Advice on used watch purchase
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  1. #1
    Member kak1154's Avatar
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    Advice on used watch purchase

    I recently purchased a pre-owned Vacheron Constantin Overseas Gen 2 from a well-known dealer. I saw the watch listed, looked at the pictures, called to ask a little about it, and found out it was a 2016 model year, and it had been serviced by VC just a month earlier. I negotiated a price and wired the money the next day.

    I was on vacation, and as such, did not get the watch in my hands until after the end of the return policy. When I opened the box and looked at the watch, I noticed that the bezel was dinged up and it had a small chip in the crystal. (Pictures below.)

    What would you do in this situation?

    Some questions I'm anticipating:
    Can you return it? No. The return period has passed.
    Could you see the damage in the pictures of the listing? I'm not sure, the listing has been removed. I didn't see/notice the damage before I bought it.
    Did you ask about the condition before you bought? I didn't ask directly if there was any damage not shown in the pictures. I was told it was fresh from service.
    Have you contacted the dealer? Yes. Basically, the only thing I know for sure is that I cannot return it and get my money back. I'm waiting to hear back from them on other options.

    Hoping to understand what a reasonable customer would do in this situation. I don't want to make any crazy demands, nor do I want to get walked on.

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    @watchalefty on Instagram

    Vacheron Constantin FiftySix Day-Date, Glashutte Original PanomaticLunar, H. Moser & Cie Pioneer, JLC MUT Moon, Vicenterra Tycho Brahe, Breitling Navitimer
    , Zenith 36'000 VPH, Habring2 Foudroyante, IWC Ingenieur 3239, Nomos Metro 38, Omega Planet Ocean

  2. #2
    Member Kwcsports's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    That looks terrible. I'd contact the seller and discuss it. If that damage wasn't disclosed, it should have been. Good Luck
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  3. #3
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    I agree.
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  5. #4
    Member SundayDuffer's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    if it's a well known dealer as you had put it... i'm sure they will right you. Good luck. If they dont...file a claim with your CC company.
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  6. #5
    Member islands62's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    Note that "fresh from service" from a dealer is not the same as true service from Vacheron Constantin. So while I think it should have been disclosed, I dont think you should expect perfection especially if it wasnt advertised as "mint" or "unworn". I think they knew not to polish that out and affect the lines and symetry of the bezel. In addition to a return period, the dealers I have dealt with also place a seal on the watch, which shows it as unworn by the client. You have to see it from the retailers point of view, that its hard for them to gauge when the damge was done.
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  7. #6
    Member kak1154's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    Quote Originally Posted by islands62 View Post
    Note that "fresh from service" from a dealer is not the same as true service from Vacheron Constantin. So while I think it should have been disclosed, I dont think you should expect perfection especially if it wasnt advertised as "mint" or "unworn". I think they knew not to polish that out and affect the lines and symetry of the bezel. In addition to a return period, the dealers I have dealt with also place a seal on the watch, which shows it as unworn by the client. You have to see it from the retailers point of view, that its hard for them to gauge when the damge was done.
    They said it was serviced by VC. Although they are also an AD for VC, so maybe I misinterpreted that. They promised and forgot to include the receipt in the package, so TBD on that.

    I agree, I shouldn't expect perfection. I could have helped the situation by asking pointed questions about condition, but I took "just serviced" as a statement of condition. They actually don't have any sort of "condition" rating in their listings.

    That's what worries me, it doesn't look like it can be fixed without replacing the bezel and crystal. To me, it's worse than scratches/scuffs/wear anywhere else.

    There is a tag on the watch that must be intact for you to return it, which I had the good sense to leave intact at least. I honestly thought they'd take it back, since they knew I was going on vacation and wouldn't have the watch for a few weeks, but I understand why they can't/won't.

    Thanks for the comments, everyone.
    @watchalefty on Instagram

    Vacheron Constantin FiftySix Day-Date, Glashutte Original PanomaticLunar, H. Moser & Cie Pioneer, JLC MUT Moon, Vicenterra Tycho Brahe, Breitling Navitimer
    , Zenith 36'000 VPH, Habring2 Foudroyante, IWC Ingenieur 3239, Nomos Metro 38, Omega Planet Ocean

  8. #7
    Member islands62's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    In that case, I would expect them to take care of the problems. But considering what is the likely cost of replacing the crystal and bezel, they are probably more likely to offer you a credit refund than actually fixing it.
    kak1154 likes this.
    IWC Aquatimer Chronograph "Jacques Yves Cousteau", IWC Portuguese 7-Day Automatic, JLC Deep Sea Cermet, JLC Tribute to Polaris 1965, Panerai 233 "Dot", Panerai 439 Oro Rosso, Patek Philippe 5130 World Time, Rolex Milgauss, Rolex Seadweller, Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph, Vacheron Constantin Overseas World Time. Vacheron Constantin Patrimony Traditionnelle Chronograph.

    IG: bvllitt

  9. #8
    Member ChronoTraveler's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    My thoughts on this: you can't expect a perfect watch when buying pre-owned, but, when someone mentions that, I expect very light scratches from normal wear, maybe some creasing on the strap and very light marks from strap changes. Anything beyond that should be disclosed by the seller, because sometimes you just can't see it from pictures.

    If this wasn't in the original ad, I'd think you have the right to ask for either a refund or a compensation to fix it. It looks very signifcant to go unnoticed.
    kak1154 and Papichulo like this.

  10. #9
    Member kak1154's Avatar
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    Update: They are looking to try and find a suitable replacement for an exchange over the next day or two. (That will be difficult imo since this was a prime example, last year produced and freshly serviced.)

    To boot, I have discovered that there is something wrong with the movement. As you move the hands forward to set the time, it gets more and more difficult to turn. Sometimes pretty tough for 15 minutes or so, then easy for the next 15 minutes. So regardless, the watch is going back to them. What I end up with in return is still in question at the moment. A refund is still not being offered, nor is a replacement bezel & crystal.
    @watchalefty on Instagram

    Vacheron Constantin FiftySix Day-Date, Glashutte Original PanomaticLunar, H. Moser & Cie Pioneer, JLC MUT Moon, Vicenterra Tycho Brahe, Breitling Navitimer
    , Zenith 36'000 VPH, Habring2 Foudroyante, IWC Ingenieur 3239, Nomos Metro 38, Omega Planet Ocean

  11. #10
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    Re: Advice on used watch purchase

    Sorry to hear kak1154.

    Definitely ask for a full refund of you are not satisfied.it doesn't make sense to give them your trust and money if they aren't honest about their product.
    kak1154 likes this.

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