Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

Thread: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Hi all,

    I've been lurking here for a while, learning more about watches from all you fine people as I've been working on building myself a small collection. I do own one rather valuable watch -- a vintage Omega that I bought on eBay. Also some decent stuff from Tissot, Bulova, etc. as well as a few cheaper items and some things that are just unusual (I have a Zodiac which my local watchmaker liked a lot when I showed it to him and a Jules Jurgensen which I happen to like just because it's pretty though not terribly valuable). I didn't register until now because I didn't really know what to talk about here and didn't want to seem like a rank amateur (actually, considering how little I know, that would be a step up). I actually got into collecting watches by accident (long story) and still don't know much about it. Just whatever I read here and elsewhere when researching watches.

    However, I recently came across one watch which was quite bizarre. For what it cost, I thought I'd grab it because it was so unusual. It's got a signed 17 jewel movement from Helbros but the dial is signed Rolex. The seller on eBay says it's 1940s and I can believe it. The watch looks about that age. Just won the auction a few minutes ago and because of this rather odd combination, decided to register so I could ask if anyone knows what this is supposed to be about. I mean, if it was a cheap knockoff of a Rolex, it wouldn't have a semi-decent movement from Helbros and it would be a more modern look for the Rolex logo with the crown emblem. So anyone know what gives here? Did Rolex ever use a Helbros made movement? Original listing can be seen here. I'll see if I can post extra pix when it gets here.

    Thanks for any info folks.

  2. #2
    Member Marrick's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    East Yorkshire, UK

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Hi and welcome.

    Its a Helbros watch and someone has written Rolex on the dial. No connection with Rolex at all. To be fair, the seller hasn't mentioned Rolex in the listing.
    Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects."

    Will Rogers (1879 - 1935)

    Please don't PM me to ask for a valuation - I won't attempt one.

  3. #3
    Member Addictedtowatches's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Luckily this mistake didn't cost you much. It is a Helbros with a repainted dial. Is it from the 40s? yes. Is it Rolex? Far from it I'm afraid.

    -Citizen -Seiko -Heuer -Steinhart -Bulova -TagHeuer

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2014

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Thanks folks. As I said to someone else who already answered me via PM, considering how little it cost me, I'm not complaining. From what I've read, Helbros made decent movements as well (obviously not on par with Rolex but decent for what they are) and that was why I originally clicked on the listing. The fact that it said Rolex on the dial made me curious enough to buy it. However, even with it *just* being a Helbros, the price was worth that at the very least...

    Plus, because it is so old, if I ever want to, I can pretend to friends that I bought a near antique Rolex and nobody but an expert would know the difference. ;)


    Edit: Curious though why whoever created it as a fake would have used a semi decent movement. One would have thought they'd have used a cheap, generic movement. Or was Helbros about as close to generic as one could get in 1940? Also odd because Rolex wasn't considered such a status symbol back then. The company was still quite young and would have been an unlikely target for a counterfeit. As I said, not unhappy as long as the watch works properly. Just find it to be a very interesting piece to own even if it's not at all related to Rolex just considering the oddity of it.
    Last edited by eric11210; October 11th, 2014 at 18:57.

  6. #5
    Zenith Forum Co-moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Well, I have to say, when I saw that listing, I had to laugh my head off!! Nothing against the original poster but the person who created the watch ought to find his way high up in this hall of fame:


    As for why one might create a fake with such an up market movement, the engine is not by Helbros (who didn't make their own movements) but is actually a generic Fontainemelon Cal. 70 or derivative:

    Das Metatechnische Kabinett - FHF 70

    So, someone just took a genuine Helbros and slapped "Rolex" on the dial. In a pretty unconvinving font, one has to say.....

    Hartmut Richter

  7. #6
    Member Buzz224's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    N.E. central Alabama

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    The worst fake Rolex I've seen was some cheap thing with Rolex printed on the dial at a pawnshop in the 1980s, should have bought it for gigglz.

    Sent from my SM-N900V using Tapatalk

  8. #7
    Member Shum's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    I could see someone doing that to an old watch for fun.

    It is a very small men's watch with little value nowadays and probably had a bad dial anyway.

  9. #8
    Member James A's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2014

    Re: Helbros movement with Rolex dial?

    Welcome Eric,

    Great to have another contributor. Post your other watches when able.


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