How To Spot Fake IWC Watches (Portuguese, Pilot, Portofino)

Ch Alex
fake vs real iwc watch
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To spot fake IWC watches, you have to check the details available on the dial of your watch, since the replica items often have the elements on the dial at the incorrect font weight, while the genuine IWC watches are never flawed, thanks to their higher quality.

Looking to learn how to spot fake IWC Pilot, Portuguese or Portofino watches? Afraid of getting scammed with a replica IWC watch?

Then don’t even worry, you’re in the right place, as our real vs fake IWC watch guide will teach you how to easily identify the real vs fake IWC Portuguese / Pilot / Portofino watches.

Along with every step of our real vs fake IWC authentication guide, we are going to link reference fake vs real IWC images with either of the Portuguese, Pilot, or Portofino watch models.

These images with the authentic vs replica IWC watches will help you visualize the flaws on the fake watches, as well as what the details on the genuine watches should look like.

How to spot fake IWC Portofino, Portuguese, or Pilot watches

Step 1: Real vs fake IWC Watches main dial

The dial on the IWC watches, especially the Portuguese, Pilot, and Portofino, are more often than not pretty crowded. This represents quite a challenge for replica manufacturers who can barely reproduce all the fine and small details.

Just as we have previously mentioned, we will share images that help you better understand the specific tells.

iwc watch fake check tutorial

In the image above with the fake vs real IWC Portuguese watches above, we have pointed out how the fake IWC Portuguese watch has different inconsistencies.

The main one is the fact that the genuine IWC Portuguese watch has 3 ticks between the seconds’ markers, while the replica IWC watch has 4. The three ticks represent the mechanism’s 3 ticks per second.

Another tell on the above example is the blue color on the chronograph’s sub-dial – blue that is painted on the replica watch, while on the genuine watch it looks different and of higher quality because of a different manufacturing process.

Last but not least are the hour markers present on the dial. For this example, we have randomly chosen the 6 o’clock hour marker, which is represented in one way on the authentic IWC Portuguese watch, while it is represented totally differently on the replica IWC Portuguese.

Be aware of the embossed numbers on the genuine dial, while on the replica dial those numbers will more often be looking like they are “glued”.

iwc watch authenticity check guide

For our last comparison picture, the one above with both the real and the fake IWC Portuguese watch, we chose to share some other flaws that are never to be seen on the genuine watch.

If you take a close look at the replica watch above, you will see flaws when it comes to the printing on the dial. Such flaws will never be present on the real IWC watches, so keep an eye out for those, as they can often be signs that you are looking at a replica IWC watch.

Step 2: Check the sub-dials and side pushers on your IWC Portuguese / Pilot / Portofino

The sub-dials are an other easy tell to inspect when authenticating an IWC watch, of course if those are present.

Let’s first take a look a the comparison pictures between the 2 IWC watches, the genuine and the replica, then we will further explain.

how to authenticate iwc watches

In the image with the real vs fake IWC watches above, we have pointed out how the fake IWC watch has a different design when it comes to its sub-dials. First, you can notice the different shades of red present on the small second’s hand in the sub-dial at 9 o’clock.

The second thing to notice is the different space between the sub-dials of the two IWC watches. This has to do with the watch’s mechanism which is of course not perfectly replicated by the replica manufacturers. Because of this, the manufacturers have to make different compromises when it comes to the elements present on the main dial and so it is often noticed that the distances between the sub-dials are totally inconsistent.

Another very important aspect on your IWC watch is the fact that the sub-dials have to be “connected” with the side pushers. So another step when authenticating the IWC watch is to push the side buttons and to make sure that those are mechanically linked with the features present on the sub-dial.

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Step 3: Inspect the date-window on your IWC watch

As for the third method on how to spot fake IWC Portuguese, Portofino, or Pilot watches, we are going to look at the date window. This of course can be applied exclusively to those watches that do have a date window present.

how to spot a fake iwc watch

When closely inspecting the IWC watches date window, on either of Pilot, Portuguese, or Portofino model, differences can be seen.

Most of the time, like in the example above, IWC replicas will not perfectly replicate the font and thickness present on the genuine IWC watch. This means that the font can be thinner, like in the picture above, or in some cases even thinner.

Make sure you are comparing the watch in your hands with reference IWC watches pictures available on the official website, or trusted dealers. In this way, you can be sure that you are accurately authenticating your IWC watch, whether it is a Portofino, Pilot, or Portuguese model.

Other relevant watch authentication guides: Panerai Luminor, Tudor watches.

Step 4: Authentic vs replica IWC Watch crystal

Another step on the authentication guide for your IWC watch has to do with the watch’s crystal. More specific, with the anti-reflective coating that has to be present on the crystal.

And, as always, let’s first have a look at the real vs fake IWC Pilot watches below, in order to make the authentication job easier.

how to tell a fake iwc watch

Please remember that this step, just like others, can be applied to at least any of the Portuguese, Portofino, and Pilot models.

Now the fact is that replica manufacturers need to reduce their manufacturing costs, so the chemicals that are part of the anti-reflective coating will be used in a lower quantity, or lower quality.

Hence the light and shadows are easily reflected on the watch’s main dial. This happens while the genuine IWC watch will rarely reflect light from its main dial and will actually always assist you in easily reading the date and time on the main dial.

The steps we’ve written so far are the best ways to authenticate this item.

