I'm out

Aug 18, 2023,12:05 PM

Yesterday afternoon I was chatting with a fellow PuristS member what Lange he / I could buy next when at the same time I've got a mail vom Lange service center I've been waiting for. Six weeks ago I went to a Lange Boutique and dropped my beloved Lange 1 for a service request. I own this rare piece for about 10 years. The watch runs well, keeps time, no scrateches, perfect hands and dial (in my eyes)  - just one of the date disks was not centered for 1/2 millimeter so I thought that a service will be a good idea.

So I got the estimate of service costs and was falling from chair. At first I thought there was a mistake but unfortunately it wasn't. Service and repair 8.300,- Euro (incl. tax) and optional case polish and change dial additional 1.900,- Euro (incl. tax) thats complete 10.200,- Euros... for a service of a "simple" Lange 1. If there is a real reason for this efford I expect that this will be explained but I didn't find anything on the Lange papers. I have no idea why I should change the dial... I asked the staff @ boutique but they can't tell me and confirmed, that this is no mistake.

Don't get me wrong: the watch works fine, great condition no water issue... 10 grand for a simple service???  I'm out. I'm completely scared of service costs of my complicated Lange watches. Sorry guys, I know that a Lange watch is a high end product, mostly handmade but I never ever justifies this amount. Lange is dead - for me! I will sell my Lange watches asap. and I will never again buy a Lange... sorry guys!


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That is absolutely crazy!

 By: andrea~ : August 18th, 2023-12:14
I don't blame you. Get rid of them ASAP. Was it broken in any way? Did it have water damage? I can't wrap my brain around this. You could buy a Rolex every time you send a Lange to the service center. This is Richemont at its finest.

Here I agree. ;)

 By: amanico : August 18th, 2023-12:37

+1 (000)

 By: myles721 : August 18th, 2023-16:24
You are so right. Actually I think this is a Richemont play on owners egos.


 By: enjoythemusic : August 18th, 2023-12:34
Sorry for your troubles, it seems Richemont brands are... Yes, and sad to say, imho the best bet is to try and avoid the situation they cast upon customers. This is a very sad situation indeed.

There must be a mistake! You mind sharing the exact model?

 By: Pour le Mérite : August 18th, 2023-12:41
According to their website, the quoted 1,900 Euro are for complete service of the case and the movement (movement only sitting at 1,300 Euro), while a repair/restoration on the movement and the case are quoted at 4,350 Euro (movement only sitting at 3,500... 

I checked the price list...

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-12:52
... and a service for Lange 1 (tier 2) is 1.900,- Euro incl. polishing. Changing date disk on top I expected around 2.500,- but never >10k€ stere

As said, there must be a mistake. Seems like they’re adding on services that basically negate themselves.

 By: Pour le Mérite : August 18th, 2023-12:57
Have you seen the detailed cost estimate on paper or how did you learn about it?

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-12:58
I've seen the detais and asked the boutique staff about it and the only response was "sorry for that". stere

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-13:13
Yes, this can be an option...or Wempe. It can fix the issue for this case. But if this is the way Lange interacts with his customer I don't want to be a part oft this journey. stere

If this is listed service prices then how on earth could they quote what they did?!

 By: ArmisT : August 18th, 2023-13:46
This is a scary and disappointing situation since I have a Lange 1, and this makes me think like you ie why keep it if at some point the service will be disrespectfully unreasonable. Did you show the staff the listed pricing? If so, then how can their res... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:05
as I wrote in another reply: serveral parts (in addition to the 3.500,- movement repair rate) should be replaced for additional 4.800,- Euro but it is not explained why. The watch was in good condition and not from flea market. stere

So they were consistent with their listed pricing, that’s better.

 By: ArmisT : August 18th, 2023-16:02
But they’re saying that they suggest other work/replacements in your piece…which was unexpected. Understood.

It sounds unbelievable. Last year a PP retrograde QP, was serviced, I do not recall the exact data, but

 By: hora12reborn : August 18th, 2023-12:43
the complete service with polishing and laser welding was fast less than six months for sure and for sure less than 3000 EUR. The prices quoted on Patek’s website testify it.

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:06
maybe I will exchange my Lange watches with Pateks ;-) stere

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-12:57
It comes from Dresden resp. Glashuette... stere

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-16:45
yes, the estimate cost paper came via mail but after receiving it I called the boutique and the confirmed me on phone that price. Maybe I will find someone who will service it locally so my trust in the brand is completely destoyed. How can I trust Lange ... 

