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  1. joso

    joso Oct 19, 2015

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    hi, im new here on the forum. i am also new to vintage watches but have fallen in love with omega,s from the early 70,s. i have started to collect these cool watches but have made my first error, to go to a guy that told me he is very good with watches, and cheap. so now my first watch is partly destroyed-the starburst finnish is full of scratches.is it a dum idea to repolish and renovate a speedmaster mk iii at bienne if you want to keep the value on it. regards john
     
  2. Northernman

    Northernman Oct 19, 2015

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    Hi and welcome.
    Bienne is not a cheap way to go.
    If it is only the case that has been mangled then at least one of our forum members @photo500 may be your man.
    But first a hint: no pictures normally = no advice, but since you are a new kid in town you are let of with only a warning:)
     
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  3. Andy K

    Andy K Dreaming about winning an OFfie one day. Oct 19, 2015

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    Hi and welcome. I will echo @Northernman and say we need pics! But based on your post I'd advise against Bienne - they'll charge more than the market value of a non-mint Mark III and they're likely to replace some parts that will drastically affect the value of the watch.
     
  4. Northernman

    Northernman Oct 19, 2015

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    Just to illustrate: Here are two Omega "jumbo" ChronoStop cases Adam/@photo500 did for me.
    Both had been butchered and polished far beyond what I presumed was possible to rescue.
    I was wrong!
    [​IMG]
     
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  5. Stewart H

    Stewart H Honorary NJ Resident Oct 19, 2015

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    It all depends on where in the world you are. If you are in Europe, I would recommend contacting STS in the UK. They can work wonders with cases.

    I guess you have found out, the hard way, that the best watchmakers are not necessarily the best people to work on the case. There is a watchmaker that I trust implicitly with my best pieces but I wouldn't ask him to re-finish a stainless steel case.
     
  6. MickeyJimmy

    MickeyJimmy Jun 30, 2020 10:48pm

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    I'm a budding watch collector, we have had Omega Speedmasters in the family for generations, hence my love of these watches. I am attemping case repair and lapping, crystal & dial replacement - my question is where or what is a good resource to get repair procedures and techinques from ie cyrstal replacement and OEM lapping specifications??
    The photos here show the watch, its still in good going condition, 20200625_211606.jpg 20200626_080951.jpg 20200626_080958.jpg 20200626_201538.jpg maybe someone would have some advice for a newbie on what I should do with this watch...
     
  7. nkhandekar

    nkhandekar Jul 1, 2020 9:51am

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    Bienne do a great job refinishing cases...contrary to popular opinion, I think they do a teriffic job for what they do. You just have to understand the parameters. On a Mark III speedmaster the case finish is critical. But there are alternatives suggested on the forum and they are worth exploring too.
     
    Edited Jul 1, 2020 10:42am
  8. SkunkPrince

    SkunkPrince Jul 1, 2020 10:06am

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    A watchmaker at the Rolex dealer was telling me about the new machines they received recently for refinishing cases. It sounds like quite the complex process and I don't think I would trust anyone without the proper machines (and training/experience!) to refinish a case.
     
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  9. smorrisonmd

    smorrisonmd Jul 1, 2020 10:47am

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    If you are in the US, I would send to Tyler Morehouse. He has done some fantastic work for me.
     
  10. guwipa

    guwipa Jul 1, 2020 11:22am

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    Hi MJ,

    To me it clearly depends on what you want. Is it an inheritated piece so a complete refurbishment would probably drop its character and sentimental worth to the owner and so should end up with a sole service to the mvmt, cristal and sealing exchange and a General clean up of case and bracelet (only my 2ct).

    If not, the case#s appearance is very crisp so would lead me to the assumption that it's been untouched yet. so you're open for both Options but going the second way will mean to also swap dial/hands, refurbish the bracelet what is a cost factor of ist own to this game and at the end of the day you'll notice that the potentially created worth, your taken action/efforts should let one think of, doesn't meet the crude reality.

