Remember the 1995 Limited Edition Swarovski Eagle?
When Swarovski produced its first NLE (Numbered Limited Edition) figurine – The Eagle. it retailed at $1750, and only 2,900 of 10,000 issued were allocated for purchase to USA SCS members. You could only purchase a quantity of one.
In Canada and Europe, you didn’t have to be an SCS member, nor was there any qualifying ‘rule’ that only one Swarovski Eagle per customer could be purchased.
The Eagle sold out in the USA very quickly, and as a result, Secondary market prices began to skyrocket. By 1998, the Swarovski Eagle was selling in the $6500 – $7500 price range. From 2003 to 2005, prices remained stable at $4900 to $5500.
Then, we began hearing first hand stories from our CFC Members about the feathers becoming unglued. During shipping, the crystal feathers detached, and they would rattle around inside the box, causing the feathers and other crystal components to become nicked and chipped, and seriously devaluing its worth on the secondary market.
Some secondary market specialists changed their shipping policies and some dealers even ceased selling it. The risk of damage was simply far too great. But worse yet, our crystal fanatics started telling us that the Eagle’s feathered wings were coming unglued in display cases. It happened to us. And, the Swarovski ‘warranty’ had long expired (normal warranty periods are within the 3 year range).
In 2007 and 2008, prices dropped even more dramatically, with an average selling price of just under $4,000.
So, just What happened here ? Why is the glue not holding ?
- In 1995, a lot less was known about the adhesive and its long-term bonding on very large figurines. Remember…this was the biggest figurine ever produced by Swarovski.
- There was such little surface area to glue, it made it more difficult to maintain and hold a strong bond.
In 2012, there are only a few completed sales on eBay, with prices ranging between $2400 – $2900, and a lot of secondary market specialists who shy away from offering the Eagle to their customers.
I would not recommend buying the 1995 Eagle. It truly does not matter if the Eagle is on display or safely stored in its shipping carton, detachment of the feathered wings is a serious problem.
And, while this article is not positive in nature, I hope that it does provide some insight if you are giving some consideration to purchasing the 1995 Swarovski NLE Eagle – just don’t do it!
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