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Little advice on recent 145.102 service experience

  1. Don Bocadillo

    Don Bocadillo Jul 7, 2018

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    Hi All,

    Recently had my 145.012-67SP serviced at the well known vintage Omega facility in the UK. I had the movement serviced and a vintage tear drop hand I sourced added to the watch and a new OEM crystal added, other than that the instructions were to leave the original pushers and crown in place and not to polish.

    Upon completion of the service I asked for a few pics and noticed that a lot of the lume was missing from the hour markers and the tear drop hand that originally had a little piece of tritium missing had been "restored" which I asked to be left as is prior to the service. I sent an image of the dial prior to service and was told that the service manager would look into what happened. Next thing I receive a pic of the dial which has now apparently been re-lumed without me asking for or wanting this.... is this normal? how should I address this?

    pics below:

    1. Prior to service.

    image1.jpeg

    2. Post service

    145.012.jpg

    3. Post email regarding the loss of tritium...

    T60524.JPG
     
    Edited Jul 8, 2018
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  2. MaiLollo

    MaiLollo Jul 7, 2018

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    Who did this ?
    The pictures are not the clearest, but it looks like the lume was scraped from the dial in the second pic ?
    This would be unacccpetable for a “serious” service center, especially resuming without asking for permission
     
  3. stefman

    stefman Jul 7, 2018

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    Hope it gets sorted out
     
  4. Don Bocadillo

    Don Bocadillo Jul 7, 2018

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    STS. I do of course understand that the lume can become unstable with time and can deteriorate when the dial is removed during swrviceing, but to go ahead and patch it up without asking my opinion/ permission is disconcerting.

    The 4pm plot is a good example, the original has plenty of tritium and the post service pic is almost completely washed...
     
    Edited Jul 7, 2018
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  5. ChicagoFrog

    ChicagoFrog wincer, not a bidder Jul 7, 2018

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    I wouldn't normally pile on, but I do think it's worth noting that I sent STS a straight lug Speedy earlier this year with instructions to not touch the case, service the movement, and match all of the hands to the plots on the dial (the hour/minute hand were dark brown and unattractive and the chrono hand had the rust/reddish color that can happen from time to time). When I received it back, the case and caseback had both been polished (I was beyond furious) and the hour/minute hands had been matched to the reddish chrono spear instead of the yellow lume on the dial. I don't know if Simon's departure from STS is directly related to the decline in service levels, but I was aghast upon receiving the watch and will likely never send them a vintage Speedmaster again. Just mindless work on a $XX,XXX watch.

    It's actually left me in a lurch, as I have a very nice Speedmaster that needs servicing (below) and I don't really know who to send it to in the US...sad times. IMG_8936.jpg
     
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  6. ndgal

    ndgal Jul 7, 2018

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    Send to LAWW.
    They have a new guy in that does Chronos.
     
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  7. ChicagoFrog

    ChicagoFrog wincer, not a bidder Jul 7, 2018

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    Yeah, I use them for everything. My only knock on LAWW is they take forever...would love to find somewhere that can get through a watch in 4-6 weeks instead of 4-6 months.
     
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  8. sjg22

    sjg22 Jul 7, 2018

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    Why not send to Simon?

    It’s amazing how many crappy watchmakers there are out there - I’ve had as many bad experiences as good. This site, combined with my own experience, has underlined the need to send nice watches to the best people regardless of any extra hoops (shipping, Issues at the border, etc) involved. I have a local watchmaker for things I don’t need to be perfect or are replaceable/less valuable but it’s well worth using Simon, our own Archer, LAWW, etc for the good stuff.
     
    Edited Jul 7, 2018
  9. Reborn

    Reborn Jul 7, 2018

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    Definitely not acceptable if they did what you did not ask for.
     
  10. shishy

    shishy Jul 8, 2018

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    For others who have been in similar situations -- did you complain to the company that "messed up" the watch/did you get money back or was it just a "welp, guess my watch is now worth $XXXX less I'll just never send to them anymore and move on"?
     