Mind blowing !?

 By: Jp75 : August 18th, 2023-13:30
It sounds mind blowing 🥺🤯 I see three options: (1) ALS increased their prices by a factor 5x; (2) there was a mistake during the estimate; (3) some info is missing in the calculations provided by ALS, like extra replacement parts (new dial? New parts in m... 

Rereading the post

 By: Jp75 : August 18th, 2023-13:46
Rereading the post, I now see the itemization which I had missed .. sorry about that. Seems like the repair itself is 8,3k… That is getting even more crazy. Please let us know how it ends! J

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:01
well, i will take the watch back from Glashuette without a service and then I will think about the future. Right now I'm afraid it has no future in my collection. stere

I sincerely doubt the entire L1 movement even costs that much to make.

 By: vitalsigns : August 18th, 2023-14:02
For a repair, that amount is just insane, and Lange is profiteering from your misfortune (i.e., there must be some Lange movement defect otherwise a simple service would have sufficed).

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:09
At the time I dropped the watch on the boutique desk there was no malfunction except the little issue withe the date disk. But I never expected that fixing this will cost that amount of money. stere

 By: somethingpositive : August 18th, 2023-19:44
Sorry, but something about this doesn't make sense. This sounds like an estimate for a watch with serious damage somewhere, not a watch going for a regular service.

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-20:02
I'm with you that this story sounds weired. I can confirm that there was no obvious damage, watch runs well, keeps time. I have no idea why Lange calls such an amount of money. stere

maybe #3

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-13:59
There are some additional costs listed but did not explain why they have to exchange. When Service cost of movement is listed by 3.500,- Euro on Lange website I expect that this is a flat rate and I didn't understand why I should pay additional 4.800,- fo... 

So sorry to hear this, Stere,

 By: sery.vlk : August 18th, 2023-13:36
the quoted estimation is absolutely out of proportion, cca 25 % of the today's retail, maybe a half of the price at the time it was purchased, just outrageous. I'm afraid this Lange/Richemont policy transforms a timepiece as a precious object that could b... 

This has to be a mistake

 By: Cozmopak : August 18th, 2023-13:45
But I am surprised the boutique does not see it

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:02
No, there is no mistake. I've checked it with a long conversation with boutique staff. stere

If this is all as it seems and a legitimate repair price...

 By: vitalsigns : August 18th, 2023-14:19
Note: I'm not doubting you, just wondering if there's some miscommunication or mistake, although with your double-checks, it would seem entirely as you perceived. If this is all as it seems and a legitimate price, then this will absolutely affect Lange se... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-14:30
Probably there is a damage at movement I didn't realize. Probably it is necessary to exchange some parts. But the rate for movement repair (3.500,-) should include mostly of the spare parts or if not, I expect that they explain why this should be done. It... 

No doubt the explanation will be some movement damage.

 By: vitalsigns : August 18th, 2023-16:02
But how much is the marginal cost of producing gears, levers, etc. that are required to address the movement damage? As I noted above, 8,000 Euros is probably more than the full cost (labor included) of manufacturing and assembling the entire L1 movement.... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-16:49
I wish that you to keep away with your Lange watches from storys like that. Enjoy it and take care of it! stere

Dear Stere,this is a real horror story.

 By: jlux : August 18th, 2023-15:13
And hardly understandeable how they can come up with such a price. As a reference,I had my Datograph serviced last year which had stopped working (through Lange boutique in Frankfurt). The repair plus polishing incl. laser welding plus exchange of both cr... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-15:21
Thanks Gerard! It is clear, that the Dato is more complicated so I understand that it will be more expensive. I would also accept 5k for a Dato, but 10k for a L1 makes me speechless. stere

Sounds crazy

 By: Watchcph : August 18th, 2023-15:20
And so very greedy to a point I have a hard time believing it to be true. 10k euro should more than cover the complete costs of materials, labor and everything for a new watch. Having owned the watch for years and suddenly they make it to expensive to kee... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-15:25
I didn't expect a service for free but it is hard to negociate when the opposite position operates at a position of power and is convinced that there is no mistake made. stere

I won't lie, the high cost of servicing expensive

 By: Thomas_3 : August 18th, 2023-15:28
watches keeps me from, or causes me to reconsider the purchase of another one. Buying one then having to spend $1,500+ to have it serviced doesn't do much for me. I know they need to be serviced, just like cars, motorcycles etc. with moving parts. While I... 

