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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am looking to get a very good dress watch till I can get the Patek 5196. My present budget is about $4,000.

I like slimness and mechanical movement in a dress watch so have narrowed it down to JLC Master Ultra Thin.

However, I am having a tough time deciding between 34 mm and 38 mm version. Since I would be getting it only a month or two from now, do you think JLC would still be making the 34 mm version or are they planning to discontinue it already (after the present stocks sell out)?

Other questions
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1. Does both the 34 mm and 38 mm have a display case back?

2. How much does a typical (regular) service for JLC cost?

3. Does the caliber 849 on the watches have overwind protection?

Thanks! :)
 

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1) Yes. Even the 40mm Grande has a display back, and adds a subdial second at 6:00. The bigger 38 mm watch looks a little weird since the same movement is in both and it looks tiny in the bigger version. Do you like the minute track on the larger version or the more plain dial of the 34?

2) What kind of service? A simple service can be done at any competent watchmaker for a couple hundred-ish. A complete overhaul and refurbishing can run a couple thousand. As mentioned in your other thread, I have a reference #2285 that was junk being redone at the factory. The complete service on the movement, case, and hands is $1245 and the refinishing of the dial is $898. Yes, those numbers are correct but JLC does the most incredible work of anyone. They never throw out a tool, die or pattern and when they refurbish a watch you can't tell it from new. Literally.

3) Overwind protection? That's something used in an automatic. To overwind a manual watch, you'd have to be King Kong on the crown. There is a definite tension felt when it gets close to fully wound and a pronounced stop at absolute full wind.


EDIT: A little history lesson - the caliber 849 was derived directly from the 839, which was first used by JLC in the mid 70's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks I decided I like the simpler dial on the 34 mm better. A complete refurbish for about $2000 sounds quite reasonable actually. I guess that would put a 5-7 year service at $500-$700 range similar to or maybe slightly more than Rolex's. Should be fine I guess.

I have only had one manual wind so far - a Oysterdate Precision and when it was fully wound, it stops rotating further. I guess it would be similar. For some reason I thought there will be a "slippage" mechanism built in, in some handwinds too (thought I read it somewhere). Anywhere, that should be fine too. Will be ordering soon and starting the 6-8 week wait. :)
 

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Excellent choice. I was lucky enough to have a tour through the JLC manufacture a few months ago. It is a fascinating mix of old-fashioned workmanship, with a lot of hand made steps, and of painstaking quality control and sophisticated eengineering. I had the impression that in every departement, more people were actually checking parts than actually producing things. Few, if any, manufactures make as many distinct movements simultaneously.
 
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