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Breitling Datora in need of service...

  1. Burnt

    Burnt Jan 31, 2020

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    My brother-in-law came by last night to solicit my thoughts on some watches he’s been given by an elderly friend of his. There were several quality pieces but this one in particular he’s committed to wearing. I checked it out to the extent of my knowledge and everything seems to be in working order, but I cautioned him against even infrequent wear until it’s had a proper service.
    I believe the movement is a Valjoux calibre 88, though I was unable to locate any markings to confirm that. I’m in need of a confirmed identification of the movement, a referral to a watchmaker experienced working on them and a general idea of the cost to fully service the movement and case. I realize there are plenty of variables to consider when answering the cost question, but he has the resources and after our discussion last night is committed to either doing what’s best for the watch or not wearing it. The watch is in my possession so if there’s a particular area where another picture will help it’s available on short notice. Your opinions, experiences and recommendations are welcomed, with much thanks in advance.
     
    8F867C59-387D-4E59-8015-44A5BB33F44E.jpeg 7475963C-822F-4C90-B664-96343F57ADE3.jpeg 2B54B269-BF99-4EFE-A5D0-F7994CC9114B.jpeg 349D3003-C948-4BA4-8FC8-EE0BDFF44A78.jpeg 7F930D23-3529-4D5E-BE25-DD0543047122.jpeg 00D3D82E-B4EA-4408-A41E-AA55151F74EB.jpeg 4CBEA0A4-F327-4C24-A077-7D33FC59859B.jpeg
  2. Braindrain

    Braindrain Jan 31, 2020

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    Aren't those a Valjoux 726? In any case, it's a very complicated mvmt to service. Prices do vary depending where you're at but it's going to come out at the higher end.

    And we're talking service with a trusted 3rd party watchmaker and not Breitling, right?
     
  3. Burnt

    Burnt Jan 31, 2020

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    I can’t verify your thoughts on what calibre it is, but I think we’re in agreement that this is a job best taken on by a craftsman. I’m 40 miles east of Orlando, though finding the right watchmaker is more important than convenience.
     
  4. Ninja2789

    Ninja2789 Jan 31, 2020

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  5. GandOsDad

    GandOsDad Jan 31, 2020

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    Just an absolute gorgeous watch
     
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  6. Burnt

    Burnt Feb 1, 2020

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    It’s a VERY nice watch with universal lines. The case width is 38mm without the crown and 41mm including it, while lug width is 21mm and lug to lug distance is 46mm. It sits very comfortably on my smallish wrist yet is large enough to appear modern at a glance, but the classic proportions really shine through on my brother-in-law’s 8” wrist, something he notices and appreciates. It’s nice seeing someone who’s not necessarily a “watch guy” realize the beauty of a design from another era, and to my thinking that’s what defines timelessness.
     
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  7. Burnt

    Burnt Feb 12, 2020

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    Just an update. I’ve located a watchmaker who came highly recommended and will be delivering the watch this weekend. Once I have an estimate and other particulars I’ll post those as well as it may be helpful to others here. That, and I can’t stand threads without resolution.
     
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  8. janice&fred

    janice&fred Feb 12, 2020

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    she's a stunner that's for sure! Good luck in the quest for a servicing.
     
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  9. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    Its an extremly rare watch, only 12 pieces were made by Breitlingin a screw back case.
    I sold one for 18.000,- Euro plus 22% commission in an auction some years ago.
    http://www.cornettedesaintcyr.fr/html/fiche.jsp?id=8133067
    There are a lot of fakes in the net for small money around 5000,- Euro,inexperienced collectors can't tell the difference.
    Your watch is absolutly genuine and original in every detail.
     
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  10. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    My had the serial number 740194, only 2 numbers earlier.
     
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  11. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    Here is one of the bad fakes that have been on the web for years
     
    Breitlinn804-dif[1].jpg
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  12. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    Another fake, shown in Breitlingsource
     
    804example-1[1].jpg
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  13. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    one mor fake sold in Antiquorum auction
     
    Antiquorumfake.jpg
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  14. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    and here the most primitive fake, found in the R-L-X forum. Made in a LePhare case, it was originally a LePhare, now faked to Breitling.
     
    DatorafakeRLX.jpg
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  15. Time-classics

    Time-classics Feb 18, 2020

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    every Breitling Datora is signed with "Breitling Datora" on the dial, never only with "Breitling"
     
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  16. bgrisso

    bgrisso Jun 30, 2020 11:45am

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    Thats a stunning watch, and huge case size !
     
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  17. Burnt

    Burnt Jun 30, 2020 1:16pm

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    Thank you. Wish it was mine but it belongs to my brother-in-law and it has a story. He was given MANY watches by a close family friend after her husband passed early this year. He wanted to compensate her as a way of helping out but she refused to accept anything at all for a bunch of old watches. He’s not a watch guy and didn’t know what any of them were so he planned to take them to a pawn shop and asked me to look at a couple of them first so he knew what he should expect in return. That “couple” of watches he wanted me to look at was actually six large shoeboxes full of watches, dirt, tangled bracelets and dry-rotted straps. Most only had sentimental value if that, but the Breitling was in one of those boxes. Also found a very nice late 50s Longines, a first year production Seiko Bell-Matic, some early 20th century Hamilton pocket watches and a few other interesting pieces of lesser value. The Breitling as well as the Longines caught his eye (good taste!) so he decided to keep those two for himself. I told him it was going to cost him to keep the Breitling in particular, so he was understandably excited when I gave him a ballpark value. He immediately asked me to throw it on a strap so he could begin wearing it daily. Luckily he agreed to let me have it serviced before he destroyed the bone-dry movement, so that’s where it is currently. The Longines was a simpler service and I had my local guy take care of that one, but for the Breitling I did some research and got references before delivering it to someone up to the job. Since the widow refused to accept anything for the watches we decided to anonymously help her out so she couldn’t return the money or feel uncomfortable in any way about it. My brother-in-law could afford to both keep the two watches he really liked and do the honorable thing in more-than-fairly compensating a very deserving woman. I gave him an idea of what a thorough service would cost on top of the watch’s value and that parts would likely add to that total, but that’s not an issue for him (it would’ve been for me!). So I get to do the legwork and can borrow it whenever I want, but when it’s all said and done he’ll have a wonderful watch in top running condition to remind him of the friend he lost. I enjoyed discovering that little treasure but the real reward I’ll never forget was the look on that saintly woman’s face when my brother-in-law and I were helping her clean out her garage a few Saturdays ago and “discovered” a significant amount of cash in yet another old shoebox. Maybe that’s why I’ve always had a hard time throwing out perfectly good shoeboxes.
     
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  18. bgrisso

    bgrisso Jun 30, 2020 1:31pm

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    it looks to be in great condition. you might consider trying to stabilize the lume in the minute hand so nothing more is lost....
     
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  19. Burnt

    Burnt Jun 30, 2020 1:39pm

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    Good eye, and thank you. I’ll bring that concern up to my watchmaker.
     
  20. dsacks30

    dsacks30 Jun 30, 2020 2:53pm

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    I’d recommend sending it to Mark Heist at:

    https://horologicalservices.com/

    He specializes in vintage Breitling, and given the complexity of that movement and the probability that it needs some replacement parts a specialist is your best bet.