Ref. 2656 Overhaul and Detailing Project

Cartier Santos, when fashion, design, and performance go hand in hand

Cartier launched the new Santos 100 collection to commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the first men’s wristwatch ever produced.

Louis Cartier was a good friend of Alberto Santos-Dumont, a Brazilian flight pioneer that has a good debate for the title of the first human to fly with the Wright brothers.

As the story tells, Santos-Dumont complained to his buddy Louis Cartier that while flying it was awkward to be looking at a pocket watch and not very convenient to check the time while flying during races.

Cartier listened to his friend and came out with the “original” idea of a wristwatch, becoming the first men’s wristwatch and first pilot watch in 1904.

No small task at the time.

With the success of his first wristwatch and the great promotion that a well-known figure as Santos-Dumont was enjoying it, Cartier decided to mass-produce it and in 1911 came out with the Cartier Santos, giving a famous French jeweler, the most enviable historical claim of any watch manufacturer: creator of the first wristwatch.

Sure Rolex, Patek Philippe, and Breguet have many notable technological innovations but… Cartier is the one that started the whole wristwatch business.

Another first for Cartier was designing and developing the first deployment buckle for a wristwatch, and for many years was the only one offering such a practical buckle for its customers.

Cartier has re-designed and re-launched this iconic collection many times but had a special interest by 2004, the year in which they celebrated the 100 year anniversary.

Santos de Cartier is a legendary and iconic timepiece, with a bold design for the risk-takers and rule-breakers. Square case, curved lugs, exposed screws resembling the Eiffel Tower legs, and art deco design. A wristwatch designed by one of the world’s most famous jewelers.

It is always a great privilege to work on such a beautiful and iconic watch.

Gray and Sons received the watch from a collector that wanted to make sure we were going to follow manufacturers’ protocols to repair it.

When we spoke to the customer, he explained that the watch’s strap broke and the watch hit a hard floor surface. The customer was concerned about the movement and wanted to make sure we were going to use original parts to fix it. The watch did not run at all.

Ref. 2656 Overhaul and Detailing Project

Before Gray and Sons, dirty and damaged movement

Our Swiss watchmakers took the job with great passion, and when we opened the movement we could look at the damage that the impact had generated on the dial and the movement.

The dial was loose and the feet holding the dial to the case were broken and fell inside the movement. The balance wheel was damaged and the dial feet had broken a few teeth of the wheels. Not unexpected but still sorry to say that most watches that come for service are due to falling from the wrist. Either as the bracelet or strap broke or when putting on the watch it fell to the floor. A simple mistake is easily corrected by putting on the watch always on the top of a table or the bed and making sure that the band and bracelet are strong and in good shape.

Cartier Santos, when fashion, design, and performance go hand in hand
It is always a great privilege to work on such a beautiful and iconic watch.

Before Gray and Sons, dial with broken feet to hold the dial

Cartier Santos 100 XL  Detailed Description
A brief story about Gray & Sons Inspired Jewelers and Watch Experts

Before Gray and Sons, detail of damaged and dirty parts.

#1 Specialist on Rolex, Cartier, Patek Philippe, Corum, Breitling, Audemars Piguet, Piaget, Omega, JLC, IWC, Hublot, Blanc Pain, Ulysse Nardin, GP, and all major luxury Swiss brands.

After Gray and Sons, clean and repaired parts

Every movement is different, every watch is unique and it is a different challenge. At Gray & Sons, we make it personal to bring every timepiece back to its original splendor.

So the process begins, the movement is removed. Case and buckle are sent to one of our highly specialized watch polishers to detail and buff up the stainless steel to its original beauty, which requires a very clear understanding of the job to be done with each timepiece, to make sure that each part of the watch continues to be as original as designed: in this case, satin and shiny stainless steel.

Meanwhile, our watchmaker had disassembled the movement to the barest parts. Cleaning them using a multi-stage process to remove dirt, small broken parts, and old dried lubricants to bring this great movement back to its best performance.

