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Thread: When do I start making a fuss? - A resolution.

  1. #1
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    When do I start making a fuss? - A resolution.

    October 2020, I buy a watch. The timekeeping is abominable, sometimes gaining time, sometimes losing almost a minute a day.

    November 2020, I take it back to Fraser Hart, explain the issue, they return it to Bell & Ross. They quote a time of 12 weeks to have the watch back on my wrist.

    February 2021, I give them a call, the watch hasn't yet been returned. The now well-worn Covid excuse is trotted out.

    9th May 2021, I get the watch back. Timekeeping is still abominable, it has apparently been regulated but the issue was inconsistency, not the base level of accuracy.

    Late May 2021, I again return the watch to Fraser Hart, explain that the regulation did not cure the problem, I would like the movement serviced properly. Again, quoted 12 weeks.

    September, 2021, the 12 weeks was up a fortnight ago. I visited the shop to be told that they would send an email to Bell & Ross, I've heard nothing since.

    I've owned this watch for 11 months and had zero pleasure in owning it, it has been in my possession less than two months and didn't function correctly at all during that time.

    It's a basic three hander with an ETA 2824 inside, this doesn't take almost a year to sort out and I'm not buying the Covid excuse anymore.

    Where do I stand in returning this watch? I have given Fraser Hart the opportunity to put it right, which didn't happen. I have given them a second opportunity to put it right and so far as I can discern, nothing has happened.

    Can I return a watch that I'm not even in possession of? The manufacturer has it and will be returning it to the retailer, so can I reasonably expect to return an empty box to them and get my money back?
    Last edited by Papa Hotel; 17th September 2021 at 17:48.

  2. #2
    I donít see why not, the watch has been with them more than you and clearly has a problem or they are doing what Seiko once did to me, try and regulate the watch rather than actually fix the problem. In my case the watch had been sitting around for so long prior to purchase it needed a full service and once it had one it worked fine. In my case I waited (giving them the benefit of the doubt) and the timekeeping went out again just outside of warranty so I had to send it to an independent at my cost (I also found Seiko kindly left a big fingerprint on the rotor)

    Donít make that mistake they are just messing you about get your money back and buy somewhere else.

  3. #3
    Master
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    I had this with a breitling the dealer spent a month messing about regulating a watch that needed a full service

  4. #4
    Grand Master ryanb741's Avatar
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    I'd say it isn't unreasonable to expect a full refund or replacement. There is an expectation that a new watch works as advertised and having it gone for months at a time isn't cricket. I'd push up the chain for your money back. Being a big chain they should accommodate.

  5. #5
    Master blackal's Avatar
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    I think you are at the stage in the process where you can/should reasonably but firmly reject the watch, and get a full refund from FH.

  6. #6
    Craftsman HookedSeven's Avatar
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    Can you give us some figures to work with ? One mans ďabominable timekeepingĒ might another mans ďacceptable timekeepingĒ. Itís hard to comment without knowing the actual problem.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by HookedSeven View Post
    Can you give us some figures to work with ? One mans ďabominable timekeepingĒ might another mans ďacceptable timekeepingĒ. Itís hard to comment without knowing the actual problem.
    Losing almost minute/day seems abominable to me.

  8. #8
    Master
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    Demand a full refund or a replacement watch.

  9. #9
    Craftsman HookedSeven's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kingstepper View Post
    Losing almost minute/day seems abominable to me.
    I scanned the OP twice and completely missed that. Is there really no facepalm smiley available here ?

  10. #10
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    You’d be well within your rights to ask for a refund or replacement if asking after the first failed attempt to repair.

    You returned it within the period required by the consumer rights act, gave the chance to repair, they’ve failed.

    Whether you need to wait for the second attempt to fix to come back though is for discussion with the retailer. Given the delay, I’d expect them to just refund and deal with the watch themselves from here.

