Mystery Rolex

Thread: Mystery Rolex

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  1. #1
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    Mystery Rolex

    Hi everyone. I am new to this brand, but I am learning much today. I have posted the following question to a couple other Rolex sites today, and although I am getting good responses, nobody has the answer quite yet.

    Here are links to the original threads in case you want to read what has already been said:

    http://www.rolexforums.com/showthread.php?t=148280
    http://www.network54.com/Forum/20759.../Mystery+Rolex


    My original post is below:


    My wife and I recently inherited several items from her deceased grandfather, one of which is the Rolex pictured in the attached images. Until yesterday I knew nothing about Rolex (except the general vague notions shared by most of the public). However, I now have this extraordinary watch in my hands, and I am trying to identify it... a task which has proven much more difficult than I imagined it would, since It does not appear to conform to any of the most commonly referenced models/pictures I have seen online.

    Here is what I THINK I know about it so far:

    1) It is a real Rolex (not a fake) (I could be wrong about this of course)

    2) The band is 14k gold and the case is 18k gold. (this was told to me by the local ye-olde watch-fixit-shoppe here in town... the owner of which seemed quite keen to take the watch off my hands :comeandge )

    2) It appears to look generally like a 60's model Daytona, but has some distinct differences... the general spacing of the dials, the lack of the word "Daytona" on the face, the apparently rare spelling of "Oyster Chronographe" (with an E on the end) and "Anti-Magnetique" (With a Que) on its face, more numbers on its sub-dials than a regular Daytona, no BOLD numbers on the main dial, and slight differences in the hands, crown symbol and face markers.... it has been suggested on the other sites that it could be a limited edition Ref. 6234 or 6238, but I have looked at many examples of those models, and neither has quite enough in common for me to say it is one or the other, or either of them definitively.

    3) Because of the differences noted above, I believe this watch to be a late 50's to early 60's "pre-Daytona" model.... although I have not been able to find a single watch online which conforms perfectly to this one.

    4) The closest match for this watch that I HAVE been able to find is this one: Eric Clapton's Rolex Chronograph: A Chance To Own A Rock Legend's Classic.Wristwear - Blog - Hodinkee Although you will note some differences: That watch appears to have a printed crown emblem, not gold like mine, and it has intersecting underlayed printing (The outer numbers intersect with, and can be seen through, the smaller dials) on the face, whereas this one does not.

    So.... Have at it. Anyone know PRECISELY what I have here?

    Pictures Below:



    Last edited by DFWUser; October 18th, 2010 at 01:05.

  2. #2
    Moderator Jason71's Avatar
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    Re: Mystery Rolex

    I agree with your sentiments on the other thread..........do your research, and don't be in a hurry about selling that watch. I also think that the idea of selling it to buy 4 identical engraved Rolexes would be smiled upon by your wife's grandfather.

    Good luck to you, and I hope that it turns out to be authentic, and worth a truckload of money.
    Best Regards,
    Jason





  3. #3
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    Mystery Solved

    The Mystery is solved. With the help of Brian Dumais (via email), I took the band off and identified the watch.

    It is a very early model 6238

    One side reads: Registered Design 6238
    The other side: 14k and the serial number: 1206452
    (so, it is 14k, not 18k. good to know)

    Brian was kind enough to look up the serial number for me, and he believes it is from 1959.

    Pictures are below. first picture shows the model number, second shows what I could get of the 14k and serial number, and the third is of the band. After I spend a few hundred dollars getting it properly refurbished It appears the value of this Rolex could be quite high depending on the auction and how much attention it gets.

    Thanks to everyone here for their help and interest.

    Here are the pics:





    Last edited by DFWUser; October 19th, 2010 at 09:08.

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  5. #4
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    Re: Mystery Rolex

    I was going to suggest you post this on vintagerolexforum.com, but I see you already have and they were able to help you. If it proves authentic (and I suspect it will) and all original, then yes it could be quite valuable.

    Good luck with the watch. We'd love to see pics again once you've had it cleaned up.

    If you don't already have a watchmaker lined up, you might want to consider Bob Ridley at www.watchmakers.com.

    Jeannie

  6. #5
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    Re: Mystery Solved

    Very nice! I hope you've been refered to a good place for restoration. I don't think you should send it in to Rolex - they might not service it anyway, and if they did they'd use service replacement parts which would hurt the value. Originality is the key to watches like that. What a great heirloom!

  7. #6
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    Re: Mystery Solved

    Bob Ridley at Watchmakers.com has been mentioned more than once. I think I will be turning to him for this job.

  8. #7
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    Re: Mystery Solved

    Quote Originally Posted by DFWUser View Post
    Bob Ridley at Watchmakers.com has been mentioned more than once. I think I will be turning to him for this job.
    He did the rebuild on the watch I inherited from my dad.

    Jeannie

  9. #8
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    Value... ?

    When it comes time to sell it (after it is restored), I will be very interested to see the outcome. It is a 6238 with a 6234 dial... I have not seen another like it online, for sale or otherwise.. and I have been searching all day. I dont know if a collector will deem it to be more valuable because of the rarity of the configuration and the low serial number, or less valuable because if they are purchasing a 6238 they want it to LOOK like a 6238.

    Anyone have any thoughts about that?

  10. #9
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    Re: Mystery Rolex

    Congratulations - that is a very special inheritance and worth a "lot" of money - I'd talk to one of the major auction houses like Christies or Southerby's and have it put in one of their annual "fine watch" sales which gets international coverage/marketing. Personally, I wouldn't get it serviced until I'd spoken to them and taken their recommendation.

    When the money flows in, I'd definitely put a bit of it into buying something for you to wear daily and appreciate in the footsteps of your gramps - a new Daytona

    Delighted for ya

    si
    "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose" Jim Elliot - Missionary, Martyr

  11. #10
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    Re: Mystery Rolex

    If I'd be selling a vintage Rolex, I'd not talk to Christie's or Sotheby's.

    The right place for rare timepieces is Antiquorum and Mr. Patrizzi should be able to tell you, if the watch came like that from Rolex.

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