There is a big bag of dirty tricks for getting a watch running but only one way to do it well

Much of the watch servicing people are purchasing is a shortcut, botch, or straight misrepresentation. There is a big bag of dirty tricks for getting a watch running but only one way to do it well and avoid future issues. Here we have a watch whose mainspring barrel hasn’t been cleaned in almost 40 years but has been worked-on by many watchmakers. A watch must be fully and completely dissembled to be serviced properly and the work starts, not stops, there. Saying “disassembled” means nothing. If you shop on price, you are missing the point. Your complicated vintage watch may take 1 to 2 days to service properly and many good watchmaker’s have invested as much as the cost of your house in infrastructure and accumulated decades of experience— do the math. You need to shop on quality, true watch collecting is about what’s inside, not just a cool looking watch. Experienced watch collectors care about how their watches run and function.If you accumulate a collection of poorly running vintage watches and that somehow satisfies you (learning watchmakers aside), you are missing-out on half the fun. To be an honest person, you must fully describe how your watch runs if you sell it, not hide behind vagaries or an “as-is” disclaimer— this isn’t a game of “for me to know and you to find out.” If you know the watch has an issue, you share that with the buyer. Successful long-term watch collecting means a well maintained and well running watch collection. The terms “vintage time” losing minutes a day or stopping and accepting malfunctions are excuses— these watches are capable of running well again and serving their original purpose. That’s the idea, not strictly patina, colors, shapes, or history.

There is only one way to service a watch properly-- fully and complete disassembly and the work starts there