10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches

10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches

10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches   look inside manufacture

Rolex really isn't like any other watch brand. In fact, the privately held, independently run entity isn't like most other companies. I can say this now with a lot more clarity than most people because I was there. Rolex rarely allows anyone into its hallowed halls, but I was invited to visit their four manufacture locations in Switzerland and experience first-hand how Rolex makes their famous watches.

Rolex is a universe of its own: respected; admired; valued; and known across the globe. Sometimes I sit back and think about all that Rolex is and does and find it hard to believe that at the end of the day, they just make watches. Rolex does just make watches and their timepieces have taken on a role beyond that of mere timekeeper. Having said that, the reason a "Rolex is a Rolex" is because they are good watches and tell pretty good time. It's taken me over a decade to fully appreciate the brand, and it will probably take longer before I learn everything I'd like to know about them.

The purpose of this article isn't to give you a totally inside look at Rolex. That isn't possible because as of now there is a strict "no photography" policy at Rolex. There is a very real mystique behind the manufacture because they are relatively closed and their operations aren't public. The brand takes the concept of Swiss discreetness to a new level, and in a lot of ways that is good for them. So since we can't show you what we saw, I'd like to share with you some interesting facts that every Rolex and watch lover should know.

1. They Use An Expensive And Difficult To Machine Steel Because It Looks Better

Many watch lovers are familiar with the fact that Rolex uses a type of steel that no one else uses. Stainless steel is not all the same. Steel comes in various types and grades... and most steel watches are made from a type of stainless steel called 316L. Today, all the steel in Rolex watches is made from 904L steel, and as far as we know, pretty much no one else does. Why?

Rolex used to use the same steel as everyone else, but in around 2003 they moved their entire steel production to 904L steel. In 1988 they released their first 904L steel watch with a few versions of the Sea-Dweller. 904L steel is more rust and corrosion resistant, and is somewhat harder than other steels. Most important to Rolex, is that 904L steel, when worked properly, is able to take (and hold) polishes incredibly well. If you've ever noticed that steel on a Rolex watch looks different than other watches, it is because of 904L steel, and how Rolex has learned to work with it.

A natural question is why doesn't everyone else in the watch industry use 904L steel? A good guess is because it is more expensive and much more complicated to machine. Rolex had to replace most of their steel working machines and tools to deal with 904L steel. It made sense for them because of the amount of watches they produce, and because they make all their parts in-house. Most other brands get their cases made from outside suppliers. So even though 904L steel is better than 316L steel for watches, it is more expensive, requires special tools and skills, and is overall more difficult to work with. This has prevented other brands (so far) from taking advantage of it, and is something special that Rolex has. The benefit is obvious once you handle any steel Rolex watch.


10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches   look inside manufacture

2. Rolex Has Its Own Science Lab

Given everything Rolex has done over the years it shouldn't come as a surprise that they have an internal Research & Development department. However, Rolex takes it well beyond that. Rolex has not one, but several different types of extremely well-equipped professional science labs at their various facilities. The purpose of these labs isn't just to research new watches and things that may go into watches, but also to research more effective and efficient manufacturing techniques. One way of looking at Rolex is that they are an extremely competent and almost obsessively organized manufacturing company - that just happens to make timepieces.

Rolex labs are as diverse as they are amazing. Perhaps the most visually interesting is the chemistry lab. Full of beakers and tubes that carry liquids and gases, the Rolex chemistry lab is full of highly trained scientists. What is it mostly used for? Well one thing that Rolex stated is that the lab is used for developing and researching oils and lubricants that they use in machines during the manufacturing process.

Rolex has a room with multiple electron microscopes and some gas spectrometers. They are able to take an extremely close look at metals and other materials to investigate the effects of machining and manufacturing techniques. These large areas are extremely impressive and are used seriously on a regular basis to remedy or prevent possible problems.

Of course Rolex also uses its science labs on the watches themselves. An interesting room is the stress test room. Here watch movements, bracelets, and cases undergo simulated wear and abuse on custom-made machines and robots. Let's just say that it would not be unreasonable to assume your typical Rolex is designed to last a lifetime (or two).


