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TjHGHgds

Why Can I Not Join the IWC club? Or Torneau and the Story of the Portofino's that runs slow

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In 2011 or so I sauntered into a Torneau store and fell madly in lust with nice watches. Before that I was wearing quartz (movado and raymond weil). So began the the quest. One of the watches that really caught my eye was the entry level Portofino at 39 mm or so in gold with a date. Classic looking watch to say the least. I was not willing though to shell out $10k for a new watch. So I searched and searched and searched and came across what I thought was a great Portofino from Torneau that was pre-owned. I purchased the watch site unseen and was guaranteed a refund if something was wrong. Well I received my watch and marveled at its beauty. Slight problem though, there was a noticeable nick in the case and the d*mn watch ran slow by many seconds outside of specification. So the watch went back and I received a refund. But sad I was. So I kept on with my watch hunting, slowly but surely like an animal hunting prey....and then it appeared, a great pre-owned zenith elite hw with reserve and seconds. Lovely watch and even my wife liked it. I purchased in 2012 and it came with a brown leather strap. So for the last 3 years I have been quite happy with my zenith, but I still lusted for nice watch with a black band that looked classic. Well while still on the prowl, there it was, a nice IWC portofino in rose gold from 2008 or so at 38 mm or so. Torneau has the watch and was willing to negotiate some on the price. Determined to buy the watch after two weeks of going back forth, I went into the store yesterday (Saturday). I wound up the portofino and my zenith and synchronized them to the second by the app on the smart phone. My goal was to go into the store today and if the portofino held time withing a few seconds then I would buy the puppy. So..................I go into the store today (Sunday 20 hours later ) to compare the zenith and the portofino to the app. Zenith is spot on, maybe 1 second off. The portofino by IWC that I have been lusting after.......was slow by 35 seconds.....35 seconds. No way I can buy this watch. The salesperson agreed with the time being off. She is supposed to call NY tomorrow to discuss getting the watch serviced or looked at. I'm not sure she is going to follow-through. I really want this watch and also want to join the IWC club. It seems though as if my goal is being thwarted by the case of the IWC Portofino's that run slow. Woe is me....

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I'm sorry about your experience with IWC. However, when buying a watch this old (from 2008) it is pretty certain that you will have it properly serviced if it has not done so. The Portofino you are after uses the ETA 2892-A2 movement, which is a proven work horse. If properly maintained, it can run very accurately and last very long. I'm not sure about Torneau's policy with respect to servicing their pre-owned pieces, but it sounds to me that neither IWCs you purchased was serviced immediately before you purchased it, which can explain the accuracy issue. IWC usually tune it to run a little fast, as you may know, their spec is +0-7 sec/day. You might just have been pretty lucky. Hopefully, Torneau can get that Portofino to spec for you soon! Good luck.

 

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The power reserve version is very nice indeed. The face is a bit chaotic, but somehow it works. IMHO, you'd have to move up to the Portofino 8 Days to even compete with your Zenith.

Kudos to you for having actually timed the IWC over 24 hours as it sat in the shop! It's possible that its performance may improve after the break-in period and regular wear. Thirty five seconds really is a pretty serious deviation for a 2892 though...

 

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