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Change the language on Patek 3970?

  1. TheRealMe

    TheRealMe Oct 15, 2019

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    So I’m considering buying a 3970. I was wondering if it’s possible to have Patek change the language wheel to English?

    I was told that if I take the watch in for service I can request the language wheels be changed?

    Never owned a Patek before so this is all new territory for me.
     
  2. Evitzee

    Evitzee Oct 15, 2019

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    Patek Philippe's guidelines have changed over the years so you need to clarify it with the relevant service center in your country (not your AD). They are stricter now about customizing or changing dials/hands for regular customers, if you are a very good customer they will do lots of custom stuff, but those kinds of customers aren't hanging out on these types of forums. I believe the 3970 goes back to Geneve for service as standard practice. Most collectors would not change the day/month wheels because it changes the way it came from the factory, and how it is shown on the internal books of the company. We all know how people freak out here when something is not original from the factory, the same will be true for the PP in the future. If it doesn't bother you that's fine. So just check with the service center and be prepared to open your wallet for a complete service and changing of the wheels.....and a long wait.
     
  3. TheRealMe

    TheRealMe Oct 15, 2019

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    Evitzee, thank you so much for the info and advice. It’s a German language watch, which I understand is pretty rare.

    If I produce the service papers showing the wheels being changed at the factory would that affect the value of the watch considerably?

    I mean the watch is for me, but I don’t want to hurt the value too much.
     
  4. TheRealMe

    TheRealMe Oct 16, 2019

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    Any idea how much service in Geneva and having them change out the date wheels will cost? Just curious about the ballpark figure.
     
  5. alphabeta81

    alphabeta81 Oct 20, 2019

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    Years ago when I was considering a dial change on a Patek 5040 perpetual, to change the language was $1700. Also, they do not return the original dial - once changed, the watch is returned with the new dial affixed only.
     
  6. oinkitt

    oinkitt Oct 20, 2019

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    Also note... all Pateks that are older than 20 years now have to be returned to the factory... even if its only for a new plexi!!!
     
  7. Pun

    Pun Oct 20, 2019

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    I would not change in my watch. It’s expensive and reduces the value as well. It’s also not difficult to understand the day and the month in German on my watch.
     
    lando likes this.
  8. Cad290

    Cad290 Oct 20, 2019

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    And it will take a year or so to service
     
  9. WatchTimes

    WatchTimes Oct 22, 2019

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    Keep it as is... Please!
     
  10. TheRealMe

    TheRealMe Oct 23, 2019

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    So even with factory papers showing the factory changed the language wheel, it would still reduce the value? Would it be significant drop in blue?

    Thank you so much for the advice on keeping it as is.

    I don’t want to lose the watch for a whole year.
     
  11. Pun

    Pun Oct 23, 2019

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    Yes, as I understand, any change in the original watch would impact its value considerably. Period.
     
  12. WatchCor

    WatchCor Oct 23, 2019

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    First of all I have to be honest and admit I do not own a Patek. One day I might be lucky /successful enough to be able to consider a 3970.

    Despite of that I believe that in this case your suggested course of action would not necessarily result in "drop of value".

    Assuming of course that the service is done by Patek , you retain possesion of the original date disc. Additionally one should safekeep the servicerecord and extract detailing the exchange.

    What I have understood about that reference is that condition is the ultimate defining factor for value. So if you purchase a good example , case sharp, dial pristine and hands in good condition , and do the aforementioned exchange , I personally believe that you will not experience any "value drop".

    In general @Pun advice is correct but as I understand, perpetual Pateks and especially perpetual chrono Pateks are a slightly different world.

    Just my 2cents

    P.s. ig you do decide to get it . Please post pics. Legendary watch and the ultimate grail
     
    TheRealMe likes this.
  13. Pun

    Pun Oct 23, 2019

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    I believe someone mentioned above that Patek doesn’t return the replaced piece. If that being so, it’ll be not good. Patek in future, when asked for verification, may not authenticate the said watch with replaced day wheel as original watch!
     
  14. WatchCor

    WatchCor Oct 23, 2019

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    That might be true about the original day/date discs. OP can assertain that before commiting to a service though.

    Having no prior experience with perpetual patek chronos but I find it very hard to believe that there is risk of them "not verifiyng" it IF you do the change through Patek(assuming they are willing). They have notoriously good records of every watch they produce and service they do. Additionally if you keep the service records and extract of archives I do not personally believe that this would be an issue in a future sales event.

    I guess the "simplest" thing to do would be to purchase a good example 3970 and then talk to the Patek service office about your wishes very specifically. :thumbsup:
     
    Pun likes this.
  15. Pun

    Pun Oct 23, 2019

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    I can’t get 3970 but 5146G is offered to me by my dealer. What’s you advise on that model Sir? Is it also worth buying as a classic Patek?
     
  16. WatchCor

    WatchCor Oct 23, 2019

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    Not entirely sure if you're sarcastic but there's no need to address me as sir. As I mentioned I am no authority in Patek and have yet to own one. I just like reading about Patek and dreaming of owning a Patek perp one day.

    But as you asked my opinion about the 5146g, it is great value for money, classic yet slightly sportier esthetic but a bit underrated and under the radar as of what I can gather. It has somewhat similar esthetics imo to the 3940. If I had the means I would go for either one but probably would go for a good condition 3940.

    As for alternative to 5146g is the 5346 as an Annual calendar. Absolutely stunning in my opinion and at "only" slightly higher price point. Invokes the esthestics of the most elegenantly beautiful perpetual 3448.
     
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  17. Pun

    Pun Oct 23, 2019

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    Dear I can’t be sarcastic here with anyone. It’s a great forum for very decent people. I love this community.
    My query is genuine. You don’t need to be an expert here to advise on the aesthetics of a watch.
     
    WatchCor likes this.
  18. STANDY

    STANDY schizophrenic pizza orderer and watch collector Oct 23, 2019

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    Well if you haven’t bought one yet, might be cheaper to buy one with the wheel in the language you want. ;)
     
    billving and Pun like this.
  19. Pun

    Pun Oct 23, 2019

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    Yes indeed it’s the best course of action for you.
     
    STANDY likes this.
  20. Cad290

    Cad290 Oct 23, 2019

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    A good starting question is also what type of 3970 are you thinking of buying?