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The History of Rolex Cosmograph Daytona

History-of-Rolex-Cosmograph-Daytona-2

Throughout the long and compelling history, Rolex has manufactured many remarkable watches that represent the utmost precision and luxury. However, the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona is ideally more admired and desired by watch aficionados and collectors across the world. But it was not until nearly 1965 that the term ‘Daytona’ actually appeared on the dial. Let’s us today delve into the illustrious history of the model and know how it became one of the most sought-after Rolex watches both in the retail and pre-owned watch market.

Early Years

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Rolex introduced the chronograph reference 6234 in 1955. The watch neither flaunted the name ‘Daytona’ nor ‘Cosmograph’ on its dial. It was labelled simply as ‘Chronograph’. Until 1961, the brand produced nearly 500 of these timepieces every year, when finally Rolex discontinued the reference’s production. While other watch-manufacturers already established themselves as the chronograph specialists in the early 1960s, these ‘Pre-Daytona’ watches were not very successful. However, the early Daytona references are indeed today rare and highly desirable. In fact, the entry-level value of one of these most extraordinary watches with a stainless steel case and the black or silver dial is about £16, 220.

Coining of the Name ‘Daytona’

Daytona is indeed the name of a city in Florida that began alluring motorsport lovers at the beginning of the last century. The fact is that the broad beach of compact and smooth sand made the place perfect for speed record attempts on land. Eventually, the first Stock car race took place on the Daytona Beach Road in 1936. However, in 1958, the venue shifted to the Daytona International Speedway, made by NASCAR or the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing. Today, the Daytona International Speedway is the home of the most famous race in NASCAR – the Daytona 500.

Sir Malcolm Campbell of Great Britain was one of the most famous racecar drivers who wore Rolex timepieces on as well as off the racetrack. In 1931, Campbell was known to have written an acknowledgement letter to Rolex, asserting that he was impressed by the durability of his Oyster. Eventually, the brand started to become recognised as a producer of sports watches. During these years, Rolex developed its first chronograph watch using one push button on the side for starting, stopping and resetting a detached second hand.

In 1955, the manufacturer launched a manual wind watch, Reference 6234 in an Oyster case that can be regarded as the predecessor of the Rolex Daytona. However, this Oyster Chronograph features a tachometer scale on the outer ring as well as a telemeter scale on the inner ring for distances. Rolex made nearly 2300 watches in stainless steel and less than 150 pieces in 18ct or 14ct gold from the year 1955 to 1961.

Nonetheless, the original precursor of the Rolex Daytona is the chronograph reference 6238, specifically the second series that is popularly known as ‘Pre-Daytona’. While the first series of watch ref. 6238 was pretty similar to that of the ref. 6234, the second series indeed represented a contemporary style. The second series of the Reference 6238 featured monochromatic dials, faceted hour markers and baton hands. Moreover, other features include the tachometer scale, smooth bezel, 37mm case diameter and Valjoux Calibre 72 movement.

Rolex worked as the official timekeeper of Daytona in 1962 and the following year, the first Rolex Cosmograph model reference 6239 was introduced. The brand nicknamed this particular reference as ‘Daytona’ in the same year for emphasising its association with the prestigious car race. While the watch was made especially keeping racecar drivers in mind, the watch came with a larger tachometer scale on its metal bezel. Indeed, the tachometer scale increased the readability of the dial and was available in silver with black counters or vice-versa.

In 1964, the name ‘Daytona’ first appeared on the dial under the word ‘Cosmograph’. However, the ‘Daytona’ name was later engraved on the top of the sub-dials 6 o’clock by 1967, and it remained there ever since.

Innovations Through the Ages

The tachymeter scale’s relocation to the bezel and the contrasting sub-dial offered the Reference 6239 a much sporty and chunkier look than its predecessors. Ever since the reference 6239 was launched, each Rolex Daytona manufactured by Rolex has had the tachymeter scale on the bezel instead of the dial. However, the Daytona 6239 watch had a celebrity fanatic in the late 1960s. Now, who was the devotee?

Paul Newman was not only an actor but also a successful racecar driver. While he wore his Daytona timepiece during his races, devotees attributed the ‘Paul Newman’ nickname to his style of Daytona in the 1980s. The Paul Newman Rolex Daytona can be distinguished primarily by the contrasting coloured seconds-scale along the periphery of the dial.

However, the Rolex Daytona ref. 6239 watch features pump-style pushers that make it less water resistance in comparison to the screw-down Oyster Daytona. The screw-down Oyster Daytona made a debut with the reference 6240, and the screw-down pushers are one of the leading design attributes that can be yet seen on the modern Rolex Daytona timepieces manufactured today.

