Despite news to the contrary, the Watch and Clock industry is alive and ticking! In fact, there’s a lot of commentary on the blogosphere right now on how to find reliable service for your prized watch or clock. It’s easier than you might think. Just go to the AWCI website and click on their Referral Directory in the left sidebar. Here you can give your zip code and find qualified watch repair or clock repair services in your area. (AWCI stands for American Watchmakers-Clockmakers Institute, the trade association for these professionals.)
Who is AWCI and what is a “Watchmaker?” AWCI is not only the U.S. trade association for watchmakers and clockmakers, it is one source for training and certification…so you’ll know the person handling your prized Rolex or Cartier actually knows their stuff and can provide a quality repair. For certification, watchmakers go through a grueling 4-day repair test, and they must keep up on their certification by obtaining further testing every five years. This certification is called the “CW21″ (21st Century Watchmaker) exam. These are the people youwant to take your watch to. They have proven expertise, and they can get the right parts. But deep down, who are these folks really? According to a recent article in WatchTime magazine, …”these guys are mavericks–rugged individualists and gifted mechanics, who are hopeless romantics about horology [the science of timekeeping]. They willingly pay the price for their labor of love.” That means, they work long hours at an exacting profession that’s not usually a high-paying job. But once you’re a certified watchmaker or clockmaker, it’s almost like you’re addicted to the profession. You live every day looking forward to that next difficult repair job that presents a unique challenge. So if you have a timepiece that you really value, take it to a certified professional, one who’s trained and eager to handle the job.
Amy D is the Editor of Horological Times monthly magazine, a publication for watchmakers and clockmakers in the U.S. To find AWCI for a local timepiece repair service, see the left sidebar on this site: www.awci.com
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