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  1. momentomori Apr 30, 2021

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    Hello, all!

    So, as some of you may know, I purchased my first Rolex earlier this year, and I absolutely love the piece. Thing is, it has been running so poorly, losing 15 minutes somedays, a few minutes other days. I sent it in to the Rolex service center in Dallas, and the quote came back today: $1100 USD for a full service, new crown, and new hands. (I paid $4600 USD for it). Here is a photo of the original watch
    [​IMG]
    Now, I wouldn't mind paying this price, but the thing is that after this service, the lume on the hands will no longer match the dial. Further, they said they would not do the service unless the hands were replaced, because the hands have moisture damage, and this damage could impact the movement if pieces of lume fell off and got into the movement (is that true?)

    Yes, I could replace the dial so that the hands match, but then that's another $450 USD.

    I guess what I want to know is this: What would you do? Do you drop like $1500 USD into it, or try to sell it as is? Find a new service provider?

    I am so confused.

    I do like the tapestry dial option they sent over, but then does changing the dial and hands ruin the integrity of the watch? Impact resale value?[​IMG]
     
    Edited Apr 30, 2021
  2. Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker Apr 30, 2021

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    This is why people don't usually send vintage watches to the service center.

    I would find an independent watchmaker to service it who can maintain the vintage aspect of the watch for you.
     
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  3. momentomori Apr 30, 2021

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    Gotcha! Only reason I sent it there is because of the great reviews I had seen on Rolex Forms, folks who said the vintage charm did not suffer as a result, that the integrity was maintained. I guess I should have gone with my gut and taken it back to M and B where I got my Speedy serviced.

    Thanks, Archer!
     
  4. mrs_LA May 1, 2021

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    That’s a very nice looking watch. You can definitely get it serviced by a qualified watchmaker for much less! Where are you located? I can suggest one of my watchmakers for a service if you don’t mind sending the watch out of state.
     
  5. kip595 May 1, 2021

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    Definitely go independent - there are a good handful of places that specialize in vintage Rolex and you'll be able to keep it original/near-original where it counts (hands, dial, etc).

    Good luck!
     
  6. Dan S May 1, 2021

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    This is what I always do with vintage Rolex. I wouldn't even waste my time sending it to an RSC. You can have the hands stabilized if you are concerned about lume loss.
     
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  7. Archer Omega Qualified Watchmaker May 1, 2021

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    It's odd to me that anyone well versed in vintage watches would actually recommend the service center, and say that the vintage aspects would be maintained. Service centers really don't tend to work this way.
     
  8. Dan S May 1, 2021

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    I don't think the OP's characterization of the RF consensus is really accurate from my perspective, certainly not on the vintage sub-forum there. This question is asked over and over again, and 90% of the suggestions are always to send it to an independent. Yes, there are a few members who repeatedly recommend an RSC, and of course there are some people who have a good experience with that. I think some Rolex owners have sort of a worshipful attitude about their watches, and think that only Rolex should work on them. And who knows, if the OP's hands had been in slightly better condition, maybe everything would have gone smoothly. But it's a crapshoot without much of an upside IMO.
     
  9. southtexas May 1, 2021

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    Most people in the vintage section of TRF would say the exact opposite- do NOT send it to RSC. Your watch is lovely and can be easily serviced by most competent watchmakers. Where are you located?
     
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  10. jaguar11 May 1, 2021

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    Could you not just stipulate that you do not want to have the hands replaced? I had no issues whatsoever with my 16800 that I have received back from Kings Hill yesterday. They were perfectly compliant with my instructions as to what I did and did not want doing to my watch and it always feels special when they come back from their maker. Over the years I have never had any problems with multiple services on "vintage" watches apart from one occasion when the dial was swapped on my 5512. This was I accept because of my ambiguous instructions and the matter was resolved to my perfect satisfaction. Good luck either way!
     
    DSC_0086.JPG
    Edited May 1, 2021
  11. Dan S May 1, 2021

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    Some repairs are optional and some are required. If you do not agree to a required repair, the watch is returned to you.
     