  11. nonuffinkbloke

    nonuffinkbloke Jul 8, 2018

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    Hello @Don Bocadillo (and @ChicagoFrog )

    Sorry to read that you've both had this experience with STS. It's a shame to spend that much money and time on two beautiful watches, and not get the results that you wanted.

    Fortunately for me, I had a good experience with Swiss Time Services, although (to be honest) the colour of the (aging effect) that was applied to the new, 'period correct' hand set was a bit lighter than I expected. Having said that, the combination of hand colour, original plot lume and brown dial, on my watch, does work very well and so I was pleased with the end result.

    I had the advantage of sitting across a table with Simon Freese, with the watch in front of us. Not so easy if communication is going via email or telephone. Maybe this stuff comes down to the way these things are communicated between the office and the workshop.::confused2::

    For example my watch was opened and assessed by Simon. He listened very carefully to my questions and concerns and then offered the appropriate advice. A few days later he left STS and the actual service was handled by another watchmaker. I was a bit worried, at the time, as I had been told by the experts on this forum that Simon was the 'top man' with this kind of work. To find out that he wasn't going to be actually doing the work was a worry at the time. As it happened, he communicate my wishes to the delegated service technician and things turned out well.

    STS is a fairly large set up and I can see how a problem could arise if the detail of a customer's requirements are not communicated accurately to the watchmaker who is actually doing the work. When I collected my watch from STS I was given a detailed account of what had happened to my watch by the boss Tony Coe. He was very helpful and told me that if I had any concerns, regarding the service, to give him a call.

    Don, have you been able to call and talk to Tony Coe about your concerns? As I said earlier, I found him to be a helpful sort of chap.

    Jonathan.
     
    Edited Jul 8, 2018
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  12. flame

    flame Speedmaster Neil Jul 8, 2018

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    Hi Don

    The lighting & reflection in picture 2 makes it very difficult to compare against the original condition shown by picture 1 IMHO....

    I would strongly recommend following the above advice and speaking directly with Tony via phone/email. Give STS the opportunity to review & respond....only seems fair !

    Best - Neil
     
    Edited Jul 8, 2018
  13. Don Bocadillo

    Don Bocadillo Jul 8, 2018

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    Hey guys, I have reached out to Leona as she was my initial point of contact. Lets see how things pan out next week...
     
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  14. Don Bocadillo

    Don Bocadillo Jul 8, 2018

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    Here is a better angle of the intermediate stage after the initial service.

    145.012.jpg
     
    Edited Jul 8, 2018
  15. Dgercp

    Dgercp Jul 8, 2018

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    Very upsetting stories, especially realizing that once the damage is done it cannot be undone.

    I live in the states and have not sent to STS. With any large service center, even STS, as @nonuffinkbloke pointed out, things can get screwed up and communication breaks down. Better when possible to use a small watchmaker that you personally know and trust, especially if it is just a routine service with no real detailed work required.

    Let us know how things work out.
     
  16. ICONO

    ICONO Jul 8, 2018

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    That looks like a half finished watch

    I am not surprised you are hitting the roof
     
  17. Davidt

    Davidt Jul 8, 2018

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    So to be clear, they haven’t relumed the dial, but some of the compound has been lost during service?

    This is unfortunate but it does happen occasionally with 59 year old tritium compound. Sometimes it just can’t be helped if it was clinging on and they’ve used a light puff of air to remove dust.

    However, if this had happened, I would expect some contact prior to shipping to advise if the issue and ask whether you want it leaving as is or touching up.
     
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  18. ChrisN

    ChrisN Jul 8, 2018

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    Is that the intermediate stage? The last photo in your first post seems to have lume on all the markers.

    Chris
     
  19. Dgercp

    Dgercp Jul 8, 2018

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    Unless I am mistaken, the dial WAS relumed!
     
  20. Don Bocadillo

    Don Bocadillo Jul 8, 2018

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    Hi Guys, this was indeed the intermediate stage after the movement service, addition of sweep hand and new glass. At this point I enquired about the missing tritium on the markers and a few days later received the image of the watch with touched up hour plots...