10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches   look inside manufacture

3. Their Movements Are All Hand-Assembled And Tested

One of biggest misconceptions about Rolex is that machines build their watches. The rumor is so pervasive that even people at aBlogtoWatch believed it to be mostly true. This is because traditionally Rolex didn't communicate much on this topic. Well the truth is that Rolex watches are given all the hands-on human attention that you'd like to expect from a fine Swiss made watch.

Rolex uses machines in the process for sure. In fact, Rolex easily has the most sophisticated watch making machinery in the world. The robots and other automated tasks are really used for tasks that humans aren't as good at. These include sorting, filing, cataloging, and very delicate procedures that involve the type of care you want a machine to handle. Most of these machines are still human-operated though. And everything from Rolex movements to bracelets are assembled by hand. A machine however helps with doing things such as applying the right pressure when attaching pins, aligning parts, and pressing down hands. Having said that, all Rolex watch hands are still set by hand via a trained technician.

It would be an understatement to suggest that Rolex is obsessive about quality control. A predominant theme in the manufacture is that things are checked, re-checked, and then checked again. It feels as though their goal is to ensure that if a Rolex watch fails, it does so before it leaves the factory. Large teams of watchmakers and assembly people work on every single movement that Rolex produces. This is before and after their movements are sent to COSC for chronometer certification. And on top of that, Rolex re-tests their movements for accuracy after they are cased for several days while simulating wear before they are sent out to retailers.


10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches   look inside manufacture

4. An In-House Foundry Makes All Their Gold

Rolex makes their own gold. While they have a small handful of suppliers that send them steel (Rolex still works the steel in-house to make all the parts), all the gold and platinum is made in-house. 24k gold comes into Rolex and it is turned into 18k yellow, white, or Rolex's Everose gold (their non-fading version of 18k rose gold).

Large kilns under hot flames are used to melt and mix the metals which are then turned into cases and bracelets. Because Rolex controls the production and machining of their gold, they are able to strictly ensure not only quality, but the best looking parts. To our knowledge Rolex is the only watch manufacture that makes their own gold or even has a real foundry in-house.


10 Things To Know About How Rolex Makes Watches   look inside manufacture

5. Technology Is A Watchmaker's Best Friend

The philosophy at Rolex seems to be very pragmatic, if a human does it better, then let a human do it, if a machine does it better, then let a machine do it. In fact the reason more watchmakers don't use machines is two-fold. First of all machines are huge investments and in many instances keeping people around to do it is less expensive. Second, they don't have the production demands that Rolex does. In fact, Rolex is fortunate to have the ability to equip its facilities with robotic help where needed.

The epicenter of Rolex's automation prowess is the master supply room. Massive columns of parts are attended to by robotic servants that store and retrieve trays with parts or complete watches. A watchmaker needing parts must simply place an order with the system, and it is delivered on a series of conveyer systems to them in about 6-8 minutes.

Robotic arms populate the Rolex manufacture locations when it mostly comes to repetitive or highly detailed tasks that require consistency. Many Rolex parts are given an initial machine polish by a robot, but amazingly they are hand-finishing and polished as well. The fact is that while modern technology is a huge part of the "Rolex manufacturing machine," robotic equipment is there to assist what is a very real, human watch making operation... more »

161 comments
Jus_ad_bellum
Jus_ad_bellum

I enjoyed this, long read was worth it. With regard to the 904L steel; on either timekeeperforum or watchuseek forums there's a great thread about the steel Rolex uses and what's myth and what's real about 904L steel. I do remember one need thing someone pointed out about Sinn, with one of their watches I guess the claim is that they're using re-purposed German Submarine steel and get even better rust resistance than Rolex as a result.  https://www.sinn.de/en/Modell/U1.htm

jashotwe
jashotwe

I do not own, nor do I plan on purchasing, a Rolex.  With that out of the way, I want to say that I really appreciate your article, very insightful info on Rolex' s manufacturing process.  It's always great to read or hear about the making of timepieces regardless of the brand.  Thanks Ariel for sharing!

jfd55
jfd55

I just have some questions:

1.If Rolex is such a marvel mostly done by detailed and expert watchmakers who pay attention to the upmost detail and only use machines to help and they check, re-check and check again each one of their watches… why, oh why most crowns do not align correctly? I’m sorry but 99% of Rolex watches I’ve seen the crown is not vertically lined up; while, say, a VC overseas is always perfect; even Baume & Mercier pay attention to it. (And yes, I do have one which is perfectly aligned: upside down!).