Unfortunate for sure!

 By: walidk : August 18th, 2023-15:34
Hi Stere, This is definitely an unfortunate turn of events. I recently had my L1 with a Guilloche MOP dial serviced for the first time in some 16 years by one of the few authorized watchmakers (who is not part of Lange/Richemont) and it was in line with t... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-15:58
Thanks for your warm words! I re-checked the Lange paper once again and there is nothing written with any damage or so. There is written the replacing is needed because of normal usage over the time. I never had a crash or similar issues with this watch. ... 

Then this is a very odd quote…

 By: walidk : August 18th, 2023-16:05
In the case of the gentleman with the watch that was tampered with, he was told exactly what was done to damage the watch so not sure why they can’t walk you through the estimate at that ‘price-point’! I think it is worth exploring a discussion with an AD... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-16:35
The expensive components which are should be replaced are listed on the paper with no further explaination. The watch was inspected at headquarter in Glashuette so I thought this will be no better place to service the watch. Unfortunately I was in NYC in ... 


 By: myles721 : August 18th, 2023-16:23
the movement melted inside the case and they need to supply a brand new one this is OUTRAGEOUS. I’m just going to say it straight…Richemont is suckering high end owners…period. That is why I returned my JLC…crappy workmanship coupled with crummy customer ... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-16:38
the movement was not melted They made some pictures of the watch when I left it at the boutique. I can't say if this is normal at Riechemont brands but a couple of years ago I had a IWC at service and had to return it 3 times (!) after service because som... 

Factory service sounds great but sometimes

 By: sery.vlk : August 18th, 2023-17:21
the watch needs to be sent back for another intervention. I suspect the best/most skilled watchmakers are on the production side. Or when they specialise in the movement servicing and are really good, they go independent. In addition, factory service is u... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-18:40
Unfortunately the independent watchmakers don't get the spare parts from Lange. Only certified workshops get some original parts. Unfortunately I don't know a independent Lange certified watchmaker. But I'm with you: a Lange movement is no magic stere

Dear Stere,

 By: Speedie74 aka Mr. Torquise : August 18th, 2023-20:55
I can totally understand your concerns about this situation. Let me tell you my story with the service cost of my Langematik Sax-O-Mat, maybe it helps to you: I have sent my watch directly to Glashütte, the zero-reset mechanism doesn’t work anymore. Accor... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-21:08
Dear Adam, thanks for your advice. This is a good idea. I can call the repair service department in Glashuette. If this really works I would say that the way Lange operates with his clients is not serious. Unfortunately yesterday I asked for sending me th... 

As I understand it seems as if they are telling you that some parts should be changed but frankly I would just tell them to not change the parts, clean and lubricate the parts only.

 By: Derreck : August 18th, 2023-21:04
Tell them to center the date disk, don’t change the dial, no welding or polish. I would ask a quote only for the services that I request and not the ones they are suggesting. It seems that Richemont is trying to milk customers with unnecessary service ite... 

 By: stere : August 18th, 2023-21:23
Thanks Derreck for your encouragement. I will call Lange on Monday. Maybe they change their mind. On my opinion at first I have to trust, that things they offered me, are in the best way to keep me as a customer, satisfy me but I've learned my lesson that... 

Dear Stere

 By: Derreck : August 19th, 2023-11:29
Thank you for your reply. For clarification I think exactly like speedie74 aka mrtourquise. The services shouldn’t do unnecessary jobs on watches but sadly with big corporations this is becoming usual practice which is a shame. I’m guessing at the end you... 


 By: compa : August 19th, 2023-01:07
I’ve been planning a L1 purchase recently, but have heard enough horror stories to scare me off of the idea for now. I might have to get my high horology fix elsewhere.

 By: CR : August 19th, 2023-15:59
Hi Stere, it is understandably upsetting to receive such shocking news about a brand you've held in such high regard! I hope you feel calmer today. As you learned, the boutique staff cannot help with this. You must talk with someone at a higher level. The... 

 By: stere : August 19th, 2023-16:39
Dear CR, thanks for your message. At first: don't worry, I stay calm. Should we keep in Mind, that it is just a watch. It is a luxury problem. At second view the end of this story is relevant for me how to continue with this hobby. I don't want to publish... 

