closing tag is in template navbar
timefactors watches



TZ-UK Fundraiser
Results 1 to 28 of 28

Thread: Watch polishing query.

  1. #1
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653

    Watch polishing query.

    Hey guys.
    Simon Freese no longer polishes or refurbishes watch cases and bracelets (will still as part of a service) He sent my JLC master Quartz back and said on the phone they have taken the decision as it no longer makes economic sense.
    A real shame really, but understandable.

    Anyway any recommendations as to where I can get this work done?

    Thanks
    Last edited by Redwolf; 22nd January 2020 at 17:18.

  2. #2
    Master ryanb741's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    London
    Posts
    7,325
    I'm sure JLC would do this and do it with the utmost expertise? I'd never trust an independent with refinishing any watch from a premium brand tbh but of course everyone has different mileage.

    Sent from my SM-G950F using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    Grand Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Wakefield, West Yorkshire
    Posts
    18,243
    What people don't realise is how time-consuming refinishing work can be, I can well understand Simon's decision. Anyone doing watch work commercially needs to earn money, and you don`t do that spending hours refinishing cases and bracelets.

    I gave it up because I find it mind-numbing, it's too tedious, and people don't want to pay a fair price for the time involved. I`m also disillusioned with the general disregard for refinished watches too, the disparaging comments from the so-called experts when they see a vintage watch that's been refinished are annoying, even when the works been done to a high standard the crusty farts who 'know about these things' dismiss the watches.

    I've just refinished 3 vintage Omegas, one for myself and two for a forum guy, but that's it from me, I`m doing no more for a few months.

    I don`t know where the answer lies on this, to refinish watches requires the skills to fully strip the case down, and if you're able to do that you're probably well-placed to do movement work and make a few bob. It reminds me of painting cars, you need a certain type of mind to do it, there's a lot of skill/technique needed but it's so bloody monotonous.

    Have to smile at Ryans comments above, I`ve seen some of the work Omega service centre have done in the past on SMP bezels........enough said!

  4. #4
    I've never had reason to use them myself however I have heard good things about http://www.watchworks.co.uk/ , it might be worth contacting them to see what they can do.

  5. #5
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653
    Quote Originally Posted by CardShark View Post
    I've never had reason to use them myself however I have heard good things about http://www.watchworks.co.uk/ , it might be worth contacting them to see what they can do.
    Already tried them, and they won’t do it because it’s not a rolex and that’s all they work ok apparently.

  6. #6
    Grand Master Foxy100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Die Fuchsröhre
    Posts
    13,798
    Quote Originally Posted by Redwolf View Post
    Already tried them, and they won’t do it because it’s not a rolex and that’s all they work ok apparently.
    That's a shame. I got in early enough and Rocco lapped an old Heuer and old Omega for me before he changed the rules after being overwhelmed with work.

    You could try Swiss Time Services, they can lap a watch case back into shape.
    You can live in your car but you can't drive your house.

  7. #7
    Craftsman
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    swansea uk
    Posts
    548
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    people don't want to pay a fair price for the time involved. !
    I can well believe that. Trying to do a service for people as self employed skilled worker is one of the hardest things you can ever do because of the people you deal with want to pay you like you were unskilled

  8. #8
    Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,178
    I don’t understand this. Instead of not doing it why not put a cost in the hours it takes and charge a accordingly? If people want to pay that price everyone wins and with someone like Simon people may well pay the price.

  9. #9
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653
    Quote Originally Posted by Stuno1 View Post
    I don’t understand this. Instead of not doing it why not put a cost in the hours it takes and charge a accordingly? If people want to pay that price everyone wins and with someone like Simon people may well pay the price.
    I offered that to him, I said what price would you do it for, he also said he was worried about the watch and. It being able to get parts for it playing a part in his decision.

  10. #10
    Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    London
    Posts
    1,178
    Quote Originally Posted by Redwolf View Post
    I offered that to him, I said what price would you do it for, he also said he was worried about the watch and. It being able to get parts for it playing a part in his decision.
    Ok that’s different but for a case/bracelet refinish he can charge what he liked to make it economically viable and folk can then accept it or reject it. It’s a shame.

