One of my hobbies was watch collecting and I used to have a good collection of wristwatches, especially Rolex watches. To complement my hobby, I had an internet forum called TURF which is the acronym for The Ultimate Rolex Forum. I moderated TURF from 1998 to 2001 and it was a very exciting time for me because the board managed to gather thousands of watch lovers from all over the world and in particular many Rolex collectors and experts. To concentrate on my photography, I stopped watch collecting in 2001and sold most of my watches, after having being an avid watch collector for more than 30 years. I also stopped moderating TURF and started Penang Talk, later Taiping Talk and then Ipoh Talk.

Below you will also see a list of selected messages written by the former participants of TURF and later archived as TURF Nuggets. They make up one of the best sources of info available about watches in general and Rolex in particular. Whether you have in interest in watches or not, you will find them enjoyable to read. Check out the island where I live. They call it the Pearl of the Orient and where Rolex watches are tax free. Click here.

During my Rolex collecting days and also when I was moderating TURF, one of the most asked questions was how to tell a fake Rolex from a real one. Well, I would like to start by saying it is getting harder all the time but there are a few fundamental steps which one can follow to avoid being duped. To start with, please remember that modern Rolex watches have no "clear casebacks" or "skeleton backs". These skeleton backs allow you to view the watch's mechanism or movement. I remember someone posted a message to TURF saying that a couple of vintage Rolex watches (circa 1930) have clear casebacks. I have never seen such watches but it is sufficient for you to remember that as a general rule, Rolex does not make skeleton back cases in their production watches and so, if you see one, it is most likely a fake. Once when I was in Hong Kong, I saw a "Yachtmaster" with a clear caseback and it was obviously a fake and a bad one at that. Avoid all "Rolexes" with clear casebacks.

If you see a Rolex with a date function, check out the magnification of the date. The real Rolex has the date magnified more than the fake .This is especially true in the Submariner with date and the Explorer II. However, please note that the Seadweller is an exception, where the magnification is minimal. If you can manage to get a real Rolex and a fake one, a side-by-side comparison will show you the obvious difference. Take a good look at my Explorer II on top of this page. The magnification of the date should be something as large as that.

If you see a Rolex with an "engraved caseback", it is most likely a fake because Rolex does not engrave their casebacks except for the Seadweller where the words "Rolex Oyster Original Gas Escape Valve" are engraved in a circular manner. However, please note that all Rolexes have a hologram sticker affixed to the caseback and the new hologram sticker is " three dimensional" which allows it to be viewed from all angles. The fake sticker is "flat" and can easily be distinguished from the real hologram sticker.

A fake Daytona often has a shorter minute hand and the three registers will not work .The real Rolex Daytona can be used as a stop watch. It is not easy to make a counterfeit Rolex Daytona and I have yet to see one that will confuse me.

The latest Rolexes have a "crown" or "coronet" etched on the watch crystal at the six o'clock position.

If you have a set of Rolex serial numbers, it is possible to determine whether a Rolex is a fake by checking the serial number engraved on the watch. The serial number of a fake or real Rolex is engraved (etched) between the lugs. However, to do this, you will have to know what these numbers signify and your local Rolex dealer can probably help you. It is enough for you to know that those numbers are often "badly engraved" on the watch and most fakes from the same supplier carry the same number.

Okay, that's it for the time being. I will add more details here from time to time and will also try to post some pics.


If you would like to say something about Rolex, use the form below or email me at


How to sell your Rolex by S King 

There are a lot of folks who wish Rolex harm by Unclesam

Buying a Rolex from abroad (US residents please read) by Mikel

You're wrong about Rolex by BobJ

Story of my Rolex watches by Matthias

Are we shallow? Frans Hens and others

Platinum's Forever! by DAC

My Submariner review by Frans Hens

Is that a REAL Rolex? Courtesy and Sensitivity by John F Kennedy

TURF re-opens! includes some house rules to posting at TURF by kayes

Russians, Rolexes and the Internet by James

The chronometer certification is irrelevant by John F Kennedy

I have a Comex SeaDweller by R Day

Using a GMT Master by Devin Winton

I was in Singapore by Timor

Choosing between Rolex models by John F Kennedy

Tanks are not pretty by  Rolecks Puhlease  

TURF it doesn't get any better than this by Art

Removing glass cyclop from sapphire crystal by Frank Ferrara

My thoughts on the fake Rolex phenomenon by Remington

How the Mk XII got me my Explorer 1 by Siapa

Buying your 1st Rolex by Rolecks Puhlease

That Explorer 1 Review by Rolecks Puhlease

Buying on eBay by John Ireland

The Zenith of Rolex by Rolecks Puhlease

Understated Value by Rolecks Puhlease  

Caution is the word (or authenticating a Rolex) by Bergzy

Understanding the power of the internet by Gilbert Martinez

Different Oyster models by Olaf

How to really clean your Rolex! by John M Polston

Why we like TURF by John Raba & John L  

Legal Beagles Neutered by Rolecks Puhlease

Differences between GMT/GMT II by Olaf  

Women wearing Rolexes by John Ireland

Discussing the virtues & vices of watch dealers by kayes

Military Submariner - British & others by John. F. Kennedy

Overwinding by Tom Gref

How TURF led me to my Rolex by Raul

How TURF led me to my Rolex by Tangent

GMT with a suit? Or Is chivalry comatose? --- Rudy Venturi & John F. Kennedy

Review of 16519 white gold Daytona by Sir Rex of Vantage

Which is better? 3135 or 3000? by Olaf  

Buying over the net by John F. Kennedy

Regrets? I've had a few (or Subs & Sea-Dwellers) by Rolecks Puhlease

Buying Rolex in Singapore by W Leong

How to get rich collecting watches by a few Turfers

Meeting Rolex General Director Mr. Jaques Duchene by Nick Garcia Creighton

Anti-Magnetic Watches by Olaf

Hand Movement by Tom Gref

A Jewel is an anti-friction device by Rolecks Puhlease

Some questions about the James Bond Sub by David

Small town boy goes to the city by Stephan

No Way! (or Rolex in Japan) by Rolecks Puhlease

10 Silly and Trivial Questions About Rolex by Ed Heliosz

NEWEST Sea Dweller by Rolecks Puhlease

A clarification for Patrick by Jay Bond

Storing watches by Tom Gref

An interesting thread on Tudors...4 posts --- Albert, John F. Kennedy, Max

A technical review (or why Odets is wrong) by Robban

Let's do some arithmetic by Frans Hens

Kayes...thanks so much...more by Richard Paige

More news for Turfers - please read by kayes

Strap on a Rolex by John Ireland

Sorry we ignored you by Dan T

Value of Time by Birol

New Rolex bracelets by Gary S .  

Rolex service information by Tom Gref

Rolex in space by Gary S.

Early Sea-Dweller & 007 Subs by John F. Kennedy

Rolex servicing - where Turf can help by John F. Kennedy

Fake Daytonas by Ariel Rosler

GMT I versus GMT II by John Quinn

Pre-owned Rolexes & cost of refurbishment by John F. Kennedy

Vintage Bubbleback by John Quinn

Rolex Books - Who's right after all? by Copernicus

Fakes & Integrity by John F. Kennedy

Exact time on your Rolex? by Olaf

Chalk & Cheese (White Gold or Platinum) by John Quinn

Current production Rolex movements by Olaf

What age to own a Rolex - a reply by Carlos 

Rolex Air King by Matthew K.A.

It's a Rolex! by John Quinn

White Gold President by Gary S .

Review of TT Daytona by Tommy

Daytona Strap & Bracelet Not Interchangeable by kayes

Submariner & Sea Dweller Bracelets by Olaf

Datejust & Explorer II by CRL  

GMT Master - a classic by C. Veltman

Rolex Quartz Movement by Gary S .

Does Rolex Outsource? by Olaf

What is a Swiss Watch? by Frans Hens

Talking Points - a Rolex service book by C. Veltman

Some Rolex Ads by kayes

Parts for Vintage Rolex Watches by C. Veltman

Rolex Bubbleback by C. Veltman

Tudor Submariner by John F. Kennedy

Simplicity versus Complexity by John F. Kennedy

Red Submariner by C. Veltman

Sea Dweller - The Habitat Watch by John F. Kennedy

Accessorizing your Rolex by John Quinn




How to sell your Rolex

Posted by S. King ® , Dec 09,2000,09:46


Well, let's see, after laying out the cash for a watch, paying booth rental ($140), waking up at 5 am to make the show set-up  deadline. Standing in the hot  Miami sun for 8+ hours and fending off dealers who belittle me because  my prices are too high, I  eventually (within 2 or 3 shows) will find a retail buyer who'll give me about  $200 ~ $300 more than I  paid. So, to answer your question, $1100 ~ $2000 is the retail market  price, depending upon  condition and accessories. If there is any polishing or repairs, my  watchmaker takes a little piece of  this.  I might make a little more on E-Bay which involves taking photos for 1  hr., processing the photos on  the computer (another 30 mins), uploading the photos, writing a description, creating the auction,  answering numerous e-mails and praying the high-bidder won't be a flake  and eventually remits  payment (still waiting almost 1 month for payment on a recent $2500 E-Bay sale).


What's that you say? You have no avenue/desire to sell at shows? E-Bay  stinks? Then just put an ad  in the paper! Your phone will ring at 5.00 am from every dealer across the country (who will also  badger you about prices), then your phone will ring the rest of the day and  every nut-flake within 200  miles who wants, but cannot afford, a Rolex will grill you endlessly about  everything from your watch  to their current (lack of) finances (i.e. Will you take payments?). Finally,  you arrange a meeting at  your bank (don't forget to strap on the .38 so you don't get jacked in the  parking lot. This IS  Miami, home of the still-at-large Rolex Bandit) and meet the buyer (a well-dressed gentleman in a suit) who presents a legitimate-looking certified bank check for the full amount, no questions asked.  You turn over the watch and shake hands, then go to his bank to cash the check, only to be told it is  counterfeit (this really happened to an associate) Nevermind, I'll sell it to a friend. My buddy has always admired my Sub.  THREE YEARS after he  purchases the Sub, it stops working. He sends it to Rolex USA and gets  the bill for $500. You will be  reminded about that $500 every time you run into your buddy.  Whew, all this to make $200! I must be crazy...  If you have any doubts as to my estimates, please take your watch to a  local jeweler, watch seller or pawn shop and ask how much they'll pay. Make sure to tell them how much you originally paid  (full-blown retail), how sentimental the watch is to you and how it keeps time to within (+/- 2 sec. a century). When they're done yawning, their offer will remain the same. Please post their quotes here and we'll compare numbers.  Sorry for appearing so cynical, but whenever I post dealer prices on  these boards, I always get  hate-mail saying my quotes are out of line (low) and I must be trying to  rip-off unsuspecting sellers.  I have done my homework.




There are alot of folks in this world that wish Rolex harm

Posted by Unclesam ® , Nov 14,2000,22:46


In an almost immediate rebuttal, independent of Rolex, another Rolex, a submariner, was taken to a  non-Rolex master craftsman watch repair facility, and the owner of the watch and the owner of the  facility proceeded to tear the watch down, photographing each part of the dissection. You will also see these pictures on the web. But because the master watchmaker was impressed, it was not a man bites dog story like the one you read, and so has been lost in the storage alcoves of the web somewhere. Long before the web, the old saw was, believe about half of what you see, and none of what you hear, or something to that effect. still true today.


Now that a bad Rolex story written by a non-owner of a Rolex has got you discouraged, please go to other makers watch forums. Read about the Patek advisory that you should not manually wind their autowind watches more than five revs by hand or risk damaging their autowind mech. (with 7 rolexes, and one winder, I would be SOL if that were the case for Rolexes.) Read about the heartburn one gets when you buy a $48,000 Lange Datograph, or whatever their fancy name is for an expensive chrono,and then find that the owner had to send it back to the factory because somebody pushed the chronograph buttons too many times, and they stopped working. a couple of stories below, you will find a recalibrating chrono story. Not rolex of course. but one very famous chronograph ebauche (motor) the Valjoux 7750, used in every watch from $995 to $100,000 pieces, uses lever actuation of the chrono module when the pushers are depressed, and that lever gets out of adjustment, and the chrono registers go weird. Rolex uses a completely different, and more expensive design, the column actuated. I'm not a watchmaker, don't ask me how it works, I just know it works perfectly. Read about the guys who buy exotic brands, and then find no one in the country knows how to fix them. Then read of THREE Rolex factory repair centers in the US alone!


So why do people want to tear down Rolex? Why do people trash any leader? If you're a dealer, and don't have the Rolex franchise, you see all your brands go begging, while the Rolex dealer can't keep many of his models in stock. If you are a buyer, new from a dealer, but purchased other than Rolex, you thought you got a good deal, until you saw your watch sold by a gray marketeer on the internet for 65% less new than what you paid for it. If you are a buyer, and bought other than Rolex, and then tried to sell, then you probably experienced a major loss on the deal, if you could even sell at all, while noticing that Rolex prices remain high, and stable. If you are a watch collector, then you probably find the inner workings of a Rolex about as exciting as your Grandma's underwear. But Grandma wore those underwear not to be stylish and keep up with the latest fad, she wore them because they served the intended purpose, and because they lasted. But there are no seals from Geneva 'arfing under a Rolex'es knickers. I  think them Geneva seals are arfing at their owners. I believe if Rolex made watches in the US, they would make them in Lake Woebegon. Where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average. Good solid watches from good solid people. But so boring that we listen every day for more escapades about them!


If you want a watch that will last longer than you, is tuned to chronometer accuracy (and most importantly, stays that way), but if you make a serious boo-boo to, can be restored to new condition anywhere in the world by factory service centers. then Rolex is your watch. It took me about $5,000 on lost money trading other watches to get all the above knocked into my head. And hell's bells, I even started out with my first expensive watchbeing a Rolex! hello, my name is Unclesam, and I'm (now) a Rolaholic.




Buying a Rolex from abroad (US residents please read)


Posted by Mikel ® , Nov 02,2000,20:34



Are you a first time Rolex buyer looking for the best place and best deal on a Rolex? Are you considering purchasing a Rolex and having it shipped into the US? Did you know customs can and will seize your watch?


Read about my personal experience. I was a first time Rolex buyer. The watch I wanted was nowhere to be found locally. I wanted to save money but that was not my first priority. I researched all the forums, emailed others for their recommendations and one Europe dealer kept coming up with high marks and praise. I contacted the dealer who assured me that he could get me the new watch in a reasonable timeframe and at a slight discount. After adding a percentage for putting it on a credit card and figuring a possible amount for customs it wound up being 15% or so off retail. He also assured me that customs was not a problem. I did not research that point as I assumed he knew what he was doing as he had been in business for quite along time. My watch finally was shipped.


First I will explain how it was shipped. The watch was shipped separately via UPS. When this was done the seller informed me that the box and papers were each shipped separately. I thought this was odd. About one week after the watch was shipped I received a call from customs. They told me to fax them a copy of the receipt for what was in the box. The seller sent me a receipt showing the value of the watch and at the top of the receipt it said, “ Watch being returned after repair, for personal use only and not for resale”.  I thought this was odd too but faxed it on to customs. Their reply… here’s the name and phone number of the Rolex attorneys. You need a release from them to get the watch. They also said that they have never seen  Rolex give anyone a release. They seized the watch. I later got the box then the papers.I had no idea that there would be a customs problem buying a watch and was never informed that there could be but there sure was. Rolex has tight controls with customs on inbound watches.


Fortunately the seller refunded my money. I sent the papers and box back to him. I found an authorized US dealer from another acquaintance from the forum that had the watch I was looking for and even gave me a small discount. Wound up costing me only a couple hundred dollars more this way. I would have gladly paid three times as much to avoid all the hassle and worrying. I just wish there was a post such as this when I first started looking to purchase that first Rolex.




You're wrong about Rolex....

Re:I. Bystander, you’re wrong about Rolex, Walt and me....

Posted by BobJ ® , Sep 30,2000,19:25


Dear I. Bystander,  Nice post. You write very well, and persuasively. You obviously possess penetrating and subtle intelligence. Which is why I am so surprised that you don't seem to perceive the difference between Walt's article and his jarring conclusion stuck at the end of it. If you really cannot see that, that conclusion does not belong at the end of that article, then you must have your own reasons for not wanting to.


You say there have ben no technical rebuttals to Walt's article. But I listed three very technical rebuttals in my post. Two are by one of Walt's students and one is by a micro-mechanical engineer. They are posted on the TURF forum in the TURF NUGGETS section. And if you care to look around you can find several others. You should also read the TZ interview with Alexander Linz on the TZ homepage. He is at the very pinnacle of Horological knowledge in Europe. He had high praise for Rolex engineering, reliability and quality. The fact of the matter is that Walt stands alone in his myopic and hostile criticism of Rolex. The body of his article is fine but his conclusions aren't, and he has drawn a line at an extreme end of the spectrum.


Watch experts, watch makers and millions of Rolex owners all around the world all stand on one side, Walt and a handful of uncritical followers stand on the other. You sneeringly and condescendingly dismiss me as someone desperately trying to feel good about a watch given to me by my family. Well... in the beginning, right after reading Walt's article, there was some truth to that. I wasn't desperate, but I was deflated, confused and wondering if I had an overpriced hunk of junk on my wrist. What newbie wouldn't be, after reading Walt's article? But I've learned so much more since then and that is no longer the case.


 I treasure my Rolex for two main reasons. One, is the love with which it was given. I think of the trouble my wife went through just to locate an Explorer (it took two months of secret phone calls all over the country), the thoughtfulness, the excitement she and my daughter had in giving it to me, and, as a token of all this, I would cherish it even if it were an Omega, a Hamilton or a god-awful Gucci (although I'd probably cherish that last one in a drawer somewhere!). The other reason I treasure my Rolex is that it is such a fine, fine timepiece, in some ways the best, certainly the best for me.


Among some, who read Walt's article uncritically, and whose knowledge of Rolex does not extend far beyond that article, there is a feeling that it is not permissible to call Rolex a fine timepiece. But is this so? Let us take a look. Suppose we divide all of time into two parts. Let's call them Before Walt's article and After Walt's article. Before Walt's article Rolexes were known around the world to be beautiful, rugged, reliable, accurate watches that would last a lifetime or more. Then came Walt's article. And now what are Rolexes? They are still beautiful, rugged, reliable, accurate watches that will last a lifetime or more!


The body of Walt's article confirms this, and even his inexplicably hostile conclusion doesn't dispute ANY of it! So I feel comfortable saying that before Walt's article, Rolexes were fine timepieces,and after Walt's article they are still fine timepieces. Are Rolex movements perfect? No. But what makes them such great watches is that they are designed to operate flawlessly in less than perfect conditions, and to do it for a long long time. You really should read an Horologium article by Walt entitled, Jessica's Cornavin Dolphin. It is about a watch that has a movement that is a cheap copy of a Rolex movement. It had had no service or cleaning for 24 years, the movement was filthy and wet, it was periodically banged on the edge of a table to dislodge a loose hour marker that would get stuck under the second hand! But the amazing thing is that after 24 years of this abuse, this cheap copy of a Rolex movement was running at +2 seconds per day!!! Well within COSC chronometer standards, and actually better than most brand new Pateks!!! How is this possible? According to Walt, there is no doubt that sturdy simple thick construction provides an advantage in this regard (excellent running performance under poor conditions. And this: Everything in the Cornavin Dolphin is thicker than anything I've seen in a contemporary Swiss watch -- except for the Rolex Explorer that I examined several months ago. He also said, detail after detail reminded me of the Explorer. No doubt the creators of the Dolphin had a Rolex in hand.


And speaking of Pateks, here is another interesting quote from the article: If I'd taken the dirt from this single watch and distributed it evenly among 100 Pateks, I am quite sure it would have brought all 100 to a dead stop.!!! Does this mean that movement is 100 times more robust than a Patek? If the cheap copy is capable of this amazing performance, imagine what we can expect from the real thing! To fault a Rolex movement because it is not finished to the level of a Patek is like criticizing a Sherman tank because it is not polished to the level of a Rolls Royce. They are two different things, designed to fulfill two different roles. You can appreciate the Rolls Royce for what it is and what it does, and also appreciate the Sherman tank for what it is and what it does (it can take abuse that would bring 100 Rolls Royces to stop). Which is better? It depends on what you want it for. You could get out your microscope and spend the rest of your life finding imperfections in the tank, but in the end it could chew right through 100 Rolls Royces without even burping. I used to think that I really wanted a Patek because it was the best, but would have to settle for a Rolex because I couldn't afford the Patek. But I have learned so much more about watches since then. I still appreciate the art, craft and beauty of a movement like a Patek, and there is still a part of me that yearns for one, but I've come to see that it is kind of like buying a very expensive and beautiful painting that you can never take out of the box to look at. You may derive a certain satisfaction from knowing that there is, indeed, beauty inside that box, and you may have seen photographs of other similar paintings, but, in the end, you are paying a lot of money for beauty that you can never see or appreciate (unless you are a watchmaker with a microscope and want to take your Patek apart). You pay five times the price of a Rolex for beauty you cannot see. You do not get better performance. You do not get better accuracy. You do not get better reliability or ruggedness, in fact, you get less. You get a thin, delicate, fussy, high maintenance movement that you can wear on special occasions or in a very sedate lifestyle. I live an active outdoors lifestyle on the Oregon coast where it is often wet and rainy. (you know how to tell when it's summer on the Oregon coast? -- the rain gets warm!) And the more I have learned about watches, the more deeply I have come to appreciate that my Rolex is the perfect watch for me. I am not desperately trying to feel good, I'm overjoyed! And what is even nicer, is that my elation is now based on Understanding and not Ignorance. Otherwise I might have to start calling myself I. BobJackson. With serene contentment, Bob




Story of my Rolex Watches

Posted by Matthias ® , Jun 14,2000,11:25


Dear Turfers,  as it is the first time I attend TURF please let me introduce myself. I´m from Germany (therefore please excuse my english) and since my 15th birthday (today I´m 40) I´m collecting wrist watches. Rolex was always my favorite watch, but I was also and am still interested in Omega, Breitling and all type of Chronographs. So I started 1975 with a Breitling Chrono-Matic Ref. 2110 which is still in my hands today and it is keeping perfect time after an overhaul at Breitling in Switzerland. My first Rolex came in 1979 and was a gift from my father for finishing school with the German so called “Abitur”, which gives the right to start at University. The Rolex chosen by me was absolutely uncommon at that time: it was an Explorer II Ref. 1655/0 with an engraving on the back “Abitur 1979”. The dealer where it was bought (Bucherer in St. Moritz) had to take firstly a look into the catalogue because he only knew GMT´s, Sub´s etc.. But after looking to the Explorer II which he had in stock he was of the opinion that it is a great choice as it is not an “everybodies Rolex”. The reason for me choosing just this model was a book from the famous mountain climber Reinhold Messner about his solo attempt to the Nanga Parbat, where I saw pictures with Messner wearing an Explorer II. It was strange to me, that Messner advertised at the same time for Rolex the new Oysterquartz. Well, my Explorer II 1655 is on my wrist today and still keeping time, but I think it has to be overhauled at Rolex in Cologne, as the amplitude of the balance wheel is too low now. By the way, I own nearly all Rolex catalogues and several other booklets since 1975 (same for Omega and Breitling), but mostly in German language. Therefore may be I can be of help for answering questions concerning Rolexes from that date on. If you still have some time, I will shortly tell the stories of my other Rolex watches.


In 1983 I bought my second Rolex and once again my choice was an uncommon Rolex at that time. It was a Daytona Ref. 6263/0 with a white dial, rare black Daytona character and Valjoux 72 caliber. Comment from the dealer at that time (Bucherer in Interlaken): “Why do you buy a Rolex watch with handwinding movement and no date? You are the first one asking for a Daytona since the last 3 years.” Doesn´t this sounds strange from the todays point of view? Nevertheless I bought it together with a special fitted jubilee bracelet (also uncommon) and an engraving of my initials “MS” on the back. The Daytona was so unusual to the dealer, that he gave incorrectly a chronometer certificate with it, but at that time only the 18k Daytonas were certified chronometers. Unfortunately I sold the watch 1989 obviously in mental illness to a vintage watch dealer in Pforzheim and the only things I still have in my hands are the box and the papers (“chronometer”/guarantee certificate, instruction booklet, invoice). Believe me, I will never sell one of my watches again!!


My next Rolex was a vintage Datejust 1601 with white dial from the late 60´s (no hack, no quickset) bought 1991 which is still keeping perfect time after an overhaul at Rolex in Cologne (these people are doing a great job, especially their watchmaker Mr.Buchholz). A more sad story is about the Day-Date 18038 (silver dial, single quickset). My father bought this watch in 1982 at Bucherer in St. Moritz after several years of my continuous recommendations to him for buying a Day-Date. Maybe he was tired about any further recommendation and therefore he bought the watch. He wore the Day-Date only on special occasions, as his daily watch was a 1978 TTDatejust. Therefore the Day-Date is today in nearly new condition. Unfortunately my father died in April 2000 and 4 weeks before he gave the Day-Date to me for keeping it well. I will do so and just in the same way as my father, I wear it only on special occasions.


My last Rolex is only 3 weeks old. In remembering my old Daytona I went to see whether I can get one of the last Daytonas with the 4030 caliber before they are out of stock. Once again Bucherer/Switzerland was of help. In Basel they reserved for me a TT Daytona 16523 with steel coloured dial and P serial number. I went there, was inspired and bought the watch. It is keeping perfect time gaining within one week only 3 seconds. Even my Zenith El Primero with nearly the same movement (but not the same balance wheel and frequency) doesn´t have the same accuracy. It looses one second per day (which is also very good). In my opinion the 4030 is the best chrono movement at the moment due to the combination of the perfect chrono mechanism from Zenith with the perfect balance wheel from Rolex. The new 4130 caliber has to show, whetherit can be the real successor of the 4030.


Hopefully my story was not boring to you and once again I apologize for my english. May be there will be the opportunity for attending TURF once again. For the time being Best Regards  Matthias


PS. Can anybody tell me how to incorporate a scan into a message? Unfortunately I´m not very familiar with Internet forums. Sorry for that.




Are we shallow?

Posted by Frans Hens ® , Jun 17,2000,15:52


Well, are we? Apart from owning a Rolex (and in some cases, multiple Rolex's and other watches), most of us seem to like the finer things in life. (With me being NO exception). Fine cigars, whiskeys, cars, etc. I suspect that most of us earn an above average income and thus are able to enjoy the perks that come with it. But is it a coincidence that many of us are into Cuban cigars, Single Malt Scotch, handcrafted fountain pens and fine, automatic Swiss watches? Do we like these things, mainly because they're expensive and give the owner/user an aura of wealth or just because we thoroughly enjoy them? Though one, eh? One can steer oneself in safe waters by stating that most of you're acquaintances never heard of Omas, Highland Park or Partagas. Or, in my case, Hooper's Grand Reserva 1937, Krell, Kiseki or Burmester. (Puzzling?). Rolex, off course, is a totally different matter; the whole world knows Rolex. No excuseshere, I'm afraid. For me, life is too short to forego on these things. It sounds incredibly shallow, but I just love enjoying life to the full. And that means that I carry aSubmariner Date around my wrist and having a glass of Four Roses single barrel right now. On the other hand, I put in many hours, studied in my free time and always made the extra effort. It didn't come by accident, and that's what some of my friends tend to forget. So, what's you're story, you're thoughts on this?

TURF'er forever, Frans.



Good Point

Posted by John Graves ® , Jun 17,2000,16:40


I must say that I have had similar thoughts. I am extremely picky about what I wear, what I drive, what I drink, and where I live. Luckily I just now achieved an income status where I can do and have this stuff. Now if only I could find the right woman:-)



True meaning of shallow...........

Posted by iavina ® , Jun 17,2000,16:47


My friend, shallow means without depth, just above any given surface. If you live you life without pursuit of excellence in any field or endeavor, you are shallow. If you find your self appreciating that which is made or produced with care, quality and even a passionate love, you are not shallow. A shallow man/women does NOT care what comes across his life-they only eat, drink, shit, sleep and then die. Always strive for better things, and anyone who says wearing a Rolex is shallow does not understand anything and should be looked upon as a child, innocent and yet to learn. One more thing. How many times have we heard about regret? I should have donethis, I should have said that, I should have bought that Orange hand EX II ref. 1655 in 1978 when they were only $500 list!



I don't like the word connoisseur because it sounds...

Posted by chris k ® , Jun 17,2000,16:53


Pretentious. From Merriam-Webster: one who *enjoys* with discrimination and appreciation of subtleties emphasis mine. But that's what it's all about (for me anyhow). I started with a La Unica, a (very) used Volkswagon, Dewer's and a badly made Hamilton. Cigars, cars, scotch and watches fascinated me and I chased the high. I'm up to scheming the import of Montecristos, a (not so new) Mercedes, The Macallan 18 (when I can find it) and my first Rolex (after having gone through any number of other Swiss watches and spending years with my Omegas). Worse still is that each of these interests has many higher levels that I have yet to probe. Will I? Who knows? I don't have any friends who share or care about *all* of these things. I have some who care much more than I do about “some” of these things. No one but my wife and close friends know what I drink or smoke. As far as I can tell, my watch is only of interest to those folks who know me and ask as an ice-breaker what are you wearing today?  The car, well, how can you be discreet with a car? Heck- there are million other things that I or any of us could also be into-- Art, travel, kitchens, book collecting, flying, horses, boats, etc., etc. You pick and choose what's important. I don't think I'm shallow, and I know that most of my friends and family aren't aware of many of my interests. I guess the point is: I'm just trying to get me some enjoyment with discrimination and appreciation of the subtleties. Rationalization? I don't know. Maybe.



I don't think it's necessarily shallow to appreciate quality...

Posted by Paul-V. ® , Jun 17,2000,17:54


I think that if you work hard in life, you should be entitled to some of the finer things in life. Right now, I've not yet achieved the plateau in my life (still got one semester of law school left), and am living fairly hand to mouth. Yet I've still managed to eek out enough for my watch. If you think about it ANYONE can afford a Rolex, it's just a matter of putting priorities first. Most people would rather shell the money out on a car, rent, or what have you. With me, and in my opinion most other Turfers, we go for Rolex not necessarily because its a status symbol, but because we can recognize the history and the craftsmanship behind the brand. Regards.



Not shallow (more)

Posted by Otto ® , Jun 17,2000,19:23


I love to wear a Rolex watch because unlike a house or car, the watch is always with me. When I wear a Rolex watch, I feel like I am wearing a small piece of perfection in an imperfect world. I know this is an illusion, and perhaps silly, but sometimes when things get hectic and out of synch, I look at that watch and see constancy in the midst of chaos. Is that silly? Maybe. Maybe not. And, I also just like the look and feel of the watch. It's as if I have a small piece of museum art on my wrist. Is there some part of me that sees it as a status symbol? Maybe. If so, I like to think the watch, at least to me, represents accomplishment, not elitism. When I look at my Rolex, I remember how hard I worked to be able to afford the watch. I know I don't really need this kind of external feedback, but I suppose I enjoy it. Or maybe, despite all these rationalizations (?) maybe the kid in me just loves expensive toys? Oh well, all work and no play ...



I like Swiss watches, cars, homes,........

Posted by alfletch ® , Jun 17,2000,21:37


cards, but not pens, scotch, whiskey, guns etc,etc,. Hey maybe I'm not as shallow as you guys! :)))



Come on guys, no harm enjoying some good life! (more)

Posted by KC Kwek ® , Jun 17,2000,21:54


It's a matter of balance. All things in moderation, life has too many ups and downs to worry about what others might think of us. regards,




The purpose of Life is to Experience Life (more)

Posted by minuteman ® , Jun 17,2000,23:42


What other explanation is there? We are also here to understand the meaning of giving, For when we die everything we have we leave behind, So in the end we give it all away, I believe God sent us here to experience who and what we are, To realize our full potential, To overcome our own limiting beliefs, I feel sorry for all those who choose to be jealous rather than to learn how to have it all themselves, I feel sorry for the religious leaders who think God would send us to a world of plenty then tell us we cannot enjoy it... HOGWASH, Enjoy it all! Learn to aquire it all! Then teach others to do the same, Give it all away, for when you realize from whence it came you can acquire it all over again. Isn't it funny most who would ridicule us for our Rolex's would rather wallow in jealousy than to ask, how can I get one, Or how can I afford such fine things, or teach me to be successful. They believe they cannot have one and that is there life, I believe I deserve one and that is my life, However, if ever asked Can you teach me I would gladly help... I wear my Rolex with PRIDE, Everyday, All Day... Love Life, it's worth living...



as for me

Posted by jal ® , Jun 17,2000,23:50


As for me, I’ve been studying and selling watches for 25 years. I started at age 12 (my career pre-dates quartz) and at 38 unless I change professions i will never earn the type of money that is associated with Rolex. So I have to save and be very selective. I’ve saved for 5 years for a single piece of jewelry before and have saved for 4 for the rolley but most of that went into a new car after a car accident. So i will continue to save. Shallow is not thinking how or why we do some thing or how it affects others around us. I am willing to make the sacrifices to buy the Rolex and know it is a good long term decision. To me that is not shallow, but good business sense in the long run. Hope there are those that can understand my ramblings. jal



I don't drink, don't smoke, and drive a '99 F-150 pickup (more)

Posted by rob rector ® , Jun 18,2000,00:11


I am what most people would call a redneck from WV. I grew up in WV, my father never made over $5 an hour his entire life. Growing up I never always got what I wanted, but always had what I needed. I now live in San Jose, CA with my wife and 1 year old daughter. I am 32, own my house without a mortgage, drive a ford pickup, and watch WWF and WCW wrestling every week. The only other expensive thing besides watches I like is high end home audio, which is one hold until my daughter gets a little older. I own about 17 watches and everyday at work most people ask to see what I am wearing, because they know it makes me feel good that people can appreciate my hobby. Theyalways say, how can you afford all those watches? I say, I worked hard, paid cash for my house, and now I can enjoy life. Of course getting into a e-commerce startup at the right time had a lot to do with it. I always tell everyone that if you work hard, no one will give you a hard time about how you spend your money or live your life. Thanks for listening.



Maybe the best thread of all!!

Posted by TonyS ® , Jun 18,2000,01:50


Man are we a diverse group or what and then we are Not!! I'm 52 and not even close to satisfaction with Rolex or other toys!! Have driven some of the best, smoked some fine and tasted, well you know what I mean! Also, been on the top of life and almost at the bottom and still it all is too good to give up on! These days I've decided that it matters little or not what some one else thinks. It only matters that 1st of all that I'm not hurting or taking something away from another living thing or person. I'm not abusing myself or some one else but am living this short given existence to the fullest and achieving my complete potential! Also, these days I'm trying to make sure that my net worth is always close by or on my person. Mostly Rolexes! So, to me the thought that we on this forum might be considered SHALLOW, for what we drive, wear, drink or otherwise indulge ourselves in is preposterous. It's people of our make up, strength, guile and gusto for life that makeup for the rest of the poor souls in this world. We are not shallow! I really do like this forum, too much, it's beginning to be a big part of my day. Regards, TonyS


Frans--Thank you for the start of this thread!! Fabulous responses folks!(nt)

Posted by rex ® , Jun 18,2000,02:25



An Excellent Question....

Posted by Chris ® , Jun 18,2000,03:12


That I've often thought about. The real question I suppose is what is the alternative?. I was just realising the other day, the alternative to enjoying the excellence of something engineered to be the finest, is for everyone to be mediocre. All of us could be wearing the overalls of the Chinese communist party, we could all be driving a VW beetle and live in identical apartments in a concrete skyscraper. What would humanity be as awhole if we were all dedicated to mediocrity?



The truly shallow person ...

Posted by Doctor Whom ® , Jun 19,2000,16:54


... isn't the one who simply has nice things, but the person who defines him/herself and the quality of his/her existence solely or primarily by those nice things, and who judges those around him/her by the same standard. In other words, the shallow person can't tell the difference between the main course and the frosting rose on the cake. The onewho dies with the most toys is just as dead.


