IN PERPETUITY
World of Watches|Spring 2021
Can your watch stand the test of time? With regular servicing, yes it can. We take a look at the service journey offered by Rolex World Service
ASHOK SOMAN

A great watch can last you a lifetime. Quite a number of watch firms make this very bold claim, and magazines such as this one (but not only this one) back them up. How can we be so sure? To investigate, we looked into the promise of one firm in particular: Rolex. As the makers of the world’s most popular and best known fine timepieces, Rolex does indeed come right out and say that “there is no limit on how long a Rolex watch can keep working, being handed down from one generation to the next, and living several lives.” Helpfully, the brand explains how this is possible, but the short answer is excellent servicing. If you ensure that your watches are regularly serviced by qualified specialists, you have every reason to expect them to outlive you. Ok that is all you need to know, so you can quit reading now.

If you are sticking with this tale, then you must want to know exactly how the brand plans to keep its promises. We shall do our best to explain the work of the Rolex World Service, which is an essential effort in the business of watches. We shall say at the outset that every Rolex watch sent in for full servicing gets completely overhauled, meaning the movement is disassembled and each component is carefully examined. And that is just to begin with - the proverbial tip of the iceberg if you will. We will get into that properly in a bit, but the story has skipped ahead a fair bit in the interest of teasing you about what lies ahead here. There is quite a lot to understand before we get to the full service experience.

EMBRACING THE DETAILS

Brands often remind us that the question of the after-sales experience is important, even if it is perhaps not as sexy as the novelties of the year. To use our example here, even though the Rolex World Service will make an impact on the entire lifespan of every Rolex watch, the news does not grab you in quite the same way as the announcement of the new Submariner last year did. We will be honest and admit to that ourselves. This only lasted until we found out more about the servicing story, which is at the very least rich in details.

The images you see here track the watch and its movement through the entire process servicing process, which is a great boon for owners of Rolex watches. In fact, you could make do here with just reading the captions to the pictures. Alright, if after that second overt discouragement you are still reading this, it is time to get into the details.

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