Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

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Markornot
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Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Markornot » Sat Feb 16, 2019 11:02 pm

Not too long ago I bid and won a 316L blue on eBay. The winning bid was excellent at $450US but the watch, although described as excellent, was not. ( I broke my fuzzy photo rule and purchased anyway after communicating with the seller who described it actually as new but that’s another story). I learned some time ago on this forum that CW will re-case watches at a reasonable cost and I inquired and found that replacements were available so I decided to give it a whirl. The watch returned 10 weeks later, pressure tested and as good as new. The total cost for the watch and restoration which included the original canvas strap, stainless steel bracelet and rt shipping from US was $620. A bargain for essentially a new LE watch with a movement that is still under warranty.

I began to wonder if this might be way of sourcing other CW’s at very reasonable cost. FInding a real beater at a deep discount and restoring to new might be a way of buying into some real bargains.

I am curious if anyone has gone this route (meaning real beaters) and if there were any pitfalls When CW does a case replacement, it includes (in the example of the trident) the bezel, crystal and case but does not include the case back where information specific to the model are etched. I know one would want to be sure the movement was solid and that the specific case was available prior to purchasing but I’m not sure if the availability would be the same for all the color iterations for the ceramic bezels when it comes to the trident. It might be interesting to know what sort of stock is available for the various models over the years.

I had two watches re-cased, a DLC C8 and the the 316L and were happy with both with the exception of a small defect on the C8 case which CW took care of.
Mark
CW - C8 Flyer, C6 JHMk3, C7 Corsa Rosso LE, C3 Chronograph, C8 Reg | TAG Heuer F1 | Orient - Black Raven II, Bambino, Star Seeker GMT, Galant, Monarch | Seagull - Grn Military, Moon Phase | Tissot - Visodate | Steinhart - NavA Pilot MW, NavB Vintage

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by 0uatiOW » Sun Feb 17, 2019 4:53 am

Interesting story Mark. Sounds like it worked out OK for you. What surprised me most was that the repair, including postage, was “only” $180 which seems to me to be terrific value for a brand new case, bezel and crystal.

The challenge, as it always is with the bay, is to source a reliable piece in the first place. If the owner beats the watch to the state you describe, is the movement also likely to be damaged? Let’s assume the majority of owners, no matter how disrespectful they are of one of the wonders of mechanical engineering, aren’t going to open the caseback, so the warranty will be intact. Do you need the original papers for this to be the case?

Certainly sounds like an opportunity if you can find a good movement in a beaten case with all the other prerequisites. So, very well done to you - any photo?
My name is 0uatiOW, but before you ask, no I don’t.

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Markornot » Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:30 am

0uatiOW wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 4:53 am
- any photo?
In all their glory😉
93D273AF-DCB0-42B4-ACCA-D609CF2D57F4.jpeg
84032F07-6006-4EC5-91C6-20BB96E3BC1D.jpeg
Mark
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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by 0uatiOW » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:10 am

Markornot wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:30 am
0uatiOW wrote:
Sun Feb 17, 2019 4:53 am
- any photo?
In all their glory😉
Looks great - have you got a “before” on the C60? Just wondering, did you check where the replacement parts were available before you bought it? And did you need the original papers or was the serial number enough for CW to work it out?
My name is 0uatiOW, but before you ask, no I don’t.

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Jcalder68 » Sun Feb 17, 2019 9:22 am

My first CW Watch arrived in my possession in a similar way, although this was more by happy coincidence than me specifically choosing this route.
I spotted a bargain of a C61 Trident on eBay that was listed with “erratic timekeeping” and an “issue” with the bezel. Through many, many messages to the seller I was able to get some more specific detail, but he/she was either being very obtuse with their replies or genuinely had no knowledge of what they were selling. I suspect a mixture of the above.
Anyway, I won the watch for (if memory serves) a bit over £150. Bargain!
When it arrived there was definitely an issue with the bezel - it really needed pliers to turn it and would not align anywhere near 12. Timekeeping was also off by nearly 1min a day!
So, a quick phone call to CW Towers, the delivery of a returns bag, a return and a five week wait, and I was presented with my restored watch. The bezel was silky smooth, timekeeping was spot on and I believe a new leather strap had been fitted. I had asked for a swap of bezel insert (from the funky orange to something more subtle) but I was told this was not something they were willing to do.
I no longer have that particular watch, but I did enjoy it for a year or so and I really appreciated its “as new” condition and quality, and the knowledge that it was fully checked, pressure tested and covered by a decent warranty.
The (one of the) big attractions of CW watches is their after sales and customer support. I know that some owners have been let down, but they have always done me well.