... can't tell the difference between working hard to earn something and having it just dropped into one's lap, or thinks that it is unfair that others can earn it when he/she doesn't have it presented to him/her on a velvet cushion. Handicapper General wannabees, are you listening? I admit to having gobbled my share of frosting roses, but I remember that they are just frosting roses and that if you make them the main course, various bad things will happen to you. Nice possessions cannot take the place of your achievements in life, your relationships with the people around you, or, most importantly, your walk with God. Nor do they have to. By the way, I drink sparingly and don't smoke at all.





Platinum's Forever! 

Posted by DAC ® , Jun 06,2000,14:55


I had been looking for MANY years for a Platinum. I wanted a single quick, a 84/85 model. and wasn't even thinking of a double quick. WOW, I looked and looked and LOOKED and found NOTHING! Not a single mid-eighties Platinum. Then one day I happened to be in a Jeweler in Baltimore who was an authorized Rolex dealer. (The guy had been looking for a gently used Platinum for me since 1989.) he pulls me aside and says..... I can get you a Tridor day/date for around 10K NEW ! Well..... I had also liked those as well. Being frustrated after years of looking (by now it was 1994)........ I decided to say yes and try to forget about the Plat.


So he got me the watch. BRAND NEW. Papers, everything. Instead of a YG bezel I had them put a WG on. With a Rhodium dial. It was smashing. I know TURFERS don't like the Tridor. But, If you had seen mine, you would have loved it. My boyfriend now wears it. Anyway, you asked about the Plat. but this was part of the story too. After 5 years I became frustrated again.... I couldn't get the Plat out of my mind. (YES., this is a Rolex obsession,  admit it). So... I decided to go on a search for one again. Once again I looked and looked and LOOKED, calling every dealer who old pre-owned Rolex. I even emailed James Dowling to ask if he could help......did he know where I could find one ? No luck. This went on for 2 more years. I have to laugh now as I think back on all my notes and all the phone calls and people I spoke with. I even contacted Time Antiques in Singapore, nothing. Nobody had a line on a mid-80's Plat. Yes there were diamond and ruby encrusted Plat's if I wanted one of those, their bands stretched and no papers. Lots of those in Florida. No thanks.


So on and on it went. By now I was thinking, OK... I'll take a double quick if I can afford. it....still none showed up and jewelers were telling me that the white metal watches were so HOT that when they did come on the market, they were snatched up instantly.


AND the prices by now were waaaay through the roof. When I had started this whole thing the prices were around 12K. Yeah ! try to get a used Plat. for that price now ! AND nobody wanted them. Back then dealers were telling me that they couldn't find them because so few people bought them. Therefore, there were verrry few used ones on the market. I was about to give up again but I made one last call to a Jeweler in Phila. Somehow I hooked up with this guy who said...Plainum ?....NO Problem ! I laughed to myself and thought, Yeah right, we'll see. In a few weeks I spoke with him again and he told me he had a perfect one, no diamonds, tight band, just flat out perfection. at a price I could afford.


Of course I was ecstatic..... Well, that was short lived when he called back the next day to say that as he was taking it apart to examine, he noticed something weird about the pins. Turns out... it was am Italian fake made to perfection in solid platinum ! I was glum for 3 days after that. BUT he called back the next week and said had indeed found it. The next day... I jumped in the car and sped off to Philly.  And yes, there it was... in all it's elusive perfection. A simple Platinum Day/date with a rose dial and white romans. No diamonds, no band stretch, no heavy dings..... just plain simple perfection. Even my boyfriend, who at the time didn't care to much for white metals, gasped when he saw it. It was a U serial number, a double quick..... more than I was able to afford but my boyfriend REALLY wanted my Tridor and so he bought it from me for a good price and somehow I was able to pull the deal off.


After so many years of looking I couldn't believe I finally had it and was in a DAZE for weeks...... a regular Rolex stupor. So, there you have it and now I'm a happy girl.... AND ... I still get to enjoy my old Tridor because I see it on my boyfriends wrist all the time. Long story I know, BUT you asked. Hope you don't think I'm too crazy..... This forum may be the ONLY place I could tell this story, anywhere else and they would think I lost my mind.




My Submariner review.... long

Posted by Frans Hens ® , Apr 08,2000,12:28


Way back in June 1980 I decided to give myself a little reward for landing a new job. A year earlier, a little story about the launch of a new Cartier, the Santos Dumont, had caught my eye. But I also liked Rolex, for various reasons. To make a long story short, the fact that Cartier offered a very elaborate, lifelong guarantee made me buy it. However, with the purchase of a Rolex model 16610, better known as the Submarine Date in stainless steel I have corrected this error of my ways.


After being on a waiting list for no less than 4 months, I received the phone call that put an enormous smile on my face: Sir, your watch has arrived. Two days later I managed to take the afternoon off, rush to the bank, get the money and rush to the dealer. Before entering, I took a deep breath, checked my wallet once more and entered. As I enquired a few times about my watch, the sales lady recognized me and asked me to take a seat while she spoke in the intercom (the watches are kept in a vault in the basement of the store), to have my watch sent up by a little lift. When she removed the jewel from it's velvet cloth, my heart raced: finally! It was much better than the picture from the catalogue or any other picture. What a watch! The band was adjusted and a huge sum changed hands, now I was the proud owner of a Submariner.


The following is a review from my point of view, but I have tried to keep it as objective as possible. Although most posters here are familiar with Rolex watches, the packaging, etc., I thought it nice to cover everything. The watch under review is the Rolex Submariner Date, model number 16610. It's predecessor, the model 6204 was the grand daddy of all diver's watches, and the model 16610 is the latest incarnation.


The watch comes in a green leather box, covered by a cardboard outer box with grey greenish stone design. The latter, of course, is nothing special but I still mention it. Inside the box is the watch on a tan suede like pillow and attached to it are two hang tags, one red stating the watch is a chronometer with a Rolex crown hologram on it and one green stating the serial number (A795XXX), the model number and the band type number (93250). With the watch came an Oyster manual, a Submariner manual, the little anchor and a guarantee/chronometer form in a small green leather wallet, together with the translation of the guarantee. The band is of the new type, with solid end-links! The Submariner manual still mentions the previous band, type 93150. As an extra service I received a 141-page book, titled  L'univers des Montres.


The watch itself is 12.4 mm thick and the bezel is 40 mm in diameter and is slightly larger than the case. The links are 3.8 mm thick and the watch weighs around 134 grams. Although everyone mentions that the ends of the lugs are sharp, with this watch this is not a problem. Because of the angle of the (solid) end-links and the thickness of the first link, the sharp ends of the lugs will touch your wrist. On the deep black dial, there is Swiss Made at the six 'o clock position. The bezel turns anti-clockwise in hal minute steps. Under the glass, the Luminova coating inside the markers is spotless and even, and the hands line up perfectly. The bevelled edge of the crystal is polished, so that is feels round to the touch. The date window, however, is plain and undecorated. This, along with the fact that I find the Luminova coating less bright and powerful that Tritium coating is my only point of critique on the dial. The indentations on the bezel area little rough and the click mechanism causes a little horizontal play, but we must remember this is a diving watch that also has to be operated while wearing gloves.


Over to the band. After removing one of the spring bars, one can clearly see that the end-links are solid. The spring bars are also polished and have one tube, so no flimsy telescopic affairs here. The construction of the solid end-links made me believe that a conversion for older models may not be possible. That is because the case has a milled recess between the lugs in which the underside of the links fall flush. (The ears are gone). Very clean and neat. The band itself feels heavy and solid and the centre links, although still hollow, seamless and the material is thick. The clasp is signed with a Rolex crown (as is the winding crown) on the outside and twice with the Rolex logo on the inside. The last links on both sides are attached with screws. The clasp is less flimsy than it looks but still (and now even more) lags behind the band. Although the clasp is purely functional, this is my second point of critique. Why is it so difficult to design a new clasp on a watch in this price range? Perhaps Rolex S.A. feels it's a tried and tested design and sees no need to change it. Change is good, no change is better. Underneath the winding crown logo are three dots, meaning it has a TripLock mechanism. The sides of the case, the winding crown, the outer edge of the bezel and the front and sides of the clasp are polished; the rest of the watch is matt. This gives the watch a machine like and technical look, almost that of a surgical instrument. I like it. The case back is completely void of any marking, as typical for Rolex watches bar one exception.Because I cannot and will not open the watch, there's nothing to tell about the finish of the movement, the calibre 3135. What did however, surprise me, is the accuracy. At night it seems to lose a few seconds (crown up), but these are won again during daytime. I've timed the watch a few days against a DCF clock (atomic time signal receiver), but up to now it's almost dead on. I hope it stays this way. Let me finish by an overview, but bear in mind I'm a bit biased. Pros: strong name,watch will keep it's value. Classic design, the mould after all  sports watches are created. High quality hands and dial and an overall good finish. Very accurate at first glance. Probably a lifetime support by the manufacturer. Cons: clasp below par, Luminova could be bettered and perhaps a bit pricey to some. Frans Hens.




Is that a REAL Rolex?  Courtesy and sensitivity…

Posted by John F. Kennedy ® , Apr 03,2000,04:28


Dear Fellow TURFers, Sadly, an amazingly high percentage of the population would not think that asking whether one’s watch is a REAL Rolex, or whether the stone in a young lady's engagement ring is a genuine diamond or just a cubic zirconium, is ill mannered and insensitive. It is in fact on a par with a teen ager asking a dignified gentleman whether the fine head of hair he is wearing is his own. I have recently been asked both questions, by people who intended no offense, so I quietly answered, Yes without becoming angry or lecturing the offender.


While I regret in these people such ignorance of the finer points of being civil, I did not wish to embarrass them. If the persons making the enquiries had only exercised their intellects a bit more, it might have dawned on them that a person who is wearing a real Rolex may not want the fact broadcast amongst everyone in the vicinity. Further, some people who are wearing their own hair or a real Rolex, without really wishing to answer, may feel that they are somehow obligated by such questions to first answer, and then PROVE that speak the truth. Some may even be offended or at least be made to feel uncomfortable by what they infer from the one of the above questions, whether any negative connotation was intended or not. It can go something like the following: Does this rude individual think I look like a person who wants to deceive others by wearing a fake? Perhaps he thinks that I could never afford a real Rolex, (or my fiancee would not buy me a real diamond). Perhaps he (or she) thinks that I am emotionally immature and untruthful enough to pretend to be ‘above my station’. If a person IS untruthful enough to be pretentious, why would he not lie to the person asking the question? How many people who wear fake Rolexes in order to pretend to be what they not, and will then admit to their questioner that they are really just minor frauds pretending to real Rolex owners? While a bald man will often tell the truth about a hair piece, he does not welcome the question for obvious reasons. The man who IS growing his own hair may not welcome the question either, since he may not like to be reminded that he has reached that age where some people tend to expect him to be bald.


Unfortunately, if common behavior is a reliable indication, good manners and sensitivity seem to be taught far less often these days to young people than in years past. Yet, these are still, and will always be extremely important social skills. I am happy to say that with a small number of exceptions, TURFers are mostly polite and caring, or at least try to be. TURF has been blessed with a number of gentlemen and at least one very fine lady whom we all know as Mary, who with her husband and family runs Eddy and Sons, in Miami (They specialize in Rolex watch repair and service). If anyone were to ask me which two TURFers one should most emulate in their kindness, sensitivity, and courtesy, I should have to say Kayes, the owner of this forum and Mary, who is like a favorite sister to some of us and a mom to others. I am very surprised and saddened to hear about recent unjustified attacks against both of these people, especially since they have always been so kind courteous and helpful to all TURFers. Along with defending such unselfish friends of this forum from attack, many TURFers could benefit by considering each of them as a valuable role model in how to behave on TURF and in their other daily social interactions. I for one, am happy that the commonsense rules upon which this forum was founded have been reemphasized. If we all remember to be courteous and sensitive to the other persons’ feelings, TURF will continue to give pleasure to Rolex aficionados and other interested parties for a very long time.


When one is not in the habit of doing so, it is not easy to be sensitive as a rule. It takes a willingness to first THINK about how one wishes to be treated before wording one’s posts. Next, after wording it, but before sending the post, it would be helpful to read it as though the writer of the post were the person receiving it. With a little imagination and practice, sensitivity comes easier, and easier, until it becomes a way of life and is almost automatic. When the person makes a habit of being sensitive with one’s family (especially the spouse) and then extends it out to all people, at that point, one can honestly be described as a lady or gentleman. Best wishes, John Kennedy



TURF Re-Opens! includes some house rules to posting at TURF

Posted by kayes , Apr 03,2000,12:11


TURF Re-Opens! Whew! At first I thought the recent spate of attacks on TURF were April Fool Day pranks but they certainly weren't. The past couple of days were difficult for us here but we sure weathered that storm. TURF now re-opens but with a few changes learnt the hard way:-


1. You are now required to register before you can post to TURF. When you register, you will be taken to a window that asks you a few questions. However, you need only fill in your screen name, email address and password. The rest of the fields can be left blank.This happens to be the way the software is configured. I will try to ask the makers the software to delete the other three questions. (Please note that TURF will not accept Hotmail or Yahoo type of addresses. Once you are registered, whenever you post a message, you will not need to enter your email address anymore if you do not wish to.This will enable your email address to be kept private).


2. After having submitted your registration, you will instantly receive an email which will provide a link (url) to enable you to activate your registration with TURF. When you get to that link you will be asked whether you accept the rules regarding participation at TURF. Unfortunately, due to the low level of my technical expertise I do not know how to make the software open the rules file. However, the rules are pretty much the same as what you are reading here. Most of the dos and don'ts regarding posting to TURF can be gathered from my messages archived at Turf Nuggets. Please read them. However, I wish to repeat the following:-


A. TURF is read by people of all ages and of both sexes. Therefore, the language used when posting messages must be suitable for this kind of audience. B. TURF is about Rolex watches. It is not about watch dealers. C. Impolite and rude messages have no place at TURF. Libellous posts will vanish with no trace. Messages designed to create mischief will meet the same fate. D. There is a watch forum that bans the very mention of TURF and TURF wishes to return this favour. Therefore, any reference to that watch forum contained in messages posted at TURF will also vanish. E. TURF is not meant to be a pipeline for the conduct of personal vendettas or an avenue for self advancement.


The above represent a few common sense rules and if you feel you are unable to agree, please do not bother to register as you will never be able to enjoy yourself at TURF. If you need any clarification to any of these rules, please email me directly - do not post such queries to TURF which is reserved solely for the discussion of Rolex watches. Over the last two days, I have received 62 emails from Turfers inquiring about TURF and some offering to help in any way they can. To all these Turfers, I thank you for your concern and offers to help. At the moment I have no time to reply to all the emails but I will do so as soon as I can. Best wishes to all, kayes. Owner of TURF



Russians, Rolexes and the Internet (long)

Posted by James , Mar 23,2000,10:47


Hi all, As an occasional poster I thought I'd share an interesting anecdote from my lunch time stroll today. I live in Germany, and since the Wall dropped the used watch trade (and a lot worse) has tended to be controlled by Russian 'Biznezmen' coming over from the East and doing a raging trade in everything from used Rolexes to diamond tiaras and Persian carpets out of small store fronts, and usually right in the nice part of town. A lot of these businesses clearly have a sideline of laundering money coming out of other rackets, notably proceeds from BMWs and Porsches hijacked off of German streets that are then sold to the Russian Mafia back home, usually stopping over Poland for a paint job. But, in fairness, they do sell real merchandize that by all appearances is being sold on commission. Some might be hot, depending on the store.


There are at least four here in town (Dusseldorf) and when it comes to Rolexes they usually have what you would expected, armies of discarded Datejusts that have seen better days, etc. I'm very partial to GMTs (have both the I and the II) and lo' and behold there in a window today was a faded old GMT I on a jubilee bracelet that could have been dated from anywhere between 1960 and 1980. Next to it was the almost obligatory beaten up Datejust. I walked in and the Russian snapped his head up and dropped his other customer when I asked about the GMT, the biggest ticket item in his window. He showed me the watch (bezel and dial faded, bracelet lose, but otherwise not too banged up) and wanted $1950 for it - which seemed steep for a watch in that condition. I told him so, but he shrugged. Yes, I look at internet all time for price. Internet very good, but very risky.'' Nor was he very forthcoming on the origin of the watch. Which is really only academic: I have two Rolexes and if I added a third my wife would have me shot. But I was unable to resist trying it on for kicks. I took off my GMTII (all black bezel) to try on the Russian's with the jubilee. This was a mistake; because his eyes locked on the my watch like rope. Picking it up and running a grimy thumb over the crystal, he asked:Is flat - is sapphire? Well, now it's smudged sapphire, I thought, snatching it back and checking the exit. But how can you fault a guy who likes to talk watches? There followed a discourse on Rolexes in the world market, of which he seemed bottomless knowledge. He could have been reading this forum for months. This was a Russian James Dowling who knew all about the acute shortage of Daytonas, SDs and Subs. He held forth on acrylic vs. sapphire and grumbled darkly about unprincipled competitors selling composites and outright fakes, as if he were registered with the Ohio BBB. When I walked out he warned that the watch could be sold by the morning. come in and out, he said, ''But Rolex always go very fast.'' Who says Russians don't know business?



They are everywhere....

Posted by James , Mar 24,2000,04:43


They are everywhere and very hard to miss. The flood coming over from the East hasn't stopped since the SU collapsed. The Russian store I mentioned yesterday for instance had a shelf full of them. But one has to question the authenticity of these things, or at least most of them. It defies even the most inventive imagination to believe that there is an official watch for every arm of the Russian military, and then even lower denominators like 'tank commander's watch' or 'Missile Corps watch'. This is an army that is chronically in arrears on its payroll, fights with aging equipment and a corps of near- mutinous officers who live three families per apartment in squalid garrison towns. Somehow, scores of different flashy  watches for every MOS in the Russian military doesn't track. If all the Soviet medals and ribbons for sale in the flea markets here were real then the Soviets should by rights of arms be camped in Kansas by now. I might be wrong, but think these watches probably have less to do with the Russian military than budding entrepreneurial spirit in the New Russia as it looks for a buck in western markets. James



The chronometer certification is irrelevant  once you pay for the Rolex

Posted by John F. Kennedy , Mar 23,2000,00:05


Actually the official certification only states that the movement, which is submitted for official certification without the date parts installed, is accurate to within chronometer standards at the time of testing. It makes no statement what happens after it leave the testing facility. In itself official certification is not a warrantee. Rolex is responsible for keeping your watch within the certification margins during the year of the warrantee period. Regardless of whether your Rolex is a non-date submariner without the fancy  words Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified, or an Explorer I with certification, Rolex must keep your watch within that accuracy during the warrantee. My attitude is if the legend on the dial makes no difference in the accuracy of your Rolex why pay extra for a piece of paper that states that it tested by an official outside agency to with the accuracy that Rolex is obligated by their warrantee to keep it to whether certified or not? Why not just simplify the dial with a two word claim on all their dials: Chronometer Accuracy. I think Swiss law prohibits labeling it Chronometer until it has been submitted to the official certifying agency though, hence my addition of the additional word accuracy which converts the legend from a label into a description. Rolex advertises that all of their watches are chronometers even though not all movements are submitted to outside testing. Rolex is able to, and does, insure chronometer accuracy of all their watches whether certified or  I even have Tudors in my collection that stay within a couple of seconds per day. If anyone who would have preferred the non-date Submariner over the date model, but chose a date Submariner over a non-date Submariner because it states that it is an officially certified Superlative Chronometer (whatever Superlative is supposed to mean), then they wasted their money unless they just want the status of having the extra words that clutter up the dial. It's all there for sales enhancement, but does nothing to change the watch in any way. Once you plunk down your money, and walk out the door of the dealer, that certification certificate and the legend on the dial are irrelevant and meaningless. Best wishes, John Kennedy



I have a Comex SeaDweller and an opinion (long winded)

Posted by R.Day , Mar 11,2000,09:28


I have a Comex Sea Dweller, but I got mine what I say is the correct way. Mine was issued to my by Comex. You might say that getting your Comex Sea Dweller is the commercial diving equivalent of getting a Super Bowl Ring. You are regarded as the best! I wore mine on every deep dive I made. It was with me through some scary situations, and with me on some of my happiest times. I don't wear it daily anymore, just bringing it out on special occasions. I'll wear it to the ADC (Association of Diving Contractors) Convention and to the Euro equivalent where I must confess it is a bit of a status symbol. There is no amount of money that could buy the watch from me. It's special to me not because of its high money value, or it's worth as a collector’s piece, it's valuable to me for sentimental reasons.


Ok, time for my point. I don't like the fact that Comex Sea Dwellers are available to the  public. Although they are still rare, I wish no one other then the people who earned then could have them. To me that makes the watch more valuable to us, the Comex alumni. Perhaps how someone who earned a Super Bowl Ring might feel if they met someone else who wore one they bought in a pawnshop. But, I know that some ex-Comexers have sold their watches for some reason or another, and that is their prerogative. And if a rare watch like that is available someone is going to want to buy it. I can't fault a watch collector for going after a rare watch for his collection, but I still don't like it. If you have the means, and you really want the Comex Sea Dweller, buy it, it's your money and you can do with it what you want. But what would make it more valuable is to find out about the previous owner and where he worked, and projects he was on, and some sea stories of things the watch went through. IMO anyway. Lastly, I would be careful of buying a Comex Sea Dweller that someone claims is NEW. If it's new, how did they get it? When a batch is ordered they ALL go to Comex! Comex does not sell them! If a genuine Comex Sea Dweller were for sale it would have to be one that was issued to a Comexer who then sold it later. There are a lot of fakes out there. You may buy one you think is a new Comex Sea Dweller, it may be a genuine Sea Dweller, but with a fake Comex dial. You'll pay about $10,000 USD for a $3600 watch. Good luck to you on whatever you decide to do, let me know if you get one. R.Day




Using a GMT-Master (more)

Posted by Devin Winton , Jan 04,2000,15:44


Many good posts have been written regarding the use of a GMT watch. However, I have not yet read one that describes how I use my Rolex GMT. The procedure eliminates the need to constantly reset the watch when travelling or when Daylight Savings Time rolls around, and keeps the chronometer movement running. Before going any further, I must reiterate my first point and make a second: 1) I am not writing this post because I feel any others are deficient, and 2) because of the quick-set date feature, the procedure I describe may only be used with the GMT (sorry, GMT-II owners). First, some definitions: Dial time: time shown by minute hand and 12-hr. hand (mercedes) Bezel time: time shown by minute hand and 24-hr. hand (triangle)


The procedure is very simple: Set the dial time to Greenwich Mean Time, making sure the date is correct and will advance at midnight, GMT. Next rotate the bezel to show local time. For example, I live in the Eastern time zone of the U.S. Currently, we are 5 hours behind GMT on EST. Therefore, I rotate my bezel 5 hrs. clockwise to show local time.This puts the dot representing 19 at the 12 position, with the triangle marker on the bezel between 2 and 3. Dial time will always be GMT, and bezel time will always be local. What, you may ask, is the advantage to using the Rolex GMT in this manner? When Daylight Savings Time starts again, instead of having to reset the watch, I simply rotate the bezel 1 hr. counterclockwise (20 at the 12 position). If I fly from the East coast to the West coast, I simply rotate the bezel 3 hrs. clockwise and I have local time on the bezel and never have to reset my watch. When I fly back, I rotate the bezel 3 hrs. counterclockwise (again, not having to reset the watch). In addition, if one does anything regulated by GMT/UTC/ZULU time, (flight operations, military missions, etc.) GMT is readily readable. If your Rolex GMT is running with any degree of accuracy, you may not have to set it again for another year or so (depending on your tolerance). Of course, with anything new, it takes time to get used to telling local time with the bezel. Now, if you have a Rolex GMT and are showing dial time as local time and bezel time as GMT and you are comfortable using it that way, great - keep using it that way. I am sharing what I believe to be an efficient use of the Rolex GMT, especially for those who may be GMT-dependent. Best wishes for a new year whose passing is marked by the beat of a Rolex on your wrist. Devin Winton



I was in Singapore last week

Posted by Timor , Jan 04,2000,08:32


I was in Singapore last week, and would like to share my watch experience :- ) I had the chance to visit many watch shops, and of course, the Rolex Service Center on Orchard Road. I paid a visit to the Rolex Center, a huge building with very conspicuous LARGE Rolex signs. There are two sections, with the right-hand-side being for Sales, and the left for Service/Repair. There is a clear glass wall on each section, with about a dozen Rolex technicians wearing white robes in each room, with their repair tables, 'goggles',and tools (beautiful sight!). Saw a beautiful no-date Submariner steel, the nice two-tone Sub w/ blue dial, and numerous Datejusts, Presidents and a few Daytonas. There was the 18K gold white dial Daytona with brown leather deployant strap, and diamond-baguettes bezel, and the price.... S$96,000! (US$58,181!) I am not sure I like it. I would rather drive off in something if I had that kind of money to dispose of ;- ) ...I also saw the first day-date/President I really liked, an all gold president with bark finish dial and center link (no diamonds) A lady friend of mine had cracked the glass on her Datejust, which meant that we had to go into the service section as well. I saw a burly Japanese man with an all gold Sub w/ blue dial, inquiring to the attendants if his steel Sub was done from repairing (!). While he waited, I noticed that his eyes was glued to my steel white Daytona.  (Yes,  I did put the metal bracelet back on before I left ;- ) Of course I didn't forget to pick up the best FREE literature in the world, the Rolex booklets, which apparently came out in two sizes. I am quite sure many of you have the large Rolex booklet; the smaller booklet has nice, and slightly different pictures, e.g. the Explorer II in the small booklet has the black dial (as opposed to white on the big booklet).


 A day earlier, I was at the Hour Glass store at Ngee Ann City Mall on Orchard. I was in the market for a ladies Rolex (wedding present for my fiance, we're getting married in  February), and set my sights on a two-tone lady Datejust with oyster bracelet. I was attended to by a nice Mr. Chong from the store, with whom I ended up talking for a couple of hours on watches. Mr. Chong commented that my steel white Daytona would be worth at least S$10,000 (US$6,000, which is $100 more than the original amount I paid for mine) on  the Singapore used market, and that the last new one he had was sold for S$16,000 (US$9,700!)... huh ;- ) ? After all was said and done, the damage was US$3275 (picture below, can any Rolex gurus tell me if I paid a fair price for this tt lady Datejust? It was claimed to be 5.5% off the list price in Singapore. Your comments would be most appreciated). I took a chance to try on a few of the Daniel Roths (the Hour Glass, a listed company, actually owns this watchmaking house), and of course, Patek Philippes (nice!). I particularly like the 5054, and the Aquanaut with expo back and metal bracelet. Got out of the store with one watch, did not get anything for myself... whew! ;- )


We then went to the hotel where my would be in-laws were staying, and showed them the watch, and the Rolex booklets. My fiancee's dad, who own a couple of tt Datejusts jubillee band (w/ diamonds and all), really liked the tt no-date with the oyster bracelet and gray silver dial. I told him that if he were in the market for a no-date Rolex, why notget the no-date Sub, or the Explorer I (!)? when I showed him the pics in the booklet, he started nodding.... ;- ) Well, we ended up with Mr. Chong again the day after, and my fiancee's dad started looking at the tt with oyster bracelet... while he was looking, I quietly asked Mr. Chong to hand me the no-date steel Sub.., and put it in front of my soon-to-be in-law's for his viewing pleasure. It took about a silent two minutes... and he quietly whispered.. I'll take this one... I then talked with Mr. Chong for a while and after some time, settled on S$4,270 (US$2,580), which he claimed was about a 10% discount (again, Rolex gurus, was this a fair price for a steel no-date Sub? Your comments would be appreciated). The store actually had an Explorer I (what an example of elegant simplicity!) in stock, but wouldn't budge on their US$3,600 asking price. The Explorer I is a great watch, but perhaps not worth US$1000 more than the no-date Sub, in my opinion.And here's a pic of the beautiful no-date Sub: That was my Rolex part of the story... I don't necessarily respect others who treat you by what you wear. Having said that, I did notice the extra attentiveness of store attendants, especially in watch dealers, as I was looking around with my steel white Daytona (which is quite visible from afar ;- ) We passed millennium midnight in Orchard Road (the NYC's Times Square equivalent) with 500,000 other people (!) and it was finally time to go home on Sunday the 2nd. A special holiday for me, and I hope it was the same for forummers everywhere too ;- ))))) Oh, and I did get a watch, a Christmas present from my fiance... She knew that I like mechanical watches, and that I would like to have one with day and date.... and no, no, it's not the Prezzie..., but this was just as special (really!) It's the Seiko Diver's automatic watch with day-date (perfect everyday watch for me) Thanks for reading! Happy New Year again everyone! Regards, Timor




Choosing between Rolex models in the face of adverse claims (long tutorial)

Posted by John F. Kennedy , Dec 31,1999,00:42


Much of this essay mentions the Tudor Submariner, but the same points are meant to apply to many different Rolex watches especially sports models, and the way claims are made about comparative worth. No comment is aimed at any particular individual, and I do not wish to offend anyone.


First, I have no exclusive interest in one specific Rolex sport watch. My collection  includes Rolex Submariners, Tudor Submariners, Sea Dwellers, GMTs, Explorers, and will soon include the all Stainless Steel Yacht Master. Second, I hope we agree that all Rolex products are excellent. If this were not true there would be no shortages of them. Rolex does not make junk watches nor does it make any watches that are or even “above average. One sometimes sees put downs of one Rolex product by one or more owners of a different model Rolex (naturally the claimant’s watch is the Best).


Often, but not always, this is a motivated by a conscious or unconscious desire to be one up on the other bloke. Various examples of truth, half-truth, misconceptions, speculation, and myth are offered as proof to support the claims. Sometimes the claim is general (non specific), such as saying that one’s watch is not as good or of less quality, or even implying that a another person has chosen a poor quality Rolex model (as though one such existed) without giving any reason at all. One should never accept such an unsupported statement as worthy of any consideration. The person delivering the claim offers no way for the reader or listener to check up on its veracity. In making a claim one hopes that the claimant would at least be specific and point out such things as accuracy of the movement, finish of the case, durability, ruggedness, etc., and then support their claims with some specific facts and sources that one may check.


How many times have we read on this forum or others, that a Sea Dweller is the Best diving watch (or even the best sport watch)? Who hasn’t seen claims which state that compared to the Rolex Submariner, the Tudor Submariner is mediocre at best? These are the types of both nonspecific and unsupported claims that we see every week on various forums. Since a supported refutation is better than an unsupported claim, what evidence is there to refute claims and others like them?


In my collection I have Tudors that are adjusted to chronometer accuracy, and two of them are over thirty years old. It is possible to adjust any Rolex model to chronometeraccuracy. Yet we still see making statements that Tudor is less accurate that the Rolex,and that a non date Sube is less accurate that the date model because the date model has Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified printed on the dial. It so happens  that all movements submitted or certification are submitted before the date wheels and parts or other complications are added. Another fact is that the dateless Submariner shares the same movement as the Explorer which has no date but sports the Superlative Chronometer markings on its dial. Additionally Rolex ads have clearly stated that ALL Rolex watches are chronometers.


Below are some supported refutations of the previous unsupported put down claims as well as related more specific claims: What about ruggedness? The abuse necessary to destroy a Tudor Submariner on dry land would also destroy a Rolex Submariner as well as a Sea Dweller I’m afraid. The Tudor Submariner has virtually the same case as a Rolex Submariner with some slight cosmetic differences and markings that distinguish the two and the fact that the Tudor uses the older style of Submariner twinlock crown instead or the Triplock one. Barring dropping one of these from an aeroplane, face down onto a concrete walk, it is pretty hard to destroy it.


This leads us to the differences in depth ratings. Depth rating is not necessarily proof of ruggedness or better quality since a Stainless Steel Submariner, whether Tudor with a lesser rating or Rolex, will withstand far greater abuse than will the Submariner in all gold, in spite of the fact that it has the same 1,000 foot depth rating as the Stainless Rolex Submariner. It has been said that one diving watch is of lower quality than another because it is rated with less than 4,000 feet (in comparing a new Sea Dweller with others) or less than 1,000 feet of Diving Depth if comparing the current Rolex Submariner with a Tudor Submariner, Oddly enough I have never heard this same criticism applied to a vintage Rolex Submariner the has a rating of 660 feet. When did depth rating become a gauge of quality?


There are many Rolex sport watches which are tested only to 300 feet, including the GMT, Yacht Master, Daytona, Chronograph, and Explorer. If we were to consider depth rating as the criterion for quality, then one would be forced to say that the Tudor Submariner is superior to all of the above as well as the Daytona Chronograph which is among the most expensive of Rolex models. Then, if we say that it is the criterion for judging the quality of DIVING watches, we are forced to say that the lowly Tudor is the equal of all vintage Rolex Submariners which have the same depth rating. Believe it or not, in forty years I have not met a single sport diver who has ever even approached the depth limit of the Tudor Submariner or vintage Rolex Submariner on a dive. How many of you have even come near the test depth of a non diving Rolex (300 feet)? Few professional, research, or submarine rescue divers have ever come near that depth. Divers in Special Forces and Navy SEALs stay mostly at shallow depths. Unless he is one of the very few deep research or rescue divers no one on this forum is likely to ever dive to anywhere near the depth that either the vintage Rolex Submariners or the Tudor Submariner is capable of, nor will any of the other chaps on TURF who opted for Sea Dwellers do so (an excellent watch, I presently have three variations of it). So much for the depth myth, and so much for a sport diver needing a watch to go to 4,000 or even 1,000 feet! While there is no practical advantage in the average active sportsman owning a Sea Dweller, some people like its slightly greater mass on their wrists. And If you like the feature, it’s window is free from the distortion of the Cyclops lens (found on all other Rolex date watches) which sometimes makes it difficult to read the second hand or minute hand when they are under the lens. Florescent and overhead lighting sometimes also makes the Cyclops hard to see through. So Sea Dweller lovers do have legitimate reasons to choose this watch, but is it a better watch? Not unless you are in need or it’s unique features and nothing else is adequate. With most owners of the SD it is more of a subjective choice rather than a practical one (except for those who insist on having the date and hate the Cyclops).


In comparing the desirability of Rolex and other companies’ sport watches, as well as comparing one Rolex against another, sometimes people are tempted to use the bracelets as a gauge of the watches’ comparative quality as though that were an essential part of the watch: If one uses any sport watch, whether it be the Tudor Submariner, the Rolex Submariner, the Sea Dweller or another, for diving, parachute jumps, or other activities such as river rafting, rock climbing, rappelling, or rough water kayaking, it is not my recommendation that he or she use a bracelet, but rather a one piece Nylon band (something on the order of the NATO wristband. This is in order not to lose your watch ifone lug pin pops out or breaks, or one of the pins in the bracelet breaks. A one piece wristband has saved my Rolex watches several times in the last 35 years. Since all of the bracelets are a bad choice for a person engaged in any rugged outdoor activity, I consider the bracelets as being irrelevant in comparing the quality of Rolex made sport watches. They should not be used to gauge the difference in quality between two watches that are designed for rugged outdoor activity. The only watches I use the bracelets on are those in my collection that I do not use for such activities. The practical minded should consider bracelets on sports watches as auxiliary jewelry only to be used with causal dress or when dressed in suit and tie, but never as serious hardware. Actually it is quite acceptable to wear a black nylon band even with a vested Tuxedo (can James Bond be a bad dresser?). However, when so dressed I prefer a gold pocket watch in a hunting case on an antique gold watch chain across the vest.