The Reference 6240 did not always have the name ‘Daytona’ on its dial. However, besides the screw-down pushers, the watch also debuts a new metal bezel with the plastic insert in black and white numerals.  The ref.6240 watches with the Oyster name in-between ‘Rolex’ and ‘Cosmograph’ are among the rarest Rolex Daytona models ever made.

Like the reference 6240, Rolex introduced the reference 6241 with a black plastic bezel but equipped it with push-down buttons. However, the term ‘Daytona’ began to be printed officially on the dial of the ref. 6241 and also, the subsequent references. Between the year 1970 and 1971, four new Daytona watches were launched in 37mm watchcase, housing the new Calibre 727 movement.

While the reference 6262 and 6264 featured push-down buttons with metal bezel and black plastic bezel respectively, the references 6263 and 6265 adopted the screw-down push buttons. The references 6262 and 6264 were made from 1970 to 1972, whereas the references 6263 and 6265 were produced from 1971 to 1987 in stainless steel and gold. However, the screw-down push buttons along with the more prominent winding crown make the models 6263 and 6265 water-resistant up to 100m.

The Legendary ‘Paul Newman’ Dial

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Paul Newman’s first Rolex Daytona watch was the Reference 6263 with an exotic black dial and white sub-dials. During the manufacturing year of this reference, Rolex launched the unique ‘exotic dials’, produced by the famous dial manufacturer of the time – Singer. Paul Newman was gifted the exclusive and rare Cosmograph Daytona 6239 with an ‘exotic’ dial by his wife when he began his career as a racecar driver in 1972.

While the watch was owned and well-documented by the eminent Paul Newman, Rolex Daytona watches with these exotic dials consequently were nicknamed as ‘Paul Newman’ dials. Ever since that, these dials have become significantly more valuable and coveted than the standard dials. However, Paul Newman’s Daytona 6239 watch was sold for nearly £14.6 million in October 2017.

It eventually reinforced the market for both new and pre-owned Daytona timepieces. Thus, if you are looking to ‘sell vintage Rolex Daytona’ or ‘sell Rolex Daytona watch with any desirable or rare characteristics, you are likely to obtain a higher price from any potential watch buyers like at The Luxury Hut. Although Paul Newman was an ambassador of Rolex, he was actually a Rolex enthusiast.

Over the years, any Daytona featuring the exotic dial is commonly identified as the ‘Paul Newman Daytona’. However, the references 6265, 6264, 6263, 6262, 6241 or 6239 ideally feature the original exotic ‘Paul Newman’ dial.

The Self-Winding Movement

In 1988, the Rolex Daytona 16520 watch made its debut, powered by a self-winding movement. The movement was only one of the significant upgrades made to this new reference. However, the watch featured a 40mm watch case, a renovated dial with different hour markers and sub-dials flaunting contrast timing tracks. While the crystal on the Daytona 16520 was fabricated from synthetic sapphire, the crystal on its earlier iterations was made up of acrylic.

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However, the self-winding calibre that powered the Daytona ref 16520 was not produced entirely in-house. Instead, the movement was based on the Calibre 400 from Zenith EI Primero. In fact, the Zenith calibre 400 movement was considered as the best automatic movement available in the market at that time. As a result, many watch collectors today refer to this Daytona collection as ‘Zenith Daytona’, and it differentiated them from the later Daytona timepieces with in-house movements. Now:

The fact is that Rolex used to heavily modify the base movement supplied by Zenith for aligning it to the Daytona specifications and for increasing the reliability. The manufacturer either altered or replaced nearly half of its elements. These components were revised to run at a 4 Hz frequency instead of El Primero’s 5 Hz. The vibration per hour was decreased to 28,800 from 36,000. Moreover, while Rolex removed the date function, a new balance and escapement replaced the original ones.

Eventually, it gave rise to the first automatic movement, Calibre 4030 that was housed in one Daytona model. However, Rolex made many changes to its Daytona watches over the years, thereby bringing the collection up to the modern standard. Indeed, the Rolex Cosmograph Daytona ref. 16520 achieved exceptional success. The limited supply of Zenith’s base movement, limited production and higher demand made the watch much more desirable in the market.

In 1991, Rolex launched a special series of Reference 16528, limited to only ten pieces. The yellow gold watch came with a graduated bezel and galvanised blue dial. This Daytona ref. 16528 is referred often to as the ‘Chairman Daytona’ as it was designed to gift noteworthy Rolex directors.

