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Old 15 September 2020, 12:48 AM   #1
Blueline226
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Rolex Archives

So, I was just curious if anyone here might know why Rolex doesn’t have an archive service? Omega, Patek, and I’m sure others do, why not Rolex? It would be nice to see some of the history associated with a vintage piece. Did they not keep records like the others? Kind regards, Jason
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Old 15 September 2020, 01:20 AM   #2
offrdmania
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No, they do not.

Unless the watch is "special" in some way to Rolex, ie a presentation watch or a piece with historical significance, they might then give you some information on it.

I've seen letters confirming Milsub serial numbers, but I dont think they do that any longer.
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Old 15 September 2020, 01:24 AM   #3
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I’m sure they have but they are in the business of selling new watches. Who knows if it ever will become better but I hope they will improve if/when they open a museum. Something they might do as they have publicly been buying pieces the last couple of years.
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Old 15 September 2020, 08:35 AM   #4
watchlovr
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I think they know everything about every watch they’ve ever sold or serviced.
They just don’t give the information out.
As stated above, the business model is to sell new watches.
They have no Finiancial incentive in bothering with old watches.
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Old 15 September 2020, 09:10 AM   #5
Blueline226
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Thank you for the replies. Maybe someday they’ll reconsider and we can archive pieces!
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Old 15 September 2020, 10:04 AM   #6
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In the past they did reply to every single letter I've sent them.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg 1994.10.26.jpg (47.4 KB, 277 views)
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Old 15 September 2020, 10:12 AM   #7
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I love that they tried to sell you a clasp in the letter. If that doesn't underscore that they are in the biz of selling new I don't know what does.
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Old 15 September 2020, 11:02 AM   #8
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I love that they tried to sell you a clasp in the letter. If that doesn't underscore that they are in the biz of selling new I don't know what does.
I think that's a bit harsh maybe. We have no idea what the inquiry that was sent in to Rolex entailed. Perhaps he had an issue with his band that he had mentioned.

While I have had varied interactions with them through the years...they've always been extremely gracious. They ARE in business to sell new watches. Ford is in the business to sell new cars. Do we expect to get a historical magna carta from Ford on every 36 Ford that was ever built and complete restoration with NOS parts at the same cost as overhauling a new car?

It seems very presumptuous the concepts of what a watch manufacturer should be willing to do, or not be willing to do.

As time has gone by, they've been under a great deal more pressure to say this or that publically and also field the insanity of collector types. It is rumored that certain archival certificates were reissued and they ended up with fake watches...so they stopped. Do you blame them? They are liable indirectly.

That being said, my first inquiry as a complete rube...in 1984 was asking about a very old Rolex that I had purchased used, my very first one in fact. I was looking for a required a straight end bracelet which was no longer available anywhere. I won't go into detail, but I was very pleased with the response. I developed a very good rapport with the man in charge at that time. I have a stack of correspondence from him that I will always cherish.


They have their reasons for doing what they do. Sometimes it doesn't go along with what we might like. It's their oyster...no pun intended.

At the end of the day they can be extremely kind and accommodating and it's not always about getting you to buy something. They also serviced the aforementioned watch for me in Geneva, LONG after they were no longer accepting that model for routine work.

Things have changed a bit since 1984...their liabilities are greater. Also the insanity of the collector has increased exponentially. They are the boss of what they do or don't do...and the collectors piss on them publicly all the time. The bigger the collector fish the greater the chiding. How should they respond to the attacks? The Swiss can be very closed at times if they feel intruded upon. Generally speaking Rolex is pretty cool. One thing I learned from a friend...that should be obvious but we don't always think that way....you can't base what you think someone should do based on what someone else does...it's not fair to them. Just because Patek does this or that or Omega does or whatever...and Rolex doesn't...it's not fair to make those comparisons. If you want that and you can't get it from Rolex...buy a Patek.
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Old 15 September 2020, 11:10 AM   #9
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I too have a (small) archive of very kind and friendly letters. What a great service they had, my bond with the brand grew stronger with every word/sentence/paragraph I got from them or from Rolex Benelux (Avenue Louise - Brussels - Belgium) that handled some of my pearls. Pun intended. HAte them or love them. I love them. Still.
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Old 15 September 2020, 01:12 PM   #10
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Hate them or love them. I love them. Still.
They're like the beautiful lover whose offish-ness makes them even more appealing.

I believe the youngsters call it negging. There's a book about it called The Game.
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Old 15 September 2020, 05:13 PM   #11
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I have archive extracts from Omega and Zenith and I'd love to be able to get the same from Rolex but I doubt it will be a service they offer any time soon, which is a shame.
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Old 15 September 2020, 11:37 PM   #12
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I kind a like it. It adds to the cloak and dagger mystery of the brand.
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Old 16 September 2020, 01:35 AM   #13
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In the past they did reply to every single letter I've sent them.
Very nice letter from 1994, 26 years later: no chance to get that any longer from Geneva.
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Old 19 September 2020, 12:42 AM   #14
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I have an 19018 quartz day date, related to the serialnr it should be from 1982.

But when I bring it for service to the RSC I ask how old the watch was and they give in the serialnr in ther computer and they told me it was from 1985.

So there some kind of database but how it goes back? No idea.
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Old 19 September 2020, 07:35 AM   #15
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I have an 19018 quartz day date, related to the serialnr it should be from 1982.

But when I bring it for service to the RSC I ask how old the watch was and they give in the serialnr in ther computer and they told me it was from 1985.

So there some kind of database but how it goes back? No idea.
Maybe 1985 was when it finally sold, and the warranty activated? Doesn’t seem impossible it could have sat in the case for those three years (after all, in 1982 30-year US mortgage rates were >15%).
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Old 21 September 2020, 08:48 AM   #16
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I have an 19018 quartz day date, related to the serialnr it should be from 1982.

But when I bring it for service to the RSC I ask how old the watch was and they give in the serialnr in ther computer and they told me it was from 1985.

So there some kind of database but how it goes back? No idea.
Their database goes back to 1907.

They know whatever they want to know.

1982 According to whose list? You trust the unofficial compiled lists in the
public domain as opposed to the list Rolex is using?

What is the serial number?
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Old 21 September 2020, 04:27 PM   #17
robbrum
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The serialnr is 7510xxx
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Old 21 September 2020, 09:31 PM   #18
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The serialnr is 7510xxx
I agree with you 1982. But I wonder if Oysterquartz maybe some some separate batch...honestly with them who knows.
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Old 22 September 2020, 04:11 AM   #19
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In the past they did reply to every single letter I've sent them.
That is so nice to have.
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Old 22 September 2020, 04:40 AM   #20
Filipćo
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That is so nice to have.
@swaini3, it just means I'm REALLY old...
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Old 22 September 2020, 06:21 AM   #21
swaini3
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@swaini3, it just means I'm REALLY old...
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