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  • Opinions on IWC condition

    Hi All,

    So for my first post on the forum I'm looking for some advice...
    I'm looking at buying my first good watch. It'll be one that I keep for a while, though may not be a daily wearer.
    After looking through a variety of options I'm pretty much set on an IWC pilots watch - either 3706 or 3717 at this stage.

    Ok, so now the question - I have come across a 3706 which I quite like the look of. My only concern at this stage is the condition of the case/bezel. See attached pictures.



    Will these kind of marks likely come out with a refinish? If I were to resell the watch in the future would this affect the resale price drastically?

    Thanks,

    George


    Attached files


  • #2
    Hi George, Welcome to the forum,very nice watch there, the price should reflect on what price your paying for it, and would think that they should all polish out,see what other opinions come in and go from there. Cheers Pete.
    'Man Invented time, Cyma Perfected it.'

    Comment


    • #3
      Hi George
      Welcome to the forum.
      I really like IWC watches but only own one at this point. Great choice IMHO. With regards to your watch a couple of those dings look quite deep so polishing them out may cause permanent change to the edges etc of the watch. There is a school of thought that would suggest leaving the condition as is. No doubt the price will reflect the overall condition now and in the future. Once a watch has been "refurbished" it cannot be "unrefurbished" and this may also effect the price in some buyers eyes.
      I would be more interested in the condition of the movement. Being a chrono do all the functions work as they should? Do they return correctly when reset etc. Are the pushers working well? Is the crown screwing in correctly? Is the watch losing or gaining and how much? What is the approximate power reserve from a full wind?What is the service history of the watch? How trustworthy and reliable is the seller? (There is a saying on the forum: Buy the Seller not the watch)
      Hope this helps. I am no expert and others may have different opinions on the polishing issue.
      Steve
      “I want to touch base on how we’ll synergize the pivot going forward”

      Comment


      • #4
        Hi Guys,

        Thanks for the quick and very helpful replies! Definitle something to think about regarding whether to have it refinished or not - sending it back to IWC for refinishing is an option I've heard of, though likely not a cheap one...

        One more question that I've been looking for some answers on - what is a ballpark figure if I needed to have a watch such as this serviced? $500? $1000? Would it need to go back to IWC or could a local watchmaker handle it?

        Thanks,
        George.

        Comment


        • #5
          Hi Guys,

          Thanks for the quick and very helpful replies! Definitle something to think about regarding whether to have it refinished or not - sending it back to IWC for refinishing is an option I've heard of, though likely not a cheap one...

          One more question that I've been looking for some answers on - what is a ballpark figure if I needed to have a watch such as this serviced? $500? $1000? Would it need to go back to IWC or could a local watchmaker handle it?

          Thanks,
          George.
          Never done it but I suspect sending it back to IWC for a refurb may be very very expensive and take a long time. I believe there are NZ based watchmakers who could service this watch and there is also an accredited IWC watchmaker in Tauranga. Others may be able to help you on service cost but I would definitely get a quote before committing.
          “I want to touch base on how we’ll synergize the pivot going forward”

          Comment


          • #6
            I think the polish will take get rid off the scratches, but I agree with Steve that you should not polish the watch.

            (After all, it looks pretty good and you will get a few scratches from wearing it).

            On servicing figure, I suspect it will be pretty expensive (a watch with chrono is pretty dare).

            Again, I agree with Steve and you might get it serviced by accredited watchmaker in NZ (which will save you some $$$ and time)

            Comment


            • #7
              Any thing that had AD after their name (will cost money)
              If you sent it back to IWC warm up your credit card, and be prepared to wait a long time .
              There are local watchmakers who can do the job , normally the old boys with heaps of experience . just ring around or ask for a referral in your town.
              What city / town you residing in ?
              If I was fortunate enough to own that watch i may be tempted to get a very light polish to get the superficial scratches and marks, but would not try to get the dings out, as Steve mentioned the risk to losing the edges on the case is great .
              Besides , A little ding here and there is called "Character"
              Boy have some of my watches got"Character" :roll:
              Rest easy Matty , My best Mate and Son

              Comment


              • #8
                Hey George, Welcome Nice choice of watch. I absolutely concur with the previous comments. I would however suggest that the photo's make the watch and it's flaws look huge, so it may not be as bad on the wrist as it looks in the pics. There are sellers who wouldn't bother pointing them out.
                Preparation and planning prevent piss poor performance

                Comment


                • #9
                  Hi Everyone,

                  Thanks for all the comments and suggestions - great information for someone new to the horological world.

