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How can I get my 20+ yr old Timex windable watch fixed?
December 6, 2005 11:25 AM   Subscribe

I own a windable Timex watch given to me about twenty years ago. I have been using it for the past few years without problem, but now it doesn't seem to keep time very well. Timex HQ says that they won't fix it because of its age and parts likely being unavailable. How can I get this watch tuned up/repaired? I'd like to keep it - great sentimental value plus my name engraved in the back.
posted by cadge to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (8 answers total)
 
I don't know where you live, but first look in the Yellow Pages for "watchmaker." If there aren't any left in your area, see if you can find a good jeweler that has a watchmaker on staff. If that doesn't work, see if there is a vintage watch collecting club in your area - a lot of the folks in those clubs do watch repair.
Your watch probably needs cleaning and regulating - and depending on quality, it may also need parts (mainspring being the most likely culprit). Prepare to pay more than the watch cost new - cleaning in the Seattle area runs about $175, plus any parts and add'l labor for fixing.
Good for you for keeping the old wind-up though - to my mind, there's nothing as nice as a good wind-up (the batteries never need replacing and how many of us really need to know the time at an accuracy of +/- .0001 seconds?).
posted by dbmcd at 11:31 AM on December 6, 2005


This guy, maybe?
posted by beagle at 11:35 AM on December 6, 2005


Yes. I think google is not your friend, but the yellow pages is your friend. I have had watches repaired, usually by elderly men who do little to no advertising and have no web presence.
posted by cushie at 11:49 AM on December 6, 2005


What I would do is post your question on the Timezone (http://www.timezone.com/) Public Forum (free, but reg required.) It's where the mechanical watch geeks hang. Someone there will be able to refer you to a good watchmaker in your area.

Your watchmaker will be able to tell you whether a good cleaning and regulation can revive your piece. But be braced for the possibility that your Timex may simply be worn out. It was manufactured to meet a (very low) price. It was not meant to be passed down the years. While a good quality jeweled Swiss movement can be kept accurate forever, the Timex one most likely did not have that build quality.
posted by mojohand at 11:55 AM on December 6, 2005


Yes, Timexes are disposable watches. You don't actually have to dispose of it, especially if it has great sentimental value, but you shouldn't expect it to run forever.
posted by kindall at 12:42 PM on December 6, 2005


Could you buy a new watch of the same measurements and remove the mechanism and place it in your watch? Timexes are cheap enough that you could give it a few tries.
posted by LarryC at 3:32 PM on December 6, 2005


You might even be able to find the same watch on eBay.
posted by wryly at 5:37 PM on December 6, 2005


Thanks for your advice, everyone!

I think I'll hold onto the now-broken watch as a keepsake and invest in a good sturdy new windable watch for the long haul.
posted by cadge at 9:12 AM on December 8, 2005


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