2.My math may be terrible; so forgive me, but, if they produce 1,000,000 watches a year, and they need a year to produce a watch, Do they employ a million watchmakers? With those numbers… I still don’t buy they really hand-made the watches. Sorry.

By no means I think Rolex watches are bad; they are good watches created by a company using marketing and smoke and mirrors to maintain the glory it used to have and maintain high revenue; those ploys just reminded me the Disney vault. No wonder Rolex is usually at the top of the watch brands spending most money in advertisement. 

MaxTait
MaxTait

SuperSteel Superchronometre Supercosmograph SupergasescapeSuperlative ahahha 

teddywga1
teddywga1

Nickel is not good for the body... that's the reason I wear gold

Clueless2
Clueless2

What is the source of your claim that 904L is harder than 316L? If you look up its hardness values, it's actually softer, unless Rolex actually hardens its steel. It is marginally stronger though, and there is a huge difference between hardness and strength. You also forgot the fact, that it has increased nickel content which is a real problem for people with nickel allergies.

LTVN68
LTVN68

Left Vietnam and the USArmy as a 1LT. Got my Single Engine Commercial Land and Sea License on the GI Bill.

Took my newly acquired wife, MBA and Cessna 180 on floats to Alaska where I flew for Sportsman's Flying Service. Bought a Rolex Submariner 16800 for just under $1,000 in Anchorge because I wanted a good, reliable watch. Others I had owned had failed me. After constant wear for 31 years and 1,000s of miles of flying, hiking, hunting, fishing and construction the 16800 is scratched, nicked, battered and worn. It has sheep hunted in the Wrangells, fished in the Tikchik and pulled crab pots in Kachemak Bay. It is now at RUSA for service only for the second time. The bracelet was declared by them to be unrepairable and the dents and dings unremoveable. I bought the Rolex to have a good watch.

It has never failed me for 31 years. It became a constant companion. And while readings these blogs, I followed the asked question of why one would buy such a watch and began to realize maybe that is up to each of us. What I now see is that my question is rather what this watch has become for me. The answer is that it is a record of my life; every dent and ding. I realize I never feared it would not be there to tell me the time. I just always assumed it would, as it always had, remain faithfully ticking on my wrist. I am truly thankful that such a watch was built and that I came to own it. I realize that I have a deep emotional attachment to it because it really is more than a watch to me.

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

Ah...Yes... the voice of reason permeates the delicious silence of the Rolex Blog...! 

So you ask: "..please could anybody tell me to use or make use of whatever this damn watch can do.?


To a Rolex owner, you are the distant voice of the plebeian, the vassal washing the de-sandled feet of the wealthy Roman who has had to trek to the well from his carriage for refreshment..


Fortunately (for you)... I can: 

Let's imagine you are out of gas, your wallet's been stolen and decide to rent an Aston Martin from Budget Rent A Car.... Well... OMG -- All you have to do is flash your Rolex President, constructed from solid 18K gold with a bezel containing 100 investment grade diamonds, and you're on your way... sans watch, of course. 


Let's say the age restrictions of Obamacare is preventing you, now a wasted 70year old, from getting a new kidney, you flash the above watch and the greedy surgeon removes it from your wrist and attaches it to the many Rolexes he carries on his upper arm and... Voila -- A new kidney...!


Let's say your wife of thirty years is running off with a new 28 year old punker... All a Rolex collector has to do is go into his closet and take one very small briefcase, containing his Rolex President watch collection and walk out the front door... He's a millionaire...!