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  12. jaguar11 May 1, 2021

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    They insisted on replacing the dial on my above watch. However, after short discussion with a delightful lady on the telephone the repair was approved with an exclusion applying to any damage caused by a "degrading" dial caused apparently by water (which is categorically not the case). The dial on my 16800 has been "degrading" nicely for me since the mid 1990's so I was happy to take the risk. I assume however that there could be circumstances where they could be more resolute with the application of less flexibility and perhaps different service centres have their own peculiarities with what they will and will not do. However, no harm in asking.
     
  13. Dan S May 1, 2021

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    That's interesting to hear, and it certainly seems that different people have different experiences with different RSCs. It's good that they had some flexibility in your case, since the dial and hands on your watch are developing some lovely patina. I have also heard some anecdotal stories about some people being able to receive parts that are replaced back from the RSC, even though their quotes general indicate that parts are provided strictly on a replacement basis. Generally they will not return parts that are removed, but supposedly they sometimes do. Apparently they have some discretion.

    So ... indeed ... there is definitely no harm in asking.
     
  14. jmnav May 2, 2021

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    May this depend on geography? It's my understanding that, under EU regulations, repaired parts must be returned to the owner (those parts are theirs, after all). There may be some caveats, though, like those parts that require special disposal treatment (toxic, radiactive, etc.), or price discounts if you agree to the vendor retaining the old part, etc.

    That's absolutely true.
     
  15. jmnav May 2, 2021

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    Hi:

    I suppose it depends in how you approach your ownership. If it's that of a collector/speculator, you are probably better off maintaining the watch as original as possible, so I'd take the path of an independent watchmaker that can abide to doing the very minimal to the watch as to put it in acceptable running condition (losing 15min/day would certainly impact resell value if you disclose it).

    On the other hand, if you approach the situation as a "mere user" of a fine wristwatch, I'd take it to Rolex to have it fully overhauled, dial included, not necessarily because lack of confidence on independent watchmakers, but because how this market works (not every indy will have access to all kind of parts, and you lack a "quality baseline", so you still have to find the "proper" professional). This will have an impact to the watch's resell value but then, if you want to use the watch, so what? I for one would want the watch to work and look as near to new as possible while using it, and once (if) I sell it, I'm its user anymore, so not my problem.
     
  16. Larry S Color Commentator for the Hyperbole. May 2, 2021

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    A modern Rolex, purchased new or late model used should go to the factory service network. Vintage is most likely not going anywhere near water and can be serviced by a competent watchmaker. The shop I use charges just a bit north of $500 for oysters. They have done a superb job with my 1675 and 5513.
     
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  17. WatchCor May 2, 2021

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    Yeah, absolutely and some people choose to do so. Most of them are however shocked when they decide to sell their 4600$+1500$ RSC serviced Rollie and realize that it's virtually unsellable or only at painfully low price. RSC service however doesn't diminish a watches "heirloom" value.

    I am happy that OP decided to inform himself and gather opinion of others in this matter. It's up to the OP to decide which choise he makes.

    I personally would agree with @Larry S ; RSC for modern Rolex timepieces , independent watchmakers for vintage(and neovintage) pieces.
     
    Edited May 2, 2021
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  18. jmnav May 2, 2021

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    But then, I think Rolex also charges just a bit north of $500 for oysters (I might be utterly wrong, if so, please, correct me).

    If I'm right about prices, how is not preferable Rolex, with clear quality expectations, including water tightness, and two-year world-wide guarantee at any Rolex official center?
     
  19. Larry S Color Commentator for the Hyperbole. May 2, 2021

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    Please read the prior posts on this thread for your answer.
     
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  20. airansun Seasons will pass you by May 3, 2021

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    I had exactly the opposite experience with a RSC when I sent my 1016 into them, about twenty something years ago. They would not service it without replacing the dial with a then current (white gold surrounds) dial. :eek: ::puke::

    I spoke to an RSC woman on the phone for at least fifteen minutes, pleading my case. I was incredulous that Rolex would so cavalierly destroy their own heritage and I finally told her so. She was entirely unimpressed. “They’re just tools after all, just tools!” I wonder how many thousands of collectors she’d told that to.

    I had them send the watch back to me. Thank goodness they alerted me beforehand.

    You guys have seen my 1016 before.

    EA262C4C-EEC5-471D-B11D-05693DAB6D7A.jpeg

    Just another close call for this watch. ::psy::