                  I called the IWC service centre in Tauranga - the good news is that the service cost has just come down in price. For others out there who may be interested it is now $520+gst for a single flieger chrono on a strap. This is for a full overhaul (all new seals and gaskets, new pushers, complete service and refinish if required/requested). As they are an accredited service centre it also gives you a 2 year worldwide warranty. Turn around is 14-21 days.

                  Cheers,
                  George

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    That seems very reasonable cost-wise and the turnaround equally impressive.
                    Harlan
                    Timekeeper Watch Club
                    Auckland, New Zealand, Pacific Ocean, Earth

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      it is now $520+gst for a single flieger chrono on a strap
                      full overhaul (all new seals and gaskets, new pushers, complete service and refinish if required/requested).

                      I reckon it's a sweet deal - will keep it in mind when it comes to servicing my 3717. Thanks for the info!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Hi George, and welcome to the forum.

                        For some reason (could be good taste? ), TKNZ has a disproportionate number of IWCs to the usual IWC watch per head in NZ. So, it seems you have come to the right place. From what I gather in your questions, you have not yet purchased this watch that we are shown close-ups of? If so, then I'd like to offer a different perspective from some of the members.

                        It's great that you have settled on what you would like to buy for your first good watch (if you tell me what else you have, I may beg to differ ...many people actually own or have owned good watches, though they never realized it). It's also to your advantage that you have chosen a model that is quite popular among IWC buyers--both 3706 and 3717 have been tremendous success, relative to IWC's usual uptake. This means that there are many to choose from, now and for some time to come yet. It means that you should spend time browsing, looking, until such time that you know what to expect from a watch condition-wise, for watches of different age, at different price point (which Pete Cyma has already pointed out).

                        My advice to anyone like yourself is to imagine that you are buying a used car--let's say a desirable luxury make. Regardless of how tempting it may be to buy a low-priced specimen, just to get your foot in the door, and in hope of eventually repairing it to good condition, in the end it is probably more wise to pay more upfront for one that doesn't need to be fixed up. Unless of course you are a mechanic.

                        Watches are the same. Unless you are a watchmaker, or have access to one, it's often more wise to wait until a specimen comes along that needs nothing else but your wrist, especially as this model is so plentiful in the used market. The argument would be different if you were after a rare vintage IWC, say an IWC Porsche Design Ocean 500, which I've seen collectors grab in whatever condition they can find.






                        Will these kind of marks likely come out with a refinish?


                        Yes, it will... after sanding.

                        However, sanding will remove more than the dings. It will remove the sharpness of the case lines, and will remove a large portion of the original case finish. Authorized service centers cannot replicate the original factory finish, as the factory use purpose-designed machines to create the finish, while service centers only have the case finishing tool commonly available to watchmakers.

                        The process of removing the case lines and case finishing is irreversible. Once done, it can be spotted by trained eyes. I will buy a slightly scratched watch with original case finish over a service center molested watch with smooth rounded edges on shiny-as-a-bumper-bar case any day. So, the scratches that you see will not affect the resale price as much as an incorrectly finished case will. Unfortunately, watch companies can only train service center watchmakers to be skilled in servicing their watches, and cannot train them to be intelligent in doing so.

                        I'm not saying that the scratches on this piece are bad. I would probably buy this piece at the right price. However, I would be comfortable to use the piece in the condition as it is, or at most, do a bit of grooming myself. If I am not going to be comfortable, then I won't buy it and wait until I find a piece that I am satisfied with. Getting this one done up and there'll be chance you won't be happy with the outcome.

                        For you, I suggest choosing a watch that is in near-mint or better, and less than 5 years old. That way, no servicing will be required for a while. There are plenty out there.

                        Good luck!
                        On the instruments we entrust to pace our lives, to bear witness to our days, and to be the keepers of the most precious thing we have... time.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Very well explained Don.
                          'Man Invented time, Cyma Perfected it.'

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Hi Don,

                            Thanks for the advice - it certainly gives me something to think about.
                            To be honest I'm not overly concerned about the marks (as long as they aren't worse than the pictures purport). I'd love it to look like new, but it will be a watch I wear fairly frequently so is bound to pick up a few marks anyway. I'm unsure about paying a premium for a near-mint item for this reason.

                            Cheers,
                            George

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Hi - I am the owner of an IWC, a Port Crono 3714 which has been in for servicing twice. From my experience I would never allow anyone other the IWC service agent in NZ to touch them. First of all he access to spare parts which is critical, he can provide a 2 year service warranty from IWC after an overhaul and he at least knows what hes doing. One of my watch servicings was required because an unauthorised person had mucked about with it. The turn over time you mentioned of 3-4 weeks is probably the fastest you will get anywhere in the world if you have been reading watch forums from europe.
                              By the way theres nothing wrong with a watch with a bit of patina. It looked a nice piece.

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