The next few steps are still reliable signs of authenticity but are for non-top-versions of replicas available for this item. We recommend sticking to the steps we’ve explained above to make sure you’re not drawing the wrong conclusions.

Step 5: Inspect the Power Reserve indicator of your IWC watch

Proceeding to the fifth step of the guide on how to authenticate IWC Pilot / Portuguese / Portofino watches, we are going to have a look at the fake vs real IWC watches for their power reserve indicator/dial.

The power reserve indicator is a feature present on some of the IWC watches, and it is visible on the main dial, as a sub-dial. This indicator lets you know the number of days left until your watch runs out of power. This is a helpful feature for you to know when to wind your watch and charge it.

iwc watch authentication

Now since this is a useful and very interesting feature, IWC replica manufacturers added it to their items as well. But then again, because they need to cut their costs to the minimum, in some cases the power indicator will be frozen and not working, being there just as a display.

In order to properly inspect the indicator, your watch will have to be charged less than the maximum. In this way, you can start winding it and make sure that while it charges, the arrow on the IWC power indicator sub-dial moves and reflects a higher state of its power.

To sum it up, in case your IWC watch has a power indicator on its main dial, make sure this works by winding it while inspecting the sub-dial.

Step 6: Verify the crown and the winding action of your IWC watch

For step number 6 we are going to inspect the IWC watch’s crown.

It is commonly known that the much cheaper mechanisms used with the IWC replica watches have flaws when it comes to the winding of the crown.

iwc watch authenticity check guide

Now, this is an aspect that is much tougher to reflect in the picture, but we will try to do it in writing.

When authenticating an IWC watch, pull out its crown and try rotating it. Try manually changing your IWC’s date and time and check how it feels. If it feels smooth and easy, then you are most probably holding a genuine IWC watch in your hands.

If however the winding action does not feel smooth and you face different inconsistencies (like a clingy feeling in the movement of the crown), then it might be the case, the most probable case, that you are holding a replica IWC watch in your hands, no matter it is a Portuguese, Pilot, or Portofino model.

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Step 7: Inspect the case thickness of your IWC watch

For the seventh step, make sure to inspect the case thickness of your IWC Pilot, Portuguese, or Portofino.

Again, because of the replica mechanism, the fake IWC will more often than not have a thicker case.

how to spot a fake iwc watch

Don’t forget to inspect the case thickness on both sides of your IWC watch and make sure it is not thicker than it should be.

For future reference, feel free and confident to come back to our pictures at any moment!

real vs fake iwc

Step 8: Authentic vs replica leather straps on your IWC watch

Your IWC’s leather strap will be, just like your watch, of the highest quality. Of course, the leather strap wears off in time and you might be looking at a second-hand IWC watch that has a replaced strap and that can be an aftermarket strap.

fake vs real iwc

However, if looking at an IWC branded leather strap, make sure it is an authentic piece.

Inspect all its text and stitches. Make sure it is of utmost quality and no inconsistency is visible. If there are inconsistencies present on the strap, you might be looking at a fake bracelet.

How can I spot the fake IWC Portuguese, Pilot or Portofino watches in 60 seconds?

The 8 detailed real vs fake IWC Pilot, Portuguese, or Portofino steps outlined above might not be so practical when you are in a hurry or when you want to buy the item online.

That is why we have compiled this quick 60 seconds solution to authenticating your IWC watch. Below are the top 8 indicators that can help you determine if you have a fake or real IWC Pilot, Portuguese, or Portofino watch.

  1. Check all the elements present on the dial of your watch, as fake watches usually have different flaws or inconsistencies
  2. Sub-dial Examine the sub-dials on the main dial of your watch since the replica pieces commonly have those frozen. Also, check the side pushers and make sure those work together with the sub-dials
  3. Look at the date window of your watch. Usually, the fake watches have their date window presenting a different font and thickness
  4. Inspect the crystal of your IWC watch, as the fake watches tend to have a lower quality anti-reflective coating available, if at all
  5. Check the power reserve indicator of your watch, if such a sub-dial is present. Usually, the fake watches only have it as a design in the form of the sub-dial, without its function being available/working
  6. Try winding the watch by rotating its crown. Make sure it offers a smooth and consistent movement, without any imperfections
  7. Verify the case thickness of your watch. In most cases, the replica watches have a thicker case in comparison with the genuine watch, because of the movement that cannot be perfectly replicated
  8. Look at the leather strap of your watch, in case it is still fitted with the genuine one. If it is indeed genuine, all the stitches and text on the leather will be extremely consistent and of high quality

Where can I get my IWC watch authenticated? The IWC watch authentication service

If you need help with the authentication of your IWC watch, we’ve got you covered.

All you have to do is send us high-quality pictures of your IWC watch and we will get back to you with the results within 48 hours. The results will also come with a report on why we believe your IWC watch model is fake or authentic.

That brings us to the end of our guide on how to spot fake vs real IWC watches. We will continue to update this article as better and newer comparisons are put out.

Need our opinion in regards to the authenticity of your watch? It’s a service we provide.

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Thank you for reading this,

Ch Alex

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About the Author

Ch Alex is the co-founder and COO of Legit Check By Ch. Ch Alex is in charge of the "Watch Guides" section of our Legit Check By Ch Library. Alex is also the main host of our YouTube channel where our guides have helped people save millions of dollars in scams. Make sure you subscribe to our channel and check out the videos hosted by Alex!
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