To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?
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  1. #1
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    Confused To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    I have read a few threads on watches, mostly on painted type dial 1940s-60s sport wristwatches.
    But what about these two circa 1920s pocket watches?






    I want to preserve their value, and I found a great watch doctor for them (Denis Carignan, NH). I am trying to decide whether or not to do the dials. Part of me wants to leave them….. but they look so crappy!!!

    What are your thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    Personally, I wouldn't touch the second one.

    The first, if it was something common like an Elgin or Waltham, I'd look for a better replacement (there are lots). If its nothing particularly special, I might get this one done.

    That said, I'd probably look for a better example as I don't really enjoy redials myself - although I have to admit to owning several.
    Last edited by trim; November 21st, 2012 at 08:20.

  3. #3
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    The first is an Audemars Piguet and the second is a Touchon, both Platinum. Neither is inexpensive or easily replaceable like an Elgin.

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    Member Eeeb's Avatar
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    To me any watch in the collection needs to be one I wear (occasionally). I don't collect museum pieces that sit in storage. I collect watches I can wear.

    That criteria makes it easy to decide to redial or not -- if the dial is not usable then it needs to be redialed. I don't think anyone would be happy wearing the AP. The Touchon, to me, is fine.

    But your criteria may be different...
    "Forever is composed of nows." - Emily Dickinson

    "The watch has to be surrounded by a history.
    You need more than just a great design. You need to create an atmosphere around the product.
    Who is the company behind it? Why are they using this material?
    People need to be able to identify the watch with themselves. It's based on emotion." - Ralph Furter

    ...that's just my opinion and I've been wrong before and will be again and might be now!

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    Member radger's Avatar
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    This looks to be tarnish on a silver dial, the numbers, either gold alloy or gilt are also tarnished.
    Tarnish on silver dials is easily removed if this is the case, and the dial will look like new.

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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    Quote Originally Posted by sunnydayrain17 View Post
    The first is an Audemars Piguet and the second is a Touchon, both Platinum. Neither is inexpensive or easily replaceable like an Elgin.
    See, that was critical info. Then no is my answer.

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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    This is my thought also.


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    Member john*thomas's Avatar
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    There is no way I would touch the second one. I would see if someone could clean the first one up.

  10. #9
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    Thanks for the input! You guys on here are the best.

    Given the discussion: I think since these are steel or some sort of metal brushed dials the consensus is that there is not much to “restore”. Restoration will likely consisted of removing dirt/corrosion and re-brushing, along with re-gilding of the numerals and markers. I don’t think it will not likely cause any noticeable inaccuracies, authenticity issues, or value degradation (which is what I am actually worried about.)

    And in my opinion it will make them look better : )

  11. #10
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    Re: To Restore or Not to Restore? Dials/Faces?

    Here they are finished:

    I really like how the Touchon turned out:


    After:


    Before:


    However, the AP was not as stellar. I am unable to get a picture of it, but the applied numerals turned out slightly warped.
    laikrodukas likes this.

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