Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?
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Thread: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

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  1. #1
    Member parks11's Avatar
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    Cool Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Recently took my old Royal Oyster to Rolex here in Berlin, hoping they could do an official service, but they unfortunately declined and told me that, as it was out of date, they cannot service it any more.

    As such, wanted to put it to the forum to see if anyone had any suggestions for where I could service this watch in Berlin (or abroad?)? Wondered if there were any reputable options one can DHL the watch to?

  2. #2
    Member busmatt's Avatar
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    Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Personally I'd have thought that any respectable watchmaker would be able to service it for you, I presume it's just a three hand automatic/manual, possibly with date? It shouldn't cost the earth.

    From what I've heard you might have dodged a bullet here as Rolex like to "REFURBISH" watches usually destroying decades of great patina.

    Pictures please

    Matt

    Just googled it, they mostly seem to be manual three hand no date, a doddle for a good watchmaker.

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    Last edited by busmatt; June 19th, 2017 at 18:49.
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    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    I don't know about Germany but I know that my favorite watchmaker in Paris does service vintage Rolex better than many of his competitors, his website is
    Bienvenue sur www.montresexpert.com
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  5. #4
    Member mkws's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    It's rather odd that they have declined to service it- they do service vintage watches, only they don't do it particularly well. Upon servicing, Rolex tends to swap out the dial and the hands for new ones, often inconsistent with the original (exempli gratia: contemporary Datejust flat dial with lume-filled markers and the current Rolex font, placed on a 1960s Datejust). They also polish the case, which hurts the value as well. What is more, these changes are usually irreversible, as Rolex does not give the original parts back (Omega, for example, does).

    Therefore, as Matt said, you're actually lucky that they have refused to service it.
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  6. #5
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Quote Originally Posted by mkws View Post
    It's rather odd that they have declined to service it- they do service vintage watches, only they don't do it particularly well. Upon servicing, Rolex tends to swap out the dial and the hands for new ones, often inconsistent with the original (exempli gratia: contemporary Datejust flat dial with lume-filled markers and the current Rolex font, placed on a 1960s Datejust). They also polish the case, which hurts the value as well. What is more, these changes are usually irreversible, as Rolex does not give the original parts back (Omega, for example, does).

    Therefore, as Matt said, you're actually lucky that they have refused to service it.
    Rolex always refuses to service watches that are more than 25 years old and after 25 years, they stop production of spare parts. So their refusal to service the watch is normal. You have to know a very very good independant watchmaker who services Rolex vintage watches well and who has a good spare parts stock for Rolex vintage watches. And good watchmakers who know how to restore or service vintage Rolex are not that common.
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  7. #6
    Member CRAZYBUBBA's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Any info on how JLC/VC treat this issue? I intend to die with one of those on each wrist haha

    Quote Originally Posted by georges zaslavsky View Post
    Rolex always refuses to service watches that are more than 25 years old and after 25 years, they stop production of spare parts. So their refusal to service the watch is normal. You have to know a very very good independant watchmaker who services Rolex vintage watches well and who has a good spare parts stock for Rolex vintage watches. And good watchmakers who know how to restore or service vintage Rolex are not that common.

  8. #7
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Quote Originally Posted by CRAZYBUBBA View Post
    Any info on how JLC/VC treat this issue? I intend to die with one of those on each wrist haha
    JLC as well as VC will charge you a fortune for a basic restoration or overhaul on a vintage watch. I have often read horror stories about jlc repairs or overhauls even on modern watches
    Omega the sign of Excellence since 1848. Jaeger Le Coultre Horlogerie de Luxe depuis 1833
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  9. #8
    Member CRAZYBUBBA's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    I'm beginning to dislike this hobby :P
    Maybe I'll pass on an obsolete apple watch to my kids

    Quote Originally Posted by georges zaslavsky View Post
    JLC as well as VC will charge you a fortune for a basic restoration or overhaul on a vintage watch. I have often read horror stories about jlc repairs or overhauls even on modern watches

  10. #9
    Member georges zaslavsky's Avatar
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    Re: Where to service a 'discontinued' 70s Rolex in Europe?

    Quote Originally Posted by CRAZYBUBBA View Post
    I'm beginning to dislike this hobby :P
    Maybe I'll pass on an obsolete apple watch to my kids
    As I said before to know and have a good independant watchmaker for a vintage watch or some modern watch,it is the only warranty to have your watch unmolested and period correct, going through factory is rarely a good choice
    Omega the sign of Excellence since 1848. Jaeger Le Coultre Horlogerie de Luxe depuis 1833
    22 times Olympic games timekeeper, Nasa watch supplier and holder of several world records of precision, Omega has the world's trust
    Omega and Rolex for ever
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    Zenith Swiss Watchmaking and Chronometry champion since 1865

  11. #10
    Member Dan S's Avatar
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    All three watchmakers in my smallish city are very familiar with and comfortable servicing Rolex watches from the 60s and 70s. Older Rolexes get a little trickier.

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