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Old 14 January 2020, 03:32 AM   #1
Legendcho
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Affordable vintage models with patina

Iíve been bitten by the vintage bug thanks to all of you enablers here

The explorer 1016 and the red sub 1680 are my favorites so far but Iím new to the vintage world and am looking to find a model thatís easier to find and afford to start my vintage collection. I would much appreciate few recommendations from more experienced collectors. Iím open to all rolex models but I have a strong preference for patina
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Old 14 January 2020, 04:22 AM   #2
Kingface66
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Welcome!
First recommendation is to take some time and learn all you can about the models that strike your fancy. Not only that, but look up some threads here featuring those models and buyers asking the experts here for some evaluations. You’ll learn a lot about what to look for and what to avoid.
Secondly, what’s your budget?
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Old 14 January 2020, 04:37 AM   #3
Legendcho
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Thank you for the welcome and recommendation! I’ll definitely keep digging the forum.

I’m looking for something under 10k hopefully. Although it seems tough to find a vintage model with patina within that budget based on the sales forum here.
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Old 14 January 2020, 04:47 AM   #4
rolexest
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I agree with you on the 1016, unfortunately prices have skyrocketed. You can get some very nice examples of vintage datejust 1601s well below 10k. When it comes to vintage I recommend finding the best condition of a particular model/reference, rather then lets say the cheapest 1016 or 1680 available.
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Old 14 January 2020, 05:29 AM   #5
colpol
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You mentioned red sub 1680
Drop the red & look for a box standard 1680. Fantastic watch
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Old 14 January 2020, 06:23 AM   #6
Juhuatai
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You can't find a 1016 with nice patina for under 10k unless its at an obscure estate sale or pawnshop.
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Old 14 January 2020, 08:05 AM   #7
Paul
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A push for the 16750 ...

Hello Legendcho,

With the obsession for four digit references pushing prices beyond many folk nowadays, I see the 16750 GMT as a sleeper classic that's still reasonably affordable.

The matte dial 16750s' are pretty much the same visually as the earlier classic vintage GMT (different hand stack and newer generation 3075 movement in the 16750 with hack function and quick-set date .... so easy to live with .... what's not to love ). You pay a bit for a matte dial 16750 cos some owners like to pretend it's a 1675 but if you can live with white gold plot surrounds, the later 16750s' can be quite well priced.

It's that crazy 'vintage vs. classic' argument I guess. And while you're never gonna find a tropical dial 16750, a patina lover can easily put a few years on the visuals of a 16750 simply by swapping on a faded insert. Dress it up for a wedding ... dress it down for casual wear. Cool
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Old 14 January 2020, 08:31 AM   #8
strafer_kid
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16750 is certainly a great choice.....and no probs at all living with gold surround dial.
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Old 14 January 2020, 09:50 AM   #9
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Old 14 January 2020, 11:24 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by strafer_kid View Post
16750 is certainly a great choice.....and no probs at all living with gold surround dial.
Even gold surround 16750s may be difficult to source under $10k.
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Old 14 January 2020, 05:09 PM   #11
996marty
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HQ Milton would be a great starting point always a fantastic selection
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Old 14 January 2020, 06:04 PM   #12
cascavel
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Either wait, learn and save up until you have $30K to buy something great or buy something post 2001, from the new millennium. The vintage Rolex market is a minefield. Even people who have inherited watches from their parents and grandparents find out that the one owner watches that they thought were goldmines have been serviced and devalued.
The second, third and fourth tier vintage Rolexes have all been elevated beyond affordability and the ones that seem like a bargain have been messed with.
Thousands of collectors with decades of experience are competing against you for nice examples of vintage Rolexes. Look elsewhere.
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Old 14 January 2020, 08:08 PM   #13
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I'd go for a nice 1680 !
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Old 14 January 2020, 11:38 PM   #14
OliverD
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If you like the 1016 have you considered the 5500? Much more affordable and it looks almost the same.
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Old 15 January 2020, 12:07 AM   #15
soicanbefree
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White 1680 might be the best value vintage left in the 4 digit market.

The date window is not my cup of tea so If I had your budget I would look for a 16660 with nice patina from early 80s.
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Old 15 January 2020, 12:18 AM   #16
zapokee
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For affordable vintage, I'd look at the DateJust line (e.g., 1600, 1601, 1603; 36 mm cases - same as the 1016 Explorer) and the Date line (e.g., 1500; 34 mm case - a little smaller) and see if there's anything you like there.