    So could be worth to think twice ;)

    and greetings from mine (original dial/hands but restored mvmt/case, new cristal/seals).
    Mark III d.jpg Mark III e.jpg Mark III g.jpg

    Cheers,

    Winny
     
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  11. MickeyJimmy

    MickeyJimmy Jul 2, 2020 5:53pm

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    Thanks for your input, I will be exploring all options, im a stickler for original 1st class restoration!
     
  12. MickeyJimmy

    MickeyJimmy Jul 2, 2020 5:59pm

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    Thanks SkunkPrince I hear you, and have been told that a lot, however I'm a fitter & turner/boiler maker by trade so steel polishing and finishing machinery and techniques are not new to me, the machinery used for this operation is basic but very intricate, if you have a love for watches and attention to detail I dont see why it couldnt be done on ordinary (for want of a better word) machinery, the experts on here can comment otherwise, it would be a welcome discussion.
    Cheers Michael
     
  13. MickeyJimmy

    MickeyJimmy Jul 2, 2020 6:13pm

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    Hi Winny, love that watch!
    And your input is much appreciated, I have 2 x mkIII and a mkII, these are not inherited, with your experience, from a watch enthusiast perspective who likes a good clean new looking watch, these watches would be worth more as fully refurbished than an original watch that a collector might buy, am I right?
    As I mentioned to SkunkPrince, I'm a fitter & turner/boiler maker by trade so steel polishing and finishing machinery and techniques are not new to me, but I have never atempted this type of intricate work before...........................
    Welcome anyone's thoughts and comments!

    Best Regards
    Michael
     
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  14. Pepe Lucas

    Pepe Lucas Jul 2, 2020 6:20pm

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    image.jpg image.jpg I am a sucker for beat up pieces that had a rough life. I found a Mark III a few years back and decided to send it to Omega for restoration. They were not able to do much on the case but later I found and old stock replacement and bought it. I took it to my regular watch maker and he swapped the cases. I really like it. I know that some people are going to say that the value of the watch is gone but I just wanted to see how it looked when new and I enjoy it.
     
    image.jpg
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  15. SkunkPrince

    SkunkPrince Jul 2, 2020 8:38pm

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    It's your watch and your money. Anyone tells you to do anything different, you can tell them to stick it, if you want.
     
  16. guwipa

    guwipa Jul 3, 2020 3:21am

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    Hi Michael,

    I have to confess, despite of being a collector (and as such should always go the pure collectors way and leave the pieces in their original condition as they are), i sometimes prefer the restored fresh look, esp. when watches come with a low collectable "worth", such as this one here. It's a worn down 166.089 which I had to have for its brilliant 752-ish mvmt (the last with a swan neck reglage). here I#m very happy to have it as a complete overhauled one and wear it pretty often. So from this point go for it and bring your MKIII back to old glory :thumbsup::thumbsup:

    before:
    front alt.jpg

    and after

    P3291138.JPG Image.jpg

    Best,

    Winny

     
    Edited Jul 3, 2020 3:36am
  17. ChrisN

    ChrisN Jul 3, 2020 3:39am

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    Hi Michael

    It's a skill like any other but it sounds like you may be part way there anyway. Do a search for "lapping" and that will give you an idea. Here is a post from Al showing a lapping machine in action:
    https://omegaforums.net/threads/time-for-a-new-watchmaker.102412/#post-1337892

    Obviously, try refinishing on something less precious first... I'd be inclined to make a little jig to hold the case in a particular orientation so you can rotate the case and get a uniform finish. It depends on whether you are doing this by hand or by a machine tool. I remember @JimInOz publishing a thread where he refinished a Seiko case by hand with a little jig. I can't find it at the moment.

    It's your watch and you have some finishing skills already so, make sure to take it slowly and a little at a time. You'll already know that:D.

    Crystal replacement on this model is not as easy as many and dial replacement is far more difficult, particularly in replacement of the hands so, I would leave the latter to a watchmaker.

    Good luck, Chris