Imagine living in a world without these possibilities..?


How much can you get for a plastic Casio...?   Hahahahahaha, says the Rolex collector, sipping a mint julip whilst on the beach in the South of France... safe at last from the dreaded IRS who've been trying to figure where the hell this former pawn shop owner has been secreting his skimmed cash....


I hope this has been of help -- We at The Rolex Blog have many more stories for your pleasure... Now... go down to your local battery store and change the battery in that damned Casio... Rolex's never need batteries...lol...



MounirSoughayar
MounirSoughayar

I truly think that it is a pity and a waste of resources to invest such big money in a timepiece!!! A cheap Casio does the same job that all watches are made for "TELLING TIME". All other functions, complications and precious metals and gems are for show off 'LOOK I AM RICH"..." please could anybody tell me how to use or make use of whatever this damn watch can do!!!!"

For God's sake!!! please stop this ordeal and invest your waste money in something useful and productive. Millions are starving to death and here we are worried about what a damn timepeice could do other than telling time.

beverlyhancock
beverlyhancock

Hi


I found your blog really interesting to read. I had heard about the brand but I had no idea about the manufacturing process. The perfection involved into making <a href="http://www.certifiedtimepieces.com">rolex</a> is just amazing 

beverlyhancock
beverlyhancock

Hi


I found your blog really interesting to read. I had heard about the brand but I had no idea about the manufacturing process. The perfection involved into it is just amazing !

joe6263
joe6263

Hi 


have you ever done a review on the new Rolex explorer I tried to find a review on your site but can't find one. Thanks Joe

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

teddy remillard-lang


Rolex watches are pedestrian and commercial. Yes, they're used as a substitute for cash because they have a consistent market acceptance among the people who are their target buyers. 


Look at an Audemars-Piguet or a Vascheron Constantine or a Patek Phillipe and visit and revel in the craftsmanship, the genius of these masterpieces. For example, the 2120 movement of the above three watchmakers (designed by all three), which is the thinnest full rotor movement in the world is absolutely stunning and when this movement is in a skeleton it is astonishing. 


Rolex did use Omega, Gruen, ETA, Zenith movements at one time or another; their first real factory was the old Gruen plant... Gruen was basically forced out of the watchmaking biz by their transition to making instruments for the Allies during WWII; they were one of a handful of war materiel suppliers who could not successfully resume production. 


Nevertheless INMHO, Rolex watches are for those who choose to impress rather than those who respect the art of watchmaking. 



JessePiatte
JessePiatte

wrong, Rolex uses movements made by companies like Zenith and ETA 


Jus_ad_bellum
Jus_ad_bellum

@jfd55 I'm sure the claim is in relation to the time taken from refining the steel on up to the final placing of the materials together and probably is halfway to being accurate if not bang on. There is a great short length documentary on the processing of metal and the steps taken to produce some high end straight razors. When you see how many hands are involved in just making those razors, I could see it taking an incredibly longer time to make a watch.

MounirSoughayar
MounirSoughayar

@LTVN68  I am very happy for you, you were so lucky to buy this Rolex for such a cheap price; cheaper than my non-Rolex brand new watch which I bought for about the same price as your Rolex and which I like the way you do like your Rolex.

I wonder if you would have bought it if it were for $16800!! Maybe yes!!! As you said "that is up to each of us". Also I feel and know that many cheaper watch brands can give the same performance as a Rolex but they are much cheaper because they are not charging us the exorbitant cost of advertisement making us unconsciously feel  that what they say is valid and true.


teddywga1
teddywga1

@LTVN68  What a great life your Rolex has observed.  I bought my AP skeleton in 1976 because I'm into mechanics and I can observe every tick it makes; I wear it all the time; I've worn it while I created my chocolate business and and worn it on the factory floors while I trouble-shot machinery that went down.; It's a chronicle of my life....

aBlogtoWatch
aBlogtoWatch moderator

@teddyremillardlangAmazingly insightful and humorous comments such as this remind me why I continue to blog about watches. It isn't about agreeing with the comment or not, but rather the passion and personality behind it that defines watch lovers of all creeds.