One member recently made the unsupported statement that a Tudor’s resale value is not good: What is bad about it? All of the Tudors in my collection are now valued at much higher that their original list prices, and that is so with other Rolex manufactured watches. I don't know any other company that can boast that their entire line appreciates in value with age faster than the rate of inflation. The Tudor is after all a Rolex product. If one says that a 1967 Rolex Submariner sells for more that a 1967 Tudor Submariner, I would point out that the Tudor sold for less originally, so it cannot achieve an equal price to the comparable Rolex Submariner unless it is a rare collectors’ variation of some sort. Both will continue to increase in value, unlike most other makes. I think ability to hold value at resale is a non issue in the comparison between these two, especially if one is not buying the watch as an investment to be sold, but as a lifetime possession. Someone said that Tudor cases are made from a lower grade of Stainless Steel: Who says so? and what proof does he give? I doesn't make sense that a company with the reputation of Rolex would use two different grades of Stainless steel on Submariners because they put the Rolex signature on one and the Tudor signature on the other. Why should they bother to have two separate inventories of case steel when they can have one? The price difference does not warrant it. There are no savings, so what would be the purpose? Would it be ease of machining with the lower grade steel? If that were true, they would use the same steel on the more expensive Submariner as well since it would still be capable of the same depth rating. In support of this argument let’s remember the fact that the solid gold submariner has the same depth rating as the Stainless Steel one, yet gold is much softer. By the way the depth (thickness) of the case on the Sea Dweller is not there to give it more strength for a deeper rating, but to accommodate the helium gas release valve.


They don't have the same heritage. Was another claim I read concerning the Tudor Submariner and The Rolex Submariner. They certainly do have the same heritage. They are both Rolex products, made by the same people, and sold in the same organization of dealerships. I have handed my 1965 Tudor Submariner to managers of Rolex Dealerships and had them assume that it was a Rolex Submariner until I pointed out the little rose logo where the Rolex signature should have been on the dial. Rolex is built to the highest level of quality. The above statement seems meant to imply that Tudor is of much inferior craftsmanship or care. The only part of the Tudor that is not Rolex made is the basic movement and this has been brought up to Rolex standards with modifications and certain additions that include in-house Rolex parts. Rolex has a Rolex movement: This is not entirely true. One of the most expensive Rolex watches is the Daytona Chronograph and until this year it has been fitted with a purchased out-of-house Zenith movement also modified to Rolex standards. Most Swiss watch manufacturers have purchased ebauchs (out of house basic movements) to place in their own cases. Rolex did so with a number of its models in the past and built its reputation for superior quality based on its quality modifications of the ebauch movements and its superior cases. Rolex has GOLD and PLATINUM models. (placed in the thread comparing Tudor Submariner to the Rolex Submariner). This is irrelevant. The Submariner originally was designed as a precision rugged and durable tool not jewelry. Further, I have never seen any platinum Submariners. It is also irrelevant because the existence of a solid gold Rolex submariner does not effect the quality of a Stainless Steel Tudor causing it to be of much poorer quality than the Rolex all stainless steel Submariner. If the existence of gold version could mean that the Tudor was inferior, it would have the same effect on the stainless steel Rolex version! I’m beginning to feel like Spring Semester has already started and I’m teaching a class in Critical Thinking or Logic. Rolex is Rolex. This circular statement was recently given on TURF as proof that the Rolex Submariner is Superior to the Tudor Submariner. I fail to see any logic in it at all. Hold a Tudor Submariner in one hand and a Rolex Submariner in the other, if you can't see the difference in quality, buy the Tudor This seems to imply that the difference is obvious to a sensible observer, or perhaps that one can determine the quality of the inside by looking at the outside. More likely it implies the prior.


Lets take two 1967 Submariners, and set them side by side, one Tudor and one Rolex, not because the latest models don’t have comparable quality cases and dials, but because during the 60’s, except for the signature on the dials, they looked identical. The only thing different one might perceive would be the tiny white rose logo on the Tudor dial and Oyster Prince in place of Oyster Perpetual. The two had identical interchangeable Rolex signed bracelets with identical markings, and they had the same large twin-lock crown with the same Rolex coronet signature. I defy anyone to tell the difference in quality between those two in my collection. The design, and weight and visible craftsmanship are identical. The latest ones have comparable case and dial quality, but the dials have been changed on the Tudors to make them look distinct from the Rolex Sub. It seems that what the author of the above statement meant by quality was product recognition (that little white coronet above the axis of the hands and the precise Rolex look). That is the only external difference at present between the two unless one is referring to the bracelets, and we have already treated that subject above. Unfortunately Rolex USA no longer imports the Tudor line from Geneva. So if anyone in the United States wants one they will have to find some new old stock, purchase out of the country, or buy pre-owned and get it reconditioned. The Tudor, dollar for dollar is possibly the best deal in the Rolex line if you can get one, and if you are not into brand name and product recognition. The best deal of all would be a good used one that you can get serviced and reconditioned. I have seen Tudors offered used for about $700.


False value comparisons between Rolex made watches can lead to bitter divisiveness on TURF and that would be a pity. All Rolex products are excellent. Just because someone doesn’t wish to spend more on a different model doesn’t mean he is getting lesser quality in accuracy, craftsmanship, engineering or durability (all Rolex watches that are well maintained will outlive their purchasers many times over). Nor does getting a more expensive one imply that the purchaser is a spendthrift. For me practicality is the first measure of what I would choose if I could have only one Rolex. For another person, it is the look or the, exclusiveness, or the gold and gemstones (esthetics). No one can say that any one of these choices are wrong or inferior unless they are the person choosing and wearing the watch. The right choice is what pleases and serves you the wearer and what will continue to please you indefinitely. Best wishes, John Kennedy




Tanks are not pretty to those who lift their pinky while drinking tea

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Dec 09,1999,10:04


I may not agree with a post, or the authors intent, but I thank my lucky stars for being a citizen of a country where our rights to speak our minds are upheld. So a tinker didn't like what he did tinkered with. Not exactly man bites dog in terms of newsworthiness. Been over a year since that posting came out. Explorer's haven't dropped to $295, or 3 for $600 just yet. Rolex has not filed for chapter 11. Anybody heard of a Lange selling for thousands over list lately? How about a Rolesium Yachtmaster? 'Nuff said. But I have read some distressing news. In the past few years, watch lovers, folks just like you and me, who bit on superlative stories and the hoopla bantered on the net about other brands, bought those other brands, (and got bit), and then reported their own unhappy stories:-


1) A $44,000 Lange Datograph chrono being immediately sent back to the

factory because the chrono buttons were pushed too many times!


2) The first generation Lange 1 having to be redesigned because the date

adjuster button if pushed at the wrong time would do serious damage

(guess the original buyers are just stuck)


3) A warning from Patek to its dealers, telling them that the most frequent

repair on its new Pateks are from owners who overwind the autowind



4) A new feature just added by Patek to their automatics (only) of a wind

indicator. hmm, wonder why?


5) A report from a new owner of a Patek wind indicator watch, that the

wind indicator dial fell off.


6) A picture of the insides of a new expensive ($40k+) Patek that a

watchmaker was repairing - problem, the date function broke.


7) A report from another owner of a $12K Patek, problem, the date

function stopped working.


8) A report from the buyer of a brand new $13K+ manual Patek, problem,

the watch only ran for 20 hours and stopped.


9) A report from an owner of a sports Patek who dropped it, problem,

something is wrong with it, but Patek repair cannot find out what it is.


10) Problem with one whole type of expensive ($12K) Pateks, problem,

the minute hand is loose and imprecise to adjust. Patek says it is a

design feature.


11) A brand new Patek with a hinged back that is flimsy, looks like it

would break off easy.


Please consider my slant here also, I am not picking on Patek and Lange per se, I love Patek, there is nothing finer to fit under a french cuff than a skinny Patek dress watch. I own two Pateks, but today as I was clapping at an awards ceremony, I was very aware that I was wearing one of my Patek's and so made the motion, but not the force to make a sound, of clapping. They are FRAGILE watches. HANDLE WITH CARE. Also, I am not ashamed to admit I am ignorant of the other watch brands, I read these forums to find out what I have to be cognizant of in terms of hazards for my watches. I don't go into the other forums, but dollars to donuts, I'll betcha they have the same problems. So all I know is Rolex and Patek (and the occasional Langer who strays onto the Patek forum to cry about some problem he had with his Lange) And I all know is of the problems 1-11 listed above by real people, not self inflicted watch expert's pronouncements of the ideal watch, and all I know is that NOBODY who is real people has got on this forum to report similar problems with ROLEX. My seven Rolex have marked approximately 63,000,000 seconds (x 7!) of precise chronometer timekeeping since a tinker first told me HE THOUGHT Rolex weren't worth a tinker's damn. But I've overwound them, I've pushed all the buttons all the times I cared to, I've clapped for joy with them on my wrist, I've dropped one or two, I've scratched them and knocked them around, shucks, I've just enjoyed the hell out of them. And they have reliably and accurately marked the measure of my life. Rolex are built like tanks, and for the thousands I've paid, I wouldn't have it any other way. But don't take anybody's word (including mine!) for it. good or bad Just take a look at them resale values, and those market driven markups over list. People worldwide speak most eloquently with their pocketbook. 'nuff said.






Have your Rolex overhauled every 5 years whether it needs it or not!.....

Posted by Rex , Nov 11,1999,16:30


Some folks do it every 3. Then again, some don't worry about it until there is a performance problem. Know a buddy that bought a new Sub in 1987. He has worn it every day since, and has yet to be serviced! One day I mentioned to him it's gotta be way past due for an overhaul. Then he replied with one of those smart ass comments, If it ain't broke, he ain't fixin' it. Go figure. I just guestimate after 5 years of operation, the lubrication in the jewel pivots, mainspring barrel, etc. have dissipated and it should be plenty dirty after that long. Compare it to the 3,000 mile Jiffy Lube visit for your auto. It's just the right thing to do. The old time watchmakers call an overhaul a C.O.R. (clean, oil, and regulate.) How it's done, the movement is taken completely out of the case. The watch is completely disassembled and all the parts are placed inside a metal wire meshed basket and and then the basket is placed inside a bigger unit that is filled with cleaning fluid called a cleaning machine. All the parts are flowing through the cleaning fluid while the unit spins back and forth for a given amount of time (the same concept as a washing machine). The unit stops spinning after the parts are clean and then radiant heat is passed through the basket to dry the parts.


Then the watch is carefully put back together. While in this process, he is applying very small drops of oil to certain parts of the movement that need this done to, such as all the jeweled pivots (except the pallet fork pivots), mainspring, certain gears, and the keyless works (the system in the watch that contains the crown and stem for setting). 3 different kinds of lubricants with different kinds of viscosities are used depending on what parts he is lubricating. After it's completely assembled and lubricated and is in working order, then the movement is placed on a timing machine for regulation. Here the watch's timing and beat frequency is checked. This is done for accuracy. If the watch doesn't pass his timing test, then appropriate action is then necessary to rectify the problem such as an adjustment to the balance wheel, by turning what they call microstella screws inward or outward depending on how fast or slow it's running and other adjustment in regard to beat frequency that go over my head, (but I'm still learning). After the movement is finished, then the watch case is buffed and polished and then dipped into an ultrasonic cleaning machine (without the movement installed of course). New gaskets for the crystal, caseback, and crown are installed. Also, I forgot to mention the case tube and crown are replaced too. (the case tube is the threaded metal part that the crown screws on. In other words, it's the small threaded tube that sticks out of the case for the crown to screw on).


Beware of freelance watchmakers nowadays. Instead of disassembling the entire movement, what they do is just dip the entire movement into this hi tech cleaning solution that contains some space age lubricant like teflon or something, and by doing this, they don't have to take the time to disassemble the movement. It's a very cheap way out, that in my opinion doesn't do a thorough job. Like taking a shower with a raincoat on so to speak. So if you do have an independent watchmaker service your Rolex, make sure he is one of a type that takes his time and does a complete job, by completely disassembling the movement instead of the dipping procedure. Also make sure both the case tube and crown is replaced and all the gaskets. You never know sometimes. They may use the same gaskets and parts and say it was replaced. This is why it's so critical to find a watchmaker that will do the job right, 'cause it's a very complicated process. That's why some folks have the piece of mind and send it to a Rolex factory service center. There, it's done right too. About twice the cost of an independent or freelance watchmaker, but the old saying you get what you pay for. Hope I enlightened you somewhat about watch maintenance. Take care.





TURF - it doesn't get any better than this...

Posted by Art , Nov 04,1999,10:48


Friends- As a new Rolex owner I want to share my experience with you all and acknowledge the huge and most positive role that this discussion group has played in my pursuit and achievement of tremendous happiness. I have been attracted to Rolex watches for almost 25 years. Periodically I would come very close to pulling the trigger and buying one but there was always some reason to not do so. About a year ago I decided that 1999 would be my year. I had long since settled on the T/T Blue Sub as the watch of my dreams and it was just a matter of getting one of my own. I live almost 3 hours away from the nearest authorized Rolex dealer so the going was tough and good information about where to buy (and not buy) as well as prices was about impossible to come by....


One rainy spring day as I searched Dogpile (again) for any WWW site that could help, I came upon TURF. I visited the site and my road to Rolex took a giant step forward. I visited the site regularly. Learned an incredible amount about Rolex watches and, most importantly, came to understand all the pros and cons of buying new vs. used, authorized dealer vs. gray market, full price vs. discounts and on & on. Along the way many of you became good friends. There are an incredible number of very forthright and knowledgeable “elders” on the board and I would look forward to your posts, replies and advice. Never have I seen or heard of a more serious and dedicated bunch of guys and gals on a discussion board; I felt like I was getting an education well worth paying for and increasingly recognized that if these are the type of people that are Rolex owners then my instincts about wanting one were good because I fancy myself, when at my best, to be as helpful and considerate as all of you. I also found a bond between myself and you all because we all believe in this watch as a thing of beauty and personal accomplishment that we love for its unique style and mechanical perfection in a day and age of throw away cut & pastes. We have the watch for ourselves; it reminds us that good things come to people who work hard and have a dream. We do not have it because we want to impress others; if that were our purpose, as others have said, we’d buy a good fake on e-bay!!


Anyway, about 6 weeks ago I knew I was ready. I had decided to buy new and from an authorized dealer yet I wanted to take advantage of a discount if possible. I had come to feel so comfortable with you all that I decided to impose upon one of the elders for some specific direction. I got bold and e-mailed Rex for some personal advice and help. Although I had a list of 5 “regulars” that I thought about contacting, Rex had really impressed me with his ever sage and helpful posts. He answered me immediately and, like a personal tutor, took me step-by-step through the process that ended up with a beautiful T/T Blue Sub on my wrist. As part of his help he locked me into a super authorized dealer with an incredible customer focus and a 15% discount (with free shipping and no tax for out of staters,  to boot, calculate the savings, wow!!). Thanks Rex and to all the other elders whom, I’m sure would have been just as great.! So, I ask you, where else on the WWW are you going to find a better group than this?????? IMHO, nowhere!!!!!! Glad to be a full fledged TURFER at long last!!  All the best. Art





Removing glass cyclop from sapphire crystal

Posted by FRANK FERRARA...Doc Tock , Oct 14,1999,04:35


Hello Marco, Have an expert watchmaker examine your crystal for originality. To proceed with subject matter, the repair shop could use a sharp NEW single edge razor blade and align the blade edge with the flat side of the cyclop. Then, while holding the blade almost parallel to the crystal surface, strike the back (softly) side of the blade with a metal weight (small hammer). Of course, the watch movement MUST be removed from the case. As an added support, PRIOR TO STRIKING the cyclop, the case back is returned and tightened. NEXT, very warm water is injected into the closed case via the case tube being certain ALL the air is allowed to leave the interior of the case before screwing down the case crown. (The trapped water helps protect the crystal from the force of the jolt). If any residue from the cyclop cement remains, a sharp razor and solvent will finish the task. As per prior mention, don't try this with plastic crystals. BTW: glass cyclop magnifiers are commercially available should one be desired for application to any FLAT glass or sapphire crystal. The cement is a now well known easy to use (special) bonding agent that most watchmakers are aware of. Best regards from Florida, FRANK FERRARA...dba:WorldWide Watch Repair, P.O. Drawer 1029, Bradenton Florida..34206



My thoughts on the Fake Rolex phenomenon

Posted by REMINGTON , Oct 18,1999,22:41


I have a close associate, a relative actually, with a fake submariner Rolex. His motivations I believe are typical of the average fake rolex wearer. It is not bad as fakes go, with a sweeping second hand and better-than-average pot metal construct. He wears the watch because it gets him attention; because it conveys a sense of status and wealth that he desires but cannot or is unwilling to earn. He is convinced that his watch is a bargain and that only the foolish or very wealthy would buy a real Rolex when convincing imitations are so widely available. In my experience the kind of person that would wear a fake Rolex is unlikely to ever acquire a real one even if it were financially feasible. The love of craftsmanship and careful engineering, the appreciation of history and design integrity, are missing. To him a Rolex is a status symbol because of it's elsive cost. If true craftsmanship were the goal but cost were the stumbling block, one would simply invest in one of the lesser, but nonetheless worthy, Swiss watches. The true Rolex aficionado wears his watch because he appreciates the fineness of it's manufacture, the genius of it's engineering, and the ruggedness and longevity of it's design. Undoubtedly we are proud of our investment and enjoy those who notice our pride and joy, but it is more the pride of a parent. Far greater is the personal satisfaction of watching that sweeping second hand dance around the dial in perfect synchronization, a miracle of micro-engineering, representing the labor of love of dozens of technicians who participated in it's creation. It's knowing that something can be both timelessly beautiful and exceptionally rugged simultaneously. It's knowing that one's hard work and success has allowed one to enjoy one small piece of perfection in an imperfect world. Those who wear a fake Rolex do not understand that that impressing others is no substitute for impressing yourself. Only those who own can understand. REMINGTON






Re : Rolex Explorer 1

Posted by Siapa , Oct 22,1999,03:28


For many many years I had always yearned for an Explorer 1. I had only seen it in the catalogue but I loved that oh so handsome honest face. So legible, so clear. This is contrary to Walt Odet's comment (taste). During the 1970's to 1980's Rolex was advertising the Explorer 1 as an adventurer's tool. Go to the South pole (or North?), the presence of strong magnetic fields affecting the accuracy of instruments and hence the need for the Explorer 1 for precise radio contact etc. As far I was concerned in my impressionable mind an icon was born. Every time I inquired for an Explorer 1 in Singapore or Kuala Lumpur I was told it was out of production. Out of production? How come it’s in the catalogue? Silence. No reply.


In 1997 I wandered into my favorite watch shop in Kuala Lumpur with a couple of friends. Just for fun mind you. We were looking at the IWC MkXII. I was thinking to myself nice watch. The face had the simple clarity of the Explorer 1. (strangely in contrast to WO's taste). Yes the Explorer 1 was still in my mind. I still wanted it. I still could not find one. (no stock was the excuse now. A slight improvement) The MkXII was at that moment a credible second but I did not like their metal bracelet (beautifully intricate IMHO effeminate), the leather strap looked best. So against my better judgment (I am sorry for being such a duplicitious lover) my friend and I purchased one each. Horrors of horrors, that night I discovered it was only luminous at the 12, 6 and 9 markers and the second hand was not luminous. At the back of my mind, how on earth are the pilots going to see it in the dark cockpit?


The next morning it stopped. Stone cold. Whaaaaaaat! I wailed. This is an IWC, supposedly second to Rolex. Winston Churchill had one. How can this be? The watch shop apologised and exchanged it for another one. This was just as bad. After a few days, the second had started to behave quartz watch like. It started jerking in 10 seconds intervals, like it was running out of battery. My friend was equally frustrated, leaving it on the table overnight stops the watch. I had visions of Winston Churchill rolling in his grave. I stormed back into the shop. My face was black. As black as the Explorer 1's face (but nowhere as handsome). They apologised profusely. They did not have any more to exchange. Can they give me a credit note. A credit note!!!!!!!!  Whaaaaaaat!!!!  Are you nuts! No way amigo. What kind of rotten shop is this? I thought you guys are reputable. How many Rolexes have I bought from you guys? Credit note...pleeeeeeeze!


Wait what's that down there. Yeah at the bottom left hand corner. Just there. Smiling and winking at me. Its not is it? An EXPLORER 1. Fancy that. No discount eh. Oh big demand because its called the 369 in Hong Kong. I see. No don't know movie that's featuring it. How much? Slightly cheaper than a MkXII eh? No problem. Issue me a credit note for the remainder. Great service you have here. Went home. That night. Bliss. Can see in the dark. Aaaaaahh yes, that white ball floating gently by is the second hand. Yes. Bliss. Dreams. Antarctica here I come. Sorry it took me so long. Just got my Explorer 1. One has to be suitably equipped or else I will lose contact with the outside world. Outside world? This watch is out of this world. enjoy your Explorer 1. Its still ticking away. Oh BTW I last heard IWC has replaced the MkXII with the MkXV. Seems there have been too many complaints about the the JLC mechanism, they are using a simpler JLC movement as it is more sturdy. Looks like Rolex knew all along. BTW the MkXV is really beautiful. Shall I risk it again? Just joking. Be happy. No regrets. p.s., the plastic in the Explorer 1 that WO refers to I think is to counter act the strong magnetic fields.




Buying your 1st Rolex. You've come to the Rolex place

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Oct 18,1999,11:30


Hi Kenny, Among automatic mechanical watches, Rolex enjoys a high durability rating. Just been reading a similar question posed by a regular here that he posted on the Patek forum. He poses a lifestyle question to Patek owners, and one 'Teker gives it to him pretty straight. You can find those Q&A's at the header my other favorite - Patek on the home page of this forum. scroll on down to the August entries. As for durability, quartz is no slouch. They make quartz watches that can dive outside the bathyscape deeper (12,000 feet) although I don't think worn on a human arm, the human would fare so well at that depth. Seiko makes an engineering passion of putting quartz in various titanium and carbon fiber armor, and makes watches specially for Landmasters (whatever they are), alpinists, scuba's, quartz with GPS, atomic clock regulators, and now thermic, running off your body heat. so you aren't buying a Rolex purely for superior durability. I would espouse an automatic watch's eco-friendly nature (once built), but so many folks tie them back on battery winders, or fossil fuel generated electric winders to keep them working that it defeats an ecology sell for automatics. Accurate? Not as much as quartz. Although Rolex has an independent Swiss testing agency certify perhaps 80% of its yearly production as meeting standards of high accuracy, the chronometer rating on the dial. Truly unique among all Swiss mechanical watchmakers.


So you are left with tradition, history, and desirability. Mechanicals have been around for 300+ years, quartz for less than 25. You can still find a working model of most mechanical watches, electric powered watches (including quartz) have a fatal flaw of building up resistance in the circuitry which powers the movement. As the metal oxidizes on the circuit board, it tends to make it harder for electrons to pass through. Eventually this increased resistance consumes batteries at an ever increasing rate, until one day the resistance is so great in one location on the circuit board that it heats up at that area and the electrons burn right through the circuitry. On a fine watch, like a Rolex quartz, I am sure that replacement parts will be available for decades. But it is now getting harder to find replacement circuit boards on the old electric Hamiltons, and Bulova Accutrons.


History, Rolex is a youngster among mechanical watch producers. Zenith had already produced over 2 million watches before the founder of Rolex even got into the watch business. But the founder of Rolex was a marketer among watchmakers. He proved Rolex durability, he proved Rolex accuracy, and did so in a very public manner. So the public began over 60 years ago to associate the name Rolex with rugged, reliable, superlatively accurate wristwatches. Rolex kept the publicity machine cranking, even till today, and along the way, positioned Rolex as a maker of luxury watches. Rolex's superior product and marketing savvy allowed it to grow, prosper, and even survive the quartz invasion of the eighties. Other makers claim longer lineage today, but when you investigate them you find many are just a name purchased by giant conglomerates to differentiate what has become generic standard mechanical watch movements, all made by two or three big companies.


Rolex makes 99% of their own product, soon to be 100%. They sell their movements to no one else. Rolex is one of a handful of names that are universally recognized, and whose name and product denotes luxury, desirability, and extremely rugged precision. Seiko will have a hard sell of their $3,000 quartz-regulated, thermic body-temp powered wristwatch, but Rolex will sell every $3,000 mechanical watch they can make. You won't go wrong with a Rolex, but it will not make you smarter, richer, or sexier. It tells the world you can afford to pay $3,000 for a tool that you can get for $10 at Wal-Mart, (or $3.95 postage and handling only from your credit card insert as a free gift), which may or may not be a signal you wish to convey. It will give you a lifetime of service, with a modest request to be cleaned and oiled at 3- 5 year intervals. It possesses timeless styling, so it won't ever go out of fashion. And Rolex stands behind what they sell with factory service centers worldwide.


That said, a pre-owned Rolex watch can be a good purchase, if you know who you are buying from. As for which one, a shared observation is apropos. My local dealer orders three sports models only, the GMT Master, the GMT Master II, and the Submariner date. He got like quantities of all three models two weeks ago. On Saturday I went to two of his shops, and in both the Submariners had submerged, disappeared without a trace. So in my little corner of the world, the Sub rules among the three you are considering. If you study more, you may come to appreciate the Sea Dweller. But it is for those aficionados who seek a cachet of exclusiveness, not easily noted or appreciated by the general sub buying public. Congrats on starting your search with the best brand, all the others are Rolex wannabes. Good luck on your decision.




Re : Rolex Explorer 1 Review by Walt Odets

Posted by BGH, Oct 20,1999,17:38


You have to go and read all of his stuff before you can understand his point of view. Walt likes highly finished, high precision movements, and is critical of any imperfections in workmanship and expects the finish of the movement in the watch to be reflected in the price tag. Don't agree with the review, think that the Explorer is a very good watch, durable and lasts for ever and retains high percentage of value over the years. The movement, however, is not as finely finished as other watches in this price range, and that is a fact that cannot be disputed. My values are different from Walt O's and I have a different conclusion about Rolex than he does. He is a hell of a knowledgeable watchmaker, and with the exception of the Explorer piece, I agree with everything that he has said. Reading his articles about the basic subsystems of a watch is probably the best way that I can think of to learn how one works and the functions of the parts. The Explorer review provoked a civil war and probably had something to do with the formation of this very site. We had all hashed and rehashed this review until all concerned expressed fatigue. Go read the review again, and stop with Walt's factual findings, and leave his opinion and evaluation out. The watch has a well made case, dial, hands, and in spite of trash in the movement kept better time than many of the much more expensive watches that he prefers. Those are the facts. His opinion is that the watch is not well made for the money, and that is his opinion. Go read the piece titled CornaviDolphin,and you will get a better insight into the workings of the Odet's mind.



The Story of O

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Oct 20,1999,23:25


I've read the backgrounds of those of you who share such information, and I am very impressed. Now you have your fine timepiece. But maybe the bug has bit, and you want that certain special something, one that few or almost no one else has. And you read of all the Rolex Respecters on this forum and others, and say, Geez, there must be millions of us (fully failing to note just how rare it is to spot a kindred spirit wearing one in the real world), and decide, well boy's, Rolex is much too pedestrian for my discerning tastes! So you go play in somebody else's sandbox. And from time to time you look over at all us happy campers in the Rolex romper room and think if they only knew so you've got your one in a billion timepiece, and by this time you are so much more knowledgeable about fine timepieces, and you pronounce The Wanger quad-date twin barreled, swan-necked regulated, Doppleganger measures sixty seconds each minute in a much more refined way than the great unwashed Rolexes do! But the Rolex romper roomers are too busy having fun to notice, and not one sale is lost from Rolex to Wanger Watch co. Oops, one other problem, the Wanger Watch company's only repairer, Mr. Bang, has just retired, in his place they have got a new guy, Retread, to service all Wanger's. So you send your Doppleganger in wanting it serviced by Bang but it comes back Retreaded. You hit the moon, Alice. And tell the world, at least the internet reading watch world. Wanger is upset, they call Mr. Bang out of retirement, just this once, but he says go play in traffic, I'm with Holly in Bali! So you have a problem. The worlds best Wanger, and nobody can fix it like Bang can. Being resourceful, you figure, I better learn to play with it myself And so you study watchmaking, and it requiring only precision and methodical practices to learn, and not brain surgery education, you eventually become a watchmaker. So now you want to show those Rolex rompers a thing or two, (while they've been pursing their favorite interests, and just sending their Rolexes in for service worldwide by professional Rolex Repair men and women, you have been learning to service Wangers.) So you pull a Rolex apart. And make your own observations about it. and publish it for all the Rolex Respecters to see. And the price of the model you pull apart continues to increase in value. Ok, what have we learned? Maybe there is a better watch out there Rolex. But you better learn to Bang your own Wanger if it is not made by Rolex!





How I bought 5 watches on eBay and didn't get stung even once

Posted by John Ireland , Oct 21,1999,10:02


Hello... This is a reply to someone who asked me about my good experiences on eBay, and what I do and don't do in order not to get cheated.


1. Ask all you questions of the seller before you bid on an item. Do they offer a 3 day return policy? Who are their references? eBay has a feedback system, it pays to read it and ask the seller questions about any negative feed back. Also, if you don't know about watches, don't buy them on eBay or anywhere until you take some time to educate yourself. I have seen posts here and elsewhere about people who bought NIB Rolexes from dealers only to realize it wasn't new but like new. And realize, if you aren't buying it from an authorized dealer, it can't be 100% new”. Someone had to buy it in order to resell it.


2. Use all these watch forums to learn who the good guys/gals are. You'll see them selling here, on Watchnet, TZ, and on eBay. Like any professional, they must live and die on the quality of their merchandise and their reputation. eBay is like a giant mall, they police what goes on there, but they can only do so much and the buyer must beware and be educated.


3. You only get what you pay for. There is a difference between what makes sense and what is pie in the sky. If you are looking at a watch on eBay and the seller says things like I don't know if this is real or not... or the guy I bought it from told me he just had it serviced or any other vague or slippery kind of disclaimer, take the hint and walk away and don't bid on that item.


4. Set your price. Don't get sucked into spending more then you know you can turn around and sell the watch for.


5. You can't cheat an honest man. It's the person looking for something for nothing who is blinded by their own greed. Con men know this and that's what all great cons are based on, a deal too good to be true.


6. Here is my track record, a 1957 two tone Datejust on a strap for $900...a 1968 two tone Date (chronometer) on original leather Rolex strap, w/ original inner box and instruction book (who can really tell if it's the original book or inner box, I never pay extra for that stuff) w/ Zephyr style bezel and dial for $975, two tone (pink gold) early 50s Bubbleback w/ older redial, excellent + case, a really stunning watch that kept almost perfect time for $1800...a stainless late 40s Bubbleback in almost excellent condition for $1000 and my most recent, a 1967 14k Date (chronometer) on a strap with a near mint original silver and gold dial, excellent + to near mint case, last serviced by Rolex in Feb or 1993 for $1575. I have also made excellent buys on Rolex buckles, croc bands via eBay, again by using all the above.


7. I have kept track of all these sellers and when I'm looking for a watch, I will check with them first. So, eBay isn't perfect but it isn't any worse than any other market place. The key is to build relationships, educate yourself and follow the market and have fun.




The Zenith of Rolex (long post)

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Oct 13,1999,03:23


If you were a CEO of a secretive company who had a wildly successful product, yet you wanted to replace it with a like product, what would you do? Here are the facts for your specific industry.


1. The market has not been kind to innovation. Although the public professes desire for new, in-house product, history has not proven this to be the case. Zenith developed a brand-new ebauche and watch, the Elite, in 1992, and Chopard developed the LUC in 1996. Who owns one? Who talks about them? Gives any manufacturer pause about spending the millions necessary to design and tool a new movement.


2. Your successful product has fallen victim to its own success. You can’t make as much product as you can sell, and your margins are being eroded. Your major supplier raised prices on parts sold to you several times over the last twelve years, and is constantly advising that they cannot increase their quota to you, as they sell to other makers and produce for themselves as well. They will not license the design to you for total in-house



3. You are the number one company in the industry and of course, are proud of this fact. Independent suppliers have always been a burr under your saddle, one that you have removed by buying them. But your biggest independent supplier remaining is not for sale. “I’ll take my ball and go home” You can afford to make your own damn movement, so there! “If you build it, they will come…………(hope so)”


A. Tell the world why you built it, or at least why you would like them to think you are building it. June 1999, Basel newspaper article, the daughter of one of the Rolex founders (The Lady of Lex?) and Rolex board member gives press interview that says Rolex is building a new chronograph movement “Because we can make a better chronograph movement.” I will not steal Mr. Ozdoba’s thunder in his comment about that statement. You should visit his website.


B. Convince the world that the old watch is not as good as everybody believes, so they will desire the new one.


Method A convincing: “ Rolex officially announces today that nobody should buy the old Zenith Daytona, as it is not as good as the new Rolex Daytona” Fast forward: “Press reports that a particularly rare type I Zenith Daytona fetched the highest price ever recorded at auction for a watch, surpassing even the Patek 89. The best deal on the street was reported as a man in need, who sold a black face type II in a distress sale, for $100,000. The market is flooded with super knockoffs, people buying Tudor Tiger chronographs for the case and band and putting a Zenith El Primero movement in them. Rolex is “repositioning “ the new Rolex Daytona.” Certainly gives Rolex pause, “hmm, we’ve already had the official spokeswoman talk up the new one, and look at the snide remark that received on the internet. Not to mention that the aftermarket price of the Zenith Daytona has gone from $6500 to $7500!”


Method B: Dissing the current Daytona. Invite a friend of the company over to lunch, just happen to take him out on the shop floor on the day of the year that the whole batch of Zenith Daytona’s for that year is made. Have lots of empty boxes emblazoned with Daytona stickers lying around, and stacked to the ceiling to let him compute estimated production. Tell him how ordinary it is to make the Zenith Daytona, just like all the rest. Show him one assembly process and indicate that Rolex makes everything from Domino Pizza Airkings to Zenith Daytona’s to Comex Seadwellers in that same room with the same people. (Yep, 690,000 chronometers, and who knows how many non chronometers and Tudors and Cellini’s per year, all processed in that same room. Must be a big room.) Leave unsaid, but implied that the new Rolex Daytonas will be made in the same way, when the bugs are worked out. Do not show the unease felt by Rolex overtaking a proven design which has been acknowledged as the best chronograph design in the world for the past thirty years, to which Rolex has only improved upon with their modifications, and substitute for it a yet unproven new design. “Omigosh, on those beta prototypes sent out disguised as Tiger Tudors, the rotor falls off!” Hope he will go home and post the Rolex “unofficial, unauthorized” rebuff of the “legend” of the Zenith Daytona on his website. Of course the public will not notice from his numerous Daytona postings that there has been more information “leaked” about the new Daytona over the past year, than was probably shared with the author during the entire compilation of his and Mr. Hess’s unauthorized biography of Rolex.


“Leave ‘em hungry for more” Dry up the Zenith Daytona pipeline, keep the new watch design a closely guarded secret, and if they missed your trumpet call in Basel, and the unofficial-informal announcements on the internet, let them think you are being as quiet as ever about your business. “What a difference a Day makes”. Rolex is perceived by our community as tight-lipped, secretive, and lofty. But I think, considering that behavior, Rolex has shifted gears and has been broadcasting to the world the blow by blow development of their new Daytona, in their own unique way. They have even done public damage control on the Tudor line, which fell prey to rumor this year. And attempted a little spin-meistering to enhance the desirability of the new Rolex Daytona. All I can say is Thank You Rolex!, for sharing with Mr. Dowling, and Thank You Turfers!


Rolex may ultimately be the cold and aloof iceberg capable of sinking the titanic Zenith Daytona legend, but even it has to thaw a bit in the glare of the Internet sun. I believe that Turfers’ incessant verbal queries and suppositions on-line have been the greatest force of change to instill some transparency in the formerly opaque Ice Queen. As rumor was repeated, and assumed the mantle of fact, Rolex felt compelled to comment. The on-line demise of Tudor,repeated everywhere from Turfdom to eBay, evoked a rare denial from Rolex, who went further to espouse their continued support for Cellini. Slowly, hesitantly, through an interpreter, but you know where the words are coming from. As for the Rolex spin-doctoring, I’m convinced that Rolex has reached their zenith and will never again attempt to select and perfect the best for their needs, instead withdrawing completely into their own little world of “we do it ourselves.” They did take their ball and go home.


