AR defect- what are my options?
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Thread: AR defect- what are my options?

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  1. #1
    Member fungo45's Avatar
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    AR defect- what are my options?

    I just picked up a Stormchaser that I've been looking at for quite a while. The watch was advertised as having a blemish on the AR, but I bought it anyways. The watch is only a few months old, and was purchased at Jomashop. They nicely told me to go pound sand - their warranty only covers issues with the movement. They suggested I call Ball, but I can't find a number in the US. I have not tried calling the Swiss number - instead I have filled out the enquiry form, but have not heard back.

    Any other suggestions? I would prefer to have it repaired (new crystal) but maybe I just need to have the AR coating removed.
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  2. #2
    Member Dogbert_is_fat's Avatar
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    Re: AR defect- what are my options?

    Ball Watch will warrant your watch only if you bought from an AD so you’re left out in the cold - me thinks.

    There are people who have claimed to successfully remove the AR but I have not seen one with my own eyes.

    The best option is probably to replace your sapphire glass if it bothers you too much. Otherwise, live with it if you don’t really see it unless you view it from an angle.

  3. #3
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: AR defect- what are my options?

    Since you bought it in the aftermarket, where the seller disclosed the defect prior to sales, of course you have no recourse regarding a warranty covered repair by Jomashop, and since it was purchased in the aftermarket, Ball won't cover it either--but you should have known that before you bought it. Luckily, any jeweler can remove the crystal, polish the AR off of it, and reinstall it, at a fairly low cost.

    Replacing the crystal is NOT a sensible option, but if you must have a new crystal, it would be pricey, as you would need to go through Ball, and often they require a complete movement service for any watch that they have to take apart. I would not suggest you try to remove in AR yourself. Take it to some some local competent jewelers and get an estimate for removing the AR.

    As for numbers to call regarding Ball service in the US, you simply need to look harder--you could start by asking forum sponsor, Rob Caplan, Topper Jeweler, a Ball AD, or Jeff Hess, Ball US CEO (or at least he was), Old Northeast Jewelers.
    Last edited by timefleas; September 21st, 2019 at 16:34.

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  5. #4
    Member fungo45's Avatar
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    Re: AR defect- what are my options?

    Quote Originally Posted by timefleas View Post
    Since you bought it in the aftermarket, where the seller disclosed the defect prior to sales, of course you have no recourse regarding a warranty covered repair by Jomashop, and since it was purchased in the aftermarket, Ball won't cover it either--but you knew that before you bought it. Luckily, any jeweler can removed the crystal, polish the AR off of it, replaced it, at a fairly low cost. If you want a new crystal, it would be pricey, as you would need to go through Ball, and often they require a complete movement service for any watch that they have to take apart. I would not suggest you try to remove in AR yourself. Take to some some local competent jewelers and get an estimate for removing the AR.
    Yeah, figured as much. Got a great deal on it, so figured I would take the gamble. Will still see what Ball says. Assuming they won't help, I'll just get my local guy to polish the AR off. I believe the underside also has AR coating, so should still look fine.

    Been looking around the web, and am seeing others with the same issue. Wonder what's going on with Ball?

    Sent from my CLT-L29 using Tapatalk

  6. #5
    Member timefleas's Avatar
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    Re: AR defect- what are my options?

    Quote Originally Posted by fungo45 View Post
    Yeah, figured as much. Got a great deal on it, so figured I would take the gamble. Will still see what Ball says. Assuming they won't help, I'll just get my local guy to polish the AR off. I believe the underside also has AR coating, so should still look fine.

    Been looking around the web, and am seeing others with the same issue. Wonder what's going on with Ball?

    Sent from my CLT-L29 using Tapatalk
    To me it looked like it was on the underside--but if it is the topside, then that is something you can do yourself--diamond paste and other similar products can take it off with a lot of elbow grease and a half hour of work--have done it many times--nothing to do with Ball regarding external AR issues, you see this same thing across brands--and likely that was how the watch made it to the aftermarket--after assembly, and shipment, the defect was discovered, and sold off for cents on the dollar to Jomashop, who will take just about anything "new".
    Less is More...












  7. #6
    Member Nokie's Avatar
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    Re: AR defect- what are my options?

    A fairly easy fix if it is damage on top and not underneath.

    As TF suggested, diamond/lapping paste, a Cape Cod Cloth, etc can remove the top AR coating with a little time and effort.

    If you do this, make sure to tape off everything around the crystal to avoid further issues.

    If it is underneath, a good watchmaker should be able to correct this for a minimal amount of coin.

    Good luck.
    timefleas likes this.
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  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nokie View Post
    A fairly easy fix if it is damage on top and not underneath...

    If you do this, make sure to tape off everything around the crystal to avoid further issues...
    I just got a used Hydrocarbon with an AR defect on the outside. It wasn’t disclosed but if it’s this easy to scratch, I’d rather not have it there and it’s not worth fighting with the seller...

    Anyway, I’ve read that taping the bezel is difficult to do perfectly to protect it from the efforts to polish off AR. Any tips?

    I got a great deal on it and am Ok with taking it to a local watchmaker to polish it off if there’s much chance of me ruining the bezel. I’m very handy, but also don’t want to make a $1500 screw up. Any guesstimate how much a guy in the US would charge? $100? $500?

    Thanks!

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