Also Read: 5 Vintage Rolex Watches That Are Highly Collectable

Contemporary Evolutions

Rolex began working on entirely a new, in-house movement using only 290 components – Calibre 4130. The power reserve of this new movement increased from 54hour to 72hour. At the Baselworld 2000, the new Daytona Cosmograph watches, running on the Calibre 4130, was launched. However, all the new Daytona models had a watch case of 40mm and were also a little bit thinner than its earlier versions. Nearly 12years after the release of Zenith Daytona, the brand launched the Daytona reference 116520 in 2000, equipping it with Rolex’ in-house movement Calibre 4130.

This fully integrated Calibre 4130 was and is yet an expertly accomplished movement that was designed with durability in mind. The movement offers a power reserve up to 72hours. However, Rolex released a platinum version of its iconic Daytona that sported a chocolate brown ceramic bezel to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Dayton in 2013.

In 2016, the manufacturer unveiled the Daytona reference 116500LN also with a black Cerachrom bezel. While this specific reference watch in stainless steel assured a more convenient price point, it became a highly desirable timepiece of the year immediately. Rolex introduced a handful of novelties over the years like the ‘Rainbow Daytona’ in Everose gold was released at the Baselworld 2018. Indeed, Rolex Daytona remained pretty consistent in the market and is one of the world’s most coveted watches to date.

Where should I sell my Rolex watch in London?

The Luxury Hut offers a quick, secure and straightforward way to sell Rolex watches both online and via appointment. We understand both the historical and monetary significance of the watches manufactured by the elite brand – Rolex. Whether you want to ‘sell Rolex’, ‘sell my Rolex Daytona’, or ‘sell vintage Rolex Daytona’, you are likely to obtain the best possible price of your luxury asset.

With years of experience and substantial knowledge of the changing market prices, we can determine an accurate value of a Rolex watch, be it is a vintage Rolex Daytona or any contemporary model. Thus, to get started with the process of selling, fill up our online form today and receive an initial price quote shortly.

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5 Reasons Why Watch Collectors Love Rolex

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It is no secret that Rolex is ideally the most recognised and coveted luxury watch brand in the world. Since its inception, Rolex positioned itself as a watchmaker of reliable luxury watches that continue to appeal ardent watch collectors to date.

While some watch enthusiasts will know brands such as Omega, Breitling or IWC, but almost EVERYONE knows Rolex. For decades, Rolex watches have flaunted wrists of noteworthy individuals including the British racing motorist Sir Malcolm Campbell and also, Sir Winston Churchill.

With a distinctive design, high-end technology and precision, Rolex timepieces also tend to hold a resale value with time. Consequently, many people often decide to sell my Rolex watch or ‘sell Rolex watches’ in a hard-up situation to potential watch buyers in London or anywhere in the UK and raise the money they need.

Check out the five reasons why watch collectors love Rolex and indeed, tend to get pretty obsessed.

1.    Rolex has everything a luxury watch needs

Rolex watches have everything you need in a luxury watch. Of course, it tells the time! But the timepieces are the beautiful creations that combine updated technology and precious elements to maintain accuracy and look gaudy at the same time.

Another significant reason to love the brand is that Rolex excludes unusual complications. For example, the timepieces typically have no tourbillons, minute repeaters, power reserve indicator or not even, alarm function.

The fact is that the brand focuses on what it does the best, and refines the movement, the case and other details in progress. You will hardly find a rotating bezel that ratchets as smooth and clean as the one on the Rolex GMT-Master II or Rolex Submariner.

2.    Rolex watches are purpose-built

Rolex created many classic watch models for specific, functional purposes. And, watch lovers, especially vintage Rolex collectors love this notion. For example:

The brand manufactured the Rolex GMT-Master for Pan-Am’s pilots who were encountering a new phenomenon known as jet-lag. The pilots wanted a timepiece that could exhibit time of two time-zones at once. Similarly, the Rolex Submariner was created especially for divers.

3.    The Subtle Differences

The appeal of Rolexes resides in the varying bezels, crown guards, dials and other features. And, these subtle modulations allure the Rolex aficionados. More significantly, the nuances like an ‘exclamation’ dial, a ‘Bart Simpson’ dial or an ‘underline’ dial can boost the value as well as the collectability of a Rolex watch.

4.    Rolexes are tough and robust

With specifically mountain climbers in mind, the brand created the Rolex Explorer, for example, to be exceptionally tough and rugged. Special lubricants were used in the movement that could combat extreme temperature changes between day and night.

An Oyster Perpetual chronometer reference 6084 is one of the immediate forebears of Explorer that accompanied Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay during their expedition in 1953 to the peak of Mount Everest. Today, the watch is yet in working condition at the Beyer Watch and Clock Museum, Zurich.