  11. #11
    Master Rod's Avatar
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    I'd demand a replacement or refund.
    They've had more than enough time to sort it and failed.
    12 weeks!! come on then another 12!
    Your case is against the original retailer. Certainly sounds, 'Not of merchantable quality' to me

  12. #12
    Master
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    I had a similar thing with my B&R, brought last year in height of Covid from Ernest Jones. Watch was losing around 20 seconds per day. They were operating as a collection point only, so dropped it off to them. Was sent to B&R service centre, regulated, small repair carried out and back to EJ for collection within 4 weeks or so. Couldnít fault it really. Perhaps this is more to do with FH than B&R?

  13. #13
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Cheers all, I guess I just needed a little validation that I'm not being unreasonable in starting to get a little peeved.

  14. #14
    Master davidj54's Avatar
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    Absolutely. Iíd be emailing them with a copy of the time line youíve posted here and a copy of the receipt and be politely demanding a refund.

  15. #15
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidj54 View Post
    Absolutely. Iíd be emailing them with a copy of the time line youíve posted here and a copy of the receipt and be politely demanding a refund.
    Done just that. It's past the point where I even want the watch.

  16. #16
    Grand Master Onelasttime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    Done just that. It's past the point where I even want the watch.
    I'm not surprised. How does this kind of thing even happen?

    If you're a major watch manufacturer and a watch is returned for repair, book it in, assess it, fix the problem, assess it again, then only release when the watch passes some basic performance tests. Am I missing something?

    It could have been a genuine mistake, e.g. the watch placed in the OUT tray instead of the IN tray, but the system/process just can't be that complicated, surely?

  17. #17
    Grand Master
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    There's clearly an issue with this watch, sounds like it needs a bit more than regulating. It should be obvious to the service folks, put it on a timegrapher and check in all positions, find it what it's doing and decide whether it needs stripping down. Check the auto-winding and confirm it's functioning, if in doubt take the auto-winding bridge off, clean everything and re-lubricate the reversers. Put the watch on test for a few days and if all's well fine-tune the regulation. This is a very straightforward movement and any half-decent repairer can sort it out, if it has a fault that's going to prove tricky to track down they have the option of fitting a new movement. It should be obvious whether the watch needs more than regulating and there's no excuse for what's happened.

    I`ve no interest in the whys and wherefores of customer rights etc etc, at an earlier stage I would've taken it up directly with the Bell and Ross service folks and asked for a full report and feedback to find what exactly they found and what they've done. There should be a job sheet for it and all this should be traceable. If the retailer had anything about them they would do this on the OP's behalf. Being without the watch for the majority of the first year's ownership is unacceptable, I'm sick of hearing the Covid excuses rolled out.

    OP's been badly treated, no question about it, I would definitely put the complaints in writing to both Bell and Ross Service Centre and the retailer. The watch will be a fairly easy fix but they've failed to do that in a timely manner.

    The service centre is probably knee-deep in work and doing as little as possible to get the jobs back out, regulating a watch that's running badly doesn`t end with a happy customer but they're probably trying to get away with it.

  18. #18
    I would be asking for a refund because I donít think I could enjoy the watch after this. It is quite astonishing that we pay thousands for relatively simple devices that provide one function, maintain and display the time and it is taken almost a year and you still donít get that function!

  19. #19
    Now. Otherwise might be too late. I would have kicked up a fuss first time around.

  20. #20
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by thestore View Post
    I would be asking for a refund because I don’t think I could enjoy the watch after this.
    I find this hard to understand, the OP wanted the watch so I assume that hasn’t changed, a refund leaves him without the watch he wants! If the watch gets fixed properly it’ll be fine, a watch is a collection of parts that can be assembled and dismantled.

    Unlike my knees, which have had repair work but will never be 100% right, there’s no reason why this watch can’t be sorted out, it won’t carry some lasting legacy of the fact that its needed work......unlike my knees!

    Strongly worded letters (not e- mails) need to go to a high level otherwise this problem will get kicked down the road like a can. If the OP was local to me I would get it on the timegrapher and see what’s going on, performance if the auto- winding can be inferred too without opening it up. Ideally, the ADs should do this on site.

