Total overhaul of my 2531.80 w/ pictures.

frommeyerfrommeyer ChicagoPosts: 418MI6 Agent
To my great chagrin I was too young to have the cash to buy a Brosnan watch while they were still in stores. What's more, I didn't even know how badly I wanted one until a couple years ago. After buying a very nice used 2531.80 on ebay I was really happy with it. I simply love the watch, Bond notwithstanding.

Since then I've noticed that, over the last few years, the pricing on these things have gone up. While they're far from rare the parts and pieces are becoming (ever so slightly) harder to find. This isn't helped by the fact that Swatch has cut off supply lines to a lot of watchmakers. Omega has a parts-in-stock guarantee of 20 years after a watch model is produced. From what I've been able to gather the last 2531.80 was manufactured around 2005/2006. That means the parts guarantee only has a few years remaining. Projecting years down the road I got to thinking about what my 2531.80 situation would be when I'm, say, 60 years old (I'm 30). I got hit with some nervousness. What if I accidentally smashed my watch? Or lost it? Stolen? All you have to do is look at what a 40 year old, pristine automatic Bond watch goes for now; if you're someone who just wants the watch it's enough to make you break out into a cold sweat. Forward-thinking, patient sellers are probably Grinch-grinning though.

Anyway, this sparked a new search. I wanted a verifiable, brand-new-in-box 2531.80. Yeah, there were pristine used ones but that's not what I wanted. After an exhaustive 10 month search that included calling every Omega boutique (shoutout to Dario, the Chicago Omega manager for helping) and AD I could nothing turned up.

So I did the next best thing: I had EVERYTHING replaced on a used watch I found on Ebay. The bezel, the bracelet, the dial, the hands, the crown, the helium escape, full service... the only original part remaining is the case and parts of the movement that were deemed good. Expecting this, I knew while shopping for the used watch that the case was the only part which needed to be pristine. That and it needed to include the original box and papers. It actually wasn't too hard. I got an ok condition watch with original documents for $1500. The only major issues were a lot of scuffs on the bracelet and the bezel's scallops had been polished too much. They weren't sharp. No big deal as I was replacing it anyway.

The process with Omega was great. I live a few blocks from an Omega boutique and I was able to walk in and explain what my plan was. The people in store were fantastic. After first trying to help me find a new one (no dice) Dario mapped out a plan for me, gave an initial estimate, and then shipped it off to SWITZERLAND for me (this was a big favor because normally the do their basic servicing through Seattle with a fantastic group out there; but the best work is done in Switzerland - it probably didn't make a difference but considering the project I super appreciated it).

After about 8 weeks it was all done. Which kind blew my mind because the last simple service had (on my beater 2351.80) took ten damn months by a local watchmaker. So two months was like lightspeed. All told I spent just sky of $4,000. That's probably too much in many people's eyes but I don't care. I got exactly what I wanted from the process. An essentially new watch. Next week I will be dropping off my daily "beater" (it's in fine condition sans some marks on the bezel) 2531.80 to go through the exact same process. As Omega returns any replaced parts I like having doubles or even triples of parts like the dial. It will be nice to have those back-ups when I'm 60 and some serious fading has occurred or whatever.

So here are some photos if what it looks like. I've also done some side-by-sides with my beater. The biggest most notable difference is the heft of the bracelet. It feels a LOT more substantial than the used bracelets. You don't realize just how worn/ground down they get until compared with a 20 year old bracelet that's been worn daily. It feels twice as thick and three times as strong despite looking the same.



  • Gadget MeisterGadget Meister Bicester, OxonPosts: 1,972MI6 Agent
    Beautiful, takes me back to the day I picked my first new Omega up, this model too. Omega service may be expensive but it’s so worth it. The only mark on mine is a small bevel scratch. I now rotate between this model and the SPECTRE, love them both.
  • FerinstalFerinstal North of Londinium...Posts: 310MI6 Agent
    Good for you Sir! :)

    Sadly, I’m old enough to have bought one at the time...but I absolutely adore it and have pretty much worn it every day since! (I treated myself to a 1966 Seamaster for my 50th, which is beautiful, but I always go back to old blue...) I actually like the scratches/markings on mine as I know they are all mine.

    I’m not ‘with’ prices / valuations as some people are on here. I bought mine as I thought it looked incredible and it still makes me smile every time I glance down at it. It was A LOT of money for me then (about a months wages - it was the watch or an engagement ring. Still single... ;-) ) but I never regret a penny of it.

    Congratulations on the overhaul - I trust you will get as much enjoyment out of it as I have mine.
    Yes. Considerably.
  • FerinstalFerinstal North of Londinium...Posts: 310MI6 Agent
    BTW Never thought this watch would work on a NATO strap.

    I think your pictures give me all the proof I need that my initial thoughts were correct...! ;-)
    Yes. Considerably.
  • frommeyerfrommeyer ChicagoPosts: 418MI6 Agent
    G. Mister: I completely agree on the service cost being worthwhile. I have other Bond Omegas and for $550 they do a fantastic job. Especially on the QoS PO - the hands are notorious for fading to yellow after enough sun exposure. They replace them completely with each service. That alone makes it worth it the extra $150 or whatever.

    Ferinstal: Man, I love the NATO strap. I like how the grays compliment the blue. But I also spend a lot of time at the beach with my dog. So sand getting between bracelet links is something I wanna completely avoid (even on a daily beater). But for dressy occasions SS bracelet all the way.
  • Matt SMatt S Oh Cult Voodoo ShopPosts: 6,595MI6 Agent
    Fantastic story! I know what you mean about the bracelet. I'm on a 17-year-old bracelet now for my Omega, and it's really worn down. I'm probably going to get something else for it when it goes, either NATO or leather.
    Visit my blog, Bond Suits
  • FerinstalFerinstal North of Londinium...Posts: 310MI6 Agent
    frommeyer wrote:
    Ferinstal : Man, I love the NATO strap. I like how the grays compliment the blue. But I also spend a lot of time at the beach with my dog. So sand getting between bracelet links is something I wanna completely avoid (even on a daily beater). But for dressy occasions SS bracelet all the way.

    I’m guessing you have a lot more beach / sun than I get in the good ol’ U of K...! ;-)

    Either way it is all good!

    With no disrespect to anybody’s preference, i honestly haven’t seen a later model I like more so far.
    Yes. Considerably.
  • operas phantomoperas phantom GermanyPosts: 113MI6 Agent
    just wow...amazing effort. I hope you can enjoy your watch forever now. Altough i think watches are meant to be worn and built like that, and as you get older, why not your watch too? On the other hand i understand that the aluminium bezel with laquered painting isnt as strong and durable as ceramic, and the steel will definitely get some scratches over the time. But i can tell you DCs watch doesnt look brand new after all the action, so i think scratches are part of the bond watch anyway.
    Did you bring any chocolates?
  • Bond44Bond44 Vauxhall CrossPosts: 1,581MI6 Agent
    Looks great and like others here it does remind me of buying mine back in the day. Still going string and on,y had a bezel replacement once in all that time. I must say I have been contemplating a new bracelet as mine has worn over the years.

    Well done enjoy in good health

    Cheers :007)

    P.S Mine says hi

    My name is Bond, Basildon Bond - I have letters after my name!
  • ChriscoopChriscoop Belize Posts: 10,449MI6 Agent
    I do like a watch restoration story, having completed one on a cr era smp and an exhaustive one on an SM300. Good job -{
    It was either that.....or the priesthood
  • Rip_MurdockRip_Murdock Posts: 1MI6 Agent


    Is this watch still on your wrist? I admire your enthusiasm for this model. I'm currently wearing one.

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