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Old 13 July 2019, 09:31 AM   #1
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Submariner 16803 Repair Estimate

Hi there.

I inherited my deceased father's Submariner 16803.

It stopped running about 5 years since it was last serviced, and so I brought it in to an authorized jeweler, who sent it out to Rolex US.

They contacted me with a quote from Rolex of nearly $2,400. I was prepared for somewhere in the $1,000 range, so I was quite taken aback.

They provided me with the following list of "required" repairs:
  • Overhaul $750
  • New Crown $170
  • New Crystal $180
  • New Dial $510
  • New Hands $105
  • New Bezel Insert $48
  • New Clasp $615

These repairs were represented as "required", meaning Rolex insists on performing them all or they won't touch the watch. I understand a company like Rolex wanting to protect its brand, but the way this was presented was kind of offensive. I'm not renting the watch; I own it.

Anyway, I thought I'd post here to see if:
1. This seems reasonable, given the age of the watch and length since the last service;
2. The prices are in line with repair by Rolex;
3. Folks have any other thoughts or guidance.

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Old 14 July 2019, 07:01 AM   #2
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Send it to the Ridleys. As good as or better than Rolex (as anyone here will attest to) and at a friendlier price point.
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Old 14 July 2019, 07:12 AM   #3
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For a period piece that should remain intact - dial, hands, bezel, etc... there are better options than rsc. Try LAWW or bob r. As mentioned above.
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Old 14 July 2019, 07:18 AM   #4
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Unless the current dial, hands, and insert are totally ruined, you don't want to replace them. Photos would help. What is the issue with the clasp?
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Old 14 July 2019, 10:30 AM   #5
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That is basically a new watch. RSC isn't really in the business of preserving period pieces.
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Old 14 July 2019, 10:47 AM   #6
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Seems about $2k too much to me.

But I would not be changing those stated components. Or send it to Rolex.
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Old 14 July 2019, 10:49 AM   #7
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Overhaul $750
New Crown $170
New Crystal $180

And that's it if you go the RSC route in my opinion.

If not, I vouch for RolliWorks. Their work on vintage is stellar and highly affordable compared to others mentioned.
The wristwatch is an intimate accessory. The best watches live in harmony and interact with the wearer, and their functions offer a reassuring and emotionally satisfying bond - Kintaro Hattori
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Old 15 July 2019, 07:05 AM   #8
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Thanks to all for your responses.

I'm posting the best pic I have, which was taken with a smartphone. The watch looks much better than this. I should probably grab my real camera and take some decent shots.

I am not a collector or a Rolex enthusiast (no disrespect intended!). This was my father's watch and its value for me is entirely sentimental. That is to say, it is irreplaceable.

And so my interest in it isnít tied to its monetary value as a collectible. That having been said, my father loved this watch and told me I should make sure that it is serviced appropriately. I just wanted this thing serviced, with the movement in good shape so that it runs well, without any aesthetic refurbishment. If it was good enough for my dad, it's certainly good enough for me.

Thanks for the suggestions. My mother had a great suggestion: contacting the place where it was purchased, Grays Jewelers in Barrington, RI. I'm based in Boston, so that's not too far away. My research on this forum and elsewhere suggests that they have a good reputation for service. When I spoke to them, their perspective was much like the folks on this forum. I think I'm going to let them have at it.
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Old 15 July 2019, 08:19 AM   #9
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I would just get the movement serviced the dial hands and bezel insert are just what you would expect in an old watch and look fine
As for the crown just get the seals changed if it screws down ok
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Old 15 July 2019, 09:33 AM   #10
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send it to rolliworks.
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Old 15 July 2019, 12:27 PM   #11
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Keep the dial and hands original. I’d change the crystal looks chipped at 9 o’clock, change the dial insert and do the overhaul it will look great when you get it back for 1130 bucks well worth it.
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