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216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi, As I look at the hundreds of vintage watches on ebay it strikes me just how many would look fantastic with a bit of refurbishment.
I have no watchmakers tools except for fitting straps into lugs. I dont know what material dials are made of and whether I use a cotton bud soaked in warm water or something stronger,
I dont know how to remove a crystal and whether I need a special tool for that.
I am thinking of learning on an old beaten up watch to start with but would really appreciate some useful tips to get me started please. TIA. jack

216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi Guys, I have read several articles about refurb watches. All seem to agree that the dials are the biggest problem and can very easily be completely ruined, Many advise to leave well alone.
I have decided to spend a little more money and buy vintage watches that do not need refurb work.
On the subject of purchasing there is a company called Eashland in Florida which sells a great many expensive watches that need a refurb. A new strap is fitted and thats it.
I dont understand why they dont employ a refurb guy and once finished they could increase the prices.
In the vintage watch world do guys wear watches that scream out for a refurb but the condition is part of the charm.
I like my watches to look mint as far as possible. Is that a strange approach. jack

Super Moderator
17,459 Posts
Certainly not! There's nothing wrong with that mindset at all. In fact, it's rather normal. Just accept that there are those
who don't want their watches to look too rejuvenated for the simple reason that nobody will believe you when you tell them your pristine looking watch has in fact over 72 years of wear on it.
Personally, I'm all over the place on this one.
Most of my watches don't look new, and I'm ok with that:
Clock Watch accessory Measuring instrument Font Analog watch

There are a few I'm actually STILL trying to clean up a little:
Watch Analog watch Watch accessory Clock Natural material

and there are those (like my Elgin Foch, named after the World War 1 French General Ferdinand Foch)
I want to keep just like it is, because I blow people's minds when they find out it's 103 years old!
Watch Brown Analog watch Clock Watch accessory

I'll touch up the case with a Cape Cod cloth, but thats as far as I'll go.
The bottom line is: Different strokes for different folks!

216 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Bill, I can see both sides. when I look at my watch to find out the time I want to be treated to a shinning case and a clear a crisp dial and crystal. Therefore some would say why not buy a new watch. Agreed but they dont have the soul and personality of vintage models. Your watches look fabulous and if only they could talk, especially the WW1model.
I can carefully polish gold plate and crystals but a dial is too much for me but probably the most expensive part of a refurb. My Gruen Veri Thin looks new and possibly defeats the whole object of owning a vintage watch.
Still which ever view we take we have a fantastic hobby that need not cost a fortune. jack.
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