At the same time, we begin working with the dial. It is in good shape and has no visible damage but we need to laser solder the feet back so it will be set in the right way when assembling the watch.

The soldering of the feet is another interesting task for which we use a special soldering machine to avoid damaging the dial and still have a stronghold into the watch’s case.

Cartier Santos 100 XL Sport Watch

After Gray and Sons, ready to reassemble the timepiece

This overhaul of the movement process takes approximately 9 to 10 working days to be achieved as no shortcuts are used, we, at Gray & Sons, only do this the old-fashioned way of the antique watchmakers.

The movement is put together again to start working on the regulation, timekeeping accuracy, power reserve, and synchronization of all the parts involved for this magnificent movement to keep time, this new process taking 10 days.

Then the watch will be released, and for the final checks, two specialists will test the power reserve of the movement manually, then check the power reserve using mechanical wheels for timekeeping and winding, finally pressure testing machines to check for leaks on the seals and gaskets, this will take another 10 days.

The watch is almost ready to be shipped back and as a final stage, we will have another associate check everything all over again with new eyes and have these final tests done again before we ship it back to the owner.

Ref. 2656 Overhaul and Detailing Project

After Gray and Sons

Cartier Santos 100 XL Detailed Description

Brand: Cartier.

Model: Santos 100 XL.

Watch Style: Men’s Luxury Sport Watch.

Reference: 2656, self-winding automatic timepiece.

Case: Square, stainless steel, 38 x 38 mm.

Bezel: Smooth with 8 visible Cartier screws.

Screw-in Crown: Yes

Dial: Off-white Dial, black steel luminous hands, Roman numerals, and hours markers, with minute markers around the rim.

Date: No.

Crystal: Scratch-resistant sapphire

Case back: Solid.

Movement: Automatic self-winding.

Caliber: 049

Jewels: 21.

Complications: None.

Water Resistance: 330 ft.

Bracelet: Original alligator strap with original deployment buckle.

Circa: 2009

Cartier Santos, when fashion, design, and performance go hand in hand

After Gray and Sons

A brief story about Gray & Sons Inspired Jewelers and Watch Experts

For over 40 years, the focus of this family-owned and operated business has been selling meticulously restored & like-new condition Certified Preowned Watches and one-of-a-kind estate jewelry pieces.

We are always acquiring new watches and jewelry pieces, so please check our website frequently or sign up for our free monthly catalog, it will give you a good sense of market values and what is trending in our industry and it's free!! If you have an item that you are interested in selling, we can help sell your piece too! We have sales specialists that are fluent in Spanish, French, Polish, and Russian.

We have six in-house Swiss-trained watchmakers with over 150 years of combined experience to handle all your watch repairs and service issues.

If you have a watch that is not working as it once did, send it to us. You will be amazed at your “as new looking” watch.

Our Miami Beach showroom is located across from the world-renowned Bal Harbour Shops.

If you are ever in the area please stop by, we would love to meet you and show you our store.

Hope this brief intro to our company makes you feel reassured that you are dealing with a reputable, long-standing and honest company. Your watch will be in good hands. No job is too small or too big for us!

#1 Specialist on Rolex, Cartier, Patek Philippe, Corum, Breitling, Audemars Piguet, Piaget, Omega, JLC, IWC, Hublot, Blanc Pain, Ulysse Nardin, GP, and all major luxury Swiss brands.

Visit Gray and Sons Jewelers is a one-stop source for all your luxury watches and high-end jewelry needs throughout Florida, especially in Miami, Coral Gables, Miami Beach, Sunny Isles, and Fort Lauderdale. Gray and Sons has an excellent reputation with many customers in New York, Massachusetts, California, Texas, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and Chicago.

It is always a great privilege to work on such a beautiful and iconic watch.

Don’t hesitate to contact Gray and Sons customer service and have a look at the helpful FAQ on the website www.grayansons.com

We will exceed your expectations.