  21. #21
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    I find this hard to understand, the OP wanted the watch so I assume that hasnít changed, a refund leaves him without the watch he wants! If the watch gets fixed properly itíll be fine, a watch is a collection of parts that can be assembled and dismantled.
    I'm afraid it has changed. The ownership experience has been terrible, this will always be that f**king watch that never worked.

  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    I'm afraid it has changed. The ownership experience has been terrible, this will always be that f**king watch that never worked.
    The problem is that when you get issues like this you loose faith in a brand and why would you not?, you purchased a product that did not work as it should and they have not sorted the problem in a timely manor. I understand how you feel and as others have pointed out, request a refund as you have been most patient and something like this should have been sorted out without any issues.

  23. #23
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    I'm afraid it has changed. The ownership experience has been terrible, this will always be that f**king watch that never worked.
    If the watch was fixed and you were confident it had been fixed correctly, surely you could enjoy it and put the back story behind you? Theyíre a collection of parts, provided the last monkey to assemble it did so correctly itíll be fine and itíll meet your expectations.

    Despite my experiences as a repairer over the last 9 years Iím still primarily a watch collector/ enthusiast, but seeing a watch reduced to a pile of parts then rebuilt again has given me a different perspective and I urge others to try and see it this way. Provided a watch is sorted out properly itís fine.

  24. #24
    Master M1011's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by walkerwek1958 View Post
    If the watch was fixed and you were confident it had been fixed correctly, surely you could enjoy it and put the back story behind you? Theyíre a collection of parts, provided the last monkey to assemble it did so correctly itíll be fine and itíll meet your expectations.

    Despite my experiences as a repairer over the last 9 years Iím still primarily a watch collector/ enthusiast, but seeing a watch reduced to a pile of parts then rebuilt again has given me a different perspective and I urge others to try and see it this way. Provided a watch is sorted out properly itís fine.
    I would be in the same mind as PH and would look to return it, this sort of debacle and poor treatment of what should have been a simple issue spoils the experience. Frankly I wouldn't want the company to have my money after this treatment. It's not just about the physical product.

  25. #25
    Craftsman
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    I'm sure FH will refund you if you're polite and firm and possibly throw in a gift voucher.

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by Linocut View Post
    I'm sure FH will refund you if you're polite and firm and possibly throw in a gift voucher.
    Why should he give them a gift voucher just to get a refund?

  27. #27
    Master murkeywaters's Avatar
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    Personally any new item from a store has to be working faultlessly in my book, if it isnt give me my money back, I wouldn't want nothing to do with 3+ month waiting times for something I have just paid good money for..

  28. #28
    Master helidoc's Avatar
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    As one of the resident B&R fans /owners, I think his had been very badly handled.

    At this stage, considering how little time you have had the watch for, I would write an official rejection letter to the FH, and copy in the senior customer services team at both FH and B&R. It would be helpful if at least a £100 deposit had been made on credit card, and if that is the case you can hold the very real threat of a section 72 chargeback.

    FWIW I know the watch you refer to, and although I like it very much as a watch, I can understand if the ownership experience had been soiled beyond redemption, I would feel the same.

    At this stage, I think the only alternative rejection would be very swift resolution AND some kind of financial recompense, and I donít mean a couple of free straps.

    I hope you get it sorted

    Dave


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  29. #29
    Master village's Avatar
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    I wouldíve probably have started discussions about a replacement watch right at the beginning. If I buy a brand new watch and it isnít fit for purpose then why should I have to return it for fettling and not see it for 12 weeks? No thank you very muchÖI will have a replacement one and you can return the faulty one yourselves.

  30. #30
    Journeyman
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackal View Post
    I think you are at the stage in the process where you can/should reasonably but firmly reject the watch, and get a full refund from FH.
    This!

    Had a similar experience with an IWC a couple of years ago and a longines diver more recently and ended up pushing the dealer for a refund on both occasions. As far as im concerned if there's an issue with a new watch right out of the gate they should offer a replacement as opposed to service. doesn't seem fair to part with 000s or 0000s of pounds and be without the watch for a significant period of time

    I always find that if the buying/repair process is a pain in the arse then I never end up truly enjoying the watch.