 By: stere : August 19th, 2023-18:16
That's also what I hope. stere

I am curious...

 By: CR : August 19th, 2023-21:09
Is it possible that a non-Lange watchmaker ever opened the caseback of your Lange 1? For example, if you bought this watch preowned 10 years ago and have never sent it to Lange before now, perhaps a non-Lange watchmaker was inside your watch in the past. ... 

 By: stere : August 19th, 2023-21:22
I can't rule that out. But the watch runs flawless for at least 10 years and all I can see through caseback is a perfect movement, little patina but no scratches, no damaged screws. whatever someone else did I can't belive that the fix of the 'damage' jus... 

 By: stere : August 21st, 2023-14:51
Dear Mike, thanks for your suggestion! If I fail to call again tomorrow, I will contact Mrs. Petzold. stere

I can only confirm:

 By: Speedie74 aka Mr. Torquise : August 22nd, 2023-21:14
Mrs. Petzold is the new Gudrun Pahl! She will help you especially if you write her in your common german language…

... a short update

 By: stere : August 21st, 2023-13:56
For short: nothing new! Extended edition: 1. Using public phonebook to get the phone number of Lange company. Multiple trials... no one picks up the phone. 2. Using the phone number listet on website. Callcenter replies: wrong number - here are just sales... 

You might want to try this contact:

 By: flopi3 : August 21st, 2023-15:44
Gudrun Pahl at +49-35053-440 I got this name and number back in 2016 when I have sent my Datograph to Glashütte for a service. No idea if Mrs Pahl ist still with Lange or if the number still exists.

 By: stere : August 21st, 2023-15:49
Thanks Ralf, the number is the telephone switchboard where nobody picks up... But I will try again tomorrow. stere

I wonder if most factory staff are taking their summer vacation now?

 By: CR : August 21st, 2023-22:32
I don't remember exactly when they typically do that.

 By: stere : August 22nd, 2023-05:58
The summer holiday in Saxony ended last friday, so that should be no excuse stere


 By: Speedie74 aka Mr. Torquise : August 22nd, 2023-21:16
it is true, unfortunately! She was a very, very nice and customer-friendly person, my Lange 1 was in Service at that time when she was still on board…

So much white glove service before the sale, so little after...

 By: vitalsigns : August 22nd, 2023-00:15
a somewhat common theme in the luxury goods sector.

Superbly stated, alas.

 By: amanico : August 22nd, 2023-07:37

... a short update Part II

 By: stere : August 22nd, 2023-15:47
Today I've got an e-mail from Lange with an offer to explain the quote. We're gonna make an appointment for the phone call in the next couple of days. I'll keep you informed when done. stere

Yes indeed ...

 By: als1678 : August 22nd, 2023-17:57
Briefly my thought about the whole "replacement parts" is - watches are not cars. If there are worn out parts in a modern watch it is on the brand - either issues with the quality of the parts themselves or with assembly / lubrication. Unless of course th... 

 By: stere : August 22nd, 2023-18:55
Well I guess that replacing parts is quiet faster than repair it. Also It can be done by less qualified / experienced staff. If customer didn't questioning this way a company will do it - costs doesn't matter because client will pay for that. I can confir... 

In case of normal wear and tear certain movement parts can be replaced if deemed necessary, but that has always been included in the standard service costs.

 By: als1678 : August 22nd, 2023-20:32
I am talking from experience with PP, AP and even Lange from the old days. So this is a totally new paradigm.

finally... last Update (and end of the story!)

 By: stere : August 23rd, 2023-09:55
I had today a phone call with team lead from service center who inspected my watch in person. At first: the mood was very friendly and respectful. He explained me all the work should be done to bring this watch in a "like new" condition. It was mostly und... 

Very sad to hear ...

 By: flopi3 : August 23rd, 2023-10:10
... that means, that the minimum repair cost would add to 8300€ if you don't opt for the optional work (dial and refurbishment)???

yes, you are right!

 By: stere : August 23rd, 2023-10:39
unfortunately... by the way: The money is not the problem but I'm not willing to pay such an amount of money for a service of a "simple" L1. I can not process this in my head. This is behind my red lines. stere

Oh no, very sorry to hear this.