But with all the propaganda, Rolex has failed to disclose just how the Rolex Daytona will be better than the “Rolex improvement to the world’s best chronograph movement” masterpiece that is the Zenith Daytona. Will the Rolex Daytona be Kew “A” certified ultra-precise, instead of just COSC? Will it be cheaper than the Zenith Daytona for the customer, to buy or to get serviced? Will it have a date, moonphase, perpetual calendar? Will it be more robust? Will Paul Newman immediately discard his Zenith Daytona in favor of a Rolex Daytona, gratis, of course? I think Mr. Dowling’s last “note,” what to call the new Daytona, mirrors Rolex’s angst about it – how do you place it as a new product when the same in name and function? Will the Zenith Daytona magic automatically transfer, or must it be “repositioned”? I hope Rolex will put the Zenith Daytona production process on video, if it isn’t already history. And I hope Rolex will let Mr. Dowling know when the last Zenith Daytona is made. It is a day of historical significance to the collector, the zenith of Rolex’s historic practice of custom-crafting the best to make them Rolex, and also it’s omega. We will not see the likes of this Day again. I will buy two bottles of Dom when that time is called, and the Zenith-Day passes into the night of the brightest stars. One to toast the end of the era, and one to make a tontine. Two Daytonas and one Dom, passed down through the generations, with Dom to salute with a toast the day when my Day’s tick their last.




Understated Value

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Oct 07,1999,04:27


Today was a good day, my portfolio’s percentage advance beat the Dow, and an excellent article in the Herald Tribune covered the world of the gadget freak. I had been ashamed to admit that over the past decade, from the moment in 1991 when I revoked my resolution to always let the company buy my computer and took that fatal plunge, I have spent almost $30,000 on PC equipment. 15 months after my last purchase, I know I am hopelessly out of date, my digital camera is first gen, my PDA – wince 1.0, my laptop (Pentium 133), my desk unit - dual PP 200’s and my laser – 300 dpi. But dammit Jim, they still work, and I have resolved only to replace broken, not merely technologically surpassed. $30,000 poorer and still obsolete. Yet the Trib article made me smile. Here they profiled the “innovators,” those who buy every new gadget that comes along, and two technoids were interviewed who admitted spending over $20,000 a YEAR for the newest technology. One said he spent $60,000 for a professional home theater installation last year, and then moved to a new house this year. That kind of money buys a lot of nice watches. And then the bargain star hit me smack between the eyes. If I should ever pay $60,000 for a watch, and I move, I CAN TAKE IT WITH ME. None of my watches have become obsolete. I’ve sold some watches at a loss, yet when offset by those I’ve sold for a profit, I am delightfully breakeven. By comparison, I gave my old computers away. I wear my Rolex’s status, explained to none, recognized by all, and transcending time; a gadget freak has to spell out what’s in that plain generic casing that confers his place in the pecking order, and then for but a period of days. And the only problem with watches, trying to sell those that others may not share the same enthusiasm for as you did (once upon a time), can be easily remedied by sticking with the KING’s own, Rolex, of course. The Trib sociologist commenting on the techno-junky said that in effect, the junky is attempting to find forever with every new innovation that he spies. His ultimate quest, a technological replacement for our biological husk, thereby ensuring the owner’s immortality. And what is a watch? A time baton passed between two generational runners in life’s marathon. Who has not dated an old watch, and marveled at the progress of mankind that has occurred while this touchstone from an earlier age measured times’ passing, ticking on to infinity? And who doubts that the ROLEX you own today will still be providing faithful service many years hence, perhaps to a colonist on a distant star? And so I smiled as this realization sunk in. I have weaned myself away from the gadget grab, and while I’ve spent more on the substitute, relatively speaking, my Rolex collection could turn out to be the cheapest hobby I’ve ever had. As for trying to own forever… my words here will disappear in a few days, but the Rolexes I’ve worn will continue to sparkle in the sun for many generations to come. They don’t ever grow old, and they don’t ever die. (to paraphrase Wilford Brimley in Cocoon)






caution is the word (or authenticating a Rolex)

Posted by bergzy , Sep 29,1999,17:53


Hello, authenticity has come up quite a bit lately. By all means, I am no Rolex expert but I have noticed some things that are consistent with a Rolex. i was at a small off the beaten path jewelry store one day and there I saw a pile of Rolexes. from jeweled white gold Prezzies to jeweled tt Datejusts. The jeweler was in the middle of 'authenticating' them, whatever that means. I am pretty sure they noticed the Rolex on my wrist because when I asked to see them, they refused. Finally, after a little persistence, I got to look at one, not hold, just look. It was a tt Datejust with a jeweled jubilee dial. I looked at it and there were a lot of little things wrong with it. Things like the dial texture was very, very slightly uneven, the second hand didn't seem to have the right sweep and the lettering seemed faintly jagged. Now, one doesn't acquire noticing subtleness overnight. one has to look at a lot of known genuine Rolexes and have an eye for small and fine detail.


Just like when I look at violins, I can tell if the violin was made in Venice, Cremona, French or German. I have looked and played a lot of violins! At one time, when I was more leisurely, I sound judged for a repairman wanting to adjust his customers’ violins to their potential. No money received but it was sure fun! :) One day when I was really bored, I whipped out my 10x loupes I bought to inspect diamonds for my wife's engagement ring. It scares the jewelers when I whip out my loupes and tell them the diamond quality without their asking. It took time and looking at a lot of diamonds though! On full gold Rolexes anyways, there are some very small stamps on the bracelet and case. In fact, I surprise so many salesman with what I see at 'chain store' authorized dealers, I just have to smile. These are little 750, 18k and the head of what appears to be a St Bernard. These are also on the bracelet. As a person who knows how to work in gold and has made several rings for fun, these are difficult to reproduce. Not impossible, just difficult. Just like a hologram can be reproduced with proper and very expensive equipment, so can these stamps. but are you going to allocate your forgery expenses to create these tiny dies and stamps for the majority of the people who would not notice them? I would rely on the public’s ignorance, much cheaper that way and judging by the bidders on the online auctions, there is an unending supply of them. I have never opened a watch before nor have I ever seen the inside of one. If I were suspicious of the movement authenticity, I would bring it to my authorized dealer so he can crack it open to have a look. I don't question the authenticity of my watches because they were from a very reputable authorized dealer who is also a good friend but when in doubt, establish a good relationship with an authorized dealer and buy from them. It will be a wonderful symbiotic relationship! Take care!



Understanding the power of the internet

Posted by Gilbert Martinez , Aug 12,1999,00:07


TURFers, I have been doing a bit of research these past couple of days and wanted to share an observation. I purchased my first Rolex about 10 years ago, it was a GMT Master II and I paid $1,800 for a LNIB beauty from an unauthorized secondhand dealer. The watch retailed for around $2,800- $2,900 NIB and I was impressed with the strong discount, but never felt like I was made part of the family even though the dealer was incredibly eager to take my hard earned cash. I decided that I was ready for a Sub and after about 2 years with the GMT II I sold it in outstanding condition to this same dealer for around $1,000. I got my Sub LNIB for around $1,800 from him which was still a very good price at the time. When I went to sell the GMT Master II, I called many dealers throughout the USA who advertised that they pay TOP DOLLAR for your used Rolex and found that they wouldn't offer me anywhere near as much money as the UA dealer that I felt I had finally befriended somewhat. I kept the Sub for about 2 years and learned about the Seadweller. I sold the Sub to the UA dealer for about $1,200 again this watch was in fantastic shape and I again called around to all the people who advertised Top Dollar for your Rolex and was very disappointed at the prices I was offered on this watch and eventually sold it to the UA dealer. I picked up the SD through a connection from an authorized dealer in FA for $2,500. I kept this watch for around a year and it turned up missing through UPS, who paid me what the RETAIL VALUE of the watch was at the time, which was $3,200. I used this money to get another SD and as a partial payment for my wife's Sub from my unauthorized source. The UA dealer had both of these watches in stock and I walked out with both.


Right after this purchase I found the internet and Watch sites and this opened up a whole new world of watches, pricing and availability. This was around the time that Rolex started it's Reign of Terror and was getting rid of any dealers who discounted substantially, weren't Rolex material or transhipped their product to UA dealers. 100s of dealers lost the ability to sell Rolex and now the secondary market really started to regulate itself, but no one was regulating the internet. The reason for all the history is to point out the fact that since I have found the internet, I have found that dealers will still try to buy your watches as cheap as possible to sell them for as much money as possibly, this is called business and I respect that. But, I have found that these same dealers are now starting to realize that we consumers do have many different reliable sources for our watches and we are no longer beholden to them and their practices.


The secondary market on Rolexes is stronger than it has ever been. The dealers are trying to get as many watches as they can, BEFORE consumers locate them and enjoy the discounts and wholesale prices that they have been privy to for decades. For years the dealers would only sell their product at any real discount to dealers, you and I were still paying very close to retail unless you just so happened to have family in the business or maybe were lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time. I believe that this is directly related to the internet. People used to have to go to local dealers which can be in very limited supply in any state or county of the USA and rely on this dealer to do the right thing. Or worse yet they had to travel out of country to get any real substantial discount.


The consumers who use the internet nowadays have access to pricing that used to be strictly for dealers and this is something that should not be taken for granted. The internet has been my new watch store, since I have been on the internet I have been able to get better watches at MUCH greater discounts. The other thing that I have been able to avoid is the abuse I feel I was subjected to for years, but had to endure because I wasforced to buy watches from these people due to the fact that there were very few other realistic options. I find that my options today are limitless. I can buy a watch from CA or the UK and these people are actually acting like I am doing them a favor instead of vice-versa.


 Internet buying has it's drawbacks, but if people use their heads and don't expect the bargain of a lifetime, they can do very well on any purchase and they don't have to smooch anyone's rear in the process. One of the reasons I have stopped going to dealers is because they expected exactly that. The dealers who talk down their noses about the internet and buying watches on the internet are most likely the same dealers who are getting beat up by it and/or their business has suffered because of it's presence and growing popularity. I work very hard for my money and I think I have finally found a way to get the most bang for the buck without having to compromise my individuality and most importantly without having to suck up to anybody for an item I am prepared to pay for. People don't have to like me in order to take my money and sell me a watch, I am glad that I can finally play on a leveled playing field and I don't have to do buy from people just because they are the only game in town and where they can dictate all the rules of play without ever considering if it is good or bad business!  Thank god for progress and I can't wait to see what the year 2000 has in stored for the internet and watch world in general. This may sound like rambling because it probably is, but I just wanted to share my feelings about why I personally have found the internet the latest and greatest thing since hot dogs and apple pie! Best regards, Gilbert Martinez



Different Oyster models....

Posted by Olaf , Aug 03,1999,10:57  


You’ll find many specifications of the different current-production models if you carefully study the Rolex catalog which is available free of charge at any Rolex dealer. Also study the price list which is an additional leaflet to the catalog; it contains some information which is not found in the catalog. Unfortunately, neither the catalog not the price list contain any technical information. So here you are:


The no-date Submariner has the movement Cal. 3000 (27 jewels; 28,800 A/h; diameter 28.2 mm; height 5.8 mm). This movement is also found in the Air-King, the Oyster Perpetual, and the Explorer.


The Date Submariner, the Sea-Dweller, and the full-size Yacht-Master all use the Cal. 3135 (31 jewels; 28,800 A/h; diameter 28.2 mm, height 6.0 mm). This movement is also found in the Datejust and the Date.


The GMT-Master II has the movement Cal. 3185 (31 jewels; 28,800 A/h; diameter 28.2 mm; height 6.45 mm). This movement is a derivative of the Cal. 3135; it is also found in the Explorer II (but not in the GMT-Master; this one uses the Cal. 3175).


The Yacht-Master is the only of the so-called “Professional Models” that comes in more than one size. It is available in full size, mid size, and ladies’ size. Only the full-size version has the thick crown; the two smaller versions have slimmer crowns. I don’t know for sure if the full-size Yacht- Master’s thick crown is Triplock but I assume it is. At least it looks so. The Twinlock crown has two gaskets; one in the crown and one inside the stem’s tube. The thicker Triplock crown has the same gaskets plus an additional one on the outside of the stem’s tube; you can see that one if you unscrew the crown. The crowns bear the Rolex coronet logo and below that an indication which kind it is: a bar for Twinlock; three dots for Triplock.


The two Submariner models are water-resistant to 1,000 ft/300 m; the Sea- Dweller is WR to 4,000 ft/1,220 m. All other Rolex Oyster models are WR to 330 ft/100 m. The Sea-Dweller is the thickest model; its case height is 14.8 mm. The other Professional models are 12.8 mm high. All Professional Oyster models have a case diameter of 40 mm, except the plain Explorer which is 36 mm (and of course except the smaller Yacht-Master models). The Sea-Dweller also is the only Rolex Oyster model that has a date display with no cyclops lens over it, and it is the only one with so-called “solid” endpieces. This does not mean that the other models’ endpieces were flimsy; they’re just different. The three diver’s models (i. e. no-date and Date Submariner and Sea- Dweller) have long Fliplock clasps with an  extension link inside, to be used when the watch is worn over a diver’s wetsuit. The other Professional models have short Fliplock clasps, with no extension liks inside. The non-Professional models (i. e. Air-King, Oyster Perpetual, Date, Datejust) have Oysterlock clasps with no flip lock. The President bracelet of the Day-Date and of the golden Lady-Datejust models have hidden clasps.



How to REALLY clean your Rolex!

Posted by John M Polston , Jul 30,1999,05:44


1. Lukewarm water, not too warm.

2. Liquid Dial Soap.

3. Dilute Liquid Dial Soap in a little water, in a small cup.

4. Get Soft bristle toothbrush. If you can find one that has been used and almost worn out which means that the ends of the bristles are frayed and split making them even softer is better.

5. Make sure that crown is screwed in all the way.

6. Wash hands thoroughly to remove grime and oils from hands.

7. With the faucet running holding watch in hand, do not get water too hot, there is no need to, just get it a little warmer than your hand and that should suffice.

8. Wet watch thoroughly.

9. Apply some soap to your free hand's fingers and dilute with a little water rubbing your fingers together, then rub this solution on watch band and all over.

10. Take brush and dip into solution in cup.

11. Lightly brush the crystal (brush won't hurt the sapphire crystal) especially around the cyclops.

12. Kinda push the brush in the cracks around the crown, NOT TOO HARD.

13. Brush the back and then the back (inside of the band) and then the band clasp.

14. Rinse the watch with plenty of water, trying not to let the water change temperatures.

15. Get clean, soft, cotton towel and sit and lightly dry your watch, then blow through the side of the band all the way around to get the suspended water out of it, then wipe it dry.


That's it and enjoy.




Why we like TURF

Posted by John Raba and John L , Jul 30,1999,05:38


I would make these observations about TURF. Of singular importance is the fact that I have never been the subject of rude attacks for posting my opinion on a subject. The civility and decorum here is second to none. This place has provided me valuable information on a watch brand I have grown to respect more each year. Lastly, the people who frequent this place just seem like such helpful and decent folk. Why would I not want to visit TURF. I do not want to disparage any other forum with this post. Frankly, I think there is a place for everyone at the proverbial watch table. I enjoy all of the forums.It is for me though easier to relax and settle in here than anywhere else.

Best regards. John Raba


This forum is really a blast. The evolution and day-to-day trials and tribulations of this gathering place are something to behold. The personalities that we have here span the entire spectrum. It's funny how we start to see know the type of responses of certain posters before we read the text. I've been on Turf since late January and I just want to share some of my observations.


#1- The same old questions over and over- you know which ones I'm talking about... this over that watch, durability of sea-dweller over sub (my personal favorite), what is a good discount- it goes on and on.

#2- Mary R. provides fantastic info on watch repair and refinishing. Adds some needed estrogen at times...

#3- The best forum in terms of UNmoderation. Thanks Kayes and all members who can

police ourselves.

#4- Dave Jamieson - I love this guy, with enough posting he may even get me to get rid of my no-date for a Sea-Dweller ;)

#5- Sub-Baby-where have you gone??  Or is he posting under another name?

#6- John F. Kennedy - Hope that he is feeling better, his postings in my opinion are the


#7- Mike Ferber- my bud who enjoys the 14060 as much as I do.

#8- Olaf- provides so much good information on so many topics.

#9- Watching members come and go, I think that being my six-month anniversary on TURF that is one of the longer posting members. I think there is about 20 who have posted at least that long. Well I'll get off the stage now. Please post some of your favorite observations too. Regards, John L.



Legal Beagles Neutered

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Jul 13,1999,20:36


As Kayes has mentioned, many in the watch foisting business take exception to having their questionable watch-foisting-on-the-general- public tactics aired in public. And since Kayes does not like to receive nasty grams from these very little people huffing and puffing threatening to harm him as well as the general public they hurt every day; I second his plea to one and all take the personal gripes against the selling part of this watch business off this forum. I'd hate to see us lose this forum, not by threat of legal shutdown (impossible), but instead by some big company (who shall remain nameless) offering to buy the site from Kayes for an undisclosed phenomenal sum, and shutting it down as the new owner, just to keep bad things from being said about their good product. So lets keep it clean here.


But welcome to the internet, welcome to free speech. If you, as a disgruntled customer, are treated poorly by a vendor, create your own website! Call it,, or whatever. The stores, or company's, (or even political candidates!) name followed by an adverb describing a type of oral activity is very popular as web addresses on the net. Try a search of a few of the negative connotations associated with big business names, and see what pops up. On your site, name names, post pictures of the store, describe the dubious practices foisted on the general public, tell the world how this individual should not be allowed to walk among honorable people. But be truthful, have the facts to substantiate your allegations. set it up on a free web hosting site. and then you might mention on this forum that folks should visit your website, and post the URL here. No foul on Kayes, all that is mentioned here, is a url to another site not managed by Kayes, for which he cannot be held responsible. and no foul on you either, no matter how many fancy-pants attorney's letters you receive. It is called free speech, it is set as a cornerstone in the American Constitution, and it belongs even more so to the world, through the net.


Just ask Small-Mart, MickeyD's, or any of the current political candidates running for public office in America. All have numerous websites critical of their actions. And all have had their legal challenges to the owners of the critical web sites thrown out, along with their New York lawyers, onto the street in front of the courthouse, at every courthouse in the land. So the solution, the only solution, available to the disparaged party to date has been to buy the website from the owner. If they will sell. The amount of money spent by the political candidates to date (most even before they decided to run) to buy any website with a name related to a variation of their name, has been astounding. Purchasing websites critical of or disparaging to big business by the business itself was cited as a growth industry by Business Week! So free speech lives, and your truthful candor can be rewarded very handsomely on the web, by the very party who has wronged you! So why post your delicious tale of woe on another's web site, and give that owner the opportunity to turn your misfortune into his good fortune? Your truth will set you free, financially, on the web.




Differences between GMT/GMT II

Posted by Olaf , Jul 08,1999,10:14


The GMT-Master has the movement Cal. 3175 inside. Its 12-h hand has a fixed relation to the 24-h hand so both always display the same time—one in the 12-hour format, the other in the 24-hour format. To read a different time zone, one turns the 24-h bezel and reads the 24-h hand against the bezel. The GMT-Master II has the movement Cal. 3185 inside. Its 12-h hand is independently adjustable (in one-hour steps) so the two hour hands can display different time zones. For this adjustability the date quick-set feature had to be sacrificed. To adjust the date at the end of a short month it’s still not necessary to pull the crown into the hand-setting position and thus to hack the movement, losing the precise time. Rather, since the date display is coupled to the 12-hand, one simply adjusts the 12-h hand forwards by one day while the movement keeps running. The adjustability of the 12-h hand and the rotatable bezel of the GMT Master II yield two different methods to display another time zone. By cleverly combining them, one can keep track of three (!) time zones simultaneously which is a functional advantage over the GMT-Master. The GMT-Master’s advantages are the date quick-set feature, the simpler movement, and the fact that it’s a modern classic just like the Datejust or the Submariner; it has been around continuously for 45 years now. In comparison, the GMT Master II is relatively young; it wasn’t introduced until the ’80s (or was it early ’90s? don't know for sure right now). There’s yet another difference: the GMT-Master II is available not only in stainless steel but also in two-tone and in 18K solid gold; the GMT-Master is available in stainless steel only. By the way, the current Explorer II also uses the movement Cal. 3185, just like the GMT-Master II does. However, it has a fixed 24-h bezel so it can, just like the GMT-Master, display two time zones “only,” albeit by another method than the GMT-Master. So functionally, the GMT-Master II combines the features of the GMT-Master (rotatable 24-h bezel) and of the Explorer II (independently adjustable 12-h hand). Olaf




Women wearing Rolexes

Posted by John Ireland , Jul 07,1999,21:01


I have never been a fan of ladies watches. Perhaps those little tiny jewelry pieces now and then on little old ladies is okay but I prefer the look of a full size watch on a woman's wrist. A regular Date or Datejust or even a Sub or GMT or any other make, in full size . They accentuate the beauty of a woman's wrist and at the same time it says that she can wear a full size watch as much as any man can. The full size watch gets a life of it's own from both sexes. A man's wrist offers one feel for the watch while the woman's wrist makes the watch have an even more masculine quality (IMO) but its sort of like the woman tamed it. Anyway, ladies, girls, women, all of you, keep wearing those full size's very sexy. Regards, John.




Discussing the virtues & vices of watch dealers

Posted by kayes , Jul 02,1999,00:50


Dear Turfers, I should have posted this much earlier but somehow it always eluded me. I apologise to any Turfer who might have been misguided through my inaction. Unlike some other watch forums, it has never been TURF's intention to be some kind of consumer watch. This means that discussions on the demerits of any watch dealer are not encouraged at TURF. Of course, you can praise or recommend any watch dealer and no one will seriously object unless you go overboard doing so. However, in discussing the demerits of any watch dealer, other important considerations arise. The first significant consideration would be whether that particular watch dealer has been given a fair chance to answer the complaints or allegations made against them at TURF. However, we cannot be sure this opportunity is available to them because not all watch dealers read TURF and there is no compulsion for them to do so. In such a case, we can say that justice has been denied because they have not been given the opportunity to reply to the complaints. (Please note I am not in any way suggesting that the complaints or allegations may not be true as I believe all Turfers speak honestly but still, the other party is entitled to a defence or a chance to explain or even an opportunity to apologise!) Secondly, certain opinions about watch dealers can be classified as subjective. One person may not be happy with Dealer A while another received excellent treatment. Thirdly, I must remind Turfers that TURF is not a commercial site. It remains very much my hobby site which means that I have to continue to work for a living and yet try find time to run TURF. As such, I hope Turfers will avoid all messages that may have a legal attraction or implication - like a forthcoming slander/libel suit. This will sure make my life a lot easier! If you really feel you have gone through some crummy times, let us all hear it but mention no names. Mention the purported recalcitrant dealer's name via private email to any Turfer who might request for it. Finally, when purchasing any watch, please always remember it is still very much a case of CAVEAT EMPTOR - BUYER BEWARE!


Best wishes to all.


Owner of TURF



Reasons for Modification of Daytona Movement

Posted by Olaf , Jun 20,1999,23:39


Why is the El-Primero-based Rolex caliber 4030 slowed down from 36,000 A/h to 28,800 A/h? Well, generally an oscillator's stability, i. e. its ability to keep its amplitude and frequency constant in the presence of disturbing forces, depends on A) its speed, and B) its moment of inertia which in turn depends on size and mass. The faster, the larger, and the heavier an oscillator is, the less sensitive it is to friction, lateral forces, accelerations, and the like. The 4030's balance wheel is bigger than the original El Primero's, and it has the Microstella fine-adjustment screws that are typical for any modern Rolex movement. These add weight, so the 4030's balance wheel has a significantly higher moment of inertia than the El Primero's. If it ran at 36,000 A/h then the energy dissipation and in particular the forces on the gear train's pivots would exceed the acceptable range. The wear and tear and the need for re-lubricating would be too high. So the slow-down to 28,800 A/h—which still is pretty fast—is needed to compensate for the higher moment of inertia. In terms of potential accuracy, the higher inertia and the slower speed more or less cancel each other out—the 4030 is not less accurate than the El Primero. In terms of pivot strain, the slower speed matters more than the higher balance wheel inertia so there's an advantage left regarding longevity and maintainability. The 4030 is more user-friendly; it needs regular service less often than the El Primero and is yet at least as rugged. The only practical disadvantage is, the 4030's chronograph function can only display 1/8 s rather than 1/10 s. Why the date display on the 4030 is removed is beyond me—I guess it simply is for the cleaner and harmonious appearance of the dial. Olaf




Military Submariner - British & others

Posted by John. F. Kennedy , Jun 09,1999,19:57


The particular military Submariner to which you refer is not representative of all military Submariners. It is one variation of the British military issue Submariner. I do not know that any other nation's government ordered this particular model Submariner. In fact I believe it is unique to the British military. The reason it has full indexing all the way around the bezel is because that is what the British military specified for that particular order. Other things that differ from the other Submariners are the hands and the permanent bars in place of the normal spring pins between the lugs. This requires the use of a one piece nylon band. Such a combination makes it virtually impossible to lose the watch. Spring pin failure is perhaps the greatest single cause of losing ones watch in the field or underwater. The permanent bars make it impossible for this watch to be fitted with an Oyster bracelet (or any two piece band for that matter). James Dowling has warned me that excellent fakes of the British military Submariner are coming out of Italy. They take Real 5513's and convert them to British military configuration. They then get premium prices for them. The model to which you refer is very scarce and in high demand. These fakes are very hard to detect because they are real Rolexes. Many (if not most) of the world's major WESTERN ALLIED powers have issued the Submariner, and sometimes the Sea Dweller. Some of these were Rolex Submariners, and some of these were Tudor Submariners. A few years ago I met military divers from other nations at an affair that was held in New York City, and many were wearing Submariners, some of which had been issued. Let me make it clear however that I do not know how many or which of these nations' navy diving units (qualified army units) still officially issue the Submariner. For a time, the U.S. Navy SEALS were issued Rolex and Tudor Submariners. Over the years they have been issued a variety of dive watches. Now the individual members of the SEAL teams are responsible for supplying their own dive watches. When you see a watch called the official SEAL model, it is called that because the support the Association, not because they are I guess it got too expensive for the Navy to replace all of the watches that got lost on operations. The French ordered a substantial number of Tudor Submariners a few years back. They felt that the ETA movement in the Tudor Submariner, as modified and upgraded by Rolex to Rolex's own standards, was of very high quality, and the Submariner case was essentially the same on both the Rolex and the Tudor. If you like I can send you some scans by e-mail, of certain Submariners or Sea Dwellers which were issued to military forces. Please send you request by e-mail. Most of the testing was done by the British and the Americans. Subsequently many other countries selected the Submariner based on the result of these tests. Some other countries may have conducted their own tests in addition to this however. The tests included drop testing from great heights, and testing to various depths under water. The American tests were very punishing and even included impact tests conducted at various depths. The U.S. Government often tests new equipment to destruction just to see what kind of, and how much punishment representative specimens will take before failure. For an idea of the original British tests go over to James Dowling's website and read his essays on the Submariner. He has some interesting facts about James Bond there too. Best wishes, John Kennedy




Posted by Tom Gref , May 20,1999,11:14  


Overwinding is nothing more than a persistent myth, and is not relevant to manual-wind or autowind watches. Some people say that a watch is overwound when the watch is fully wound but it is not running. This condition is due to the fact that the watch has some fault which prohibits it from running (you can think of not running as the watch is unable to use the power in the mainspring). Such faults would include a watch that is very dirty (where the friction due to dirt in the train uses up all of the mainspring's power, so it doesn't make it to the balance), a broken balance staff, or a host of other problems.


Tom Gref

AWI Certified Master Watchmaker

BS Mechanical Engineering




How TURF led me to my Rolex

Posted by Raul , May 19,1999,01:31


Well Turfers, I have to hand it to you. you've helped me settle into a non-date Submariner. My quest for a new watch began weeks ago. At that time, I was debating the purchase of an IWC mark vii. Later, after reading some Turf postings, a choice developed: I was considering a Rolex instead. For the last several years, I've been on a Patek thing, with the attitude that Patek is the last word in watches. The more I read the Turf postings, the more I re-discovered my love for Rolex, and the more appreciative I became of the Rolex quality and world renown. Several factors influenced me. There are too many to mention here. reading Turf postings posed a serious assault on that Patek mind frame (that's not to say that Rolex is better than a Patek or vice-versa. They're different and those differences should be understood and given their due, just like a car is different from a truck. Then, I began posting Turf stuff of my own, and receiving some very informative responses. One area of inquiry I entertained was the certification or non-certification question which loomed largely in my mind due to my increasing awareness of the Air King and then, the non-date Submariner (thanks to John F. Kennedy). Once I dispensed with the non-certification concern, it's no longer a concern. The non-date Sub became an item of serious consideration. What happened to the Mark VII? It disappeared from the scene. Now the question became which Rolex. the GMT Master was a serious contender, but the non-date Submariner took the cake. It is now strapped to my wrist, as of today. Thank you Turfers. Due to your input, both generally and in response to my own postings, I was able to make a considered and informed decision that I feel very good about, just as I enjoyed the journey getting there.




How TURF led me to my Rolex (1)

Posted by Tangent , May 19,1999,01:29


Hi Everyone, I've been lurking in this forum for some months now and it's now time for me to make my presence known to you in order to say thanks for the good advice and information that is available here. You see for some time now I have been considering treating myself to a good quality watch, but I was always unable to decide upon which make/model. I was looking for something which would be robust and dependable under all conditions, (my hobbies include mountaineering, rock and ice climbing and ski instruction) and also something which had a classic timeless look to it. In my opinion too many manufacturers are changing the style and look of their watches frequently, in order to stimulate demand for the latest fashion. For me this purchase was going to be a one off, last a lifetime. I was always aware of Rolex as a quality product, however before discovering this forum, I was unaware of their reliability nor the long history of their models which are still being sold today. (Thank you John F. Kennedy, and Sir Rex of Vantage) Needless to say this information discouraged me from one or two rival manufacturers. So finally I have purchased my Rolex. I took full advantage of the free advice on offer in this forum. I went to an authorized dealer, where I was treated with respect and dignity despite my penchant for dressing casually. I was able to get a good discount, an extended warrantee (3 years), plus a free service at the end of the warrantee. I am now looking forward to many happy years of rolex ownership, and if a planned expedition to the Himalayas comes off in Spring 00, I'll let you know how my rolex gets on. Oh! did I forget to mention which model I finally purchased? Why a SS Submariner date of course. Thank you all for your words of advice and assistance even though they were not aimed directly at myself. Tangent.



GMT with a suit? Is chivalry comatose?

Posted by Rudy Venturi , May 13,1999,20:09


In the casual dress '90s, a sort of everything goes, mix and match approach has invaded traditional business dress. People wear all kinds of funky stuff with suits: loafers, buttondown shirts, knit ties, and, of course, sports watches. Nothing's against the rules, because there are no rules anymore. Personally, I think this is a shame. Not only does a clunky stainless steel sports watch look somewhat out of place with a fine tailored suit, but the practice of marrying the two displaces the fine dress wristwatches and pocket watches of the past. Your GMT is a fine watch, with or without a suit. Still, I hope you won't overlook the obvious: wearing suits is a fine way to rationalize adding a dress watch to your collection! Cheers, Rudy Venturi




Sorry Rudy, but I don't agree that chivalry is comatose

Posted by John F. Kennedy , May 14,1999,05:47


Chivalry is not comatose, and it is not restricted to those who dress with good taste. Some who have taste and knowledge in dress are NOT gentlemen at all. Yet, I have seen some poorly dressed and penniless men manifest a very high degree of chivalry on occasion, even in New York City!!! ;-) As for good taste in dress. Just because a stainless steel GMT, Submariner, and Explorer are called sport watches rather than dress watches by Rolex, does not mean that they are UNdress watches. Airline transport pilots in many different colored uniforms, have been wearing them since the mid 1950's. So have their suit wearing passengers. I know, because I was such a passenger. TWA was still using, propeller driven four engine Constellations, and Pan American World Airways was getting the Boeing 707. The term sports watch is a Rolex MARKETING designation to indicate that a watch has features that enable it to perform certain specialized tasks beyond what the regular line is capable of. It has NEVER been a classification. Sports watches didn't come out until about 1954, and when they did, they were not just used for SCUBA diving, flying or exploring. They were used with suits and even with tuxedos. People were in the habit of wearing suits and hats in those days (including the ladies, who also wore gloves), especially in San Francisco where I was born more than 61 years ago. I was raised to know good taste in dress. As for knitted ties, They are nothing new. All the boys had to wear yellow ones for our elementary school commencement. Knitted ties however are not recommended for use with a business suit. A silk Rep or some conservative stripe is much more appropriate. You say: Not only does a clunky stainless steel sports watch look somewhat out of place with a fine tailored suit, but the practice of marrying the two displaces the fine dress wristwatches and pocket watches of the past. First of all when GMT's first came out not even the executives at Pan Am thought they were clunky. In fact, they started expropriating PAN AM's company issued GMT's that were intended to be issued to the pilots, first officers and flight engineers, and were soon seen wearing them with their business suits. This happened in New York starting in 1954. Sean Connery, as James Bond, was a dapper dressing gentleman and wore a Submariner with his business and dress suits. He did not wear penny loafers. And his ties were always in good taste. The point is that stainless steel GMTs, Submariners and Explorers (since they first came out) have generally been considered to be in good taste when worn with any suit. When wearing a stainless steel watch though, it is appropriate to wear white metal cuff links (with or without a dark neutral colored opaque stone), and a matching white metal tie clip, and if a ring is worn it is always best to use one that is compatible with the tie clip and cuff links. It is considered tacky to wear gold with white metal unless both metals colors are on each piece of jewelry. White metal watches are more versatile than yellow gold, since they look good with a dark blue or black suit in the afternoon or evening, and equally well with a light wool tweed suit in the morning. Gold looks best when worn with dark grey, blue, or black, but not with light or medium brown. Just because you see a lot of people who don't know how to dress nowadays, does not indicate that nothing's against the rules, because there are no rules anymore. On the contrary, rules of dress and conduct still exist and are observed by many of us, but it is true that may young people today don't know the rules. Try to walk into certain officers clubs in the evening without a dark suit and tie, and correct shoes, or in a dress uniform, and you will be promptly asked to leave. Such is the Admiral Kidd Club in San Diego. The same holds true for Miramar Naval Air Station, a few miles north. Contrast this with San Diego's Marine Corps Recruiting Depot (MCRD, sometimes referred to as McCrudd) Officers Club, that I visited about ten years back, never to return to again. The young officers there, were allowed to wear soiled sweatshirts denim trousers and dirty canvas sneakers. Some of them looked as though they had not even shaved. the carpet looked worn, and the restrooms were filthy and foul smelling. Some people and places observe the rules of etiquette and good taste,and these days, some don't. But, please don't say that chivalry is dead or even comatose. It is not true. There are still gentlemen in this world. Men who will go out of their way to be kind to others and who maintain a high degree of courtesy and etiquette. No offence is intended but, don't you think that the idea of telling a newcomer that the new watch which he just spent so much money on and is just beginning to enjoy, is clunky, and to classify it with all kinds of funky stuff that people wear, is something that should be appraised in the light of the other person's feelings before it is said? Again, definitely no offence is intended, Rudy. While today's posting, Few rules of dress, or of conduct, survive. Chivalry's comatose is contrary to my belief, your opinion is welcome, and I consider you to be a valued fellow member of TURF Best wishes, John Kennedy


Many good points, John. Thanks. (More)

Posted by Rudy Venturi , May 15,1999,13:52


I'll agree that my statement was a bit broad. The only defense I can offer is a case of insomnia induced melancholy! What I meant to say was that I think society as a whole behaves in a less elegant fashion than in the past. There are, of course, still rules, and, as you both state and exemplify, people who conduct themselves with class and dignity. At the risk of sounding like a crusty old fart (I'm 33, for those who are keeping score), my casual observation is that people like you are a decreasingly small percentage of the population. Too bad. Anyway, my main point was that dress watches, both wrist and pocket varieties, are being pushed aside by the modern trend towards casual business dress. I think that's a bit of a shame, but let's face it, whether people wearing suits choose GMTs (or plastic calculator/alarm clock/heart monitor/pager watches!) is not exactly a pressing social issue. I'm a throwback, myself. I wear dress watches with traditional suits, oxfords, and low-key ties and accessories but I enjoy the variety of others' choices very much. Finally, I sure didn't intend to offend Clumsy (who hopefully isn't predisposed to take offense, based on his playfully chosen self-deprecating moniker!) when I referred to the GMT as clunky. It IS clunky, but I mean that descriptively, not offensively. I've had a bunch of big sport watches, including a couple of Subs, a Breitling, and an Omega, and when I accidentally smack one against something, as happens sometimes with a big watch, it makes a reassuringly solid sound: CLUNK. Now, if the term clunk is no longer politically correct, I'll have to find another way of describing this attribute; in the meantime, if I offended Clumsy, I apologize. Okay, then, think I'll put on a big clunky watch and go explore the great outdoors. Thanks for your post, John, it's always a pleasure to hear from you. Best regards, Rudy Venturi




No worries Rudy; I primarily was trying to give confidence to Clumsy

Posted by John F. Kennedy , May 16,1999,07:56


Because of some previous postings about dress watches Vs Sport watches, Clumsy

was beginning to have doubts as to the wisdom of his choice of an everyday watch.This is evident in his statement of regret that since paying for the GMT II, he is unable to purchase something else (which presumably, more knowledgeable members of TURF would deem to be more appropriate to wear with a suit). I then saw your posting, which I believed would tend to confirm those postings and definitely make him feel that the GMT is not appropriate for office or dress wear, and thus make him regret his purchase. One can hear all kinds of opinions on a forum. Since there was no informed opinion posted to counter these, I decided to post under your reply. The idea I wanted to impart to Clumsy and others who might have the same question in mind, is that a GMT or a Submariner can be worn while surfing, mountain climbing, ballooning, sky diving, or flying, as well as at the office in a suit, or at a formal affair in a tuxedo, and that the majority of people see these watches worn in dress clothing (including those knowledgeable in traditional dress clothing usage) would consider the use to be correct and in good taste. If that was Rudy's or other people's worry, they should now feel confident, and not be considering trading in their GMT's or Submariners for a President (or some such). After all, a President would not be appropriate while scaling the face of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park, or for surfing the big rollers. Besides, when a person pays for a new watch, they take a big loss if they trade it in, and the over all experience will then be one of regret instead of one of joy. With this posting, I just want to assure you that my reply was not personally targeting you, but rather, was intended to reassure Clumsy and possibly others that his choice of a watch is good, and that it is correct to wear it for all occasions. One of the nice things about a ROLEX sport watch (which may not be true of some others) is that they ARE so versatile and can be worn everywhere at any time. This is not always the case with sport watches of other manufacture, which may be of garish color or exaggerated styling and ornamentation. I enjoy your postings. Best wishes, John Kennedy



Rolex:The World's Best Wristwatch? Review of 16519 white gold Daytona

Posted by Sir Rex of Vantage , May 18,1999,06:54


The IL Destriero Scafusia, by IWC is my ultimate timepiece. Known as The War Horse of Schaffhausen, this wristwatch sells for $370,000 in 22K Rose Gold, and $390,000 in Platinum. I am not likely to ever own one. The War Horse has 21 functions, including perpetual calendar, Chrono functions, Tourbillon, and minute repeater. This watch contains a 72 Jewels, and 750 parts.


