A bust down watch is a bespoke luxury timepiece that has been entirely encrusted with high-end diamonds and precious gemstones. These watches can range in price from thousands of dollars to millions of dollars, depending on the diamonds and gemstones used.
What does bust down mean on watches?
A Rolex bust down is a unique timepiece that has been completely disassembled and then crusted with high tier diamonds. The process requires magnificent artistry and takes many hours to complete.
Generally, the majority of diamonds that are used in a cartier bust down watch are between 30 and 40 carats, although this can vary from watch to watch. A master setter will take the case, bezel, and bracelet of a watch and carefully disassemble it by hand, then use specialized excavation tools to dig out the parts that will need diamond settings.
Some of the most coveted bust down watches are Royal Oak Chronographs, which feature a pave setting of diamonds across the case, bezel, and dial. They’re a rare and extremely sought after piece of horology that can command astronomical prices at auction.
There are also plain Jane timepieces, which feature watches from brands like Rolex and Audemars Piguet that have been untouched with aftermarket alteration. These watches can be a great investment for those who are looking to get a high-end watch without the extra cost of the gems.
During an on-camera segment for GQ, rapper Quavo revealed that he has given up iced out watches in favor of Plain Janes. While putting diamonds on a watch will decrease the value of the timepiece, Quavo believes that a Plain Jane is worth more than an iced out one.