5.    Rolex watches hold their value

Hans Wilsdorf, the founder of Rolex, set out to prove that wrist watches could withstand the extremes of human activities. And, the enduring quest and passion for perfection by Wilsdorf has prevailed till date. The brand claims that each Rolex watch takes one year to manufacture and more significantly, undergoes rigorous tests at the COSC (Official Swiss Control of Chronometer) before they are launched.

Thus, all Rolex watches hold intrinsic value and indeed, the prices typically increase with time. Many potential Rolex buyers in London or anywhere in the UK often also promise to pay the highest price for pre-owned Rolex watches that are in good working condition. However, there are exceptions.

For example, the value of sport watch models like Rolex Daytona, Rolex Explorer and Rolex Submariner typically tend to increase faster and steadier in comparison to other prevailing classic Rolex timepieces.

Want to sell your Rolex watch in London?

For those who are looking to ‘sell my Rolex watch’ or ‘sell Rolex watches’, get in touch with the most trustworthy Rolex watch buyers in London like at The Luxury Hut.

We, at The Luxury Hut, provide our customers with a simple, secure and straightforward way to sell Rolex watches, be it is online or via appointment. Begin the process by filling up our online form (providing all the details of your Rolex watch as much as you can) and receive a professional valuation right away.

Alternatively, you can also call us on 0207 242 5411 to arrange an appointment and visit us at our office in Hatton Garden, London with your luxury watch. Whether it is a Rolex Datejust, Rolex Submariner or any Rolex model, you are likely to acquire a fair and competitive market price when selling your Rolex watch to professional watch buyers at The Luxury Hut.

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5 Things That Can Increase the Value of Your Luxury Watch

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In a hard-up situation, you may decide to sell your watch to raise some quick cash. Unlike many other assets, luxury watches of elite brands like Rolex, Omega and Cartier hardly depreciate with age. Indeed, many luxury timepieces possess a ‘collectability’ factor that helps to retain their value. However, watches that are not highly collectable can also fetch a higher price just because they are from a highly coveted brand.

Luxury watches may always tend to hold a high-resale value over the time, but with proper care and attention, their value can increase. Many potential watch buyers also often promise to pay top prices for the luxury pre-owned watches that are serviced timely and in good working condition.

If you understand the factors that play a vital role in determining an accurate value of a luxury watch, you will be able to sell your watch more comfortably for the most competitive price.

For those who are looking to ‘sell my watch’ or ‘sell watches for cash’, read the points below to know the things you should do or take into consideration to increase the value of your watch:

  • Keep your watch in good condition

One of the factors that play a significant role in determining the actual price of a pre-owned watch is the condition. A potential watch buyer always yearns for a good working watch, and an old timepiece in pristine condition can indeed fetch you more money compared to the ones in poor condition.

Thus, before heading out to sell your watch for cash, it is essential for you to ascertain the wear and tear of your luxury asset. While scratches, blemishes, or any damage in any part of your watch can result in a significant cutback in the resale value, it is always recommended to keep your watch in its original box and also, prevent it from getting wet.

  • Avoid polishing the timepiece

Although polishing may keep your used watch in mint condition and retain its shine, it is the nemesis of watch collectors. Polishing a luxury timepiece without taking any general precaution can cause microscopic scratches and also, wear away a watch case’s edges.

For example, the signature lug-twist on your Omega Speedmaster watch can become imperfect and blurred with polishing.

  • Try to sell your watch within five years

Luxury watches may hold a high value in the resale market over the years, but it is relatively difficult to predict the long-term value of these timepieces precisely. Popular models such as the Rolex Paul Newman Daytona or the Rolex Submariner usually demand a decent resale price over the first three to five years of ownership.

Moreover, with limited edition watch models such as the Omega Seamaster 300 ‘SPECTRE’, the chances of securing a higher value is more when selling, especially in the first few years.

  • Keep all the documents safe

While you can sell a watch without the original documents to a professional watch buyer in London or anywhere in the UK, it is true that a pre-owned watch without original papers will not fetch you as much as a second hand watch with its paperwork.

The original box, papers, servicing documents or other relevant paperwork (if any) will ensure your watch’s authenticity and also, ascertain its condition to an experienced watch buyer while enabling you to sell your watch more conveniently and straightforwardly for the highest price possible in the market.

  • Service your watch regularly

Ideally, a luxury watch requires regular servicing to maintain its value over the time. With this in mind, it may be a good idea to spend some time online researching the servicing needs of the major brands as it may vary from one brand to another. While both Audemars Piguet and Rolex have ten significant steps in their complete maintenance service, Omega claims to possess twenty-six servicing stages.