Try one on in the flesh first to see if the size is right for your wrist. These are easily within your budget. And they're uber-cool to those who know.

You won't get a decent vintage (i.e., four-digit) Sub or Explorer for under 10 grand these days.

Good luck with your purhase, and welcome to the party.
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Old 15 January 2020, 01:57 AM   #17
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I’d say first, give some thought to exactly what it is that appeals to you - Is it yellowed lume, is it a faded bezel insert, is it tropical dial color, is it the overall look of honest wear, or is it more about a vintage design/look generally? If it’s faded insert, the advice above to put one in a 16750 may be just right. Tropical dials can be tricky - People can and do mistake (or even flat-out misrepresent) undesirable dial damage from moisture intrusion for color change from honest age.

I think most vintage folks would agree with rolexest above, to find the best example of a reference that is in your budget, vs. getting a second-rate piece of one specific IG-hyped model. You might even surprise yourself - Just for one example, below is a very nice classic (1963 IIRC) Wide Boy Day-Date I recently got from ocwatchguy which, while not patinated as such, certainly has the vintage look, can be dressed up with a gloss black lizard strap or dressed down as shown or on a NATO strap, is solid 18K gold, and was thousands under your budget. (If yellow gold is just too-too, you could also look at white gold.)

Because this is new to you, I’d say keep scanning the trusted vintage sellers’ sites until something grabs your eye, and don’t be in any rush. Buying this way won’t get you a massive “steal,” but more important, you also likely won’t get taken. (I’ve personally had good experiences with HQMilton, Patrick at ocwatchguy.com, Morgan and Matt at matthewbaininc.com, Carl at Veralet.com, and others - see the trusted vintage sellers list in this forum.)

Post clear pictures here of any piece you’re seriously considering (before buying it), and get feedback - I expect you’ll find that the pros here are hugely generous with sharing both their time and their hard-won expertise.
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Old 15 January 2020, 02:05 AM   #18
TurboTim14
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I say forget the older matte dial stuff, that ship has sailed. Focus on up and coming vintage that will be worth $ in the future and is still relatively "affordable" now. 16700, tritium 16710, gloss dial 5513, tritium 16600, tritium 14060. If you like patina look for dials that are marked Swiss-T<25. Also look into some of the Tudor Subs. 1680 would be another good one as others have mentioned if you are set on a matte dial, but pristine all original examples seem to be over 10k these days.
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Old 15 January 2020, 02:24 AM   #19
rootbeer7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zapokee View Post
For affordable vintage, I'd look at the DateJust line (e.g., 1600, 1601, 1603; 36 mm cases - same as the 1016 Explorer) and the Date line (e.g., 1500; 34 mm case - a little smaller) and see if there's anything you like there.

Try one on in the flesh first to see if the size is right for your wrist. These are easily within your budget. And they're uber-cool to those who know.

You won't get a decent vintage (i.e., four-digit) Sub or Explorer for under 10 grand these days.

Good luck with your purhase, and welcome to the party.
exactly this! I have a Datejust with stunning lume plots that have patina'd to a lovely light orange colour.
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Old 15 January 2020, 02:34 AM   #20
cardiel
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very occasionally a nice Tudor 75090 pops up with nice egg shell patina on the lume plots - its only a fraction smaller than a regular Sub and can be had for around $3-4K. Or just go for a full size Tudor Sub for around $5K.
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Old 15 January 2020, 09:00 AM   #21
zapokee
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...Or just go for a full size Tudor Sub for around $5K.
Nice idea. But more than $5K for a nice four-digit model... Many of these are five figures USD now...
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Old 16 January 2020, 03:40 AM   #22
Racer X
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"Affordable" is highly subjective. Also, "patina" can refer to various aspects of the watch (patina of the tritium? patina of the case?).

That said, you can find nice Date Justs out there for under $4k. They often have small tritium hour markers that acquire patina. If you're looking for a greater amount of patinated tritium, you'll have to go to the sports watches and higher prices.
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Old 16 January 2020, 05:28 AM   #23
CPRWATCH
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Affordable with Patina Rolexes , now thatís starting to become words that arenít associated with each much these days . So without knowing your budget or type of patina your looking for , I would recommend the 16800 with matte dial & Tudor 79090 as a great choice now . Because I think the prices will steadily go only one way & thatís up.
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