Rebuild or Replace?

Thread: Rebuild or Replace?

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  1. #1
    Member mjbernier's Avatar
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    Rebuild or Replace?

    I'm hoping the great sages here can offer some practical advice to me regarding what I should do with an heirloom watch.

    I have an older Seiko 7006-8007 automatic from the early '70s that belonged to my late father-in-law. My mother-in-law gave it to me after he died, and I treasure it simply for its presence. It keeps accurate time, but takes a lot of work to wind it enough just to keep it running through the night when it's in my watch box. I've had a local watchmaker look at it, and he's asking $250 to overhaul it (I don't yet have the details of exactly what he says it needs, so I can't share them; I'll edit my posting when I do). I would like to be able to give "Grandpa's watch" in the best possible working condition to one of my sons someday, but that cost seems excessively high.

    Instead of overhauling this watch's movement, would it be more practical to find a good donor watch and have the watchmaker swap them? I'm thinking this is the better choice, but wanted some input from people who know better than I do about such things.

    Thanks in advance!

    Mike

    The Collection: Too many to list
    The Wish List: Still too many to list
    The Grail: Bremont ALT1-P (blue dial)

  2. #2
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    I pay between 85.00-150.00 for a service for a wind up or auto-matic but for a chronograph they all ways charge higher for some reason about 250.00 but yours is not a chronograph.I would check a few more watch maker's out and see if they have a better price and since it was your father inlaw it's worth fixing.
    Last edited by river rat; June 4th, 2010 at 18:43.

  3. #3
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    The problem with a donor watch is it may not be any better than the one you have. It is a lot of work doing an overhaul and if that price includes any necessary parts then it may not be a bad deal. If you can find a NOS movement that would be the best way to go but always research the source to be sure it is a true new old stock.
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  5. #4
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    Have the service done and keep that watch original. Even if you find another movement the oils in that one will still be dried up regardless of whether it's NOS or old.

  6. #5
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    Shop around for the, service some shops don't like working on vintage watches, and charge accordingly.

  7. #6
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    I've gotten away with linking to him before, so I'll try it again ...

    I use Shane Ede in Toronto, Ontario
    http://watch-repairs.vrx.net/
    I think his prices are up about $10 from those posted. Highly recommended by me and several other forum regulars.


    I know that other people have used "Genway" (another user here on WUS) and have recommended him (I think there's a post here in the vintage section if you search for it). I forget where he is based.

    Based on a poll I saw a couple of years ago, most people pay, on average, about $100 USD for a complete disassembly, cleaning, and re-oiling during reassembly. Replacement parts (which is a real possibility) would cost extra.

    Most watchmakers listed at the NAWCC site could handle it. There are also watchmakers that tend to specialize in Seikos (check the Seiko forums) which can be handy since they might have a stockpile of replacement parts.


    $250 seems high, but if the watchmaker looked at the movement, he's in a position to make a much better estimate of costs than we can.

    BTW, the numbers on the case back identify the movement (I'm guessing you already knew that since you already know it's a 7006), the model, and the serial number which allows you to determine the year and month it was made.

  8. #7
    Member Niccolo's Avatar
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    One of the mods in the Seiko sub forum specializes in servicing and modding Seikos. Forum name is V8.

    http://www.motorcitywatchworks.com/
    Cataratas do Iguaçu, Brazil => http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-9KyiwSscdo

  9. #8
    Member gatorcpa's Avatar
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    $250 is very high for basic service of a simple rotor automatic watch. It might be worthwhile to call CoServ, which is Seiko customer service in the US:

    1111 Macarthur Boulevard, Mahwah, NJ 07430, U.S.A
    Tel:+1-201-529-3316
    Fax:+1-201-529-4525
    E-mail:[email protected]

    They may be able to help. I've heard they still fix up the old chronographs.

    Just in case you want to see the watch the original poster is writing about:





    The watch was given to me for my birthday in 1974. Wore it every day for about six years until I was in college and quartz LCD's became cheap enough for a starving student. Put it away for many years and forgot about it until I got into collecting vintage watches and remembered that I had my very own "vintage" watch.

    Picked it up after 25 years in a drawer in the original box and started right up. All the nicks, scratches and crud were created by yours truly.

    It will be serviced and passed on to my nephew soon.

    Have a great weekend,
    gatorcpa

  10. #9
    Member AbslomRob's Avatar
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    I wouldn't call an auto with a day and date a "simple" watch, and seiko's can be finicky at the best of times. I'd be curious to see what this one is including in the price.
    My growing collection of "affordable" vintages: http://www.abslomrob.com

  11. #10
    Member mjbernier's Avatar
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    Re: Rebuild or Replace?

    Quote Originally Posted by AbslomRob View Post
    I wouldn't call an auto with a day and date a "simple" watch, and seiko's can be finicky at the best of times. I'd be curious to see what this one is including in the price.
    I picked up the watch from the watchmaker today, unserviced. When I asked what the price quote included, I was basically told it was a typical COA -- tear down, clean everything, reassemble and oil, and adjust the timing if needed. From the posts I've been seeing here since this started, it sounds to me that they're being a bit steep in their pricing for the service. I don't know if that's because they have so much work to do that they're overpricing to turn some customers away (not likely with this economy), or because I live in a small town and they have a monopoly (they're the only watchmaker around here) so they price accordingly.

    I'll definitely check out the other suggestions offered by several folks here since my initial post. And yes, those posted photos are indeed the model I have. It's a great little watch, and has always kept near-perfect time. I'll keep everyone posted on my progress.

    Mike

    The Collection: Too many to list
    The Wish List: Still too many to list
    The Grail: Bremont ALT1-P (blue dial)

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