A luxury timepiece is an intricate machine powered by an engine that runs continually. Thus, two years servicing intervals are often recommended for maintaining its value. Servicing on a regular basis will keep your luxury watch in mint-condition and eventually, can get you the best possible price when selling it for cash.

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How to Verify the Authenticity of a Rolex watch?

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Rolex is a universally recognised brand committed to producing watches that represent the ultimate luxury, excellence and elegance. While the Swiss manufacturer is known to produce more than 2,000 watches each day, there is also a market that produces counterfeit Rolex watches varying dramatically in quality. In short-term financial emergencies, you may decide to sell your Rolex watch to raise some fast cash right away. Whether it was gifted or bought from the second hand market, you may find it difficult to establish the authenticity of your Rolex watch before selling it in London or anywhere in the UK.

Although the counterfeit Rolex watches are becoming increasingly advanced in recent years, some key things can help you to determine whether your Rolex timepiece is fake or real. Take a look!

  • Serial Numbers

The serial number of a genuine Rolex watch is engraved deeply into its metal. This number is situated behind where the band joins the watch’s body on the 6 o’clock side. On the contrary, a fake Rolex timepiece usually has the serial number carved with acid.

While a genuine Rolex watch will have its model number on the 12 o’clock side, counterfeiters do not often bother to change these numbers, and instead, they print the same digits on every replica. You can just remove the band of your watch by using a small paper clip or pushpin to see the model number.

However, the brand is reportedly known to have refined their methodology in this respect by muddling the serial numbers in the new Rolex productions. And, only a professional Rolex dealer can help you to date them.

  • Quality and weight

While Rolex produces watches of utmost quality and accuracy, counterfeit watch makers have become increasingly proficient at designing high-quality fake timepieces. A genuine Rolex comes with a precise engraving, solid bracelet links and will also, feel heavy. The coronet marking at the 6 o’clock position is visible only by using a magnifying glass, whereas, in counterfeits, it can be seen clearly with the naked eye.

Moreover, a real Rolex timepiece will be typically heavier than its counterfeits because it is made up of real metal and crystal. Your Rolex watch should feel substantial and solid on your wrist and hand.

The watch case also plays an essential role in determining whether your Rolex is fake or real. While the case back of your asset must be plain with no logo or engravings, new Rolexes come with a hologram on their case, making it a feasible way to help in verifying the authenticity.

  • Cyclops

Many Rolex watches feature a small window that shows the date and a small magnification lens or ‘Cyclops’ to make it effortless to read. Being a convex lens, you will feel a bump running your finger over it and is situated right over the date.

If the Cyclops over the date dial does not magnify the date, your Rolex is probably a fake one. A real Rolex magnification lens is apparently known to amplify the date up to 2.5x, taking up virtually the entire date window.

  • The Tick

As with any Rolex, the second hand in your watch will move so smoothly that it will not make any ‘ticking’ noise. Generally, the second hand motion in many watches may be jerky because they have quartz movements not automatic. Thus, when the second hand shifts precipitously, it produces the ‘tick, tick’ sound.

Reversely, Rolex movements are mechanical and self-winding. Indeed, a Rolex movement is broken down into eight micro ticks per second, making it look like a ceaseless motion. If you hear a slow ‘tick’ sound coming from your timepiece or see that the second hand jerking with every tick, you are not possibly wearing an authenticated one. However, every Rolex model features a particular style of hands. Like for example, the Yacht-Master comes with a thicker minute hand, whereas the hands of Rolex Daytona stretch a little bit longer, extending all the way to the hash marks.

While today’s Counterfeiters may be proficient enough to replicate the advanced movements of luxury watches like Rolex, they often use whatever components are available for saving money and hope that buyers may overlook such detail.

Choose a professional Buyer to verify your Rolex’s Authenticity

Although some fake Rolexes can be spotted easily by comparing it with another same watch, others may require trained eyes for checking their authenticity. Thus, it may be a good idea to take your luxury timepiece to a potential Rolex watch buyer in London or any other big city to assess its authenticity.  A professional watch dealer will not only determine your watch’s authenticity but also, can carry out an accurate valuation and ultimately, provide you with the most competitive price in the market if your Rolex is genuine.

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© The Luxury Hut is a trading name of Golden Cash Limited. Authorised and regulated by The Financial Conduct Authority for pawnbroking.
Registered in England as Golden Cash Limited. Registered Number is 07309335. Registered office address: Treviot House, 186-192 High Road, IIford, Essex, IG1 1LR.

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