C
CW Watches (To Date): Trident M3 40mm, C60 Pro 300, C60 Pro 600 Vintage, C65 GMT, C65 Diver Auto, C65 Diver Manual
Others (To Date): Sinn 104, Seiko SNA411, G-Shock

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Bahnstormer_vRS » Sun Feb 17, 2019 9:32 am

I bought a ten years or so old C600 Tri-Tech IPK Yellow in August last year taking a punt on its condition and CW's resources to bring it back to tip top condition.

This was well documented in a thread at the time;-

Slight signs of wear

Bottom line is that CW were not able to bring it back to full top cosmetic and mechanical condition as they no longer had any new C600 IPK cases. They did though have a nearly new case, which meant they were able to fix it mechanically.

Repairs and a full automatic service cost me around £180.

That CW did not have a new case for the C600 is excusable as it is an older niche model, with low production numbers.

I'm extremely satisfied with what they were able to do.

Guy



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C2 FLE |C4 |C5A MkI |C5 BOB |C6 |C7 MkI 47AD |C7 MkII Harrier |C7 Auto Chrono |C70 DBR1
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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by STodd » Sun Feb 17, 2019 12:17 pm

Good to see something getting the attention it deserves - and the VFM that comes with it courtesy of CW :thumbup:

I had a similar experience, bringing a W7 back to life for my wife - story here - I really should update the photos though...
C60 GMT MkI¦C11 Elite,Pro¦C700 Grande Rapide¦C8 Pilot MkII¦C8 UTC¦C10 FLE#13¦C4 'Phoenix'¦Speedhawk¦Bluebird LE#319¦IRR LE#129¦C1000 FGR4
Omega PO 2201.51.00¦Damasko DA44¦Seiko KS 5621-7020, SRP639¦Luminox 1833¦Newmark 6BB¦Scurfa DiverOne NATO

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by MiniMpi » Sun Feb 17, 2019 5:29 pm

I probably bought the worst condition CW ever on eBay before fully knowing I'd have to get major work done at CW.
It was an ultra rare C70 GB Brooklands COSC MK1 with even rarer dial with the 'missing 87' marker that only a handful had as an error.

I bought it for £112.00 and it cost £125 to restore it so £237.00 in total. Not too bad at all.

I shouldn't have sold it afterwards and should have have kept it
:(
Have a read off my thread on it at the time :

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=34160&hilit=C70+cosc
C9 AM GT LE #001/135, C60 Ombré #001/300, C7 Proto, C11 Elite, C7 Bluebird, C70 Ascari, C7 COSC LE, C65 MK1 LE, C60 316L, C9-JH-MK3, C9-40-5DA, C600-IPB, C8-KVKT-MK2, C60 GMT, C60 SKRS, C60-TI-V2, C8 UTC, C8 Flyer MK2, C65 Trident Diver, Rolex 912 Tank.

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia » Sun Feb 17, 2019 6:09 pm

I remember that! Great work all round.

You...sold...it? :shock:
Steve
The half minute which we daily devote to the winding-up of our watches is an exertion of labour almost insensible; yet, by the aid of a few wheels, its effect is spread over the whole twenty-four hours.
Charles Babbage


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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by MiniMpi » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:41 pm


Amor Vincit Omnia wrote:
You...sold...it? :shock:
Sadly yes........
I regret it Steve.

Saying that I was petrified to wear it as the bezel marks in a millisecond as everyone knows.
So that was one of the main reasons I decided to sell it.
C9 AM GT LE #001/135, C60 Ombré #001/300, C7 Proto, C11 Elite, C7 Bluebird, C70 Ascari, C7 COSC LE, C65 MK1 LE, C60 316L, C9-JH-MK3, C9-40-5DA, C600-IPB, C8-KVKT-MK2, C60 GMT, C60 SKRS, C60-TI-V2, C8 UTC, C8 Flyer MK2, C65 Trident Diver, Rolex 912 Tank.

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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by Amor Vincit Omnia » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:44 pm

Well, Ferg, to be fair I sold a DBR1 but managed to find another.
Steve
The half minute which we daily devote to the winding-up of our watches is an exertion of labour almost insensible; yet, by the aid of a few wheels, its effect is spread over the whole twenty-four hours.
Charles Babbage


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Re: Buying CW beaters...restoring to new?

Post by GINGER1974 » Sun Feb 17, 2019 10:35 pm

I’ve bought lots of CW watches for basement prices and sold them on for a small profit. It’s definately a risky business though. Although you re-cased a relatively new model, there is definitely a sense of satisfaction of bringing an old tired model back to life so someone else gets years of future enjoyment out of them. To make a small profit makes the process a bit sweeter.

CW are very good VFM and always do a great job. I’m sure if more people knew about their excellent repair service they would use them more.....best to keep it our secret otherwise prices will increase! :lol: :lol:

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