A question on redials for the Heritage Department

A recent offline discussion on redials has prompted this question; does a refinished dial (other than by VC of course) still qualify a watch for a Certificate of Authenticity? By refinished, I'm including any newly created dial or reprinted dial on the original blank.  

Alex, would you be able to ask someone about this?  How do they view excessively cleaned or badly re-lacquered original dials?

My only experience is with one dial refinished by VC
01/06/2015 - 20:20

When I sent this watch in for service, VC said there was water damage from the previous owner and that a "Restoration of Dial" was necessary (not an option) if I wanted the watch serviced.  I received a Certificate of Authenticity with the restored dial.  Here are before and after pictures...

They did a fabulous job with the dial and left the "&", though the accent in "GENEVE" is no longer there (similar to current dials).

I would suspect if the refinishing work was not done by VC, then they may not provide a CofA.  I guess it would be a slippery slope in terms of judgjing which 3rd-party work is acceptable and which ones were done poorly in order to determine if a CofA could be issued.  (This is under the assumption that VC would not offer a Certificate if the really badly refinished dial was presented).

Re: A question on redials for the Heritage Department
01/06/2015 - 22:56

Yes, I believe that it does qualify for a Certificate of Authenticity, albeit that the CoA will be noted accordingly.

When I sent my 4178 to VC for an estimation/service quotation, VC informed me that their "diagnostics indicate that the dial has been badly restored....it will be necessary to carry out a dial restoration.  We have offered a Certificate of Authenticity as requested, please be aware that if the dial restoration is not accepted, there will be a note on the certificate regarding the dial restoration"

I think that this is a sensible compromise.



Re: Re: A question on redials for the Heritage Department
01/06/2015 - 23:30

You are correct, Nugget.

I have a 4240 triple calendar from 1948 and I received a C of A from Vacheron for it. Under "Other Characteristics" it reads: "Dial restored"

I don't know who did the restoration but it was magnificent, maintaining the original colour and text including the "&" and the accent grave on the Geneve.

There are photos of it that I posted on this site.


Thanks David and Joseph, I think VC's approach to this is quite sensible
01/07/2015 - 00:42

Glad to know about it.  BR, Dan

That settles it...
01/07/2015 - 22:26

Thanks Joseph smiley

Brilliant answer, David
01/06/2015 - 23:39

Thanks for sharing that info yes.  The slippery slope Dan mentioned comes to mind.  I wonder what other non-original components would pass the CofA criteria if duely noted?  Strap and buckle are too obvious to mention, but I will angel.  Other "sensible" items might be crystals, hairsprings, jewelled chatons, etc.  These would seem to be maintenance items to be replaced by a watchsmith when required.  OTOH, if a palladium hairspring was replaced with steel, someone should cry "foul".  They must have some interesting stories to tell in the restoration shops...