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Old 27 April 2010, 05:19 AM   #1
tkc324
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What is "transitional" sub or gmt mean?

Came across some ads locally and saw that there is a "transitional" GMT for sale. Looked at the pic and it looked like a regular GMT.
Can some one tell me what that term means? thanks~
Does it make the watch more valuable?
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Old 27 April 2010, 05:29 AM   #2
mfer
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It could mean a number of things.

Transitional in the plastic v. sapphire.
Transitional in the tritium v. luminova.

Just get the model number and the serial number beginning. (ie. T123XXX)
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Old 27 April 2010, 05:34 AM   #3
dieseldragon
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I understood transitional to be the watch that filled the gap between the old school plexi glass watches and the new style sapphire ones.
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Old 27 April 2010, 05:36 AM   #4
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Transitionals are those that carry over parts from the previous generation but then are updated during their life..

For example, the Sub 16800 carried over the Matte dial from the earlier 1680 for a couple of years before going to the current wg surrounds, so those first editions are transitional. (the 16800 is sapphire, 1680 plexi)

For the GMT, the 16750 initially had the matte dial used in the 1675 before switching to wg surrounds in about 1985, so those early 16750s are transitional.. (both are plexi)

What happens with transitionals, because they used a previous generation dial, etc, but then were updated during their life; when they go in for service, the service replacement dials are the latest versions - so you lose those sought after parts if you don't specify..

This is what makes the transitionals collectible if they still have the original look..
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Old 27 April 2010, 05:36 AM   #5
tkc324
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The serial number start with L21xxxx... i don't have the rest of the numbers.
Says that it has Tritium hands...
The watch is in mint condition.. with no box or papers.
any idea how much it would worth?
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Old 27 April 2010, 05:48 AM   #6
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It's a term that is normally associated with the early 16750 and 16800.

Why?

The references 16750 GMT-MASTER and 16800 Submariner are felt to be, by collectors, to represent a "bridge" between the old and the new versions on their specific references.

In the case of the 16750 we have the first GMT to feature a fast beat 3xxx movement that also introduced a true quick-set date feature to the model. During it's early years the 16750 still featured a matt dial sans WG surrounds prefered by collectors thereby combining the best of the "new" and the 'old".

Later versions were equipped with the more familiar gloss/WG dials.

Example,



The reference 16800 again represents Rolex venture to equip it's diver with a 3xxx fast beat movement replacing the 1575 used in the 1680 it replaced. Again we see a true quick-set date model and the first to use a 120 click ratching uni-directional bezel, sapphire crystal, but keeping (in the early examples) the lovely matt dial sans WGs

Example,




Interestingly there is a modern reference that has been given the name "transitional" by some. That being the reference 16610LV.

Why?

The LV represents the only Submariner to use the maxi-dial we see Rolex transitioning to housed in what some call the "classic" case.

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Old 27 April 2010, 05:53 AM   #7
tkc324
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Thanks Mike, Larry and all those that commented... this is a great learning tread for me.
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