Inspection

INSPECTION PROCESS

The 4K Inspection and Grading Process

To combat the technologically advanced manufacturing in the counterfeit luxury watch market, 4K has developed cutting-edge authentication protocols. Authentication protocols for other item types are coming soon.

Inspection

Inspection

4K inspects every watch that we receive for quality. By checking the item condition, papers, serial numbers, and more, we're able to report the quality of the watch before you buy.

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Packaging

Examine and document the item’s packaging to ensure that it has not been tampered with.

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Physical Damage

Inspect the timepiece for any physical damage, scratches, missing componenets, etc.

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Box & Papers

Confirm that the box is authentic and that the manual correspond with the model number.

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Warranty Card

Compare warranty’s serial number matches the watch’s serial number.

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Serial Numbers

Remove the band and confirm the serial number is consistent with the engraving on the inner edge of the bezel.

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Winding

Examine functionality by winding and loosening the crown. As the crown is unwound, confirm the minute hands, hour hands and date wheel are turning.

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Service History

If applicable, document any history of repairs, parts replacement.

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Polishing

Look for signs of previous polishing or cosmetic work.

Evaluation

Quantitative Evaluation

Our authentication process utilizes scientific devices that elevate the quality of our authentications well beyond industry standards.

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Chronometer

We use a precision measuring device to identify the rate of deviation, the amplitude, and the beat error of mechanical watches. The compact microphone has integrated measurement electronics.

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Pressure Testing

We use a pressure testing system to properly measure water resistance up to 10 bar. This process helps determine authenticity by simulating water pressure. Watches that cannot handle shallow pressure depth are usually counterfeit.

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Other Tools

We leverage other scientific equipment, such as scales to measure weight and spectroscopes to analyze metal compositions.

Product Photography

Our team of professional photographers and videographers capture stunning images at the highest possible resolution using the latest technology. This helps our sellers and also provides 100% transparency into the condition of the asset.

Examination

Microscopic Examination

Our authentication process utilizes scientific devices that elevate the quality of our authentications well beyond industry standards.

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Dial

First, we examine the dial. Dial markers in authentic watches are raised and have smooth edges. Dial markers for counterfeit watches are made of cheaper metal and show signs of erosion, fading, and rough edges.

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Hands & Center Pivot

An initial sign of a counterfeit watch is the metal used for its most detailed parts. Authentic watches, such as Rolex, have smooth and refined edges.

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Bezel

Next, we examine all of the bezel’s features. Inconsistencies in the cut of the bezel markers indicate a counterfeit. Fake bezel markers will have rough edges and are faded. When shown in the light they fail to provide any luminescence while an authentic bezel marker is cleanly cut and emits a reflectable light.

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Crown

The next step in authentication is examining the crown. The crown should have evenly cut ‘teeth’ with the depth of the cut consistent around the edge of the dial. Worn edges or fades blotches on the finish point to a fake.

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Type Face

When examining type face, we look at the quality of the lettering. Authentic type face is slightly raised off of the dial and is reflective. The font must be consistent and properly aligned.

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Clasp

Next, we look at the condition of the band and the clasp when closed. Here, we look at the integrity of the crown. In an authentic Rolex, the crown is not printed or engraved—it is welded on to the band. We look for smooth edges, correct proportions of the shapes, and the quality of metal used.

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Backing

Next, we look at the back of the watch. On Rolex watches, we examine the consistency and cut of the teeth. They must have equal height and depth around the entire watch. If there are imprints with type or a crown, we examine the quality and font to ensure there isn’t fading or rough edging.

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Engraved Crystal

The biggest clue in determining a real or fake lies in the sapphire crystal glass. Above the 6 o’clock marker is a laser-etched crown.

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Service History

If applicable, we document any history of repairs, parts replacement.

Grading

Condition Grading

To improve the transparency, we apply a standard grading system to each product. The system is on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 graded as ‘mint’ and 1 being graded as ‘poor’. We apply these grading standards to watches by examining the glass, bezel, crown, back, and bracelet of the watch.

Storage

Secure Storage

The security of your assets is our top priority. Once authenticated and graded, we store inventory in our high security, dehumidified, and temperature-controlled vaults.

The assets are live monitored 24/7. We use a dual-camera system with best-in-class machine learning capabilities for facial recognition. We store the footage both in the cloud and locally with hard backups stored offsite. We also use redundant power, redundant fiber lines, fire suppression systems, keycard access, motion sensors, and soon we will pioneer “decentralized security.”

We could go on, but we are keeping the rest private for extra security through obscurity.

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