It's About Time! Watch Repair

Professional Pocket Watch Repair & Wrist Watch Repair

Upper Sandusky, Ohio

Scott A. Ekleberry-Watchmaker

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SPECIALIZING IN BOTH POCKET WATCH REPAIR AND WRIST WATCH REPAIR.

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SHOPPING FOR A NEW WATCH

There are honest answers to may questions on this page. I write this as someone has seen hundreds and hundreds of watches. I hope you find the information here helpful! If you are interested in vintage pocket or wristwatches please e-mail me, I can refer you to a reputable dealer which you can trust.

QUARTZ WATCHES VS. MECHANICAL WATCHES

Some points to keep in mind when purchasing a watch

WATCH SHOPPING

What watch you purchase is in the end all up to the individual. There are some things you should be aware of that your retailer/sales person may not want to tell you, or may not even know themselves. Here are few tips to make the consumer more knowledgeable.


WATCH COMPANIES AND THE WATCHMAKER

When buying a modern watch there is something I guarantee the salesperson is NOT going to tell you, the watch parts situation.

I know this may sound a bit like "sour grapes", but it is not, it is simply information that every consumer should be told when they buy a watch, especially a high $ watch. For some more information on the subject from an English point of view here is a link to the BHI website and an article about the parts situation in England and Europe (and basically the US too) You will need to use your browsers "back" button to return to this page: http://www.bhi.co.uk/hj/February2001.htm

I hope that the more consumers become aware of the parts situation with the watch companies then the more pressure will be put on the companies by the public to sell the parts to independent watchmakers. 

Here is one customers experience with Cartier. This correspondence, reprinted here with permission, resulted from his inquiry about crystal replacement, and he asked me to share this for what it is worth:

"Thanks Scott for your prompt reply. All of this is born out of my disenchantment with Cartier and their service. The watch was given to me many years ago. The giver decided to take out the gold bezel and add small diamonds to it. The watch has performed sufficiently for years. One day the bracelet wouldnít stay clasped. I took it to Cartier to get it fixed in Dallas. I was told that because the bezel had the diamonds, it had been altered, and so they would not repair the bracelet until I had returned the watch into its original condition. I agreed to bear the expense to do this. I was then informed that in order to work on the watch I had to agree to have it serviced. I agreed to that. After the watch was returned to its original condition, and serviced, I was told that the bracelet that I had on my watch was no longer available because a better design was being used and no attempt on their part to fix the watch bracelet would be done. I had to buy the new bracelet. This occurred a few months ago. A few days ago I was in the Mall and the elevator was closing, I made an attempt to block the door and contact with the crystal was just enough to crack it. I walked over to Cartier and told the story of what happened. I didnít pay much attention to the receipt that was given me. My wife asked me if I knew the cost of the crystal replacement and while looking at the receipt I noticed no price but that I had agreed to have a crystal replacement as well as an additional service. I called back and was told that moisture could have gotten in. Needless to say I advised them that I wanted an estimate before I continued. Sorry for all the rhetoric, I just wanted to vent a little and maybe you might pass on this experience with your potential Cartier buyers. Cartier wants to be proprietary and I can appreciate thatÖbut abuses I donít find appealing. You stressed the fact that it is not a genuine crystal. I know for sure that Cartier would never touch the watch should I dare to contaminate their precious design. What am I looking forward too if I never cast a shadow on Cartierís doors again? Are people like yourself able to make the watch work?

Thank you for your help

Warren

PS I accept your terms, however the watch has been sent to Cartier. If I disagree with Cartier and their assessment of the damage the watch will be returned to me and I will send the watch to you."

You can expect the exact same thing from Rolex and some other brands if you change anything on one of their watches or use "generic" parts on or in one, they will NOT service it even if it is under warranty. As far as I am concerned if you buy something it is yours to do with as you wish. If the same thing were going on with the "Big Three" automakers there would be such a fervor in Washington D.C. that it would end very soon. It seems no one in our government cares about watches or those who make a living servicing them anymore.

Watch Company Service Centers

As long as a watch is under warranty, sending it to the watch companies service center for repair is not a problem (providing they fix it right), and will probably be mandatory if you want the watch fixed under the warranty. I have heard both bad and good things about watch service centers. Some people have had good luck with them others have sometimes had to wait up to 18 months to get their watch back, and then sometimes it STILL isn't repaired correctly! 

Before buying any type/brand of watch do some research!!!

A good place to research would be on GOOGLE. COM. You can search web sites, web pages, and newsgroups from there for the info you need to make an informed decision. If you are buying an expensive watch then you have the right expect proper service!

What brand of watch to choose?

What brand of watch would I recommend? That is also up to you, it is your money. I personally like Seiko on the low end for mechanical watches as their workmanship is very good for the price. Rolex is always a favorite pick on the high end, and they do hold their value well. Omega is a good bet also. Citizen and Seiko both make excellent quartz watches. As far as vintage watches go, American pocket watches are a good bet, especially "Railroad Grade" pocket watches. For wristwatches the vintage Bulova's and Omega's are very fine watches. Gruen also once made a very fine watch. Then of course on the high end is the vintage Rolex and Omega. In the end it is your money, buy what YOU like!!

WHERE TO BUY???

The most important advice I can give you is BUY FROM A REPUTABLE DEALER, especially if you are buying a high-end watch that is often faked. Nothing will put you off watches faster than spending $1500 + on a Rolex only to find out later it is a copy. I have seen several fake Rolex's and one fake Omega. The Omega was done so well it was impossible to tell it was a fake until I opened the case and saw the movement! I might buy a Seiko or Citizen off of e-Bay, but I would never buy a Rolex on there.

I hope you found the information on this page helpful!


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Scott A. Ekleberry-Watchmaker
It's About Time! Watch Repair
A Full Service Watch Repair Shop In Upper Sandusky, Ohio,  USA

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