The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC
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  1. #1
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    The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    I have been researching the purchase of a good quality sub 2K$ GMT/UTC watch for months. I first looked at the Sinn 856 UTC, then moved on to look at many other watches, only to end up back where I started... considering the 856 UTC. Here's the thing, I am confused about the service options. I have been under the impression that this watch can be serviced by any qualified watchmaker. However, it has a copper sulphate capsule that combats moisture but must be replaced when it turns blue. Obviously, there is the option to send it back to Germany. I'm not crazy about that. I also understand that RGM services these watches in the U.S., but I have read differing reviews about this company. According to Watchbuys, they carry a supply of the copper sulphate capsules but do not make them available to outside watchmakers. Then there are those who say that the copper sulphate capsule may never need replacing so it should not be a consideration. So, what's the scoop? Five years after I buy this watch what are my options for service? Thanks!

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    Member JacobC's Avatar
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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    If you don't want to use RGM or a local guy you can always send it to Sinn. However, those capsules last a really long time. If it turns blue quickly, then you've got a seal issue and it would need to be addressed anyways.

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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    Quote Originally Posted by handcrank1 View Post
    I have been researching the purchase of a good quality sub 2K$ GMT/UTC watch for months. I first looked at the Sinn 856 UTC, then moved on to look at many other watches, only to end up back where I started... considering the 856 UTC. Here's the thing, I am confused about the service options. I have been under the impression that this watch can be serviced by any qualified watchmaker. However, it has a copper sulphate capsule that combats moisture but must be replaced when it turns blue. Obviously, there is the option to send it back to Germany. I'm not crazy about that. I also understand that RGM services these watches in the U.S., but I have read differing reviews about this company. According to Watchbuys, they carry a supply of the copper sulphate capsules but do not make them available to outside watchmakers. Then there are those who say that the copper sulphate capsule may never need replacing so it should not be a consideration. So, what's the scoop? Five years after I buy this watch what are my options for service? Thanks!


    I have a 757...I bought pre-owned, it was a year old. I did a bunch of forum reading on the capsule and some differing opinions obviously came up. Some say, depending on where you live, High VS Low humidity, the capsule will have a different lifespan. I guess this could make sense..? but then it also means the INSIDE of the case is getting some moisture from the higher humidity or leaking...? Which doesn't totally make sense.

    However... It seems very clear the only place you can get a new Capsule installed is from RGM or Sinn. I have been meaning to email Sinn and RGM about the capsule directly.

    I think the 856 UTC is also a gas filled...? ...which could also be a potential issue for your local watch maker. From reading on Sinn's website, the gas is used to "push" the moisture into the capsule.

    From my reading, only the more Basic Sinn models without the advanced technologies will be able to be serviced by you local watch maker. Anything with oil, gas, capsule etc...needs to be sent to Sinn or RGM.

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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    Quote Originally Posted by handcrank1 View Post
    According to Watchbuys, they carry a supply of the copper sulphate capsules but do not make them available to outside watchmakers. Then there are those who say that the copper sulphate capsule may never need replacing so it should not be a consideration. So, what's the scoop? Five years after I buy this watch what are my options for service?
    I have had an 856 UTC for 12+ years, and capsule is the exact same shade it was when I bought it. Unless you have moisture intrusion, it will probably last a very long time. However, if you do need it replaced, Sinn or RGM are your only options.

    Quote Originally Posted by river bum View Post
    I think the 856 UTC is also a gas filled...? ...which could also be a potential issue for your local watch maker. From reading on Sinn's website, the gas is used to "push" the moisture into the capsule.
    The capsule and the gas filling are separate technologies. The 856 UTC used to have only the capsule, then in later versions the gas filling was added. Gas filling can only be done in Germany by Sinn, but the gas filling is not necessary for the proper functioning of the watch (or the capsule).

    Edit: Bunch of people downthread saying that RGM can do the argon gas fill, so my information may be out-of-date.
    Last edited by Radharc; November 16th, 2018 at 13:11.

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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    I have an 856 B Uhr so I did quite a bit of research. When I checked last year the RGM overhaul service cost about $360 sans shipping and includes argon gas refill and a new capsule. I have heard mixed reviews too but honestly you will get mixed reviews about any service center including Omega and Richemont. The people I've talked to that have actually sent watches in to RGM didn't have any issues at all for a standard service. Keep in mind that if you have a warranty issue it may go to RGM anyway. Its a great watch, and Sinn is a great brand. Also after 8 months of ownership in Houston (high humidity) the capsule is barely showing any blue at all. I know some people have gone 6-7 years without any problems.




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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    As I understand, RGM can do everything except the oil in a UX.

    I have a 900 that has the gas (dry nitrogen) with the capsule. I don’t really know how much better it is at keeping the insides dry, but I view the capsule as an early warning. I’d much much rather look down and see blue than condensation under the crystal.

    I plan to use RGM when the time comes.

    That said, there is a plug that some models have in lieu of the capsule, perhaps that could be purchased by a favorite service guy, and just forgo the capsule and gas.

    Good luck on what ever you choose.


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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    Quote Originally Posted by nodnar View Post
    As I understand, RGM can do everything except the oil in a UX.
    That is correct, though I seem to remember reading once that the U Series in general had to go back to the mothership due to something with the crystals?

    Anywho, it seems the primary “complaint” regarding RGM is time. But most every brand out there has a long lead/wait time. Geez, even my local guy doesn’t commit to anything less than 12 weeks.
    Too many flipped...

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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    Quote Originally Posted by Radharc View Post
    Gas filling can only be done in Germany by Sinn...
    This isn’t true.


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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    Quote Originally Posted by nodnar View Post
    As I understand, RGM can do everything except the oil in a UX.
    They also can’t replace the crystal on any U-Series watches. This can only be done by Sinn in Germany.


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    Re: The Scoop on Servicing a Sinn 856 UTC

    On my Sinn 203 Ti AR is the capsule over twenty years old.
    I wear these watch often,i live it.
    After winter month the capsule colour change to blue.
    Than it commes every year in the summer sun (sometimes Dubai).
    And tada capsule turns back to white,every year.
    Friends but there Sinn capsule watches in an ofen with 60 grad and finish is same ;o)

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