Modern Australian

Rolex Buying Guide: Top 8 Questions To Ask Before You Buy

  • Written by Modern Australian

The Rolex brand is the epitome of top-of-the-line watches. People from all over the world list Rolex as the top brand among watches. Who wouldn’t want to have a watch that’s made from the finest materials and crafted with world-class artisanship? The Rolex brand is truly a status symbol for more than a century now.

You are probably thinking of buying one, aren’t you? If you’re planning to buy a brand new or a second-hand Rolex, you have to know some important details that can be extremely helpful. The prices of these luxurious watches are incredibly high. Make sure that the money you spend is worth the quality and state of the Rolex watch you’re buying.

Here are the top questions you should ask the seller (and yourself) before purchasing a Rolex watch.

Is the Watch Authentic?

This is the first and most important question you should ask whenever you’re buying a brand new or pre-owned Rolex. Due to its high demand and lucrative value, the Rolex brand has the most counterfeits in the watch market. You should watch out for it. Learn how to discern an authentic luxury watch from a counterfeit.

Here’s a list of key points to remember when trying to determine if the Rolex watch is authentic or a fake one. Use these key points when assessing the watch that you’re about to buy to ensure that you have the real deal on your hands.
  • * For brand new purchases, the seller is authorised or has a direct dealership agreement with Rolex. 
  • * For second-hand purchases, the seller has the original box along with the paperwork.
  • * Most authentic Rolex watches have high-quality, self-winding movements. Fake ones use quartz.
  • * Listen to the sound of the movement. A ticking sound indicates quartz movement.
  • * All authentic Rolex watches, with the exemption of the vintage and the Sea-Dweller model, have the smooth metal case back.
  • * Check the crown and its etching. The quality of an authentic Rolex crown can never be matched by replicas.
  • * The weight of an authentic Rolex watch is far heavier than the fake ones due to the high-quality metals.
  • * The engraved serial number is presented with perfection and precision. There’s a difference between an engraved and an etched serial number.
  • * If the price you’re offered at is too low and cheap, there’s no doubt you’re holding fake.

What’s the Condition of the Movement?

All watches will always undergo and suffer from wear and tear. The authentic Rolex watch is no exception. Although Rolex watches can last decades without the need for servicing or part replacement, it wouldn’t hurt to check the accuracy of its movement.

You can use a timegrapher to check the accuracy and precision of a watch’s movement. This tool is used to check whether the watch adds or loses seconds in a day. 

Check all the features and functions of the watch. They should be operating properly. The sound of the rotor mustn’t be too soft or too loud. The date features, if present, must be accurate.

The “exacting process” is so intricate that you would need an expert or someone who has a lot of experience with Rolex watches at your side.

Is Everything on the Watch All-Original?

The timepiece is composed of hundreds of mechanical parts that work together to create a seamless, precise movement. As the years and decades pass, something will surely go awry and the watch’s function will be affected.

When buying old Rolex watches that are more than a decade old, ask the seller if there were parts that had to be replaced or if the watch underwent servicing in the past. You won’t have this problem if the timepiece is a few years old tho.

In addition, you don’t have to worry or shun away Rolex watches that have “serviced parts” as long as these replacements were approved by the company. 

What’s the Condition of the Oyster Case?

The Oyster case is one of (if not) the most unique feature of Rolex watches. The case is made from any of the following materials: steel, gold, and platinum. The company invented this feature in 1926 and has since been a symbol of robustness and waterproofing.

Check the condition as well as the authenticity of the Rolex watch you’re holding by conducting a water pressure test. Fake watches that need repairs will usually fail the test. You’ll need assistance from a professional to ensure you’ll not damage the watch.

What’s the Condition of the Dial?

Check the crown. You should feel the buttery soft movement as you turn the dial. If you feel too much or too little resistance, stiffness, or lack of clicking; these are indications of problems within the watch and its movement.

You can visually check if the dial has scratches. There may be situations where the hands have been replaced. To determine this, compare the luminosity of the hands with that of the rest of the watch. If they don’t match, those are not the original hands.

Is the Bracelet in Good Condition?

The bracelet is one of the most scrutinised parts when dealing with Rolex watches. You’ll find the reference number on the first link adjacent to the top lug. There is tons of information that you can get when checking the bracelet including the date code, the geographic origins, and the specific model it was made for.

When checking for the bracelet’s condition, check for the coronet if it’s still sharp or faded. A faded coronet indicates the bracelet was polished. In addition, you can determine the condition of the bracelet by testing its stretchability, checking for loose or missing screws, and if the clasp properly closes. 

Does the Crystal have Any Chip on It?

The crystal provides protection to your watch. For Rolex watches, the crystal may either be made from acrylic or synthetic sapphire. The former is usually used even for the latest models. The crystal of Rolex watches is very durable. They can survive extreme direct banging without damaging the mechanical movement of the other parts.

However, despite the acrylic crystal’s toughness, it’s not scratch resistant. This is where you can check for chipping, scratch marks, and other unusualities. As long as the waterproofness is maintained, those scratches can be polished to bring back the clear look again.

The Rolex’s synthetic sapphire crystal, on the other hand, is considered 99.9% scratch resistant. It’s very durable and provides a very clear opacity. It is said that only diamond beats it in terms of hardness and toughness.

Is the Seller Legit?

Last but not the least, you can breathe a sigh of relief when you know who you’re buying from. Make sure the seller is authorised and a reputable dealer of the Rolex brand. There are several ways of checking the dealer’s reputation. 

Take note of the following:
  • * They have a website and have certification from Rolex.
  • * They have years of experience dealing with high-end watches, among others.
  • * They have great reviews coming from previous customers.
  • * They provide complete information about the Rolex watch that you’re buying.

Final Thoughts

The Rolex watch is at the top of the list when it comes to luxury watches. The level of artisanship and innovation it brings can be rarely matched by others. This makes it a great choice for collection or ramping up your fashion statement. You just have to know the importance of understanding the product first before purchasing one.

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