My own watch is a Rolex 16519 Daytona. This is an 18K White Gold Cosmograph on a Midnight Blue Croc strap. Currently, as of May 1999, this timepiece retails for $14,250, and represents Rolex's most complicated movement in production at this time. Just because I own this watch and love it, doesn't mean I cannot recognize that my Rolex, fine timepiece though it may be, is not in the same league with The IL Destriero Scafusia, or any timepiece with a Tourbillon movement. The complications inherent in a Minute Repeater are also way beyond the simple durability and overall quality of any current production Rolex. To anyone out there who thinks a Rolex is the finest timepiece made, there is no insult meant by my post. I love my Rolex! But there is much to learn about the truly brilliant timepieces of the world.


I speak of watches which solely because of the considerable complications of their movements have a minimum purchase price of about $65,000. Those familiar with the Jaeger-LeCoultre 101, recognize this timepiece as containing the worlds smallest mechanical movement, it was created by JLC in 1929, and still in production today. The movement itself is not much larger than the head of a safety match, yet it contains 98 parts. Price range for this timepiece is $62,900 to $239,500. I could sit here and write another 100 pages listing the greatest timepieces ever constructed. Perhaps some of the Rolex Triple-date Chronographs would be included somewhere in my lengthy manuscript. And no treatise on rare and wonderful wristwatches would be complete without the inclusion of Rolex's Split-second Chronograph.


In terms of current production timepieces Rolex is not among the makers of the world's finest timepieces. This is really not even a matter for discussion, this is a matter of education. If anyone really has a desire to learn about the best watches, there is a wealth of information available to watch enthusiasts. Rolex may in fact be the best timepiece in one or possibly two categories. Rolex is the king of durability, that is what this timepiece is designed for. That is why we love this watch. It rarely will let you down. And if and when it needs service, repair costs are quite reasonable considering the price and quality of this timepiece. And when it comes to resale value, who could argue with Rolex's track record. I don't believe I have ever lost money on any of the ten or eleven Rolexes I have previously owned and sold. For the entire Rolex line, top to bottom, I believe Rolex to have perhaps the best overall resale value of any watch brand.


The most complicated watch movement ever created, is the celebrated Patek Phillipe Calibre 89. It is a pocket watch, but should not go without mention. This timepiece has two dials and 33 complications and comprises 1,728 pieces, 24 hands, and eight discs. Begun in 1980, the Calibre 89 wasn't completed until nine years later, in time for Patek Philippe's 150th anniversary. Unbelievably, it weighs a hefty 2.4 pounds. Try toting this around in your vest pocket! To say a Rolex is just flat out the best timepiece made today, says someone needs to educate themselves further to understand the upper realms of complicated timepieces. If you are not familiar with a Tourbillon movement, invented by Abraham-Louis Breguet in about 1795 (the exact date of this invention is not known), then this would be a good place to start your advanced education. Please understand, I mean no insult to anyone. I have been studying the art of watchmaking for over 25 years. For so many of us a Rolex is an affordable dream, and is the finest wristwatch we will ever own. But that doesn't make it the best or most complicated wristwatch made. I am learning more every day about Rolex and other timepieces, because I wish to learn. There are many watch enthusiasts, particularly the Master Watchmakers, that are far more knowledgeable than I. We all have a lot to learn, let us endeavor to share our knowledge with one another.


Review of the Rolex 16519 White Gold Daytona

Posted by Sir Rex of Vantage , May 10,1999,21:51

Accuracy test on the Rolex 16519


The White Gold Daytona.On March 1st, 1999, I took delivery of a brand new Rolex 16519 ~ A White Gold Daytona on a Midnight Blue Croc Strap. The watch was ordered from Rolex USA of New York, and its arrival took six weeks from the date of order. The serial number is U984XXX, and although this timepiece was manufactured during the first quarter of 1999, the hands and markers are coated with Tritium, rather than Lumnova.


The watch was set, and synchronized with the Atomic Clock on March 1st. Over the next 25 days the watch was worn daily, and its accuracy was measured frequently against the Atomic Clock. The chrono functions were allowed to operate approximately 4 to 6 hours per day. The Daytona never lost any time, but consistently gained time in a very precise manner. The Rolex 16519 gained a total of 4 seconds over the entire test period of 25 days. This factors out to 0.16 seconds per day gained. This makes the Rolex 16519 the most accurate mechanical timepiece I have ever owned or tested. Many Rolex owners have additionally reported similar findings while performing their own accuracy tests on various Rolex models. So Rolex owners and enthusiasts alike, take heart! Your beloved Rolex, and time-honoured friend, is more than just a rugged, reliable, and durable timekeeper. This accuracy test in which the Rolex Daytona performed so magnificently, exemplifies the brilliant timekeeping capabilities inherent in the design and production of this entirely hand-finished movement. An accuracy figure of 0.16 seconds per day gained, is truly remarkable for a mechanical timepiece. Certainly, considering these results, Rolex must be considered as one of the best mechanical timepieces manufactured today.



Which is better? 3135 or 3000?

Posted by 0laf , May 05,1999,04:32


Well, the overcoiled Breguet-type hairspring generally is considered superior to the flat hairspring with no overcoil. Back in those days when hairsprings were made from plain blued steel, an overcoiled spring, as well as a screwed bi-metallic balance wheel, was mandatory for any decent watch. The bi-metallic design of the balance compensated for most of the steel hairspring's temperature errors. Since the advent of modern temperature-compensating materials (Glucydur for the balance wheels, Nivarox for the hairsprings, and Nivaflex for the mainsprings), the need for complex mechanical compensation which introduced a whole bunch of problems of their own, has disappeared... to the watchmaker's relief. That's why most mechanical watches, even those which cost a multiple of any Rolex, nowadays have smooth balance wheels with no screws and self-compensating flat hairsprings with no overcoil. They're still more accurate than old day's watches ever were. The only current-production movements I'm aware of that still use overcoiled hairsprings are the Rolex Cal. 3135/3155/3175/3185 line, and all the movements by A. Lange & Söhne. The Lange movements are even doubly overcoiled, i. e. there are overcoils at the outer AND at the inner end of the springs—the 31x5 hairsprings are overcoiled at the outer end only. Anyway, today an overcoiled spring is more of a sign of the manufacturer's commitment to tradition and craftsmanship rather than a technical necessity. In terms of accuracy and reliability, the Cal. 3000 with flat self-compensating hairspring is not inferior to the Cal. 3135. Olaf



Buying over the net

Posted by John F. Kennedy , May 18,1999,06:46


One of the first things any prospective customer should do in the U.S. before making a large purchase at a business which is new to them should be to check with the local office of the Better Business Bureau of the the city where they are located. I don't know why more people do not take advantage of this valuable resource. Better Business Bureau offices keep records of complaints they have received concerning businesses in their areas. To belong to the Better Business Bureau, a business must maintain a high degree of ethical behavior. Jewel Avenue has been in business for over 30 years. They are on the honor roll of the Better Business bureau and are long time members of that organization of self policing merchants. If you click on their banner above, you will come to a page that has the following words: We are members of the Better Business Bureau. Call (415) 243-9999 for their report, and use our phone number as a reference: (415) 252-5300. As you see, Jewel Avenue tries to make it as convenient as possible for new customers to check on their reputation. Only an honest business that cares about customer satisfaction would go to such trouble. As far a selection goes, their stock is in constant flux. As they sell some items, they get in others. Everyone's opinion about selection is highly subjective however so I suggest that you click on their banner at the top of the TURF page, go directly to their site, and come to your own decision about their present selection of Rolexes, other watches, or jewelry. Most of their business is wholesale to the trade. As for purchasing over the net, they are just as anxious to please their long distance customers as they are their local ones.


I personally prefer a good look at watches before I purchase because I am a collector and some collectors tend to be very fussy nit-pickers. What one person might consider mint or excellent a collector might see a little differently. For that reason, I have purchased most my watches in person. It is much easier for me to inspect a watch on site than to have it sent to me and then possibly have the inconvenience of re-packaging and reshipping several watches until I get the one that is just perfect for my collection. An ordinary consumer and some collectors however are not usually so difficult. and will be less finicky. Any time you purchase a preowned watch over the internet, it makes sense to ask for and receive a written agreement for a generous inspection period. You will not only want see it yourself, but you will want your watchmaker to have a look too. Make sure that the inspection period that you negotiate allows enough time for such an inspection and more than adequate time for a return should that become necessary. Just remember though, that you will ordinarily be responsible for shipping and insurance with any watch you are returning. Getting one or more very good scans by e-mail, or a series of close up photos sent to you by regular mail in advance can often save unnecessary shipping costs, thus allowing you to inspect more possible purchases without having anything actually shipped until you think you are fully satisfied.


When you are serious about ordering, ask lots of questions and make sure the dealer understands what you consider most important about the condition of the watch. If you want only original parts as opposed to custom bezels and dials, or after market parts, make sure your dealer understands that and guarantees it to you in writing if it is not already in his advertising. If you don't order a particular watch for which you have received photos, then it is always courteous for you to return the photos to the dealer so that they may be sent them to other prospective customers. This also makes a good impression on the dealer. They appreciate considerate customers and will be more likely to go out of their way to accommodate you when you have special requests in the future. If, and when you make a purchase, please let me know how you like it. Also, good businessmen like to get feed back on the level of customer satisfaction in order to make adjustments that will increase future customer confidence. Therefore, you might want to send a polite post card or e-mail back to the dealer with that information, and any helpful suggestions that potentially improve his service, the way he ships, or the way in which he describes a watch. Happy shopping and Best wishes, John Kennedy






Regrets? I've had a few (or Subs & Sea- Dwellers)

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , May 07,1999,23:15


But not many, (thanks Mr. Sinatra)


In the plus column:

1. As close to waterproof as it gets.

2. As indestructible as it gets.

3. As close to maintenance free as you can get, short of strapping a grandfather's clock on your wrist (when is the last time you had one of those cleaned?)

4. As accurate as mechs get.

5. Looks good.

6. Rotating bezel really is more useful than a chronograph.

7. Very much in proportion on a large wrist.

8. Sapphire crystal never scratches (but can chip at edge).

9. As securely fastened to your wrist as it gets.

10. Has five pointed crown on dial.

11. The bracelet disappears on your wrist, comfort wise.

12. No personal property tax on what is a luxury item, yet.

13. Luminova wins hands down in legibility after dark.

14. The SeaDweller is a bargain with its additional features.

15. The no-date Submariner is potentially the most accurate sub (same movement, no date change taking energy from the movement.)


The drawbacks:

1. The Gold Submariner is incredibly overpriced in relation to true Rolex complicatewatches, the GMT II, Daytona and President.

2. The Gold Sub is incredibly overpriced with respect to gold content vs. a Yachtmaster. (anodized aluminum bezel vice solid gold Yachtmaster bezel).

3. Mechs cost more than Quartz to service.

4. $3000 making 36% annual return in the stock market nets you over $1000 no-sweat profit every year. $3000 invested in a watch, isn't $3000 anymore.

5. Owning one means you may spend a lot of time writing out things like this on a watch forum :)



Where to find Rolex in Singapore (revised)

Posted by WL Leong  May 07,1999,22:53


Hi All, When Master Kayes speaks, I shall comply. Below is a list of Rolex-related dealers I deal with. Not exhaustive, and they represent my opinion/experience. If anyone has experiences (good or bad), do add your comments/experiences to the list. I am NOT the authority on Singapore dealers, nor do I want to be. Helpfulness is what I am aiming at. If I am wrong, pls correct for the benefit of others. How about others doing one for their hometown? I would like to know about Malaysia (for obvious reasons), Los Angeles, Australia (any city), New York, San Francisco and London. Cheers. Suggested Shopping Route I tried various ways of presenting the list. But decided I will do it this way, with a suggested shopping route. So imagine you are in Singapore .... Hail a cab (relatively cheap here), and ask the driver to drop you off at Scotts Shopping Centre to start. Walk 5 mins to Lucky Plaza and spent the next 2 hrs there going through all 5 floors of watch dealers. When done, walk next door to Rolex Singapore. Mecca and favourite haunt for the yuppies here. Walk across to Promenade and Paragon. After that, walk across Orchard Road to Takashimaya and lunch. Take the MRT (subway) to Centrepoint. Then a cab/bus to Suntec City. Then cab it over to Peninsular before catching another cab to People's Park. When you are done at People's Park, sample the local cuisine for tea break. Take 20 mins to walk over to Clarke Quay for that last watch shop, then kick back with that brewski (there is a micro brewery across from Clarke Quay) before dinner. Voila - a day watch shopping in Singapore, Marmaduke-style. Note that on the list I did not list the addresses because most shops are located in shopping centres. So it is just a matter of telling the cab driver where you want to go. When you get there, most shopping centres have a directory, so just look it up. If anyone needs an address, just email me. The general operating hours of new watch dealers here is 10:30 am to 7:30 pm. 2nd hand dealers operate from 12:00 noon to 7:00 pm. All 2nd hand shops are closed on Sunday. Big daddy Rolex is closed on Sat and Sun. All accept cash or credit card. Be sure to bargain for that 2% to 3% for cash payment. If you are traveling, make sure they give you that GST refund form to claim back another 3% local tax. I will leave out my comments on discount rates, as I do NOT want to get these dealers into TROUBLE. Just work on the common discount structure mentioned so often on TURF. Happy shopping!!! Hope this is useful.




How to get rich collecting watches.

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Apr 23,1999,04:33


Don't buy any. Seriously, a recent posting asked the eternal question, should I buy a watch as an investment? Many will post the quick response, “Hell no!” but to expand that answer, here is the short course on “collectibles.” The market for collectibles of all types took off in the 70’s, as people earned more disposable income and gained more leisure time to acquire. One of the thousands of consumer goods that people started collecting was watches. The mechanical watch industry was rescued by and flourishes today because of this collective madness. Never in the history of mankind have there been so many items purchased by so many people simply for the speculation that the price will skyrocket as a “collectible” someday. So it’s a safe bet that for every mechanical watch made since the 70’s, perfect specimens are resting in collector/speculator safe deposit boxes, unworn, unwanted, yet jealously guarded in hopes someone will find them ultimately desirable (and pay the price) years hence. But it’s a suckers bet, given the number of collectors/speculators, and the sheer volume of watches produced today, that any modern watch will be “rare” (read very expensive) in thirty years time. I’d venture that perhaps 10% of the entire production of modern wristwatches will still be available, like new in box, in perpetuity. (And if it was billed as a limited edition watch from the start, 99.91% will be still be available in unopened boxes with the factory seals still intact!) Given the working capital tied up in purchase and storage, and the astronomical returns available from the stock market that could have been made with that capital over the past twenty years, the purchase of a watch with any expectation, other than the joy from wearing it, is guaranteed a return of disappointment.


Another viewpoint...

Posted by Rudy Venturi , Apr 24,1999,13:49


Rolecks is right -- watches are a lousy investment vehicle, as measured from a strictly financial perspective. However, if a person carefully purchases the right timepieces, he or she can hold these for some period of time and sell them for a modest profit. Can this profit compete with the performance of stocks like CMGI and AOL (or, for that matter,even the S&P) over the past several years? Well, no. On the other hand, I've owned lots of stock, and none of it ever really turned me on. I've never stapled a certificate to my boxers so I could wear it to bed. I don't ponder my portfolio in the morning, wondering which securities might flatter a blue suit and I'm pretty sure I've never held a savings bond up to my ear, just to hear it tick. In that sense, watches are kind of like classic cars -- a humble investment financially, but a rewarding one emotionally. Man, the lengths I'll go to just to justify my hobbies... Cheers, Rudy



My profit is pleasure...

Posted by John Ireland , Apr 23,1999,11:55


First, watches are easier to hide from wife than cars were. Second, I found myself gravitating to Rolex because I found them beautiful. Third, this is the first hobby I've had where I haven't lost money. I'm not making money but I'm having fun trading, buying, selling and breaking even. In the short year or so I've been doing this I've been taught by the market that I am not a collector. By that I mean, I traded into a watch that seems so rare, I can't wear it. There just aren't many of them, so I letting it go to someplace that will insure it's future survival. That'll make me happy. That's my profit. My favorite watch is an ordinary one. Another one will be a surprise gift to my brother on his birthday and nothing will make me feel richer than that. Regards to all.




Posted by Francis Phua , Apr 23,1999,11:34


Vintage or wristwatch collection is a hobby. If anyone want to invest, he better put his money in the stock and shares market or trade with currency or speculate in property markets.There are too many limited edition watch in the market such as Frank Muller and Daniel Roth who advertise enormously in Singapore. However, as a watch collector, I have never heard any one make money investing in these limited edition watches. For example, one collector bought a Frank Muller chrono for SGD $30000 but can only sell them now for a mere $12000. So much for investment. In addition, there are no limits in production capacity. Any price increase is due to demand and supply theory. With the capacity to produce mass quantities, how can one expect to have huge investment returns by investing in watches? Watch collection is a hobby. If the intention is to keep something you like and if it gives you pleasure when wearing them, then it is a good investment.But this investment is not monetary but emotionally you are rich! Cheers, Francis Phua, Singapore



Agreed , but...

Posted by John Quinn , Apr 23,1999,10:52


People make many different kinds of investment. An investment in other people (emotional) investment), their careers (psychological investments) and their families (investments in Joy). I think the term 'investment' and 'collection' are not the same thing. An investment is a risk or purchase taken on the basis of future value and I absolutely agree that to place an investment in a watch or watches over the financial markets is not a good move. The only watch-house I've seen that made their product owners wealthier by purchasing their goods is Patek. How long will that last and was the initial investment by the owner a stroke of luck given that the house itself was taken apart during the 70's.I think so. I have an uncle who was born and reared as a child in Mayo in the west of Ireland, at that time a colony of England and dirt poor. He emigrated to California where he became an accountant and eventually a financial director of a supermarket chain. He did well with his investments and owns a home in the USA , Ireland and Spain. He continues to this day to add to his collection of thousands of limited edition plates. I'm not much of a collector , life's for enjoying not acquiring and was puzzled why someone would collect plates although I understood some of them are valuable. I asked him recently why he collected them and he said : They remind of the time when I was a boy and your grandmother would take out the 'good plates' for our Sunday meal and I've been fascinated with ever since. I was then stunned when he added : It's like you collecting Rolexes after you inherited your dads'. Up until then I never thought of my watches as a collection, certainly not as an investment. Now I am beginning to think that not only do I have a collection but I also have an investment , an investment in the past for my grandnephews. I don't really care what their actual market value is , I know my fathers watch for instance simply cannot be bought. Just a few thoughts, Regards, John.



What is the meaning of life?

Posted by Mike Strickland , Apr 23,1999,09:02


When you have everything that you want, more is just an affliction. I like fine things, watches, guns, pens, cameras, cars. I have some money in the market and I trade a little, but I must have satisfying work to be happy. When I see the baseball card showcase on QVC, beanie baby auctions and so forth I am reminded that man is indeed a herd animal. The story of the Dutch tulip inflation of a few hundred years ago comes to mind. I collect things because they have some value to me personally, and I never buy things new to collect. Some people seem to have a gene that makes them vulnerable to the Carleton Sheets Syndrome which says that you can buy a property for no money down, get money at closing, and have instant equity. What hogwash. The value of a thing is either what it last sold for or what a willing and able buyer will pay today. If you owe more than what it sold for last you have negative equity. This really applies to Rolex watches, you must wait several years before the used market catches up with the price you paid for a new one. I try to find things at a fraction of their market value and I have made a hobby of looking in pawn shops and flea markets and I have done well. I manage to find something interesting at a fraction of its value about three or four times per year. A very good rule of thumb when buying vintage watches, never pay more than half of what the Shugart says that it it worth. You won't buy often but you will make money when you do. Now if you want something to use that is another matter altogether, the depreciation is charged to utility, you must pay to live. I recently bought a 1996 Cadillac over a Mercedes. I paid bottom dollar. Beside the fact that the Caddy will outrun almost everything on the road, and is a real joy to drive, I am going to completely use it up in three years @ 50K miles per year. The Mercedes would not be completely used up, but is more expensive to maintain and not as comfortable. Rolex investment RP, That is my view on the subject, why buy a watch if your not going to wear it, they were not made to be investment vehicles. I put ALL my extra money in the market, and I have done very well over the years. I seriously don’t think I would have made as much using Rolex watches as a investment. Anyhow I like to wear them too much to leave them in my vault. Best regards, S.P. Ferraro




Conversation with Rolex General Director Mr. Jaques Duchene

Posted by Nick Garcia Creighton , Apr 25,1999,16:12


Dear all, This is the first time you see my name because this is my first Post, but I am very familiar with all your names as I have been reading Turf on a daily basis for the last five months. I have emailed some of you to answer some of the questions that were posted in a private way. For the last 15 years I have been collecting watches (mainly Rolex) and consider myself very lucky. After the years I have put together a very decent Rolex vintage Collection and with effort because I am not a rich man. I am a school teacher I think it would be selfish and unfair of me not to share with you the episode that happened to me today. I am like, most of you, a wristwatch collector and a Rolex lover. You probably didn't know that this week we have had the Spanish Open of golf with many of the big players taking part in it, recent Augusta Masters winner Chema Olazabal, Good Old Seve, Nick Faldo... and many others. This tournament is played every year in the golf course where my family and myself have been members for three generations. The main sponsor of the event was the french car company Peugeot, but Rolex was an important cosponsor. Mr... Jaques Duchene, Rolex General Director, was here amongst other things to present the winner with a two-tone. The winner also got a juicy 300,000 $ check from the main sponsor, Peugeot. Just as I did last year when the award ceremony was over I went straight to talk to Mr... Duchene. He is an incredibly nice gentleman of about 60 years of age, very kind, humble and non stuck up at all, a real classy fellow. He dedicated more than one hour of his time to talk to me. He wears a fairly worn two-tone plastic Datejust on a jubilee bracelet with black dial, same watch as he was wearing last year when I talked to him. Today, I was wearing on one wrist a sapphire ss Daytona and on the other a vintage ss Rolex Oyster Chronograph ref. 6238 that I was going to show to someone. We spoke about many things. The new Daytona is a reality but it will still be two years before it sees the light. It will have no date. Something that I liked very much about him, and will tell you what kind of person he is, was the fact that when he saw my watches he acted as a father who tells a kid who doesn't know what he has that something is very valuable. He was telling me things like do you know watch you have? and take good care of them and things like this. I am telling you the guy was a class 1. He told me he knows our beloved James Dowling. Then I went on to tell him how I admire the way Rolex is run as a company. He told me that they concentrate in simple rugged watches that can last a lifetime and more and that one can wear for all occasions and at all times. He said they don't want or need to do other than what they are doing. Rolex is Rolex and Patek is Patek each one has their unique product price and market. Well fellows, I must go to late Sunday Mass to thank the Lord for days like today and all that he has given me in live, an awesome American wife (from Illinois) two amazing children and a lot more. With kindest Regards and Love for Rolex Nick Garcia Creighton PS.I am not American, sorry for my English




Anti-Magnetic Watches

Posted by 0laf, Apr 20,1999,11:58


Yes, there are watches that have a soft-iron inner case for special antimagnetic protection. The most well-known are the AP Royal Oak, the IWC Mark XII, the IWC Ingenieur, and a Sinn whose model number I forgot (maybe Model 144?). Back in the 50s or early 60s, Rolex also produced a highly anti-magnetic watch, the Rolex Milgauss. It sold poorly so it was discontinued soon. Watches with no soft-iron inner case are more sensitive to strong magnetic fields, yes. This does not mean, however, that they were completely unprotected. The materials that the balance wheel, the hairspring and most gears consist of are non-magnetic (or at least low magnetic). It takes a really strong field to disturb a watch, particularly when its case is made of steel. As an anti-magnetic shield, steel is almost as good as soft iron, another reason to dislike golden sports watches ;-). By the way, does anybody know which material Rolex dials are made of? Anyway, the amount your watch has accelerated (from +5 s/month to +1 min/month) is well within the usual variation that occurs during the first months of a watch's life. One minute per month is +2 s/day which still is very good performance. You may start to worry about magnetization when your watch suddenly jumps to +30 s/day or more. Yes, the magnets inside loudspeakers can be dangerous but only if the watch virtually touches them. At a distance of just a few inches the magnetic field is too weak already to hurt a watch. The same is true for TV sets, monitors, and any kind of CRTs as well as for theft protection devices at the entrances of department stores. Passing them is okay but avoid touching them. Yes, in order to de-magnetize a watch the case back must be opened. Olaf





Hand Movement

Posted by Tom Gref, Apr 19,1999,09:01


In my opinion this debate is really pointless. The way to tell a real Rolex from a fake is by having some knowledge, experience, and a feel for quality. When I evaluate a watch to tell if it's real or not, I wouldn't even consider which way the hands turn. As I recall, depending on the vintage of the watch, the hands will turn in either direction. On my 1965 Rolex, the hands turn opposite of the direction I turn the crown. This is also the case on the older watches, including  Bubblebacks. I am almost positive that in all of the quick-set era models, the crown and hands should turn in the same direction (although I don't fix many of these modern pieces). As I have said in a previous post, the only thing that affects this relationship is the number of intermediate set wheels used. An odd number and the hand/crown directions are opposite, even number and they turn in the same direction. The use of an even or odd number of set wheels is hardly a way to determine if a watch is genuine or not. I don't think it is relevant or decisive.


Tom Gref

AWI Certified Master Watchmaker

BS Mechanical Engineering




A Jewel is an anti-friction device

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease , Apr 19,1999,08:43


Jewels are used as anti-friction bearings to reduce metal to metal contact. They tend to improve the accuracy of the watch, and greatly extend its useful life. Instead of the metal wearing, the jewel wears, but is more easily replaced. They are now almost exclusively synthetic (man-made) jewels. A 17 jewel manual watch is considered to be fully jeweled, i.e. the most important wear parts are jeweled, the watch jewels on the Rolex going over that amount tend to be for the auto-winding mechanism. A chronograph movement may have even more jewels, but the Lemania 1873 movement discussed in the Heuer thread below, perhaps one of the finest chronograph movements on the market (ala Speedmaster Pro), has only 18 jewels! The finest, the Daytona's Zenith movement, has 31, like most other Rolexes, as it also has a self-winding movement. As the thread below notes, it is not how many jewels are used, but how the movement is constructed that is most important. Many one jeweled movements give years of trouble free service. Many mulitple-jeweled movements are on a first name basis with the watch repairman, but not Rolex of course! And Rolexes most accurate watch, the Oysterquartz, has only 11 jewels! Bottom line, jewels are used where design computers have determined they are needed in any fine Swiss watch, and are of little concern as far as numbers used, to the buyer.





Some questions about the James Bond Sub

Posted by David, Apr 19,1999,08:40


Greetings TURFers! I stumbled upon this forum a few weeks back and was quite impressed with what I found. The postings here seem to be of a much higher quality than on other forums I have visited. Keep up the good work! I would also like to congratulate Kayes on the new site, and add my voice to those who favor the bigger, bolder look.


Now for the substance... I currently own a new Tudor Submariner, and would like to purchase a vintage Rolex Submariner some time in the not-so-distant future. I am no expert in Rolexology, and I really do not know all that much about vintage timepieces. However, I attend antique shows and exhibits on occasion and frequently stumble across someone selling a classic Rolex Sub. When I do, I am always taken by this watch. I actually prefer the shape of the crystal and the prominent hour markers of these older models over the newer Subs. A few years ago, I found one of these vintage models without any protection for the crown. It is my understanding that one of the models without this protection is known as the James Bond Submariner. I am a bit a Bond fan, so the chance to merge these two interests is something I simply cannot let pass.


Consequently, I would like to know more about this model. I have been able to glean some information from this forum (Thanks to John F. Kennedy for his informative posts!) and various other websites. It is my understanding that Dowling & Hess' reference book on Rolex watches states that Rolex Reference No. 6538 or 5508 is known as the James Bond Submariner (Since I don't have a copy of the book, I cannot verify the accuracy of this statement myself). Assuming this statement is correct, an article by James Dowling on his Rolex Webpage (Submariners.........Now & Then) gives 1958 as the manufacturing date for both of these models, and identifies their calibres as 1030 (for 6538) and 1530 (for 5508), respectively. Unfortunately, I don't really know enough about watches do understand the implications of these calibres. Another website I stumbled across discussed model 6538 in some detail. According to this site, model 6538 replaced model 6204, and it resembled the older model (guaranteed to 600 feet, hemispherical crystal, parallel hands, and five-minute markers) with the exception that it was rated at 660 feet.


After two years Rolex updated this model and the bezel now had markings for the first 15 minutes, a triplock crown, a more sturdy case, a red triangle above the 12 marking, and the words officially certified chronometer were added under the word submariner because of the new 1030 movement. This information doesn't completely square with Mr. Dowling's article mentioned above, and what confuses me even further is that this same site indicated that the James Bond Submariner, so named because Sean Connery wore it in Dr. No., was produced in the 1950s, and had a screwed winding mechanism, eggshell coloured luminescent indexes, but was guaranteed waterproof to only 325 feet! Another Dowling article (Mr Fleming, Commander Bond and their toys) specifically discusses the James Bond Sub. According to Mr. Dowling, almost everyone other than Italian collectors considers only the shoulderless Subs with the Brevette crown to be the true James Bond models. I understand this to mean that Mr. Dowling is saying that the true James Bond Sub is simply the 6538 with the changes introduced in 1959. In that year, Rolex introduced the new heavier case featuring a new larger crown (8 mm), which became famous as the Triplock but possessed the word Brevette (meaning patented) instead of the three dots that have become the Triplock signature. The watch was rated at 660 feet. Dowling notes that the strangest thing about this watch was that it still carried model number 6538, which means that Rolex parts catalogues from that date list the watches as 6538 for the first model and 6538A for the later one. It is all a little confusing.


When collectors speak of the James Bond Sub, what model numbers/dates of manufacture are they specifically referring to? Are they are referring to the 1958 models and/or numbers? What about the updated model 6538, which would seem to be preferable because of the officially certified chronometer movement? Is this updated model the same one Mr. Dowling refers to as the James Bond Submariner, namely model 6538A. If so, what is the status of model 5508? Once I have the correct model numbers, how exactly would I recognize the James Bond Sub? It is my understanding that it has a pregnant plastic crystal, no case shoulders/crown guards, no date, and Benz hands like the current Submariner models. Is this true? What other distinguishing characteristics are there? Is there anything you can tell me that will assist me to easily identify the movement as being Rolex? Please remember that I am not terribly knowledgeable in this area, so any hints that you can provide to help me distinguish this Sub would be most helpful. I would also like to know what price I can expect to pay for a James Bond Sub. If there are any fellow Canadians reading this, I would really like to know what I can expect to pay in Canada. Furthermore, any recommendations regarding reputable places to purchase a used Rolex in Ottawa or Toronto (Ontario) would be greatly appreciated. If anyone who knows details about the James Bond Submariner would like to respond, please feel free to post and/or e-mail me at . Thanks in advance for clarifying things and filling in these blanks. I do apologize for the length of this post, but I felt it best to lay all my questions and concerns out at once. Sincerely, David, Rolex & TURFer Newbie




Small town boy goes to the city...

Posted by Stephan, Apr 19,1999,08:38


Well, most of you all know I live in beautiful Jackson Hole Wyoming, population 5,500 people. My wife and I and our two children visited Los Angeles for the first time this past week for a church conference, actually in Pasadena. We had a great time and truly feel that southern California get a bum rap. We went all over LA. We though that it was beautiful (for a city) and everybody, of all races and types, were especially polite and friendly. Now for the watch stuff-....... We were able to visit a bunch of really nice jewelry stores. Jackson has some very exclusive boutiques, but not a lot of quantity. It was a blast to see some other brands up close and get their feel. I saw a Patek for the first time. WOW was it beautiful. It was a 3919 looking watch with a black strap and the watch itself was 18k yellow gold. I could just tell buy looking at it that it is a superior finished watch, it seemed to be a true work of art. I was able to see a Speedmaster up close. That is one thick watch! Maybe not any thicker that my GMT-Master, but it looked huge and very cool. I saw lots of Breitlings around, they were in every store I went to. Lots of Cartier dealers (my wife likes these). What is Concord all about? Some guy in the Bailey, Banks and Biddle had a Datejust looking Concord on? It just struck me as strange. On Colorado Blvd. in Pasadena, there is an Antique watch dealer with a great selection of old watches. I am looking for a older dress watch that I can wear sometimes, and they had a great selection of watches in the $175-500 range. Last and certainly not least are the Rolexes. We had a great time looking at the Rolexes. I most likely will be getting a new ladies ss/18k Datejust for my wife in the near future and it was fun to shop around. I saw Rolexes on all types of people everywhere. At the Glendale Mall (where I did most of my watch shopping) there is a sterling silver store on the upper level and the guy working there was wearing a fake Sub. I am not expert, and it stuck out like a sore thumb. I wanted to tell him so badly, but I used better judgment and did not. Most of the Rolexes I got only passing glances at, but of all the good looks, I picked out only one fake. I will most likely ramble more later- Stephan PS turf got busy over the past week- lots of posts!!!