 By: CR : August 23rd, 2023-15:51
I suspected that at least part of the high cost may be due to prior work performed by a non-Lange watchmaker. Lange's repair quotes always increase if they detect evidence of this. And of course, it can be harder to sell such a watch if left unrepaired be... 

I have no idea,....

 By: stere : August 23rd, 2023-18:43
... what I should do next. It is for sure that I will sell the watch. Maybe, sell with attached disclaimer for upcoming service or find a Lange certified watchmaker to fix the issue before selling. I can't justify, if there is a real issue from last servi... 

Ah yes, I understand.

 By: CR : August 24th, 2023-01:32
You may just have to find any really good watchmaker. There are no independent Lange-certified watchmakers in the world, as far as I know. I believe Alkis is the only Lange watchmaker in the world who doesn't work directly for Lange and who can get Lange ... 

my service experience, original owner, no 3P attempted service

 By: drgiggles : October 10th, 2023-14:45
I brought in a watch recently to be serviced. Original owner, first time serviced after ~10 years. The quote came in above the website estimate (tier 1) citing parts wear etc. I was a bit surprised given that it does not get a lot of wear in the rotation ... 

 By: somethingpositive : October 10th, 2023-20:43
I've stretched the service interval for my Langematik Anniversary to 10 years. First service it required a crown replacement which was a bit extra, but not nearly the cost of 2 services. 2nd service after another decade was roughly standard cost, which wa... 

I've learned a lot in this process

 By: stere : October 11th, 2023-07:49
The most important thing is that you should avoid to double the recommended service interval. If you're inside, the chance is real to stay at the published estimated service cost from Lange: stere

i stand corrected -- another datapoint

 By: drgiggles : October 13th, 2023-15:41
Just got back another watch, first service 8 years after new purchase. was charged the standard service fee, no additional work needed. I'll probably adopt the "if it ain't broke..." mentality going forward; and would reiterate for prospective lange owner... 

Sorry to hear of this unfortunate update.

 By: vitalsigns : August 24th, 2023-22:05
Why should we believe Lange's assertion that service was performed by another watchmaker, especially since the service was invisible from the see-through caseback? Reason #1 is entirely bogus. These watches are crafted for a lifetime and if made properly ... 

A reasonable question. I would tend to believe Lange's assertion about this.

 By: CR : August 25th, 2023-14:08
Stere was not the original owner of the watch, and Lange had not seen this watch since Stere bought it a decade ago. Lange watchmakers can often detect cosmetic signs of work done to the movement that you and I may not be able to detect with our untrained... 

Thanks for the explained lessons learned

 By: stere : August 25th, 2023-15:11
Rethinking the phone call, some things are a little weired. At first the watchmaker mentioned a damage. At a second request the answer was vague and evasive. They didn't disassembled the movement for first inspection so that I'm afraid some parts of the a... 

It seems that....

 By: stere : August 25th, 2023-12:27
... talking about watch service is a trending topic for all watch enthusiasts. Nearly 8000 visits in just one week. Wow. stere

Now I'm worried

 By: biw : August 25th, 2023-13:00
I have a Saxon Annual Calendar with an off centre big date indicator - only on certain numbers. Maybe I'll just tilt my head a bit to read it.

Can we have a pinned summary on the outcome and takeaways?

 By: Darron : October 11th, 2023-15:36
I had followed this closely during the OG post. But i am a little lazy now trying to track this thread and takeaways! I hope all good.

I can write a summery, when....

 By: stere : October 11th, 2023-15:45
...I've got the watch back. It takes about additional 4-5 weeks. Pls be patient. stere

No problem! Thanks Stere!

 By: Darron : October 12th, 2023-03:12

This post is now making me worried... just bought a preowned L1 Moonphase

 By: watchestolove : October 18th, 2023-20:48
Recently purchased a L1 Moonphase that's dated to 2015, which means likely it will need service soon. I checked the servicing cost on Lange website which I think is reasonable, but if it were to come to the insane number you got, I don't know what I would... 

Service history is nice to have…if there

 By: Darron : November 19th, 2023-15:31
Was any! I guess the worst case is if there is non Lange approved service

I don’t want to be a fan boy, but let’s assume

 By: Darron : November 19th, 2023-15:29
Common sense prevails. In theory it was a mistake, issue with a non Lange watchmaker touching the watch, or the ask for a repair vs. a service. We will find other soon enough from OP