You may turn crazy if you delve into how things work in the vintage market, especially of watches. For instance, timepieces that you expected to do incredible in terms of demand and sale might put off than the one you thought would dawdle.
Thus, it is the unexpected frolic that goes on with vintage watches, and that is perhaps the lure of it. The legend of these watches steers their value in the market. And keep note that it is the value, not the price that you should be looking at when it is about a vintage timepiece.
Vintage Rolex Submariner 6538 – The Record-Breaking Watch
No wonder, the Rolex Submariner is one of the most famous and coveted sports watches in the world. The iconic, robust design with classic aesthetics makes it a must-have watch for virtually all watch aficionados.
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In June 2018, a vintage Rolex Submariner sold for a record-breaking price of about £846,123 at Christie’s Exceptional Watch auction in New York. It is known to be the costliest Rolex Submariner sold ever in an auction.
So how the most expensive vintage Rolex Submariner looks?
No doubt, it should be rare Submariner in mint condition, retaining all original parts – nothing is missing, and there is no polishing, isn’t it?
It is obvious to envisage like this, but as we already mentioned earlier that things do not work that way in the vintage watch market.
This vintage Rolex Submariner comes with no bezel. It features a too small Nato strap and sapphire crystal glass with lots of scratches.
Now you might be thinking about whether this watch worth such a hefty sum of £846,123. With that in mind, let’s take a quick look at what made the vintage Rolex Reference 6538 no-bezel model fetched that value.
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A Rare & Unique Submariner Reference 6538
The “James Bond” Alliance
This Submariner Reference 6538 is unique because of its association with the iconic character James Bond.
Yes, Sean Connery as the James Bond strapped the watch on his wrist in the first of film series “Dr No” in 1962. While the model is considered as rare among collectors, it is highly sought-after.
Another aspect that makes it historically significant is its famous moniker “Big Crown”.
Unique Explorer Dial
The Rolex Submariner James Bond Reference 6538 features an atypical Explorer dial. And the dial style is touted as incredibly rare to find on this specific reference.
Now if you check a little bit closer at the bottom of the dial, you will notice the depth-rating engraved above the text “SUBMARINER”.
While the rating displays the unusual meters-first that reads “200/660”, there is no depth units printed on it. Also, the depth-rating is carved in red rather than in the usual gilt or white.
Thus, these unique dial features coupled with the fact that James Bond wore it make the Reference 6538 undoubtedly an astounding rare model.
However, the story does not end here!
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No Bezel Submariner Reference 6538
What put on the real value and make this vintage Rolex Submariner reference worth the price it fetched in the auction is its originality.
A Painter was the original owner of the watch. He had removed the bezel entirely as paint typically enters in the middle of the crystal and the bezel.
Interestingly, he never set the bezel back on the timepiece, and he died in 2017.
Thus, with the vintage Rolex Submariner Reference 6538, you not only bond with a historically significant innovation of Rolex but also a real story that affirms how this iconic brand mingled with a man’s everyday life since its inception.
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