No Way! (or Rolex in Japan)

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease, Apr 19,1999,08:35


The Japanese market referred to above, blatantly ups the price and is happy to show you the suggested list price below it on the price tag! For example SS Daytona white or black face 1,060,000 yen suggested list (appx) 650,000 yen Explorer I 498,000 yen suggested list: 278,000 yen Explorer II black face 428,000 yen Explorer II white face 448,000 yen Sea Dweller 398,000 yen Sub date 338,000 yen sub can't get a date 298,000 yen TT Daytona 980,000 yen white Pres. 18K 2,050,000 yen Yachtmaster 18K 1,490,000 yen if you compare to American lists at 120 yen, the above prices are all over the board. If desirable, the price is sky high, if looking to move, it is almost reasonable. I guess the Japanese don't relate to yachts very much. I would be most grateful if anyone who is very conversant in Japanese, and frequents the fixed price stores regularly, could tell me if waving cash in face equals better deal than above. But the only Deals I have found have been at BEST in Shinjuku, purveyor of both new and used and overruns. Let me tell you, a display case of used GMT's running anywhere from 148,000 to 298,000 yen, depending on age, all look brand new! If you think you take care of your watch, the folks in Japan absolutely WORSHIP theirs, the old ones all look as flawless as new. Looking at a camera store's display of Leica's, is like a trip to the Leica Museum in Wetzlar! Absolutely, positively the most minty cameras and watches I have ever laid eyes on! The Japanese demand, and get the best, and are most willing to pay for it. And the only counters at the Watch stores that are jammed packed, three or four deep on the weekend, are the ROLEX counters. Mother Montres is quite pleased.






10 Silly and Trivial Questions About Rolex

Posted by Ed Heliosz,  Apr 19,1999,08:32



1) Have all Rolexes with dates have the same font numbers on their calendar wheels?

2) When did the font of the numbers change?

3) Has anybody received a Rolex as a gift from the Sultan of Brunei?

4) If so, does the dial bear his coat of arms?

5) We all have seen certain Rolexes that have the Tiffany & Co signature on its dials, how many of you own a Rolex with the Cartier signature on its dial?

6) The Submariner comes with an anchor, the Sea Dweller comes with a tool. What other paraphernalia comes with other Rolex watches? (Do not count Presidents).

7) What do the numbers 68.00.08 or 68.00.2, which are located at the bottom of the leather boxes, mean?

8) Why is there a blurred picture of a 1979 Formula 1 Ferrari on the cover of the Daytona instruction booklet? This particular car was sponsored by Heuer at the time.

9) What does the design on cardboard outer boxes represent?

10) Why don't Rolex give back the spare parts of your watch when it gets serviced?




NEWEST Sea Dweller

Posted by Rolecks Puhlease, Apr 16,1999,05:06


The box arrived today, big brown cardboard, stamped all over the seals for the registered look, inside, lots of peanuts. Nestled safe in the middle, a SeaDweller 4000, crispy fresh, serial number beginning with A, just like I'd read on the net, papers dated this month. Thankfully it arrived before whispering winds of a price increase! Oh the joy of opening a factory-packed Rolex! The Faux Green-marbled cardboard box, with a little white 16600 sticker on the side, and a gold crown Rolex Oyster announcing the treasure that lies within! First the green leather wallet, with dive suit extension, warranty paper, changing tool for the bracelet, dive table and Rolex Translation of Guarantee tucked neatly inside, then the Oyster booklet, and the submariner booklet. And then the sanctum sanctorum itself, green leather over wood, opening to a tan felt flower, whose folded petals cover the object of desire. The petals are gently lifted: perfectly poised, the watch glistens in the first light of ownership. Perfect presentation of course, with hang tags discreetly tucked away inside the pillow upon which the watch rests its beautiful head. The watch itself, perfect, flawless, hands frozen in time at 11:03.37 on the 14th of a month, appearing to have been carved out of a solid block of unobtainium, calls out to me Wind me up and watch me go! And down beside the inner box, a silver anchor in its own plastic cocoon, inscribed Rolex Oyster, Guaranteed 4000 ft. under water on one side, the same in meters on the other. It will soon be time to affix this beauty to my wrist, But please, a few more moments to savor the newness, the perfection, and the unique joy of purchasing a new Rolex.




A clarification for Patrick

Posted by Jay Bond, Apr 16,1999,05:04


Ironically, the most vitriolic and bitter commentary has been generated by the TZ crowd. Talk about blind support; you would think Mr Odets is a national treasure the way his defenders have come out of the racing to the fore. Furthermore, Mr Odets' review has inspired a legion of agent provocateurs whose only purpose in life, it would seem, is to attack, slander and otherwise insult Rolex owners and TURFers in general. I think that the only message of real value regarding Mr Odets and his review is twofold: 1) Mr Odets is a hobbyist, not a schooled engineer (of watches), and 2) scientific method is given a black eye by Mr Odets' broad conclusions and generalizations reached by the investigation of a single sample watch. The only way his findings would be anything more than mildly entertaining (largely because it has given we observers an opportunity to examine the excess of emotive outbursts and rude, often idiotic provocations and illogical conclusions drawn by a group of people who seem preoccupied with hating Rolex watches and the people who wear them) would be if he were to 1) disclose the specific origins of the sample watch 2) would have provided the sample to an objective party for analysis immediately and 3) would engage in a systematic/scientific examination of other samples/models with objective assistance. As none of these conditions were, have been or will be observed, the only conclusion that a critical mind can reach is this: interesting article Mr Odets. It must have been a nice way to spend a Saturday morning in your hobby shop. By the way, I have heard on TZ that Mr Odets disposed of the sample in the Far East. I wonder, did he sell this overpriced and poorly crafted watch? My final remark is this: having owned Rolex watches for more than 20 years, and their having kept outstanding time with minimal upkeep (and keeping pace with an extremely demanding physical lifestyle), and having examined ALL my Rolex movements under a loupe, I would have to completely disagree with anygeneral conclusions about Rolex being a junk watch with a disposable movement. That is, quite simply, preposterous. Thanks for your time; I realize this may have been a challenging read for some... To all at TURF, I enjoy the forum greatly! Many thanks to Kayes et al! Jay Bond




Storing watches

Posted by Tom Gref, Apr 16,1999,05:03


I don't think that it is necessary (or advantageous) to continually run a watch if you're not wearing it. I think it is probably a good idea to run it every week or two, but I don't think that it's necessary to run it any more than that. I personally think that it is better to not run watches if you're not wearing them to minimize the wear on the movement. If you are going to use a watch winder, don't run the thing all day long. Probably about 4 hours is all that is necessary to fully wind the watch. Running it any more than that will only cause the autowinding mechanism to wear. You always want to keep the crown screwed in (unless you're setting or winding the watch, of course). There are recommended/standard lubricants used, most all of which are synthetic oils. Moebius is the largest manufacturer, and their oils are claimed to not gel. However, they will evaporate over time, hence the recommended service interval of 3-5 years.

Tom Gref

AWI Certified Master Watchmaker

BS Mechanical Engineering




An interesting thread on Tudors...4 posts

Posted by Albert, John F. Kennedy, Max, Stephan, Apr 16,1999,05:01


Tudor? Just a lookalike Rolex? by Albert


I have noticed a number of Tudor posts on TURF recently (Wow, I typed TURF and was not bounced out... Imagine that). Some other TURFers may remember that I came down pretty hard on Tudor. I felt that they were nothing more Rolex trying to cash in on a lower market by building their own lookalikes seeing as how everyone else was doing so. Don't get me wrong, I think Tudor watches are high quality timepieces. Yet, they are not exactly raging bargains either. I have heard arguments for Tudor about the Oyster Case and how they look like Rolex because of this... If that is so, why is the rest of the watch so similar? I have seen Tudors that look so exactly like Rolexes that the only difference is the shield where the crown is supposed to be. And lets not forget about the people who ask if it is possible to swap the Tudor dials for a Rolex one. Even if that person does not intend to sell the watch, he/she means to pass off their watch as a Rolex when it is in fact a Tudor (Don't get me started on fakes!). And that comes to the root of another question that I have: Would you wear Tudor proudly? How? Everyone at a casual glance will think its a Rolex. You are wearing something that is intended to be casually mistaken as something else. This is what Rolex planned in the first place, when they created the Tudor line. Unfortunately, they saw fit to charge as much for a Tudor as a second hand Rolex. I concur with the other TURFers who say that you can buy a Rolex for not much more than a Tudor. They are more diplomatic than I will ever be about

Tudor watches. I guess they don't want to get flamed!



Denigration of Rolex motives and an insult to all Tudor owners by John F. Kennedy


Contrary to your fallacious leap in logic resulting in your implying that Rolex had some less than honorable motives in designing and marketing the Tudor line to look like other Rolexes, Rolex motives for marketing Tudor are honest and ethical -- legitimate profit. Not everyone can afford the full priced Submariner (for example) with the in-house Rolex movement and Rolex did not want to lose the upper middle price market. They worked out a deal with ETA whereby they would be assured a continuing supply of excellent lower cost (than in house Rolex) movements that would then be upgraded by Rolex and installed in Rolex cases with a different logo to show that it was a less expensive Rolex production. This opened up the Rolex Oyster technology to a wider market at a somewhat lower cost. The Tudor looks like a Rolex because it IS a Rolex product: A contracted movement upgraded by Rolex, a Rolex Oyster Case, Rolex crown, Rolex manufactured bracelet etc. In fact the only part that was not fully manufactured by Rolex is the ETA movement as it comes before the upgrading modifications and installation by Rolex. Since Rolex is trying to keep the cost of their Tudor line below that of their higher cost line, it would be self defeating to spend millions on re-tooling so they could make a special case and bracelets solely for the purpose of not looking like what the Tudor really is, a Rolex product. For reasons of economy Rolex uses REAL Rolex cases and other parts (hands, bezels, index markers, crystals, crowns, tubes, hands, index markers, bracelets, similar dials, etc.) on the Tudor as on the higher priced line. The savings comes from the ETA movement and because Rolex does not spent the big advertising money on Tudor. Most people find out about Tudor by seeing one or by word of mouth. THAT is why not only the case but the rest of the Tudor looks so much like the higher priced line of Rolex. And certainly Rolex has more right to make its own products look similar to other Rolex products than do the nonaffiliated watch companies who copy Rolex styles and innovations (in most cases without paying royalties to Rolex). You pose the following insensitive (some may say insulting) questions and made the following statement: Would you wear Tudor proudly? How? Everyone at a casual glance will think its a Rolex.


FIRST of all no one familiar enough to recognize a Rolex is going to be deceived by just a casual glance into thinking the Tudor is a Rolex. Why? Simply put, no such person is going to give it just a casual glance. When he sees something that pushes his button he will give it more than a casual glance. At which time he will notice the Tudor shield which is much easier to see than a tiny Rolex crown logo on the dial. Such persons become familiar with the Rolex styles because they take an active interest in Rolex at some time in their lives. Further, Most people can look right at a Rolex and it never crosses their minds that they might be looking at a Rolex. There are so many wannabe style rip-offs from Rolex by other companies that the average person can see the look-a-like and the real Rolex side by side and doesn't know what a Rolex is unless he reads the dial. Many people could look at a real Rolex on a table and if something covered the Rolex legend and logo (like a sunflower seed) might be more apt to say, Hey, that looks like copy of Hueur, except it's second hand isn't jerking, what is it? In the same breath that you insensitively questioned every Tudor owner's justification for wearing his watch proudly (thus insulting a large number of people), you made the following fallacious and outrageous unsupported claim that seems to be the result of what is referred to in Critical Thinking classes as a huge leap in logic: You are wearing something that is intended to be casually mistaken as something else. This is what Rolex planned in the first place, when they created the Tudor line.


It is ridiculous to claim that Rolex's motive for having a resemblance between the Tudor and other Rolex watches was and is to deceive the casual observer. Rolex LEGITIMATELY wants EVERYONE to know and instantly recognize that every Tudor is a ROLEX product. However, just so that even the casual observer can tell the difference between the two Rolex lines, the logos and legends on the dial clearly state what they are and some of the other dial markings are different. In some cases like later model Submariners the hands and dial hour indexes were changed to further distinguish the two. Additionally, Rolex used to produce the Tudor with a small 5 pedaled rose logo on the dial. But after a while they decided to change the logo on the dial to the larger shield that could be distinguished more easily, even at some distance, from the Rolex crown logo, thus making it clearly recognizable as a rolex product but distinguishable from the higher cost line. These points should make it very clear that Rolex definitely intended that one line NOT be mistaken for the other, but that they both be recognizable as Rolex products. There is no reason for a Tudor wearer not to wear a genuine Rolex product proudly. Tudor has a fine movement in a fine case, and it is no fake or imitation as implied. In my Rolex collection along with other Rolex Submariners, Sea Dwellers, and GMT variations, I have three variations of the TUDOR Submariner. If anyone asks why I have them on display with my Rolex watches under the crown logo, I tell them because they are ALL made by Rolex. The difference is that the Tudor has an ETA movement instead of a Rolex movement. And if anyone claims that they are not Rolexes because they don't have Rolex manufactured movements, then by that very same ridiculous criterion the Rolex Daytona is not a Rolex because it's movement came from Zenith (future Rolex Daytonas will have in-house movements but for years Rolex has used Zenith in the Daytona).


Further by that same criterion a majority of other prestigious big name watch companies could be said to be misrepresenting their watches as their own products by putting another company's movements in their own cases and putting their own labels on such watches. It is common practice for Swiss watch companies to get parts or whole components from another manufacturer and then assemble it. Nothing is sinister, deceptive, unethical or unpraiseworthy in the practice. If you want to find sinister motives in a watch company, or at least less than praiseworthy, why don't you come up with something more credible by asking yourself questions such as the following: Why do so many watch companies copy the styles first established and still in use by Rolex? Why does Hueur produce watches that are near replicas of certain Rolex professional watches such as the Submariner and GMT (even down to the same style luminous hour index markings on the dial, the Mercedes hour hand, the shape of the case, and even the Rolex style crown guards, (all of which are original innovations of Rolex)? There are a lot of companies who want to trade on the success of Rolex appearance and mystique. Rolex is the most copied watch company in the world. Even a majority of the world’s most prestigious watch companies have copied many of Rolex's innovations and styles. Is there something sinister there? Are they paying royalties? Why are so many big name watch companies Rolex wannabes? I haven't noticed anything on a Submariner, Sea, Dweller or GMT Master variant that is copied from other manufacturers. It seems that Rolex would rather be a leader than a follower.


TUDOR OWNERS: Don't let anyone's posting (here, or anywhere else) make you ashamed to wear your Tudor or admit that you own a Tudor. If someone asks, Is that a Rolex? say without apology, You are perceptive; it is a Rolex product of their Tudor line. IF they want more details say, Every part of the watch is Rolex except the movement and that is an excellent ETA movement that has been upgraded by Rolex in their own plant and installed in this case. YES YOU CAN WEAR YOUR TUDOR PROUDLY; you can be proud of selecting such a high quality durable and accurate watch at such an affordable price. As Far a price goes, the difference between the list price a new Rolex and a pre-owned one is not slight; it is significant. And  if you think that the difference between new Submariners with Rolex logos and with Tudor logos is not much, then perhaps you should be advising the French Navy (among others) who opted for the Tudor Submariner. The French Navy demands rigorous testing of proposed acquisitions. The tests require a large quantity of the item to be tested. These samples then undergo various kinds of carefully calibrated abusive tests which are increased in intensity in an attempt to destroy the item in order to see how much abuse it can withstand before losing accuracy malfunctioning or being destroyed. After testing, the only thing the French navy didn't order was the Oyster bracelet, because a nylon band was more convenient to change from a wrist to a wet-suit covered wrist and cheaper to replace. If any classes of watches are overpriced by big name watch makers it is those with quartz movements. Mechanical movements require much greater cost to produce than do quartz movements. If you are going to come on a Rolex Forum and make unsupported derogatory accusations about Rolex, and along with this you say things that you know are going to offend many of its members, and inflame those who tend to be more on the volatile side, I am not surprised that you have gotten flamed. One certainly can't go on Richard's commercial forum and run down IWC without getting flamed (even when the criticism is constructive and polite). In future, perhaps you will not get flamed by the members members if you...


1. Get your facts straight.

2. Think things out clearly.

3. Write them out before posting them.

4. Read what you have written to be sure that all of your conclusions are properly supported by accurate warrants and grounds, and then logically stated.

5. Read it again to weed out needlessly offensive or insulting statements innuendoes, or accusations.


It is certainly legitimate and socially acceptable to honestly dissent from the opinion of the majority. It is not wise to knowingly make false, rash, and unsupportable derogatory

accusations, nor to use sophistic tactics in order to win a debate by fudging. Further, TURF was founded for the intelligent and pleasant discussion of the pros and cons of Rolex. No holds Barred does not mean hostility, meanness, or insults are invited. We want this to be a pleasant place for those who want to learn about Rolex or to exchange

helpful information can relax, enjoy the experience, and not regret having visited. Please don't go away: We just want criticism to be factual, and wherever possible, logical, constructive and of benefit to those who read it. Hopefully, please write something informative or entertaining. Best wishes, John Kennedy



Albert is a true Turfer ..... more by Max


Hi Albert, In a way, your original post about Tudors did a good job - it started a lively and useful debate. Having read your earlier posts at TURF, I know you are a genuine Turfer at heart. I think you are one of the earliest people who joined TURF. IMHO, I don't think your statement was too inflammatory - just a wee bit provocative and I suppose that's okay at TURF. And the best thing was you managed to prompt that wonderful response by JFK. This is what a forum should be about!



Exactly, thoughtful post with thoughtful reply. Isn't that why we come here??? by Stephan


While we all welcome beginner posts and questions, What does T<25 stand for? (I've asked all those questions). I come here to read and learn more about watches. I think that both Albert and JFK should be congratulated for the posts. TURF is a new forum.There are boundaries, rules, and foundations that are being set. It is healthy to have such debates. Discussions like this one will define the character that TURF will have in the future. Please lets keep our manners, respect each other, and have fun God Bless You, Stephan





A technical review (or why Odets is wrong)

Posted by Robban, Apr 16,1999,04:47


Hi fellow Turfers my name is Robert and I am an educated fine-mechanic and have several years of experience with mechanical machinery and their construction, not necessarily watch movements but the principles apply even here. I have read Walt’s article several times and don`t agree with some of his findings and conclusions, that`s why I am writing this contribution to the debate.


THE CASE. We will start with the case and the indeed sharp lugs, but you would have to wear the watch extremely tight to get the lugs in contact with the skin on your wrist, so that it would feel unpleasant to wear. As for the general appearance of the watch it`s just design, which some like and others don`t.


THE BRACELET. I wish that rolex would make their lug inserts solid (like on the Sea-dweller) on all their models it would make the occasionally appearing rattle disappear. By the way the lug inserts on the IWC Mark XII don`t follow the contour of the case either and also use the standard spring bars which are fitted to about 95 percent of all current wrist-watches they work just fine, I can`t see anything wrong with them. The clasp is on the light side but if you examine it closely you will find that it is extremely well made in every detail.


THE MOVEMENT. The two click wheels are made of aluminium and surface treated for a smooth and quiet action, as we all know you can`t hear a Rolex wind. Just compare it to a ball-bearing rotor and you will hear quite an audible difference. The over-sized design and the clever technical solutions has nothing with cost saving to do. It just adds up to a very rugged and simple movement, which equals durability and thats what Rolex are so famous for. The microstella screws has a special tool which allows them to be adjusted without removing the balance, the tool wont leave a scratch on the screws. This is the first sign that the movement which Walt examined might have been fiddled with either by a total novice to watchmaking or a very unskilled watchmaker.


PERFORMANCE. Performance as most of us know are excellent in a well kept Rolex movement nothing more to be added here.


ISSUES OF QUALITY. I must state here that I personally have not seen a caliber 3000 up-close. But on every picture of a Rolex movement that I have seen (which have been some very nice close-up shots) all visible jewel holes have always been chamfered. And that it would still be machining debris from the manufacturing of the movement still apparent in a cleaned and checked movement from the factory must be considered almost impossible. This is once again a sign that somebody may have fiddled with the movement since it left the factory. One likely reason not to polish the under side of the screw-heads and the plate holes is to make the two interlock more positively than two polished surfaces would. This is a great advantage if the watch is exposed to vibration or repeated hard knocks. As for the gouging of the plate, once again it looks like somebody has been there with the wrong tool. And that`s not likely to be a trained Rolex watchmaker. And the same is valid for the sloppy oiling and the escape-wheel, which might very well have been damaged when trying to disassemble and reassemble the movement. An explanation of the straight-cut teeth of the fourth wheel might be that when two cogwheels with epicycloid shaped teeth interlock with each other they do so very tightly and smoothly giving a even travel of the gears. As you may have noticed the escape-wheel of Rolex movements are fitted with kif shock-absorbers allowing the wheel to move vertically as well as horizontally this could make the escape-wheel pinion want to move in a slightly diagonal motion if exposed to a hard knock. This motion could damage tightly interlocking teeth. But if you have a straight-cut fourth wheel the teeth which don`t interlock as positively as epicycloid teeth would allow a little motion without getting damaged. The fourth wheel don`t require epicycloid teeth since the motion of the escape-wheel is a jerking one. But further back in the movement the motion slows down and becomes more even which warrants epicycloid teeth on the rest of the gear-train. This don`t affect accuracy in any way since the whole gear-train is under constant tension which don`t allow the straight-cut wheel to rattle. As for rough edges and surfaces iIdo believe that under high-magnification most watch movements would seem to have pretty rough finishes to. But this is not visible for the naked eye and obviously do not affect the performance of the movement.


Well this is all just my own conclusions based on my basic knowledge of mechanical engineering and discussions with a number of watchmakers. There is no doubt in my mind that the Explorer I and its calibre 3000 is just as fine as any other Rolex movement. Although I have to admit that I am a bit bias as I own one myself. I hope that you have enjoyed reading this review. And if you don`t agree with my conclusions please feel free to express so. Best regards Robban (Nick name for Robert in Swedish)




Let's do some arithmetic...

Posted by Frans Hens, Apr 16,1999,01:43


Let's do some arithmetic and more (this is going to be a long story, so bear with me). Among many statements made about Rolex (Oyster) watches, the following are often used in a less positive manner:


1. Rolex's are overpriced.

2. Rolex movements are mediocre.

3. The styling is old-fashioned and dates back at least 40 years.

4. The whole Rolex concept is a marketing trick.

5. When buying a Rolex, one falls victim to a scam.


Okay, on to the first point. In my home country, The Netherlands, a stainless steel Submariner Date retails for 5890 Dutch guilders. Against today's exchange rate that is US $3100. From this price the following has to be deducted: 17.5% VAT, 6% import duty, 10% for the dealer (my assumption), 5% for the importer (again, my assumption) and about a 100 dollars for the certification, shipping and insurance. This leaves a total of (about) 1928 dollars. Remember that these are all amounts Rolex have little or no influence on and do not receive. Giving a Rolex will easily last 25 years, I added an amount of 500 dollars for servicing the watch 4 times. That makes 2428 dollars. Divided by 25 (years) is about 97 dollars a year (26c a day) for a very reliable, (and for most people) prestigious timepiece. Overpriced? I think not. All this, off course, is relative because you have to make a comparison. When reduced to it's primary function, keeping time, any watch will do, even a $19.99 Timex. But for most of us, a watch is more than that.


One of my other hobbies is cooking, and when it became more serious, I bought a set of knives. 50 dollars for 5 knives, with the block. They fell into the definition of being knives, their primary function. They were made of metal, were pointy, had handles and could cut (for a while). But they also were flimsy, didn't hold an edge for long and didn't have the backbone needed in cook's knives. But knives they were. Then I bought a set of German Dreizack Trident knives at 50 dollars a PIECE! Yes, 10 times more expensive. That was 15 years ago and I still use them and they still hold an incredible edge. Ridiculously overpriced? No sir, a steal! (Or a steel). Everything is relative, take the Blancpain that comes closest in function, an Automatic 2100 in stainless steel. Is costs $5150 and doesn't even have a Blancpain movement. Or an Ebel Voyager Geo at $3100. Would I buy the Ebel or the Blancpain? No sir! Over to the second point, the mediocre movements. Again, what yardstick is used? I don't think the 3135 caliber used in the Submariner is less elaborate then the Blancpain 2100 or the Ebel movements. Yes, when compared to a piece from, for instance Audemars Piguet, the Royal Oak Day-Date in stainless steel, it might be. But the Royal Oak retails for $11,000! What then, makes a movement mediocre? It's lack of complications? It's lack of decoration? The fact that it has no 22K gold rotor? I can't give the answer but I do know that most Rolex movements are certified chronometers. This, at least, says that the movements are able to keep time very accurate and under varying conditions. That is, if we all can agree on the fact that the certification is no hoax and that the officials in the Swiss institute are not bribed by Rolex. And yes, I know that any old quartz ticker can keep time just as well and cost a measly 50 bucks. But then, why buy a Porsche 911 Carrera, when any old Ford can do the job just a well? (Take you from A to B). Three, the old-fashioned styling. Old-fashioned to some, timeless to others. This is all a matter of taste and cannot really be discussed. I find the design well balanced and both elegant and sporty. A little butch perhaps, but I certainly like the shaken not stirred image of the Oyster case. Four, the marketing trick. What marketing? I have yet to see a Rolex add on TV. I have in front of me the Audemars Piguet catalogue for 1998. Catalogue is not the right description here, it is an elaborate book, titled: The finest hours of the Master Watchmaker. And it goes on and on about the history of Swiss watch making and the history of Audemars Piguet. A nice example of...... marketing. And if I look at the Rolex catalogue I don't see anything special or over marketed. Is the notion that a lot of people have about Rolex, the finest watch in the world, a result of marketing and thus unfair? Have you ever read the label on a bottle of Bud? Some claims from the Rolex catalogue: the worlds first waterproof wristwatch, immediately recognizable shape, it takes a full year to complete an Oyster movement of 220 parts, all false? I don't think so. Five, the scam.In a scam you buy an article that is absolutely not what is promised. You buy a VCR of the back of a truck, and when you come home it's a box with a brick in it. When you buy a Rolex, do you get an empty case? No, you buy a reliable, sturdy, highly recognizable piece of Swiss machinery. Nothing more and nothing less. That's it. As English is not my native tongue, the style and spelling maybe shaky. Frans Hens.




Kayes, thanks so much...more

Posted by Richard Paige, Apr 16,1999,01:42


Kayes, Thank you so much for your understanding of this situation, I know how difficult it was for you to make this decision. Our roles as moderators of internet forums is to try to keep things moving forward in a positive direction while also trying to keep the purity of our original visions. To allow our respective visitors to ridicule and personally attack others is not something we should tolerate. We all love a good controversy and this is what makes our forums so interesting at times but there should be consequences for personal attacks and malicious attitudes.  At TimeZone we ask these people to “Take it outside”. I wish you luck in your new forum and I’m sure we will work together to make our respective sites interesting and different....... By the way, are Rolexes any good??:-) Best regards, Richard Paige, owner






More news for Turfers - please read

Posted by kayes , Apr 16,1999,01:39


Hello Turfers, I don't really know how to start this post but I think if I show you a copy of my email to Richard Paige (owner of TimeZone), it will make my job easier. Early this morning, I received an email from Richard but I was not sure whether it originated from him. I responded to that email to double check and I got a reply from Richard saying that it was indeed sent by him. On this basis, I am of the belief that the email is authentic. My reply to Richard's emails is as follows:-


“Hello Richard, As you well know, both TURF and TimeZone are unmoderated forums and therefore, it is not possible to stop posts which you and I may find objectionable at each other's forums. I am glad you took the initiative to write first because that prompted me to take a good look at the Breastmilk thread since the past couple of days have been very hectic for me and I didn't have time to read my own forum let alone yours. Further, the frequent thunderstorms here caused by the La Nina phenomenon restricts my access to the internet. Being unfamiliar with the laws of libel and slander, I am unable to comment on the contents of the “Breastmilk thread but if you find that thread objectionable - solely in deference to you as an internet friend who so kindly agreed to publish my Rolex article on TimeZone, I have taken the immediate step to have it removed. In so removing the main post, I regret to state that all those subsidiary posts that supported you were also removed due to the configuration of the software. Hope this is okay. I set up TURF because I love watches, particularly Rolexes. The aim is to discuss Rolex watches at TURF. I am sure you have this same ideal at TimeZone. It serves no useful purpose if TURF is attacked at TimeZone and TimeZone at TURF. Best wishes. kayes P.S. I will be making a post to TURF soon about this matter. I have no wish to make an enemy out of you when we can remain friends.”


As a result of the above, I have pulled the Breastmilk thread and as I said, SOLELY in deference to Richard, to whom I feel I owe something. About three months' ago, I wanted some publicity for one of my Rolex articles and I emailed Richard asking him whether he would help by putting it up at TimeZone. He readily agreed and to that I remain grateful.




Strap on a Rolex

Posted by John Ireland, Apr 16,1999,01:37


I too love a good leather strap. And for those who find a two tone bracelet just a little to familiar, try a brown croc strap. It really shows off the head of the watch. My everyday two tone Datejust gets more looks since I put on the leather than it ever did w/ the jubilee band. I found a sterling silver Rolex buckle that looks right w/ the ss body, and yet has that slightly special look that says it can only be silver. I also trust leather over all the links in a steel bracelet. In fact I just bought a two tone GMT w/ black dial and all black bezel insert. I will wear this w/out the bracelet, again going for a brown croc strap with an 18k gold Rolex buckle. It's the same look you can see in the 18k Daytona w/ leather strap. Obviously if you're going in the water a lot, leather isn't a good first choice, but for walking around, well, you don't wear metal shoes do you? Love the's nice to be able to talk about Rolex without being attacked or have to explain yourself. Regards to all.





Sorry we ignored you...

Posted by Dan T, Apr 16,1999,01:35


Hi Dave, Watch forums are a lot like bars. People come and go, some even sit in the same seats every day. Depending on the mood of the inhabitants a newcomer may be welcomed, ignored, or even abused. I think your earlier question may have been a bit broad to elicit responses. You asked for any information about a ref 6694 Oysterdate, but didn't give us a context for your question. Perhaps we should have been more accommodating. Evidently you felt you had been dissed, you took your question elsewhere, and it sounds like you received an answer. I'd ask that you give us another chance, and to encourage you to do so, I offer the following.


The 6694 is a manual wind date model that has the same size case (I think) as the Oyster Perpetual (non-date) and Date models. It is smaller than a Datejust case by two millimeters or so. I have had a 6694 (stainless) since 1968 that keeps extraordinary time despite the fact that it is not a chronometer model. (I don't think any of the Oysterdates were certified as chronometers.) I purchased the watch used for either $50 or $75. (I can't remember whether the guy owed me $50 and I paid him an additional $25, or if he owed me $25 and I added $25 to what he owed me. Alcohol is likely the cause of this memory lapse.) My watch was made in 1953 and has a silver dial with what I believe are called lance style hands. In any event the hands are not like the more recent style used by Rolex and are perhaps more graceful looking. The watch originally came with an Oyster style bracelet that I have since lost and I now have it on a Jubilee Rolex USA bracelet that I purchased new in about 1972 for $30. This watch also looks great on a leather strap as it is not as thick as the perpetual models. However, the lug spacing is 19mm which is not as popular a width as 18mm (many other watches) and 20mm (most other Rolexes). So, you may have to hunt around for leather. Is this watch perfect? No. The dial is no longer luminous and because you must manually wind the watch daily, there are more opportunities to strip the crown threads than with automatic (perpetual) models. Renewing the crown threads a few years ago along with replacing the bezel and crystal that had suffered from a spontaneous altercation proved expensive. Nevertheless, I would not part with this watch for love or money. (On second thought I'd at least need to study the offers!) It does everything that I ask and looks smart to boot. It is not the Rolex of the popular, but untrue stereotype. It is every bit as understated as many of the watches that are coveted by those that are envious of the Rolex reputation. So, if it's important to you that everyone else recognizes the brand of watch that you are wearing, there are other models that may prove more suitable. However, if you are looking for a go anywhere, do anything, rugged, good looking watch, the Oysterdate will more than fill the bill. (So will a lot of other Rolex models.) If you are looking to purchase an Oysterdate, I would suggest Bernard's Watches (a great pre-owned Rolex seller) which has a website out of Dallas. Expect to pay $700 - $800 or thereabouts. For the more adventurous, eBay sellers offer this model regularly. Sometimes the auction prices there are better, but I don't make it a practice to buy Rolexes that I haven't inspected personally that have no return privilege. Some of the ebay sellers allow a return. Now that you have put up with this diatribe, I would appreciate any tidbits that James Dowling may have relayed to you. I am presupposing that you would like to share them with the audience here. We'll try to be more friendly next time. Regards, Dan



Value of Time

Posted by Birol, Apr 16,1999,01:34


All of us value time for various reasons, may be because it is the most scarce resource we have, even though it seems as if it is vast in supply or because it is irreversible, but having precise time keeping instruments places us in another category as well, based on the saying “I can tell you value time from the watch you are carrying” which is believed to have been remarked by an aristocrat. Sometimes we have have differences in perceiving time, that is how fast or how slow it passes, even though the amount that has elapsed is the same. Like the length of the night seems like years to a mother whose child is sick, or how fast the time passes when you sleep. When you dream you feel as if it lasted for days or sometimes for years but it has been proved that it only takes about 2 seconds for dreams to last. And different lengths of time has different meanings to everyone based on certain situations.


For example;

To realize the value of one year:

Ask a student who has failed a final exam.

To realize the value of one month:

Ask a mother who has given birth to a premature baby.

To realize the value of one week:

Ask an editor of a weekly newspaper.

To realize the value of one hour:

Ask the lovers who are waiting to meet.

To realize the value of one minute:

Ask the person who has missed the train, bus or plane.

To realize the value of one second:

Ask a person who has survived an accident.

To realize the value of one millisecond:

Ask the person who has won a silver medal in the Olympics.


There is one thing that makes me consider time in a different way, something that makes time more valuable for me. I know that many of us have thought about this or at least read somethings. We, by our nature, define time by earth units. For example our days are defined by the time it takes our planet to complete a revolution around its self. A year is defined by the time it takes our planet to complete its orbit around the sun. There is scientific logic behind all the detailed calculations made.

One Year is equal to;

12 Months

52 Weeks

360 Days (I assumed 360 even though longer)

8640 Hours

518400 minutes

31104000 seconds long.