  31. #31
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by helidoc View Post
    As one of the resident B&R fans /owners, I think his had been very badly handled.

    At this stage, considering how little time you have had the watch for, I would write an official rejection letter to the FH, and copy in the senior customer services team at both FH and B&R. It would be helpful if at least a £100 deposit had been made on credit card, and if that is the case you can hold the very real threat of a section 72 chargeback.

    FWIW I know the watch you refer to, and although I like it very much as a watch, I can understand if the ownership experience had been soiled beyond redemption, I would feel the same.

    At this stage, I think the only alternative rejection would be very swift resolution AND some kind of financial recompense, and I donít mean a couple of free straps.

    I hope you get it sorted

    Dave


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Eurgh, I keep reading the bit in bold and swithering on what I want to do!

    I've already asked for a refund, frustratingly it's been a full 24 hours since I emailed FH and haven't even had acknowledgement of my email. Hopefully they'll come back today, if not then I'll visit the store tomorrow and thrash out the options.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by village View Post
    I wouldíve probably have started discussions about a replacement watch right at the beginning. If I buy a brand new watch and it isnít fit for purpose then why should I have to return it for fettling and not see it for 12 weeks? No thank you very muchÖI will have a replacement one and you can return the faulty one yourselves.
    I totally agree, but it was a sold-out limited edition I really fancied.

  32. #32
    Not fit for purpose - if you paid with a credit card speak to them too


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  33. #33
    Master Papa Hotel's Avatar
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    Resolution -

    Fraser Hart have been in touch, I've been told that the watch has made its way back to the store from B&R, fully serviced and in full working order.

    Disappointingly, the email from FH was more or less along the lines of "you can go pick it up now" with no acknowledgement at all of the time taken, the poor customer service or the failure to put the watch right first time around.

    I replied that I just wanted the refund, which has now been processed.

    All in all, it's left a pretty sour taste in the mouth, I really liked the watch and I've spent around £10k with FH so it feels like a bit of a dismissive resolution. Quite frankly though, I'm not stuck for choice in Edinburgh.

  34. #34
    Craftsman Idontgram's Avatar
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    Good that you got it sorted PH.

    I must say, perhaps theyíve fallen short of an apology but it doesnít seem that Fraser Hart have been that out of line: more of an issue with B&R, perhaps?

    For all we know, they took the watch, contacted the manufacturer, shipped it to them, received it back, offered it to the OP, heard it was below par, shipped it back to the manufacturer and when the OP said stuff it, gave him a refund.

    Communication perhaps a bit poor and some sort of recompense may have been nice as an apology but it doesnít sound too bad. The great unknown is where time was lost and increasingly, I feel itís at service centres.

    I once got very shirty with an AD about a non-limited watch I paid for and after 10 weeks was a no-show (promised to be with me in 2). I asked for a refund and bought it elsewhere. However, I wonít set foot there again, mostly because I sort of get that they were waiting for the manufacturer to deliver and Iím a bit embarrassed at my reaction.

    Iím sure you were much more reasonable than me!

  35. #35
    Grand Master ryanb741's Avatar
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    I'd complain to customer services and state as a previously loyal customer this has tarnished their reputation and you'll go elsewhere. As if by magic a 20% discount code may make its way to you and an apology.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Papa Hotel View Post
    All in all, it's left a pretty sour taste in the mouth, I really liked the watch and I've spent around £10k with FH so it feels like a bit of a dismissive resolution. Quite frankly though, I'm not stuck for choice in Edinburgh.
    Problem is, in my experience over the years, there's plenty of choice but precious little consistent quality of service in Edinburgh - as far as watches go anyway. I've had bad experiences at almost every one.

    Notable exception is that I've had exemplary service from Clarksons, but they don't sell watches - pure jewellers with a vast majority made in house - which lends another heavy weight to the side of dealers that they can go stuff their "buying history" wait lists for Rolex or hard to get editions. I'll buy jewellery from someone who cares and watches privately or from a grey dealer.
    Last edited by Scepticalist; 17th September 2021 at 23:32.

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