  11. #11
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653
    Quote Originally Posted by Foxy100 View Post
    That's a shame. I got in early enough and Rocco lapped an old Heuer and old Omega for me before he changed the rules after being overwhelmed with work.

    You could try Swiss Time Services, they can lap a watch case back into shape.
    I will contact STS, have used them before and was pleased.

  12. #12
    Grand Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Wakefield, West Yorkshire
    Posts
    18,243
    Lack of repairers is the root of the problem, and that’s been caused largely by the manufacturers restricting supply of parts.

  13. #13
    Master sweets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bristol - UK
    Posts
    3,982
    That is a shame on both Simon and Rocco's sides.
    It is odd that they have both taken the choice to shrink their businesses, whren there is an opportunity ot expand them.
    In response to Ryan's post, I would assure him that Rocco's lapping machine is one that was started its operational life in Rolex St James, and that Rocco is the one to instruct many of the training courses that the RSC staff undertake, so you can be assured, with some independents that the work is as good as at RSC.
    I know that Rocco has shrunk the business to being just him, after Mike left, and that he has so much work that he continually trims what he takes on so that he fills his time as profitably as possible.
    It is a shame for me, as I do not own a Rolex or many modern watches that he still "does", and so have not taken him a watch to service for years now.

  14. #14
    Grand Master Wallasey Runner's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Wirral
    Posts
    10,208
    Simon is always incredibly busy anyway and usually has a waiting period before normal servicing can be done, so hopefully it will speed this side of the business up a little.

  15. #15
    Master dejjl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Solihull
    Posts
    6,747
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    Lack of repairers is the root of the problem, and that’s been caused largely by the manufacturers restricting supply of parts.
    Hearing this from several watch guys - a big worry.

  16. #16
    Grand Master Foxy100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Die Fuchsröhre
    Posts
    13,798
    I just checked and Simon hasn't stopped doing case refinishing, it's just he only does it as part of a full service.

    He couldn't service the JLC as it's an early quartz with an obsolete movement, so couldn't offer the refinish.
    You can live in your car but you can't drive your house.

  17. #17
    Craftsman
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Lincs
    Posts
    668
    Bought a P.O for my brother. It ran great but last service was 5 years ago so reccommended Simon to him. He was advised to send it to Omega as he only touches vintage nowadays. He's obviously very busy and can pick and choose what he takes on.

  18. #18
    Master
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    South Coast
    Posts
    1,779
    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    Lack of repairers is the root of the problem, and that’s been caused largely by the manufacturers restricting supply of parts.
    I think it’s had some affect, but I seriously doubt it’s had a large affect on that decision.
    It being a difficult business to make work and needing large investment in tools and equipment in, what to many is a dying skill in the eyes of younger people, are vastly more likely to be the causes.

  19. #19
    Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    London
    Posts
    5,268
    Quote Originally Posted by LukeBird View Post
    ... what to many is a dying skill in the eyes of younger people, are vastly more likely to be the causes.
    I’m sure this is a big factor in younger people not joining the trade.

    This recent article is one illustration of the mismatch between aspirations and opportunity for young people. Maybe watch repairing needs to be rebranded as a media career :)

    Warning over youth career aspiration-reality disconnect https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-51192450

  20. #20
    Master Onelasttime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Everywhere, yet nowhere...
    Posts
    7,371
    Simon refinished an Aqua Terra bracelet for me a few months back, but I had to return it. There were burn marks at the outer edges of the links and it looked awful. He charged £78.

    He got it right second time but it was a pain as I'd sold the watch and the buyer had to wait a week before I could post it to him.