Now if we assume that we were living on Pluton (outer most planet in our solar system) One Pluton year would equal to 245 earth years. And assuming that a person lives 100 years on earth, he would be living for about 4,9 months in Pluton time. That sounds short. If we take this on a greater level, that is if we compare our time units with that of the Sun, the picture gets a little bit more interesting. It is to our knowledge that our sun is one of the smaller suns that are present in the Milkyway Galaxy. There are about 400 billion other stars (some are planets and some are suns which are placed in the centers of other planetary systems similar to ours). Well all of these suns and planetary systems revolve in a certain orbit in respect with the center of a larger galactic system. The time it takes our sun to complete its revolution around the assumed center of the Milkyway, expressed in earth units is around 225 million years. When we compare this it seems as if we live around 15 seconds. That is very very very short. Usually these comparisons are made to show how insignificant we are, well more by the religious philosophers, but I look at it in another way. I think that if we have so little to live, we must really enjoy life, take the best out of it. And one more thing that means more to me is, if we have so little time, we must do our best to keep it in the very best manner and read it through the face of our favorite watches in my case this would be a Rolex 16610 Sub (hoping to get one as a new years gift for my self). Best regards, Birol Istanbul, Turkey PS – I apologize for the spelling and grammatical errors if any, due to the fact that English is not my native language. Please comment and make additions as necessary




New Rolex bracelets

Posted by Gary S, Apr 16,1999,01:33


Carlos, although I have not seen the new catalog you describe, I recently attended a new Rolex show at Ben Bridge jewelers where over 200 unusual and rare models were displayed. I believe the models you are thinking of are from the Masterpiece and Crown collections, very, very expensive and often jewel encrusted models. One of these is a ladies bracelet, two tone in white and yellow gold with round diamonds, each a good half carat, set into each link around the bracelet. Another sort of looks like the old grain of rice or beaded bracelets of the 30's and 40's. They are very nice looking bracelets. The Cellini line also has some different looking bracelets and cases. Call Rolex and request one of their crown collection catalogs - you may find these bracelets described in there. Also, Atlas Diamond Company maintains an online Rolex catalog which is very complete - I believe the link is on TURF or WatchNet - it may show what is available. At the Rolex show I was like a kid in a toy store. Got to try on some platinum presidents (nice, but not as much as a rose gold president LOL) a variety of unusual models including a Tridor Day-Date horror which looks like a fake Rolex, and the biggest surprise of the show for me - an Oysterquartz Day- Date in 18k yellow gold with an integrated bracelet with pyramid center links. It had a cream colored pyramid dial, which if memory serves was accented by small diamonds. Absolutely a drop dead gorgeous watch, very masculine looking and different. If offered a free watch at the show (don’t I wish!) I would be hard pressed to take the more valuable platinum President over that Oysterquartz president, it was so good looking. These Oysterquartz watches may look butt-ugly in Rolex catalogs but they are really pretty decent looking in person, with this particular president model being simply outstanding. If they made a perpetual model in that same case and bracelet I would probably trade in all of my other watches for it. Gary S.



Rolex service information

Posted by Tom Gref, Apr 16,1999,01:32


Here's a bit of information regarding Rolex service. It's a bit complicated, but I'll give it my best shot. First of all, qualified watchmakers are able to purchase most (but not all) Rolex parts directly from Rolex. (I have an account with them.) Watchmakers (like myself), who are not part of a factory authorized dealership, are somewhat limited in what we can buy. We can buy everything except dials, bezels (inserts are available), bracelets/bracelet parts (except spring bars), and cases or casebacks. All the movement parts are available, as well as crowns, tubes, crystals, etc. Rolex oftentimes will sell parts on an exchange basis, and/or charge more without an exchange (even to authorized dealers). If I want to buy a new Rolex dial, I have to go through gray market

suppliers like everyone else. Probably, the $890 service is not that outrageous considering the fact that Rolex gave the customer a new bracelet (which I think retails for about $400). If you want your watch to look like new, with new dial, hands, bracelet, glowing properly, etc. you're going to have to spend some real money. However, I can provide some options that Rolex doesn't, like a less expensive dial refinish rather than a new one. Also, I always return the old parts, but occasionally Rolex sells parts on an exchange-only basis (chrono pushers & some main movement plates). I tend to lean toward originality rather than trying to make it look like new, which is more important on vintage Rolexes. Hope this helps.


Tom Gref

AWI Certified Master Watchmaker

BS Mechanical Engineering





Rolex in space

Posted by Gary S, Apr 16,1999,01:30


Tonight I had the rare privilege of meeting and speaking briefly with Apollo 12 astronaut Alan Bean, the fourth person to set foot on the lunar surface on November 19-20, 1969. Mr. Bean is an artist who has painted some awesome works of art depicting what it was like on the Moon. I attended a book signing where he was introducing a new book of his artwork. While signing my book, I asked him if he remembers any Rolex watches going up into space on Apollo. He laughed and said that yes, many of the astronauts brought up as many as two or three personal watches in addition to the official Omega Speedmaster Professional watches they were required to bring up. He said they did this so that they would have family heirlooms to pass on which had been to the Moon. He definitely remembered seeing a number of Rolex watches that made it into the Apollo capsules. I got a pretty good look at the watch he was wearing tonight, a gorgeous solid gold Omega Speedmaster Pro, with a gold dial and a black tachymeter bezel. A very classy watch for a very classy, friendly and impressive man. He took quite a bit of time with each visitor. When I asked him what it was like to look out of the Landing Module window and see the Moon's surface on the other side He told me that no matter how long he lives, it was a sight he will never forget. Gary S.



Early Sea-Dweller & 007 Subs

Posted by John F. Kennedy,


If these watches have been recently serviced correctly and are keeping good time, I would consider the prices good. $2400 for the Sea Dweller; $1700 for the James Bond. As far as the plastic crystal goes, would you permanently affix modern sealed beam driving lights to an original 1933 Packard Touring Car, or would you keep it original for its collectors' value? The flat crystal was never on these older models. In addition to the plastic crystal being original equipment on the Sea Dweller, and since 2,000 feet is even deeper than the LATEST Submariner is tested for, rest assured that it is not of inferior quality. Of all the Rolex watches made today only the newer Sea Dweller is tested to a greater depth. Another advantage of the pregnant crystal is that it does not glare as does the newer flat sapphire crystal (making it hard to read in certain positions and wherever there are multiple overhead lights. Many of my former military colleagues who remain in active service prefer the older crystal not only because it does not glare, but because it will not cast a bright beam of reflected sunlight as will the flat crystal. When one sees a bright circle of light flickering along the ground or on the side of a cliff, he knows immediately that it is caused by another person. When he catches the mirrored reflection of the sun directly in his eyes (even momentarily), he immediately knows the location of the source of light. If one wishes to remain undetected, such as when on military operations, or when hunting, a flat crystal would have to be kept covered at all times when in the sun -- a distinct inconvenience. The new glass crystal is more vulnerable because the abrupt edge of the crystal is substantially above the bezel where it is unprotected and can catch on rigid edges and the material is subject to scratches that do not readily polish out. But, minor scratches can be carefully polished out of the plastic crystal. and the plastic crystal (being lenticular in shape) is not likely to be snagged by rigid edges on machinery, vehicles, aircraft, firearms, etc. The original James Bond (which was the first submariner worn by Sean Connery in his 007 role, has no protective ears straddling the crown. But the hands appear identical to the ones seen on the Submariner today. If you are a Rolex dive watch collector. both of these watches are well worth having, provided that they are in good shape. There is a version of the Submariner that is referred to as the Military Submariner, which has a dart shaped hour hand and a wider minute hand than the James Bond. The Military Submariner also has a different sweep second hand. In place of the dot on the second hand, there is a small lance point with a hairline extension out to the minute graduations on the dial. Unlike the other submariners which have minute graduations only on the first quarter of the bezel, the Military Submariner has full graduation all the way around the bezel. Like the early James Bond, the Military Submariner has no protective ears next to the crown. This watch would also be a fine addition to a Submariner collection, if you can find one. It too has the plastic crystal. If anyone finds this information interesting or helpful please let me know so I can adjust my postings to fit the interests and needs of the members.Naturally some of you already know some or all of these things, so I address this particular note to those who are newer to 'Rolexology'. Best wishes, John Kennedy




Military Submariner and The James Bond--follow up by John F. Kennedy


Below is the address of the Military Submariner version which was made in the 1970's. Note the fact that this submariner has no protective ears straddling the crown (I use this term protective ear straddling the crown because it is more visually descriptive for newcomers and those who stick around will learn Rolex terminology soon enough). This variation is said to be the rarest variation of the military Submariner because of the bezel with full graduations as compared with graduations only on the first quarter of the bezel on other variations of the Submariner. This variation came with the military nylon web wristband rather than the Oyster bracelet. The dart shaped hands are reminiscent of earlier Rolex watches. I would like to add this variation to my collection. Another I would like to acquire is the Comex Submariner (ref. 5514) which looks like an ordinary 5513 except that immediately below the center of the dial and above where it says 200 meters, there is printed a narrow white horizontal rectangle which forms the background for the word COMEX in black letters. The hour indexing around the dial will be orangish yellow on specimens of this variation. I am told that there were only 154 of these made. One can expect to pay about US$11,000 for one of these. Another Submariner without protection for the crown is the first Submariner model worn by Sean Connery in his role as 007, the James Bond variation. Note the Oyster bracelet and the resemblance to the later Submariners but without protection for the crown.  I hope you find this entertaining and informative. I always enjoy descriptions more when they include illustrations. Best wishes, John Kennedy





Rolex servicing - where Turf can help.

Posted by John F. Kennedy, Apr 15,1999,19:45


TURF offers not only a way to exchange ideas, but a way for the Rolex aficionado to learn how to get the best value for his future investments in Rolex. It would be nice if (through a list kept up to date and published in the forum), TURF members in each region would have access to information on the best local alternative Rolex servicing facility (with Rolex trained watchmakers who use genuine Rolex parts and recommend upgrades) without having to resort to the officially authorized Rolex Centers, which can be somewhat arrogant in their policies and attitudes, and unnecessarily over priced with their service.


Recently one of our members sent in his 1965 Submariner (in fairly good condition, but scratched) to have it serviced. Even though He was satisfied with the results, since it came back looking like new, he had to pay $890!!! Along with cleaning and polishing it, as well as the usual new seals, they swapped out the crystal, dial, hand, crown, stem & barrel, and Oyster wristband. As when dealing with a mechanic repairing one's vintage automobile, I like to have all replaced parts returned to me for inspection, and perhaps to save as backup parts or samples in the event that original parts become scarce for that model at some time in the future (used parts do, after all, belong to the owner of the watch or vintage auto). In California there is a law that requires mechanics to return all replaced parts to the owner of an automobile unless the owner refuses them. Unfortunately (according to the owner of the above mentioned Submariner), Rolex will NOT return parts they replace. I'm looking for a reliable watchmaker who will perform the same restoration on a similar Submariner, but who will use the old clasp on the new Oyster wristband band and who (if he replaces the dial will use the exact model dial and hands. Failing that, I would like the old dial and hands cleaned restored with new luminescence (preferably something as bright and lasting as tritium, if not tritium). My reason for desiring to have the original clasp put on the new wristband is because during the 60's, some official Rolex Oyster bands were made in the U.S. for tax reasons, and these bands have marking that say, Rolex - U.S. and C+I along with the date of manufacture. These American marked wristbands are no longer available from Rolex, and if they were, they would not have the older date. Keeping things original enhances the desirability of a discontinued model of the Submariner, if only in the heart of its owner.



An Alternative to the Official Rolex Center for service.

by John F. Kennedy


Thank for Mr. T, for the advice on swapping over the 3 part wrist band latch assembly. I can have that done by a local watchmaker who has a steadier hand than mine, and the right tools, without the danger of damaging anything or scratching parts. What I need most is to find some reliable watchmaker specializing in Rolex (hopefully Rolex trained), but not necessarily an OFFICIAL Rolex repair station (preferably in California or at least in the U.S.), who will do the same quality work as the Rolex Centre in New York, but at a reasonable price ($890 seems a bit much for a non date submariner made back in the 60's!). There is nothing wrong with my Submariner except that it is overdue for its service; plus the band is stretched (possibly only needing the replacement of certain links; and a new crown is needed because the logo (Rolex crown) on the crown got battered ; the tritium is now barely luminescent when the light is out so it needs to be replaced or a new identical set of hands an a new identical dial need to be swapped for the old (for sentimental reasons, I would like to keep the original dial and just renew the tritium, or replace it with something just as bright and as long lasting as tritium. Another concern is that New York Center will replace the crystal with a newer style plastic crystal which is noticeably not as pregnant (lenticular) as the original, thus making the watch appear somewhat different from its original silhouette. Isn't there likely to be a collector's watch maker out there who has a genuine Rolex original new 1960's vintage Submariner crystal in a parts tray of one of his drawers? It is apparent that New York Center doesn't have any since what they are installing is somewhat flatter than the original. My original crystal still looks good and has no scratches, but a watchmaker may insist that it be replaced with a new one in order to guarantee his work, since it must be both vacuum and pressure tested. If that were the case, I would like to keep the old crystal if it is undamaged after extraction. Thank you again Mr. T.  Best wishes, John Kennedy




Fake Daytonas

Posted by Ariel Rosler,  Apr 15,1999,19:42


I have come across several with sites in the internet who sell Rolex replicas, in our language fake Rolexes. Just make a search in Netscape under Rolex replicas. These Daytonas look impressively genuine, and you can get them in SS, TT or gold with a variety of dials - white, black, gold, silver, or even with the Paul Newman dial. They come usually with an automatic ETA movements with either 17, 21 or 33 jewels - depending of the company who sells them. Two things make the fake distinguishable from the real Daytonas - in all cases I come across the small chrono dials are NON-FUNCTIONAL, and they have a central hand running continually, for the seconds. Nonetheless, you may still find a sophisticated fake in where a real SS Daytona is converted into a Paul Newman, by changing the dial with a quite good fake one. Be careful Francesco! I have seen your name many times in Watchnet in the search for a SS Daytona with white dial. You better get such a watch from an authorized Rolex dealer. Hope this helps. Best regards, Ariel




GMT I versus GMT II

Posted by John Quinn, Apr 15,1999,19:40


Hi there, The GMT I can display two time zones. This is done by setting the bezel for the second zone , i.e. : IF you are 10 AM GMT then you are 5 AM Eastern standard time (the difference between London and New York (5 hours)). Move the bezel CLOCKWISE by 5 hours and viola your 24 hr. hand points to 5 am and will now track the 2nd time zone. The GMT II can display 3 time zones. In the above example YOU DO NOT ROTATE THE BEZEL TO GET THE 2ND TIME ZONE. Rather, you can move the 24 hour hand independently using the quickset feature (you cannot do this with the GMT I (different movement). Then when you want to get the 3rd time zone you now move the bezel to track the 3rd zone. Hope this is of some help. Regards, John




Pre-owned Rolexes & cost of refurbishment

Posted by John F. Kennedy, Apr 15,1999,19:38


I tried to send this to you by e-mail, but it bounced (possibly meaning that you mistyped your address). The price of reconditioning this GMT MAY cost anywhere between $350 and nearly $900 for a first class refurbishing by Rolex USA in New York. If the watch has only been cleaned over the years, and had the seals and crystal replaced, It is likely that they will do the following to a watch in the average condition you describe, but you will need to get their estimate by sending in the watch: Replace the wristband (very likely), dial (very likely) crown (very likely), crystal (very likely) winder stem and barrel (very likely), hands ( very likely), disassemble, clean and adjust the movement (which they will), polish the case (which they will), and replace the bezel and luminous bubble in the bezel (possible), this is likely to run close to $890. It recently did for one of the people who post to TURF. The crystal they replaced the original with is not as pregnant as the original. It will be flatter, but not totally flat like the sapphire crystal of the newer model. If you wish to remain absolutely original, this may not please you, but the person in question, is very happy with the refurbishing of his 1965 Submariner. The watch looks absolutely new. You will want to take the above information into account when buying the watch. The price would be very good if it had been just refurbished, but we know from your description that that is not the condition of the watch. Therefore, you need to ask yourself am I willing to pay $1600 plus $890 ($2490) for this watch, which would then be in excellent, not average, condition? That is what it may cost you after refurbishing. Consider also the discounted price of a new GMT Master. What you will be getting if you buy this watch will be a pre-owned 1960 GMT in excellent condition after refurbishing and that can cost you a total of nearly $2500 with shipping, after all is said and done. If you prefer the 60's vintage GMT to the new GMT Master with the flat crystal and the caliber 3175 movement perhaps this is preferable. I don’t think it is a good myself. Jewel Avenue in San Francisco will sell one for less, fully restored with a THREE YEAR warrantee. I hope this is helpful in your decision. Best wishes, John Kennedy



Vintage Bubbleback

Posted by John Quinn, Apr 15,1999,19:35


I think that should be TURF's mission statement. I decided to 'take the plunge' and buy an old Bubbleback from the 30's which I saw in London, here's what happened The guy who was selling it, knew nothing about it. My Rolex dealer told me not to touch it (can't get parts). JD's book merely gave me some impersonal history on it. An independent watch repairer tried to sell me something else when I mentioned it. The auction houses wanted to know where it was so they 'could take a look at it'. I actually decided to leave my foray into vintage watches for another day , when I was more educated on the subject. But I couldn't resist. It wasn't until I asked Christian, on this forum, what his thoughts were, that I decided to buy the watch. Now that's an invaluable service. Regards, John



Rolex Books - Who's right after all?

Posted by copernicus, Apr 15,1999,19:34


So many books. So many different facts. Who to believe? Can TURF, being the ULTIMATE Rolex forum, eventually arrive at the truth through discussion amongst Rolex ethusiasts and experts?




Fakes & Integrity

Posted by John F. Kennedy, Apr 15,1999,19:32


I believe that when a person agrees to buy anything with the serial number deliberately removed, whether a watch, a firearm, a notebook computer, or whatever, there has GOT to be a small still voice inside you that says, Don't do it! Something is seriously wrong. There is no convincing justification that I can think of why a serial number should be deliberately removed. I would never accept such a watch even as a gift, though I were convinced that it were a genuine Rolex. And if I were a watchmaker even without Rolex training, I would open the case for the sole purpose of getting the inside serial number for the purpose of reporting it to the proper authorities, and for notifying Rolex. No matter how one protests that an object is not stolen how can one make the assumption that the claim is true? And if you do accept it as true, but in fact it IS stolen, then you are participating in the theft by offering a market for the stolen goods. Thus, are rewarding the criminal. In other words, your are encouraging future theft (or future faking, and faking is stealing too).


When someone makes a fake Rolex, and sells it as a genuine item, or causes it to so closely resembles the original, that it could be dishonestly sold as genuine, that person is clearly stealing from Rolex as well as from the buyer. He is first of all stealing the good name of Rolex ( violating trade mark laws and potentially harming their reputation). Secondly, even if indirectly so, he is stealing sales from Rolex. The market for GENUINE pre-owned Rolex watches makes it possible for many people to sell their old Rolex watches in order to finance, in part, the purchase their NEW Rolex watches. The Sale of convincing fakes removes potential sales from that market. It appears that you consciously and willfully made a bad decision, and now you wish to avoid all of the consequences of that decision: “my objective is not to make a profit, but to break even. That would put the watch at $1100. ... If you are so desperately trying to break even (cut your losses is more accurate) what makes you think that someone else would like to assume, or should be enticed to assume your loss? Remember that the the type of huckster who sold you the fake is selling you the fake at a price far above the value of the watch, even though he gave you a discount I believe that instead of being childish about it, it is time that you decide to grow into adulthood and take RESPONSIBILITY for your own actions instead of trying to transfer the responsibility and the consequences to someone else. In other words profit from the experience by making a firm resolution from this time on, and always, to do what your true conscience tells you is just and right. Take your loss, and be grateful that the fake was not sold to you at a higher price! Your ETA movement should last you for quite a while so you might just go ahead and wear the fake. If it is real stainless and has good seals, it should remain fairly waterproof. I get the impression that you are aware that your attempt to palm your bad purchase off onto another is also against that small still voice. why else would you be afraid to give your name or return e-mail address? Please look inward and re-assess your values. Compromising ones values and trying to still its quiet voice can be habit forming, and like a narcotic addiction, it has the potential to grow beyond your present expectations. Is there anyone in the forum who feels I have spoken wrongly? Seller, you have my best wishes. I hope you find this message of some value. Sincerely, John F. Kennedy



Exact time on your Rolex?

Posted by Olaf,  Apr 15,1999,19:31


Generally, mechanical watches simply “cannot” reliably run dead-on over extended periods of time. So if a watch must deviate in the first place, most people prefer it to be slightly fast rather than slow. This is why most watches are regulated to a faster rate. This is true for all watches, not just Rolex. This does not mean, however, that a mechanical watch “must” run fast, and that something is terribly wrong if it turns out to be slow. In fact, most mechanical watches run slightly slow as long as they're brand-new, and speed up a bit after the break-in period is over after a few months. You may try to compensate for the day's error of your watch by placing it in the dial-down position over night. Also experiment with other positions to find the fastest one. Prefer a cool place for the watch over night, perhaps near the bedroom window, because cold usually speeds up a mechanical watch, whereas heat slows it down (avoid extremes, though, don't put it into the refrigerator ;-). Albeit fine watches are temperature-compensated, this compensation never is perfect. Do not have your watch regulated, not yet. Wait until your watch is at least six months old, otherwise you might end up with a watch that is way  “too” fast. On the other hand, if an older watch whose break-in period definitely is over and that used to be dead-on or slightly fast for years suddenly slows down, it usually is a sign that dirt has accumulated inside the movement or that oils have dried out. In that case it's high time for an overhaul. And finally, a mechanical watch that runs within two seconds per day, no matter if plus or minus, performs excellently. If you give it to the watchmaker to further improve this accuracy, he most likely over-regulates it and you end up with a watch that performs worse than before. Olaf




Chalk & Cheese (White Gold or Platinum)

Posted by John Quinn, Apr 14,1999,22:50


Be careful, if you are buying a gold Rolex watch out for depreciation. Also, you may notice on the threads down below that the Gold tends to wear quite quickly on the bracelet and these are FIERCE EXPENSIVE (Irish expression) to replace. The gold Rolex uses in its bracelets is 18 CARAT that is (750 per 100 parts gold) making it very soft and prone to scratching. Platinum on the other hand is very tough and durable and represents a better financial investment over the long run. Its easy to tell the difference between the two. Gold is very lustrous and has a unique silky tactile feel whereas platinum looks and feels like a dull SS and is quite heavy , it is also a lot less prone to wear. Patek use platinum quite a lot on their complication models, this should give you some idea of the value that the watch industry as a whole places on this metal. Having said all the above however : given an ideal watch I would dearly love to own a white gold Daytona , no question!! Regards, John.




Current production Rolex movements

Posted by Olaf, Apr 14,1999,22:49


Overview on current-production men's size Oyster movements by Olaf


Caliber 3000 Built since: 1984 Diameter: 28.5 mm (12 1/2 lignes) Height: 5.8 mm Jewel count: 27 Power reserve: 48 h Hairspring: flat Self-winding, no date display. Models: Air-King, Oyster Perpetual, Explorer, no-date Submariner.


Caliber 3135 Built since: 1988 Diameter: 28.5 mm (12 1/2 lignes) Height: 6.0 mm Jewel count: 31 Power reserve: 48 h Hairspring: overcoiled Breguet-type Self-winding, date display at three o'clock position. Models: Oyster Perpetual Date, Datejust, Date-Submariner, Sea-Dweller, men's size Yachtmaster.


Caliber 4030 Built since: ? Diameter: 31.0 mm (13 3/4 lignes) Height: 6.5 mm Jewel count: 31 Power reserve: 50 h Hairspring: ? Self-winding column-wheel chronograph, no date display, based upon Zenith 400 ''El Primero''. Models: Cosmograph Daytona

Caliber 3155 Derivative of the 3135, with additional day-of-week display at twelve o'clock position. Models: Day-Date Caliber 3175 Derivative of the 3135, with additional 24-h hand. Models: GMT-Master


Caliber 3185 Derivative of the 3135, with additional independently adjustable 24-h

hand. Models: GMT-Master II, Explorer II


Caliber 5035 Quartz, three hands, date display at three. Models: Oysterquartz Datejust Caliber 5055 Quartz, three hands, date display at three, day-of-week display at twelve. Models: Oysterquartz Day-Date All technical specs

without guarantee.



What age to own a Rolex - a reply

Posted by Carlos, Apr 14,1999,22:47


A few thoughts: To a degree, cost implies maturity. I myself would get a platinum president if I could, but its way out of my present financial reach. (At this point I plan to get a SS Datejust.) If I were ever to do so, it would only come after years of hard work. A half-gold Datejust like yours is a sober, dressy watch. Its cost and appearance imply a certain level of maturity in the wearer. Most younger guys seem to favor half-gold Submariners - the sportier models if you will. And this brings us to the Daytona. Now all Rolexes (excepting the Cellinis) are sport watches. In general they have come to be considered all-purpose watches, with the Professional line having a more obvious sport image. In the western culture at least, sport is stereotyped as youthful, and anything considered dressy is associated with maturity and such. As far as I'm concerned this is all irrelevant. If an 80 year-old man want to wear an SS Daytona then good for him. If an 20 year old man wants (and can afford) a gold president - then more power to him. In conclusion - if you like the Daytona - go for it.If you want a platinum president - go for it. I know that I will, even though it will be years away. Until then, an SS Datejust will be just fine - and I intend to keep both. You might consider that your father's Datejust, a Daytona, and a President would make a rather enviable collection. Just an opinion, Carlos



What age to own a Rolex?

Posted by Albert, Apr 14,1999,22:45


I hope I am not being too nosy in asking what age are some of you TURFers. Age is obviously a personal matter (even more personal if you are a female!) but the reason I ask is two-fold:


1. I am in my mid-twenties. I own an SS/18kt Datejust. This watch was passed on to me as my father passed away three years ago. I have received comments ranging from Is it real? to Why did you buy it (not knowing it was passed on to me)?. Is the SS/18kt Datejust an old man's watch?


2. My dream watches are an SS Daytona (I don't really care for the Paul Newman model), with an all white face AND a Platinum President with no diamonds! When talking Rolex with my uncles they like the fact I want the Platinum President (looks like SS but you yourself know better). I have an uncle with such watch, he wears it not to impress the passersby but the people who really know watches (the President bracelet is the obvious give-away, but you have to know Rolexes notice).


With the Daytona, however, they are baffled. Why so much for an SS Rolex? Get an Air-King! I like the Air King myself but it sure isn’t a Daytona!!! What I am actually asking, I guess, is there a certain age for a certain Rolex? At what age does own go from wanting a Daytona to wanting a President should there be such a thing? Come to think of it, the prices for various Rolexes seem to largely determine what age people can afford them. Oh yeah, people have also asked me if my Rolex was a gift. In a sad way I say yes, and I tell them I would gladly give it back to its original owner if I could. My father passed away due to diabetic complications at the age of 53). I hope I do not offend anybody with this post.



Rolex Air King

Posted by Matthew K.A., Apr 14,1999,22:44


I personally don't think of the Air King as entry level maybe in the sense that its priced the least expensive of all Rolex watches. But certainly not entry level when it comes to its looks and pedigree. It's certainly as rugged if not more so than the other watch brands costing twice the price. Case in point: It's made with the famous oyster case much like the other Rolex watches. It has a timeless look that has remained a classic all this time. Like its older brother, the date just, it can be configured or re-configured with a variety of different colored faces, numerical configurations (roman, arabic or index), bezel design, and bracelet. Can be worn as both a dress and sport watch much in the same way I wear my SS GMT or SS Daytona with shorts/sweater/loafers or three button suit. I prefer to call the Air King and all Rolex watches for that matter, .. a watch that can be worn on any occasion. As for the COSC cert... it doesn't really matter to me. We all buy Rolex watches because they're made to last several lifetimes. I would be the first one to complain if Rolex dropped it from thier collection. My favorite? The same one you like/own... the steel blue dial with either roman or arabic numbers. Take Care, Matthew K.A. BTW, I can still get away with wearing shorts this time of year because i live in Southern California. :-)



It's a Rolex!

Posted by John Quinn, Apr 14,1999,22:43


I have simple tastes, I am satisfied with the very best - Oscar Wilde. 'SUPERLATIVE' - Adj or Noun : Of the highest quality or degree. Well old Oscar , a fellow Irishman lived in simpler times, defining the best of anything these days takes some skill . For every best there is someone else’s other best , whether it be a boat, car, bottle of wine or simple cigar. Some people take the offensive step of defining their best by denigrating the competition . It's the old, cheap political trick of telling the world what’s wrong with X,Y AND Z , that’s why I bought W and that’s why you should do the same. There are , however , instances where products need no support to affirm their Best or Superlative status , one of these is , of course , the Rolex watch. Ask anybody on the street , anywhere in the world what the Best watch is and with very few exceptions , you'll hear the word Rolex. Now let's set things straight from the word go : the science of horology is dead, it is dead, Dead, DEAD. The science of calculating the earth’s rotation around the Sun is a done deal. The ART of horology , however , is very much alive and has many exponents who deal in beauty and precision and sell it as art and design. In the Patek Philippe offices in Geneva , they employ a woodworker to polish their pinions on a block of wood, I kid you not! The fact that he does it next to a room full of state of the art computer aided design equipment should tell you loads about the watch making industry and who they are selling and marketing to. Let me ask you a few questions : Who has won the most awards for innovation in watchmaking in the last five years ? Who is perceived by the watch industry to be it's great white hope? Franck Muller, that’s who. Don't believe me? Get one of his catalogues , his awards are splashed all over it. Have you got one of his watches ? Of course not. But you have a Rolex, right?


Why do you have a Rolex ? Two reasons : They are in your opinion , the best or one of the best watches in the world. They are perceived as the best or most superlative watch there is. Two good reasons. get a couple of other things straight , Rolex is not Patek and they never claimed to be. No one can doubt Patek's pre-eminence in the horological world , their recent Cal '89 with date of Easter IS a work of art. But to my mind and I am sure to a lot of other peoples, their price for such art is too high, way too high. I figure Patek are coming around to this conclusion as well, with their introduction of the Aquanaut, a firm stab at the Rolex market. It is a market they and everybody else will fail to penetrate because a Rolex is first and foremost a Rolex and every connotation that that word has will always be associated with the Oyster and the worlds first waterproof watch. Now I'm not going to drag up old history but let me state that no matter what, eh!, review you read or whose er!, opinion you come across, that denounces these great watches give them short shrift . I ask you to trust me when I say they are written by people with ulterior motives , Cynics with green eyed monsters on their backs , people with other agenda. Listen , its like this : The Rolex watch is a SUPERLATIVE CHRONOMETER , Still don't believe me ?, look at the dial-face , ITS WRITTEN ON IT. Then look at your COSC cert. Toss and replace movement?, give me a break !, I've watched these being repaired since I was a boy . THE MOVEMENTS ARE NOT TOSS AND REPLACE. These are great watches of classic design and a pedigree any company in the world would give their eye-teeth for. If anybody else tells you otherwise tell them to go away. If you have any doubts about buying one , forget them ! Buy it, enjoy it and when you're on your deathbed give it to your grandson, safe in the knowledge that it will still be ticking when he  gives it to his. John.




White Gold President

Posted by Gary S., Apr 14,1999,22:40


This is a pretty rare watch. Brand new I believe they go for around $16- 19,000. They look very similar to the Platinum President although they are not as heavy a watch and the platinum has a slightly different luster and feel. I believe the platinum presidents all come with a diamond dial and if you want a platinum look-alike, that is the way to outfit a white gold president (with a smooth, not fluted bezel). I tried one on at a Rolex show hosted by Ben Bridge jewelers last week. To tell you the truth I was not that impressed with the watch. It looks like it is made of Stainless Steel. The platinum president looked like SS but weighed a ton! I would look for a good condition used one if I were you since the styling has barely changed in decades and they depreciate fairly quickly. I would expect you might find a later model used one for $7500-9500. I own a 1962 vintage 18k rose gold Day-Date President (non-quickset, acrylic crystal) and I would not trade it for either the white gold or platinum president. The rose gold is very distinctive looking and gets lots of comments. Plus it doesn't weigh as much as a new President and is easier on the wrist. They are hard to find but cost around $5500 or so, much less than the white gold or platinum presidents. The vintage watches run very well too, with extreme accuracy. If I were you, and I had my heart set on a white gold president which is going to cost as much as a compact car, I would save the money and look for a pre-owned platinum president, whose intrinsic metal value is very high. One recently sold overnight on WatchNet for $10,000 - a good deal for a $29,000 watch. Learn as much as you can first though about the different models and then make the choice. Good luck, Gary S.



Review of TT Daytona

Posted by Tommy, Apr 14,1999,22:39


After I read some review about Date just and Submariner i think I should share some part of my experience, sorry for my English. I live in Bangkok. I got a new two tone Rolex Daytona with gold dial from my father. He bought this watch in 1994 from Rolex authorized dealer in Hong Kong. At that time he had to choose between SS & TT model the price are almost the same and he selected better material because he think TT will hold their value longer than SS model. It cost him about 5500 US$ after discount, I think Hong Kong is a good place to buy a watch.


Box. This Daytona came with a Rolex wooden box that very nice and very impressive at a first glance, outer box made of paper, Rolex leather wallet filled with the chronometer certified paper in German (may be) and a book that translate that paper into so many language but no Thai language. No real COSC certificate, two tag, one for chronometer and one for water resistance guarantee and a thin cloth that I don't know what is it used for my father so.


Appearance. Daytona design is unique. It don't have a look of Rolex, especially the TT model is very attractive the bezel, and the center band link are made of 18K YG. it was high polished and very shine. Out of 10 of my friends 5 ask me what is that watch and 2 told me wow Daytona. After 4 years the bezel still have a good shine but the black letter in the engraved tachometer scale was faded out after some heavy crashed and polished. The sapphire crystal is very hard, I was crashed the crystal with the glass corner on the top of my desk, the glass was broken out and a light scratch appear on my crystal.


Case. The case of TT Daytona made of SS, the bezel, the crown and chronograph pusher made of 18K YG the external finish is quite well but the inner lug that the serial No. and Case No. is engraved are not finished.


Bracelet. The SS/18K Oyster bracelet is finished very well. It's huge and very shine and comfortable after 4 years there are some heavy scratch on the 18K part and very light scratch on the SS part. The double fliplock is a little bit different from Sub fliplock. I think TT Daytona's shorter and has no extension part for wet suit . It's very easy to adjust the oyster band.


Accuracy & Reliability. After he bought it for 2 months he handed this watch to me, he think this watch was not suitable for his everyday activities (working day in construction sites and holiday in a jungle). At first time I got it it lose about -1 sec / day and -3 sec / day when using chronograph function. I think it's okay for -30 sec / month but after 4 years after tested this watch lose -8 sec and -14 sec with chronograph on the beat error is 0.9 I think i will send it to Rolex service center someday but I heard that they always overcharge (my friend's Air King was charged for about US$200 for time adjusting and general cleaning) and I afraid my watch will lose it's virgin haha. I use this watch for 4 years and it never have a problem and never stop. I put it on when I do skin diving. This watch can consider reliable after 4 years the test result for water resistance still over 10 bar.


Conclusion. I think Daytona is a reliable work-horse. It's always catch the eyes of other people especially TT model, very shine. If you think about buying a Daytona as a status symbol It's a very good symbol status. I think Daytona for young people and the gold President for the older. But if you want a watch that worth for your money thing Daytona is not. Me too I will not buy a Daytona for myself because it's too expensive, a lot of premium charged especially SS model it's over price . Another bad point of Daytona is it has no date function , it's very inconvenience for office man like me. I would prefer Zenith Rainbow or Some Omega Speedmaster instead of a Daytona. Remember if you want a status symbol choose SS Daytona because 18K is too soft and easy to be scratched, but if you want something usable and worth for money try the SS Omega Speedmaster or Zenith Rainbow instead of a Daytona. I will never bought Daytona, but sorry this one I got it from my father. Regards, Tommy



Daytona Strap & Bracelet Not Interchangeable

Posted by kayes , Apr 14,1999,22:37


Jack, The Daytona strap and bracelet are not interchangeable. This is because the designs of the lugs of the strap Daytona (16518) and the earlier Daytonas are slightly different. I found this out from Rolex Geneva way back in 1993 when I wanted to change the bracelet of my Daytona (16528) to the Rolex croc strap. I have seen and felt this strap Daytona and it is an exquisite watch. Buy it before your money runs out! Best wishes.




