So you are a watch collector, or at the least you like watches and have a few pieces. They were all bought at different times, places, some from dealers and some pre-owned maybe.
They all seem to be ticking pretty well don’t they? Some don’t get as much wrist times, and some do.
You might be the “by the book” collector that has “thinks” of servicing, maintenance, longevity, or you might be the complete “play it by ear” and wait till you see a prominent problem.
The thing is… it depends on the watches, they could need servicing anywhere from a 2-year interval to a 5-year interval. Now, just like you, I have 20-year old watches that I haven’t serviced that are still ticking pretty well, but that’s simply abuse, and I will tell you why.
A basic mechanical watch movement is composed of around 20 to 30 parts (and that’s for a very basic movement) that are continuously moving in sync and grinding away. What makes all that magic happen, is first and foremost good lubrication, perfect seal, and syncing. With time, lubrication dries up, elements can enter the watch and syncing can be off, meaning there will be wear and tear. Now, add a more complicated movement and these parts can go up to hundreds!
Like I said, you can either wait, till the watch starts loosing or winning time, water goes in, or in worst case scenarios, the watch completely stops working. And we don’t want that to happen!
The best approach is to read up on the movement of your watches and understand service intervals, and if the watch is under warranty always use ADs (ed. Authorized Dealers). If not under warranty, only take it to “certified and trustworthy” watchmakers! I cannot emphasize this enough. A bad service is worst than no service at all! Once you find that watchmaker, build a rapport, understand where you watches stand, keep an eye for gaining and loosing time, and ensure that watches are properly put back and sealed properly after each service through wet and dry testing.
What this will mean, is that your watches will live longer, retain their value, specially with a service record from the AD or a trusted watchmaker and most importantly that should deepen your relationship with your collection as you understand movements and service requirements.
Happy Collecting and our resident watchmaker will always be thrilled to have a discussion with you!