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Peter-H

Bizzare IWC chrono fault

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4 days of skiing later and it is running about 1.5 seconds fast per day.

I haven't come off or hit anything but there is the normal range of "active arm motion", and the shock applied to the watch when planting the poles in the snow which right now is rock hard.

It looks like it has been fixed, but of course I don't know if the watchmaker did just the said spring.

 

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A few months later, the fault has returned...

Apologies for the malformed video.

It is doing 3 seconds per minute, as before. This time, working back from the +30 mins error, this gives roughly 10 hours of fast running, so it started yesterday evening when I was just walking around the house, so no skiing or anything like that. Also I noticed it when I woke up so it has been doing it while I was sleeping for the most recent 7 of the 10 hours. And it was still doing it while I operated the stopwatch to make the above video just now.

What is my best option?

Originally the watch shop offered to send it to Watchfinder which is an IWC service agent and they would do it for something like 500 quid (probably less to him as he is trade). He would not send it to IWC since they won't ever quote a price for anything; I had some correspondence with them about this, and they saw the previous video, and were very cagey about saying anything.

Many thanks for any tips. This watch, which cost a few k, is basically a piece of junk because a sun dial in UK weather is more reliable :)

 

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I am only an amateur compared to most, but paying that price for a watch which is like that i would send it back. I have seen cheap watches perform better. (Mainly because i can not afford an expensive Watch :) )

 

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I might try that; I think it came with a 1 year warranty. However it is "only" a mechanical watch so whatever is causing this must be visually evident if one looks in the right place. The watchmaker who last worked on it (and apparently fixed it, until now) thinks it may be magnetised.

However (I can't edit my post above) there is no right to a refund in the UK, AFAIK, after a certain time. All you get is a repair.

Just looked it up: it is up to 30 days only.

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You said you bought it in February, pre-owned, and it came ... with what kind of warranty? You discovered a fault within 30 days, so it was repaired by the shop?

Depending upon your local laws, you might still be entitled to a return for refund due to you finding fault within the 30 day return window, if the shop insisted on repair instead of a refund. Jonny or one of the other retail boffins could tell you more assuredly. For myself, if it had required two repairs within 90 days of purchase, I'd be pretty chafed and expecting a return for refund, or a repair on the retailer's dime. Granted, the watch may have some fault that the prior owner didn't disclose and the seller couldn't discover prior to your purchase. 

I'm sure IWC won't say anything until/unless they've had a look at the movement themselves. They're not professional psychics. 

Wait, I thought you said the Watchfinder repair (after the smaller, independent repairer had tried to mend it twice) carried a 12 month warranty. I'd take them up on that. 

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I am sure the fault was always there. It is rare enough to enable you to sell the watch and get away with it, and a "watch broker" shop like the one I bought it from would never know.

Let's see what this repair guy comes back with. It's free (of course). Sending it to Watchfinder would be the next move, andd I will be asking the shop to pay at least a part of it.

Could a magnetised watch do this? I am not aware of any recent magnet exposure. My last airline trip was 4 weeks ago.

Regarding IWC, I would have expected them to be a bit less arrogant. I have been in business since the 1970s and if a customer reported this sort of fault (which I WOULD have seen before, across a customer base of many thousands) I would say something like "a standard service is £x, we have seen this sort of thing before and it tends to run around £y in additional parts, but we cannot be sure until we see it". Come to think of it, a standard IWC service must include some parts, otherwise the money (£700 - I don't remember) is just for a bit of time, new seals and some oil :)

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I don't recall you sharing IWC's response to you verbatim, so we have to take your word for it on the "arrogance." 

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I wrote a number of emails to them and got very "corporate" bland responses. Basically the tone was "send us the watch and a blank cheque". I also phoned them up and they could not even work out which category on their service price list the watch was.

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First you said “arrogant,” now you say “‘corporate’ bland responses.” Whatever. 

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I would be seriously tempted to try Consumer Direct and the Citizens Advice Bureau (I have had good results with both in the past). I'm sure it will be covered under trading standards, fit for purpose or something like that. Hope you get it sorted soon. 

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I'm a little confused about the beef with IWC. The watch was bought second hand of unknown history and has not been serviced by them in the last 2 years (their service guarantee period) but has been 'repaired' by a third party place. Surely without sending the watch for diagnostics would mean they could only speculate, and when you call you're through to a phone team that handle billing etc rather than the watchmakers that repair them.

 

 

if watchfinder serviced it a few months ago when this was an issue, complain to them and get it reserviced as two months or thereabouts is not a suitable time for the watch to work, failing that if they didnt service it send to IWC for a complete service, not only will you know its done properly you will also have a two year guarantee 

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Give it up Tom, he clearly thinks it’s IWC’s problem not the cowboys he bought it from. 

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The watchmaker has fitted a brand new barrel and mainspring, and has had it on test for a number of days.

To me, a mechanical and electronics engineer, it's a mystery how such an intermittent and dramatic failure can exist, yet appears so extremely sporadic.

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What watchmaker? :huh: Has it gone back to the clod who repaired it previously? 

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Yes indeed. He is doing it for nothing, all the time the fault is appearing, even though my contract is with the shop (which is not responding). He is apparently Rolex and Omega trained and Omega authorised, or something like that.

My fallback position seems to be to throw a chunk of money at it via IWC - probably best part of 1k. OTOH this guy might find the fault...?

 

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9 hours ago, Peter-H said:

Yes indeed. He is doing it for nothing, all the time the fault is appearing, even though my contract is with the shop (which is not responding). He is apparently Rolex and Omega trained and Omega authorised, or something like that.

That's the most reassuring thing you've posted in this thread. :hmmm9uh: :thumbsup:

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I can't tell if you are being sarcastic :)

He is "Rolex accredited Watchmaker", whatever that means. At least he is not claiming to be "one of the few" master watchmakers like the £1500/hr one down the road from here :)

In the end I got the watch at about the right price, about 1k under what they sell for on Ebay, so if it has to go to IWC I will bite the bullet and do that. But it will be my last mechanical watch. The next one will be a solar powered quartz, which actually solves the issue I was trying to solve by going to self winding watches originally. That said, the Fortis one, similar movement (whoops I know one is supposed to say "calibre" :) ) worked perfectly for the 4 years I had it; it just wasn't accurate.

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Apparently the barrel wall was worn. I don't know what this means but the guy says it can explain the behaviour. A new barrel and spring have been fitted.

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