Submariner & Sea Dweller Bracelets

Posted by Olaf, Apr 14,1999,22:19


Contrary to common belief, the SD's bracelet is not better than the current Subs. It is just different because it has polished flanks which looks better. The SD's end-pieces which connect the bracelet to the case, however, are heftier and solid. You can see that when looking at them from the bottom side. The most important difference is that the SD comes with two different extension links to choose from, a short one and a long one. The Sub comes with a single extension link which is the length of the SD's short one. Personally, I prefer the Sea-Dweller over the Submariner because it has a date but no cyclops lens. The second-best would be the no-date Submariner because of the plain uncrowded symmetric dial. Olaf



Datejust & Explorer II

Posted by CRL, Apr 14,1999,22:19


I too have both a white face ExpII and datejust (ss/18k 16233). Like you I find the Datejust a bit more formal and wear it for everyday business and for sport/leisure I usually wear the Explorer II. I think either watch would be a good everyday watch with the Explorer II also perfect for sport and the Datejust leaning to the more formal. I really do like Subs as well but don't have a real need for one as I don't dive nor spend that much time around the water. I chose the Explorer II for a sport watch because it is rugged and I can, and have made good use of its dual time zone function. Still someday when I get some more bucks to burn I will probably get a Sub for another sport watch. I am not a collector but since I was very young I have liked watches and am now into tough, good looking, high quality, functional watches. Like Rolex!!! Just FYI Chuck




GMT Master - a classic

Posted by C. Veltman, Apr 14,1999,22:17


The convex crystals are really nice on an older Rolex. Here in Sweden we can not get these older types any more. The crystals available today are almost flat. 1) Yes seems fair to me. Usually priced a little lower than the Submariner. The more you look around the more price conscious you will be. Take your time. Usually the price depends a lot on the condition and of course if it has papers and box. 2) You can alter the bezel insert, there is no need for a second one. IMHO the red/blue is GMT. The black bezel always confuses me. Is it a Sub or a GMT ? 3) The Oyster bracelet is more long lasting than the Jubilee. I do find it’s style of design also more suitable for the rather heavy case of the GMT. How much a bracelet gets stretched depends very much on how it is worn. Fitted loose, just hanging around ones wrist will shorten its life. A few weeks ago I bought a Rolex with a similar shaped case and an Oyster bracelet. The watch had been used by a dental mechanic for over 20 years and was covered in dental dust daily. He had worn the watch very loose. The bracelet was very worn it had to be replaced. But still, 20 years ! Best regards and good luck searching ! Christian Veltman



Rolex Quartz Movement

Posted by Gary S), Apr 14,1999,22:16


While I am not a watchmaker or repairman, I did want to make a comment regarding Rolex quartz movements. I have always been a diehard fan of the Rolex automatic movements and never gave so much as a glance to the quartz models. I have seen the movement on my 1962 Day-Date Perpetual and it is very well finished and beautiful.


This year, my Dad who is 77, is simply no longer active enough to keep his 1985 Datejust automatic wound. He was getting pretty frustrated with having the watch stop every few days and constant winding was a hassle for him. He loved his Rolex which otherwise was a fine and accurate watch for him. After discussing it with him, we decided to take a look at the Oysterquartz Datejust watches. I was very surprised and pleased when I finally got to see and handle one of these watches in person. I always thought they were pretty ugly from the catalog photos. The actual watch is really very good looking with clean styling. They have the same high quality fit and finish as is evident on the Perpetual Datejust watches. I was very impressed.


The two tone watch is classy looking, with satin finished gold parts on the bracelet and the regular fluted gold bezel on the watch head. Unlike the chintzy throw away quartz movements found in so many cheap watches, the Rolex quartz movement is truly a work of art. It has eleven jewels and is if anything, over engineered. We traded in his SS Datejust for a two tone 1981 vintage Oysterquartz Datejust, and this thing weighs more than my 1962 President. It is a very solid watch with a nicely finished, masculine looking integrated bracelet. It has a lot of heft and presence on the wrist and yet the integrated bracelet has that same silky smooth feel when worn. The styling and looks are what would result if an A.P. Royal Oak wristwatch had intercourse with a Oyster Perpetual Datejust and this is the offspring :). It is the only quartz movement I have ever listened to which ticks very loudly and positively each second as the lever mechanism works. The second hand steps with precision to the markings on the dial - aligning perfectly with the markings. Accuracy is superb, as would be expected. I understand that this watch is designed to account for temperature changes without affecting battery life. It has a sapphire crystal and is water-resistant the same as an automatic Oyster. There is a posting and hyperlink in this forum about an online Rolex catalog by Atlas Diamond Company which has a nice view of the Oysterquartz movement. I am very impressed with the watch and will probably add a SS Oysterquartz to my stable some day. I also like the look of the Oysterquartz President which is offered with a pyramid finish integrated President bracelet - very cool looking watch. The next time you are in a Rolex dealer's shop, ask to see and feel an Oysterquartz Datejust - I think you will be very pleasantly surprised, as I was. These watches are true Rolexes and not aberrations as I had always thought of them. Gary S., Torrance, CA



Does Rolex Outsource?

Posted by Olaf, Apr 14,1999,22:15


Bracelets are made by the Swiss company Gay Frères. However, they bought them up recently: Quotation: ''Rolex buys up Gay Frères Rolex has acquired the entire share capital of Gay Frères, a company employing over 950 people in Geneva. Rolex and Gay Frères have been working together for over 50 years and Rolex has always accounted for over 90 % of Gay Frères' turnover, mostly watch bracelets. For Rolex, this acquisition is part of a strategy aimed at ensuring control over the main components of its product.'' End of quotation. Furthermore, the complete escapement of the Cal. 3135 movement (and most likely of the Cal. 3000, too) is a part called Clinergic-28, made by the Swiss company Fabriques d'Assortiments Reunis, or FAR for short. I've been told that outsourcing escapement parts is common even for the most high-end brands (including e.g. Patek Philippe), with Jaeger-LeCoultre currently being the only exception to this rule. I've been told that doing the surface finish of the Oyster case parts also is delegated to a Swiss contractor but I cannot remember to whom. I don't know if Rolex outsources any work or parts to non-Swiss contractors. Olaf




What is a Swiss Watch?

Posted by Frans Hens, Apr 14,1999,22:14


A watch is considered a Swiss watch when its movement is Swiss, it is set in Switzerland and its final control from the manufacturer occurs in Switzerland. A movement is considered Swiss when it has been assembled in Switzerland, checked by the manufacturer in Switzerland and is Swiss for at least 50 percent of the value of its components (excluding the assembling costs). Source: Watches, 1998




Talking Points - a Rolex service book

Posted by C. Veltman, Apr 14,1999,21:53


I am very glad for you. I could not service and test a Rolex fitted with after market diamonds here in Sweden. Usually when a watch is serviced here in Sweden they give you 1 year guaranty and also that it is waterproof to the depth of the specific model. Rolex have printed a little book called Talking Points it is only available to authorized Rolex dealers and their staff. In it you can read about their  service intervals, 5 years. No I do not service all my watches every five years simply because they are used about 2 weeks a year each. Perpetually Yours ! Christian Veltman






Some Rolex Ads

Posted by kayes , Apr 14,1999,21:49


This post is prompted by Carlos saying (see thread below) that he hardly sees any Rolex Ads in the States. In SE Asia, Rolex advertises extensively and everyday I can see a Rolex Ad either in a newspaper or a magazine. I have compiled a list of Rolex Ads which are often seen here for those who might be interested to understand Rolex's promotion style. But the Rolex Ad I really would like to see is at the bottom of this list :-)



Rolex Submariner gold/steel (16613)

Catchline - To an underwater photographer, time is more precious than light.

Personality: David Doubilet - Underwater Photographer David Doubilet is recognised as one of the most artistically ambitious underwater photographers in the world. Says Doubilet: I look beneath the water for the same elements a surface photographer does - light, colour, motion, and gesture - and there is no place that offers a subtler variety of those elements than the sea. To achieve his singular effects, Doubilet and his assistants will submerge themselves for hours at a stretch, sometimes taking with them as many as ten complete camera systems, spare scuba tanks, and computers to ensure that every dive is carefully monitored. Yet of all the equipment David Doubilet takes with him on each diving expedition, there is one particular item that he trusts above all others. My Submariner. It is something I regard as utterly indispensable.


Rolex Datejust gold/steel (16233)

Catchline - Yo-Yo Ma. A serious musician who calls his cello Petunia.

Personality: Yo-Yo Ma - Musician Yo-Yo Ma has been called the greatest cellist of his generation. Mr. Ma merely describes as very fortunate, for he plays on the Davidoff Stradivarius and a Montagnana made in Venice in 1733. Once I played the Montagnana at a master class in Salt Lake City, he confides with a smile, and a student suggested a name for it. And since YoYo Ma must always buy these instruments their own airline tickets when travelling, he has sometimes amused his companions by requesting one ticket for myself, and one for my cello, Petunia! On the subject of a third instrument, his Rolex Chronometer, Mr. Ma is equally candid, It's extremely elegant. And utterly indestructible. Which is no more than might be said about Yo-Yo Ma's contribution to our understanding of musicianship.


Rolex GMT-Master II stainless steel (16710)

Catchline - Designed by Sir Norman Foster. Engineered like a Rolex.

Personality: Sir Norman Foster - Architect Sir Norman Foster's soaring structure of steel and glass at London's Stansted Airport seems like a celebration of flight itself. Moreover, it possesses a clarity which leaves the traveller in no doubt whatsoever exactly where he or she is. In his own constant travelling to visits projects around the world, Foster has frequent recourse to his Rolex GMT-Master. It enables him to keep track of time in London when he is visiting a site in, say, Hong Kong - where his current airport project lies. Every one of Sir Norman's buildings reflects his concern for the way in which things are put together and his immense respect for the materials he uses. Is it any surprise that he wears a Rolex?


Rolex Day-Date gold (18208)

Catchline - If every golfer's swing was as reliable as my Rolex, I'd be out of a job.

Personality: David Leadbetter - Golf Coach His gift as a communicator and his adaptability make David Leadbetter one of golf's most sought-after teachers. Just how highly his advice is valued by the world's finest golfers can be judged by the gift that he received from the first Open winner he coached: a specially-inscribed Rolex Day-Date Chronometer. David Leadbetter can trace many parallels between the Rolex on his wrist

and the ideal golf swing. What we're looking for is reliabilty and consistency - efficiency if you will. I think my Rolex covers all these aspects. It's reliable. It's efficient. It's good-looking. And it does the business every time.


Rolex Explorer II stainless steel (16570)

Catchline - To the ends of the earth and the top of the world. Only two of us have made it.

Personality: Erling Kagge - Explorer On May 9th 1994, Erling Kagge became the very first man to achieve the impossible. He had reached the North Pole with no outside help. He had reached the South Pole totally alone. And he had conquered Everest at his first ever attempt. He was accompanied on all three expeditions by one watch. His Rolex Explorer II. It's the one piece of equipment I know I can trust, he says. It's built to withstand almost anything, and it's never once let me down. Strength and reliability are the qualities that Erling Kagge values above all others. I never trust to luck, he says, but the better your equipment, the luckier you get. Maybe that's why he values his Rolex so highly.


Rolex Day-Date platinum (18206)

Catchline - This man isn't flying. He's travelling back in time.

Personality: Ichikawa Ennosuke III - Kabuki Actor High above the Theatre du Chatelet - the Paris metropolitan theatre - flies a fox named Genkuro, played by Ichikawa Ennosuke III. This spectacle represents more than just an extraordinary theatrical effect. It also marks a return to the popular origins of a performance art that is nearly 400 years old - Kabuki. Once Ichikawa Ennosuke III had decided that it was time to get back to the real Kabuki, he found himself taking on the roles of producer, playwright, director and actor. Only thus could he create his new style of theatre (called Super Kabuki) that so accurately reflects the values of modern people. It is a demanding lifestyle. Perhaps that is why Ennosuke has chosen to wear a Rolex. As he himself has said: My Rolex symbolises for me the essential spirit of Kabuki - style, tradition, beauty. Following his performance in Paris, Ennosuke was awarded the Prix Vermeil, the highest honour presented to those who contribute to the arts. Such accolades will surely encourage him in his aim to bring Kabuki closer to the people, and nearer to the hearts of all nations.




Rolex Submariner gold/steel (16613)

Catchline - Yacht designer Bruce Farr attributes much of the success of his designs to reliability engineering. So do we at Rolex.

Personality: Bruce Farr - Yacht Designer Yachts that Bruce Farr designs have an uncanny habit of finishing first. Before that, however, they have one minor obstacle to surmount: they have to get around the course. A course that could well circle the world. Just as his yachts are engineered to keep going under the most adverse conditions, so is the watch that Farr so much admires: his Rolex Submariner. Equipped with a triple-sealed screw down winding crown, and individually pressure-tested to 1,000 feet, every single Submariner is a certified ocean-going chronometer. And the very epitome of reliability engineering.


Rolex Sea-Dweller stainless steel (16600)

Catchline - Theo Mavrostomos has been to a world record depth of 701 metres in a pressure chamber. With the world's smallest decompression chamber strapped to his wrist.

Personality: Theo Mavrostomos - Deep Sea Diver The divers of Comex hav long been recognised as world leaders in undersea diving technology. Like every Comex diver, Theo Mavrostomos wears a standard-issue Rolex Sea-Dweller chronometer. Guaranteed waterproof to no less than 4,000 feet, the Sea-Dweller boasts a unique feture: a helium escape valve. the molecules of helium in the mixture that saturation divers breathe can penetrate everywhere - even into an Oyster case. The Sea-Dweller's unique valve allows these expanding gasses to escape safely when the diver ascends, thus preventing any risk of the case exploding. Meanwhile, who knows? One day a Comex diver might be able to go as deep as his Rolex.


Rolex GMT-Master II stainless steel (16710)

Catchline - Hong Kong International Airport. Designed by Sir Norman Foster. Engineered like a Rolex.

Personality: Sir Norman Foster - Architect Even the Jumbo jets that cluster around it are dwarfed by Sir Norman Foster's breathtaking terminal building at Hong Kong's new airport. It is more than a kilometre long, yet every detail of its gleaming steel and glass structure can withstand the closest scrutiny. As, indeed, can the Rolex GMT-Master II that never leaves Sir Norman's wrist. Carved from a solid ingot of steel, its case contains components accurate to one thousandth of a millimetre. And thanks to its 24-hour hand and a rotatable bezel, it allows Sir Norman to keep track of his projects around the world. Right around the clock.


Rolex GMT-Master II gold (16718)

Catchline - Around the world in 216 hours, 3 minutes and 44 seconds


Personalities: Dick Rutan & Jeana Yeager - Aviators Dawn in the Mojave desert, California. Out of a clear blue sky a frail, insect-like aircraft touched down at Edwards Air Force Base. This is the moment that marked the end of one of the most extraordinary feats of aviation history. Dick Rutan and his co-pilot Jeana Yeager had just become the very first people to fly around the world without stopping or refuelling. The weight of each item on board the Voyager had to be carefully measured. Nothing but vitally essential equipment could be tolerated. Which is how Dick Rutan's and Jeana Yeager's Rolex Chronometers came to record the fact that Voyager's historic journey lasted 216 hours, 3 minutes and 44 seconds.


Rolex Lady Datejust gold/steel (69173)

Catchline - Sylvie Guillem has a way of dancing around tradition.

Personality: Sylvie Guillem - Ballerina Her suppleness is legendary. Her command over those incredibly long limbs means that every performance elicits gasps from audiences around the world. Sylvie Guillem frequently finds herself in conflict with the traditions and rules of classical ballet. I have a way of being able to walk around tradition if it gets in my way. Nevertheless, the classical form of her Rolex Oyster earns nothing except admiration. It is a beautiful watch. I fell in love with it. Notice the pose that Mlle. Guillem has chosen to adopt for her picture. Just like her Rolex, it combines elegance and balance with the utmost technical ability. When asked to name this extraordinary ballet position, Mlle. Guillem replied with a smile: Six o'clock. Precisely.


Rolex Lady Datejust gold/steel (69173)

Catchline - Sylvie Guillem calls this position Six o'clock. Her Rolex calls it five fifty-eight and seventeen seconds precisely.

Personality: Sylvie Guillem - Ballerina Every movement that Sylvie Guillem performs is carried out with breathtaking grace and precision. But, for this most expressive of prima ballerinas, technique pure and simple is not enough. Neither is it enough for the Rolex Lady Datejust that graces her wrist. Its own movement is also a masterpiece of precision. Yet, even though its owner will never set eyes on it, every single piece of that movement will have been polished until it sparkles like jewelry. It's all part of that passion for perfection shared by those who make Rolex Oysters, and those who choose to wear them.


Rolex GMT-Master II gold (16718)

Catchline - Coming or going, you'll know the time.

Personality: Captain Steve Wand - Concorde Pilot It's easy to lose track of time at 60,000 feet, but not for the Rolex GMTMaster II. Developed to be used by intercontinental pilots, this watch shows the time in two time zones at a glance. The GMT-Master II worn by Concorde Captain Steve Wand allows him to read London time with the conventional hour and minute hands, and he can read New York time with the 24-hour hand and the clearly marked rotating bezel that is the hallmark of this classic design. Says Captain Wand: My GMT-Master II is like Concorde. When you settle on a design that is successful, you want to keep it. You'll agree, even if you don't fly as often as he does.


Rolex Lady Datejust gold (69158)

Catchline - Time I value above all things. It just gets more and more


Personality: Dame Kiri Te Kanawa - Opera Singer Without question her career has been triumphantly consistent over the years. Yet Dame Kiri Te Kanawa readily admits that one thing has changed: her attitude to time. It is so beautifully expressed in Der Rosenkavalier, she says, translating the part of The Marschallin from memory; I go through the house in the middle of the night, and I hear the ticking of the clocks. I cannot stop them; I cannot turn them back. It is like snow falling. Dame Kiri may well feel that time has speeded up year by year until January to January now flies. Her punishing schedule fills her diary five years in advance. Yet Dame Kiri remains her usual straightforward and uncompromising self. To arrive early is unfortunate, but to be late is the rudest thing imaginable, she insists. Then relenting, she smiles and she adds, sometimes I do not know whether I organize time, or time organizes me. One thing, however, remains clear. As a family woman, she finds that time is most precious to her - when I'm leaving, when I have to say goodbye; that's the hardest part of all. For seventeen years Dame Kiri has worn a Rolex and insists that she would never ever be without it. Of her treasured gold Lady Datejust Chronometer with its diamond bezel she says it is very beautiful, very elegant, quite wonderful. It is gratifying indeed to hear that in an ever accelerating world, certain things at least remain constant.


Rolex Datejust gold/steel (16233)

Catchline - Yo-Yo Ma believes the best instruments are Italian, made in the early eighteenth century. Yet he has deliberately chosen one that is Swiss, made in the late twentieth century.

Personality: Yo-Yo Ma - Musician He has been called the greatest cellist of his generation. And he plays on two of the greatest instruments created in any generation: the Davidoff Stradivarius, dated 1712, and a Montagnana made in Venice in 1733. They have different voices', he explains, describing the Stradivarius as more like a great claret, more tenor, while the Montagnana is more like a baritone, more earthy, like a Burgundy. But which I choose is up to my mood ..... On the subject of his third instrument, the Rolex chronometer which accompanies him everywhere, Yo-Yo ma is equally candid. I just love it, he says, You can use it for any occasion.


Rolex Submariner gold/steel (16613)

Catchline - The fish are at home. So is your Rolex.

Personality: David Doubilet - Underwater Photographer Ever since Rolex created the first diving watch with a rotatable bezel, the Submariner has been regarded by divers the world over as essential equipment. The rotatable bezel allows for the measurement of elapsed bottom time, and can be reset to time the diver's ascent. To aid in measuring decompression stops, the bezel is calibrated in specific markers for the first fifteen minutes. As underwater photographer David Doubilet says: For safe diving a reliable timepiece is critical. The Submariner is pressure-resistant to 1000 feet - a depth that very few divers will ever encounter. Yet you'll find a Submariner is equally at home when setting the time for nothing more hazardous than your next business meeting.


Rolex Datejust gold/steel (16233)

Catchline - The desert is in constant motion. So is your Rolex.

Personality: Nigel Winser - Explorer Ever since Rolex invented and patented the first effective automatic movement, the Perpetual rotor, generations of explorers and scientists have relied on their Rolex Oysters for expeditions. Sensitive to even the slightest movement of the wearer's wrist, the rotor pivots around an axis to wind the mainspring, maintaining constant even tension. Scientific expeditions depend on reliable field equipment like my Rolex Oyster, says Nigel Winser, leader of the Royal Geographical Society's Wahiba Sands joint expedition with the Government of Oman. You'll find a Rolex dependable, even if the only sand you encounter is at the beach.


An Ad I Would Like To See

Rolex Daytona stainless steel (16520)

Catchline - The watch to serve time with. or Time is served by the Daytona.

Personality: Toni (The Virus) Mariano - Member of Mafia Executive.Council Serving time can be a pretty lonely affair but you could always make it a twosome if you have a Daytona on your wrist. Daytona - a watch that serves precise time, all the time. Says Toni, I never serve time without my Daytona.



Parts for Vintage Rolex Watches

Posted by C. Veltman, Apr 14,1999,21:46


Congratulations to your new bubble back ! Sorry to say but your local dealer is right, parts for these old models are a bit difficult to obtain. Some time ago one of my BB´s was not working and I had to repair it. It turned out that wrong parts had been used in a previous repair. It took about four months just to find the correct wheels. Parts for these old models are quite expensive as production has ended long ago. I do not look at it asa real problem though. Every watchmaker knows that old Rolex parts are in demand so nothing will be thrown away. But it is vital to have a watchmaker who shares ones joy and who does not mind searching a bit extra for the parts. It can sometimes be worth buying a hole movement rather than singel parts. Keep the parts you need and sell the rest, maybe it can finance your repair. Although my own experience with repair of my BB I am not afraid of vintage watches. As a collector I even enjoyed the last search for apart. I bought a Rolex Turn-O-Graph (not a Datejust with turning bezel) in gold and steel. A very rare 1950´s model. The bezel was missing but I choose to buy it anyhow. Emails where sent around the world. (I still have not found it !) Will I be able to get or not......thrilling! Just my thoughts. Best regards from Stockholm, Sweden Christian Veltman





Rolex Bubbleback

Posted by C. Veltman, Apr 14,1999,21:00


Usually the nickname Bubble Back is used for the Oystermodels with a straight line between the lugs. The name refers to the domed back of these models. Also the term Semi-Bubble back is sometimes used for the early Datejust´s. Some of these real BB are fitted with a flatback. In my opinion quite confusing. Rolex information? This is really the hardest part when you are interested in older models. There do exist some books but they are quite full of mistakes. I have bought almost every book about Rolex and so far most of them are quite confusing. There is a new book by Osvaldo Patrizzi (head of Antiqourum) coming out and I have my hopes up. I will review this book as soon as I have read it. Best regards Christian Veltman



Tudor Submariner

Posted by John F. Kennedy,


Don't be put off from buying the older (rose) Tudor Submariner if it is in excellent condition. The watch you speak of is now a collectors' item! Later Tudor dive watches came in the same Rolex case but the dial and hands were changed and no longer are identical to the Rolex Sub. model 5513. The Tudor you speak of is tested to the same depth and accuracy as the 5513 and has the same accuracy. The appearance and markings on the case are identical including the crown symbol on the crown. The dial and hands are the same as the 5513 except that the Tudor says Tudor on the face of the dial where the 5513 has Rolex, and where the 5513 face has a crown, the this tudor has a stylized rose. All later Tudors have a shield in place of the rose, and the appearance of the dial and hands is totally different. Rolex never puts a movement into their cases unless they are excellent in quality. Rolex was so proud of this tudor that they put the Rolex Crown symbol on the adjusting crown and the back of the case says ORIGINAL OYSTER CASE BY ROLEX GENEVA. The Rolex Crown Symbol is found in no less than three places on this Tudor, including the back, the wristband snap lock, and the adjusting crown. Rolex wanted to be sure that everyone would know that this was THEIR product.


This watch is a true Rolex. $500 is a very good price for this watch if it is in really good condition. The comments made by the others are valuable in that they express their subjective preference and as such they are valid. If your object is to get a Rolex that says Rolex on the face of the dial in a 60's vintage Submariner then buy the 5513 or 5013 But don't assume that the quality of the watch is necessarily any better than it's contemporary Tudor Submariner. If you are a collector of Rolex watches and fail to purchase this watch, you are going to have an important gap in your collection. This Tudor Submariner is very hard to find. No mine is not for sale! among the Submariners that I have are that particular model Tudor Submariner, the James Bond (without adjusting crown protective ears), the 5513, the 16613 BL two-tone, and the Sea Dweller. I also have a GMT with red and blue bezel. If I could afford only one excellent watch, and the name of Rolex were not so universally known, the choice I would make would be that Tudor Submariner because of the cost to excellence ratio (more bang for the buck). But, since, like others, I am not immune to the snob factor, and the whole world recognizes Rolex on the face of a watch, I would pick the Rolex Submariner without the date if all I could afford would be one watch, and I wanted not only to know that I had the best but also wanted the whole world to know too.


If you can afford it, get both the Tudor submariner and another Rolex model of your choice that says Rolex on its dial. If you can't, then you have to decide whether those four little white letters on the dial are worth spending another $1,000 to $2,000. Don't be put off by other people's personal preferences, not even mine. You have your own, and they should be satisfied to the level you can afford. The reason I don't have a solid gold Submariner is because I don't think that they are practical. Gold is soft. It dents, scratches, and mars easily and should be reserved for a watch that is not intended for use in activities that would tend to damage its appearance. The President is a better choice for solid Gold. It looks grand on a person who is all dressed up, and it keeps time as well as any other Rolex, and perhaps even as well as a 30 year old Tudor Submariner! ;-)



Simplicity versus Complexity

Posted by John F. Kennedy, April 14,1999, 20:57


What is meant by best when one is looking for the best movement in a Rolex? I shall first give my definition and then offer my personal guidelines on how to qualify a Rolex for that definition. Perhaps we shall then see whether any of you agree or have additional suggestions: I consider best Rolex movement to mean most enduring, and accurate mechanical movement. Often an owner of a Rolex wants it to last not only for his life time, but for future generations in his family line. He also wants it to be accurate. In a man's watch, the simpler a Rolex chronometer is, the more accurate and durable it is likely to be. The fewer moving parts there are the less there is to go wrong at some time in the future and the easier things are to repair. The the greater the number of parts and the longer the chain of moving parts that is connected to the mainspring of any watch, the more friction is created and the more points there are that are subject to fluctuation, thus more wear and less accuracy.


For this reason and for others, a Daytona would be my last choice in a modern Rolex. The most rugged Rolexes are of course the all stainless steel specialty or sports watches such as the Sea Dweller (number one), the Submariner, the GMT, and the Explorer. MY PERSONAL FAVORITE IN AN EVERYDAY SPORT AND WORK ROLEX IS THE SUBMARINER WITHOUT DATE. Not only is it the simplest but it has the most attractively balanced dial and whether I'm SCUBA diving, sky diving, or scaling a cliff. I am not concerned that it doesn't indicate the day of the month. IT IS A SERIOUS PROFESSIONAL'S WATCH, as are all of those listed above. Whenever the month changes from 31 days to 30, 28, or 29 on a date watch, the owner must adjust his watch thus disturbing the stem and crown O-ring seal. Look at all the potential leaks on the Daytona and all other watches that have more than just a simple crown. While this has little to do with the movement itself I must digress a bit in order so point out certain things about durability of the case and wristband.


Many prospective owners however, would like the the more luxurious gold or two tone watches. My preference in these would be the Submariner and the GMT. These are not made without the date feature unfortunately. Please keep in mind that the purer the gold is the softer and less durable it will be. one should choose the watch with the lowest gold purity level. 11k is much more durable than 18k. 21k is pure gold. even 9k (if it were available in a Rolex) would still be non corrosive and would maintain its luster longer than softer gold, and would not be so subject to scratches and wear as would a watch made from more pure gold. To me such a watch should not only be a luxury, but it's practicality as a professional tool should not be compromised. Because of the size of the movement, no woman's watch can qualify as highly in durability or accuracy as the men's Rolex watches above. Further, whether flying one's own airplane, SCUBA diving, Sky diving or just trying to see the dial in subdued lighting, if a woman wants a serious professional working and sports watch, she should buy one of those listed above and have the wristband adjusted to fit her wrist by the dealer at the time of sale. More women today are wearing men's watches than ever before. A woman can do this without raising eyebrows. James Bond wearing a woman's Rolex would raise eyebrows! ;-)



Red Submariner

Posted by C. Veltman, Apr 14,1999,20:56


The red submariner is a ref 1680. The name Submariner is printed in red. This model was likely in production ca 1968 to 1978. I do say likely because there is no trustworthy information at hand today. There is a highly regarded Rolexbook which says the red Subs only were in production 1971-73. However I do believe this to wrong maily because of two reasons. First, there are to many pre 1971 red Subs on the market and secondly, Rolex themselves advertised red one as late as 1977 in National Geographic. The red Submariner Date are today very popular and therefor becoming a bit rare with high prices as a result. Best regards from Stockholm Sweden Christian Veltman



Sea Dweller - The Habitat Watch

Posted by John F. Kennedy,


As you may already know, the Sea dweller is designed to be used in an underwater habitat that has a mixed atmosphere of helium and oxygen. This permits the concentration of oxygen to have a normal partial pressure without the nitrogen which is the major gas found in air along with oxygen. If normal air were used in a deep sea habitat, the pressurized concentration of nitrogen would cause nitrogen narcosis (very undesirable). With helium replacing the nitrogen, many dive problems are solved, but some others are created. Because the helium molecule is so small (atomic weight: 1; atomic number: 1 - remember?), helium can easily infiltrate through the crystal and O rings of the Submariner or Sea Dweller. Since the heli-ox mixture in the under sea habitat will be so much greater than that of the surface atmospheric pressure, the accumulated helium pressure inside a Submariner would be so great, that on surfacing the waterproof integrity could fail since there is no way for the Submariner to release the gas inside the case in order to equalize with the decreased pressure of the water near the surface. Naturally the crystal is the weakest component of the watch movement's case. As a helium filled toy balloon rises to greater altitudes it encounters lower atmospheric pressure so that the pressure differential inside the balloon becomes so much greater that the atmosphere around it that it expands. The same principle is at play in the ocean except that the effect is greatly exaggerated (water weighs so much more than air). Now the helium that was pressurized in the watch at a great depth may be equal to several atmospheres, but as it rises to the surface, unlike with the balloon, there is no place for it to expand. Therefore the gas pushes outward with tremendous pressure. As mentioned above the case is much stronger than the watch crystal and eventually something must give way.


With the Sea Dweller ROLEX has solved this problem by using a one way valve (pressure relief valve). If you are not going to live in an under sea habitat with marine biologists or geologists, then you don't need the sea dweller. Essentially it is the Submariner with a relief valve and designed to take the pressure at a depth of 4000 feet rather than the lesser depths of the Submariner. For any other purpose, the Submariner is just as good as the Sea Dweller and of the same quality. Gold is not normally what you would expect in a hard knocks working watch. Divers watches take a terrible beating over the years (you should see the scratches on my Submariner's bezel case and band! the ROLEX symbol on the top of the screw down crown is almost unrecognizable (time to replace the crown when I get it cleaned). people don't notice these things very much with a stainless steel watch, unless they look close and use a magnifying glass, but when one has a gold watch, one would also like to wear it for dress use. Gold glitters better when it doesn't have millions of very fine scratches that take away its lustre. Besides, who wants to abuse a watch for which they paid over $19300 U.S.? There are not a great number of people working in underwater habitats, which limits the size of the market for the Sea Dweller, and for the reasons just noted above, where a Submariner will do just as well, it seems unlikely that ROLEX will make any solid gold Sea Dwellers (especially when gold is much softer and easier to mar than stainless steel. I can understand why some people might prefer the Sea Dweller even though they may never enter an underwater habitat: The date window at the three O'clock position on the dial is not magnified by the large ugly bubble that is found on the Submariner so the Sea Dweller looks more like the old 5013 or the 5513 which have no date window. I can't see any real advantage to the date window, even minimized as it is in the Sea Dweller. I can't imagine anyone needing to refer to it under water, and most people can read the date off a calendar before they leave home for the day. The magnifier bubble seems to throw the dial off balance, and it is not as aesthetically pleasing as is the perfectly symmetrical dial of the dateless Submariner. Whenever the minute hand comes under the magnifier, it looks grossly distorted so that one cannot perceive to which minute it is pointing. Since the Sea Dweller has no magnifier, it is free of this problem too. I only wish they had a dateless two-tone 18k/SS Submariner with a blue bezel and dial. An on the job dateless watch that can be worn as a dress watch on the same hand with a gold ring, perfect! It's the best of both worlds.



Accessorizing your Rolex

Posted by John Quinn, Apr 14,1999,20:50


There has never been a better time to own a Rolex. The Oyster case, which was designed in the 1920's, is an example of Art Deco design, which is currently enjoying a worldwide revival. Art Deco is noted for its flamboyant (though not ostentatious) style. It achieved its Zenith in the inter war years when economies worldwide were on the up-turn. Strictly speaking the JLC Reverso is the NE Plus Ultra of Art Deco style as most watches of this style were rectangular in shape. However the Rolex Oyster with its big case and overstated dial qualifies well. Novelty of design ala the Reversos turning case and the Oysters waterproofness were also a feature of Art Deco. As I say , Art Deco is currently enjoying a revival and auction houses everywhere are fetching record prices for jewelry and accessories from this period. No better time to accessorize your faithful and much loved possession. The precious metal Gold, which had its heyday in the disco diva 70's (The decade that taste forgot) on the chest of every medallion man and as gold plate over plastic (I kid you not!) on the wrist of every social wannabe is very much out of favor at the moment. This looks set to continue as more modern metals, i.e. titanium and platinum are constantly at the vanguard of innovation and design. So ditch your aviator sunglasses, your Elvis Presley belt buckle, your sovereign rings and your 2 ton nine carat gold chain.


If you want to preserve the social cachet which your Rolex brings, think cufflinks, fountain pens and sharp tailoring. Try and match the color tone of your watch. First rule : if your watch is steel, don't wear gold cufflinks and vice versa. If you are lucky enough to own a gold Rolex then wear white diamond or Onyx (Art Deco favorites) cufflinks on a gold background. Don't wear jewelry. This is the preserve of women and aristocrats. Never wear gold trimmed spectacles, these have been the style equivalent of flared trousers since the beginning of the nineties. Think titanium or black anodised steel and you're there. Invest in a decent pair of cufflinks. You side-stepped the whims of fashion when you bought your Rolex. Do the same here. A nice pair of silver links are worth the expense as you'll have them a life-time . Better still make a small investment in one of the more famous name jewelry houses cufflinks and you've bought yourself an heirloom. Take advice on them and try and get an Art Deco style pair, you'll be surprised at how well they look with your watch.


If you write at home or in the office then a fountain pen is a must. Mont Blanc which had its innovation heyday in the 1920's looks a good bet. They recently had a Limited Edition Meisterstuck pen called the 'Agatha Christie' , which is a replica of a '20's pen with 'aged' silver detail in the form of a snake which is used as the pen clip. You should kill for this pen. Any of the Meisterstuck series is ideal. More modern pen makers such as Visconti, Omas and Montegrappa also make pens with a firm eye towards design detail. The Parker Duofold (another Art Deco classic), which, in my opinion, is one of the best pens on the market should also be high on your list. If the gold detail on these pens is clashing with your stainless steel then there are precious metal alternatives in silver and titanium. If all you use your pen for is to sign cheques, most major pen makers also make ballpoints (check out the Parker Duofold ballpoint) with the same care and attention they give to their FP's. The Rolex watch really allows the wearer to have the final say in how it looks on him or her. So if you want to wear one with your 10 year old tee-shirt and jeans then make sure you are getting away with it. If the only other accessory you have is a beer gut and an untrimmed goatee maybe you should have a rethink. In the final analysis, taking a tip from every Yakuza, Mafioso and triad member out there, the one accessory sure to show off your Rolex is confidence !





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