  21. #21
    Master
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Northern Ireland
    Posts
    2,127
    Does anyone know if Simon Freese has a lapping machine and can undertake a welded repair?
    I have a Speedmaster that needs a service but the case has a severe ding on the outside of one of the lugs. Looks almost as if it had been struck with a centre punch - the lug itself isn't out of shape but there is a 'hole' in it. Otherwise it's a decent, used case, so just needs a localised repair that will need to be filled with SS weld first. Is this something that Simon Freese would undertake, as part of a service?

  22. #22
    Master
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    Kent
    Posts
    1,901

    Wink

    Quote Originally Posted by TomGW View Post
    Does anyone know if Simon Freese has a lapping machine and can undertake a welded repair?
    I have a Speedmaster that needs a service but the case has a severe ding on the outside of one of the lugs. Looks almost as if it had been struck with a centre punch - the lug itself isn't out of shape but there is a 'hole' in it. Otherwise it's a decent, used case, so just needs a localised repair that will need to be filled with SS weld first. Is this something that Simon Freese would undertake, as part of a service?
    Considering the whole thread is about him no longer repairing or refurbishing cases and bracelets... I’d say it may be unlikely

  23. #23
    Grand Master Foxy100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Die Fuchsröhre
    Posts
    13,798
    Quote Originally Posted by TomGW View Post
    Does anyone know if Simon Freese has a lapping machine and can undertake a welded repair?
    I have a Speedmaster that needs a service but the case has a severe ding on the outside of one of the lugs. Looks almost as if it had been struck with a centre punch - the lug itself isn't out of shape but there is a 'hole' in it. Otherwise it's a decent, used case, so just needs a localised repair that will need to be filled with SS weld first. Is this something that Simon Freese would undertake, as part of a service?
    Simon Freese Watchmakersemail: office@simonfreesewatchmakers.comTelephone: 01702 474441Please note office phone is answered between 9am and 1pm, Monday to Friday.
    You can live in your car but you can't drive your house.

  24. #24
    Grand Master Foxy100's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Die Fuchsröhre
    Posts
    13,798
    Quote Originally Posted by jameswrx View Post
    Considering the whole thread is about him no longer repairing or refurbishing cases and bracelets... I’d say it may be unlikely
    Quote Originally Posted by Foxy100 View Post
    I just checked and Simon hasn't stopped doing case refinishing, it's just he only does it as part of a full service.

    He couldn't service the JLC as it's an early quartz with an obsolete movement, so couldn't offer the refinish.
    The OP's information is incorrect, Simon does still repair and refurbish cases and bracelets, but only as part of a service.
    You can live in your car but you can't drive your house.

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by Redwolf View Post
    I will contact STS, have used them before and was pleased.
    I’d recommend them, they re did a speedmaster mark ii for me and the results were excellent (laser welding and redoing the starburst finish).

  26. #26
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653
    Quote Originally Posted by Foxy100 View Post
    I just checked and Simon hasn't stopped doing case refinishing, it's just he only does it as part of a full service.

    He couldn't service the JLC as it's an early quartz with an obsolete movement, so couldn't offer the refinish.
    Well you’ll never guess what’s happened.
    I was waiting to hear back from Simon regarding a separate matter on my watch, and he said as I’ve been messed about he will offer the case and bracelet refurbishment to me as a matter of courtesy, (obviously still charging)
    So I am very happy, I was still going to use Simon for servicing anyway as he is such a nice guy, who’s reputation precedes him.

    My last suggestion? Call or email him with your query and I think he will consider all/work. Even if you need to have a service with your case/bracelet refurb.

    Thanks

  27. #27
    Master Chinnock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Essex
    Posts
    8,232
    Have a Sinn 142 with Simon and will be sending him my Speedmaster 125 for a full service and light case brushing. No issue regarding case finishing but makes sense if you are having a full service as more cost / time efficient for him.

    He's a top notch guy by the way, and I've used him for many years from STS days to present.

  28. #28
    Craftsman Redwolf's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    London
    Posts
    653
    Title changed and thread updated to reflect that he does still do it (as part of a full service) as I don’t wanna give wrong information.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Do Not Sell My Personal Information