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

@teddyremillardlangBack in the day Rolex made the "Oyster Quartz" so, while rare, it is possible to find a Rolex that needs a battery change. And of course the $7 "Rolex" watches in flea markets around the world  need new batteries every now and them. But it's easier to just toss the watch out. Cheers.

MounirSoughayar
MounirSoughayar

@teddyremillardlang HAHAHAHAHAHA this is what's expected from void arrogant people hiding behind a piece of gold!!!!

Go get a real human life and stop staring at your time piece wondering how it can get back your runaway wife who ran to rid herself of the void life  with someone who's too busy learning things about his magic time piece.

And by the way my Casio has a photo cell and doesn't need battery change.

micropoint
micropoint

I'm just a guy who love Rolex but I don't do reviews.

Regards

Sammy

Ilijam
Ilijam

About the 2120 movement you are refering to - you are completely mistaken. First of all, it wasn't "designed" by PP, AP an/or VC, but by Jaeger LeCoultre as calibre 920 (they have never used it themselves in their watches - in fact, nobody aside from PP, AP or VC did). The number 2120 you mention was the number that Audemars gave to the calibre (after finishing it, of course), as well as 2121 and 2122. Vacheron named it 1120, or 1121 or 1122, and Patek Philippe had it in Nautilus as 28-255. The rest of your comment is full of flawed understanding of the way the Swiss watch world operates - or rather used to operate. Using parts from different suppliers was the way things were done basically always (hence the example you - unwittingly - came up with), and the "in-house" craze we are witnessing now is quite a modern conception. E.g., Patek Philippe is today owned by the Stern family, who were the owners of a company that produced dials for Patek and many others, and when PP fell into hard times, the Strens had enough money (and intelligence) to take it over. Want to know which company was one of the first to use most of their own components in watches - especially movements? Yup, Rolex. OK, they only developed their own chronograph in 2000., but other than that - they've done it themselves. The "Big Three" often used movements from other companies (JLC first and foremost).

By the way - I don't and I've never owned a Rolex watch - I'm an Omega man...

ChristianNyegaard
ChristianNyegaard

@teddyremillardlang I would have to disagree in the fullest. I've had many APs and I love the brand and I have both PPs and Rolex in my collection right now. I don't really understand why you think you can say anything at all about what a person likes in a watch based on the brand of the watch. It's a very flawed and prejudicial line of thought.


Rolex needs to be respected for what they've done over the years, the lineage and the impact they've had. People complain about the lack of originality, yet, the generic look of "dive watch" closely resembles the submariner.


Each to his own, but you (and others) really do need to stop believing you can read out any sort of information about someone based on the brand of watch they're using. I find a lot of joy in the simplicity and solidity of a Submariner over the somewhat more frail feeling high end brands.  

joe6263
joe6263

@JessePiatte  Rolex have never used ETA never you must have seen a fake. They used zenith chronograph in the early Daytona and thats about it. Tudor uses ETA movements but that is not Role its a side company owned by Rolex but separate brands hence why the are cheeper. 

ChristianNyegaard
ChristianNyegaard

@JessePiatte Wrong on absolutely all levels. There are many years since Rolex used a Zenith movement in the daytona. Learn your facts.


If you open up a modern Rolex and find an ETA movement you are looking at a fake watch.

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@MarkCarson @teddyremillardlang   "You are correct, sir," as Ed McMahon would say to Mr. Carson.  It was a dark day when those few battery-powered watches his the scene. Even Patek, Audemars & most of the other watch companies made quartz watches...   Ah well...

muhammedflaifil74
muhammedflaifil74

Poor little Man, what Mommy didn't buy you a teady bear when you were 4 yrs. old ? So your picking on the people who have Rolexes ? Your full of shit, at write something sensible on this blog, Idiot.

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@MounirSoughayar @teddyremillardlang  


OMG...Mounir -- Your perspicuity is astounding..! Are you a Psychic with one of those neon signs at the curb offering the lovelorn a glimpse into the future...?


Well... yes ...I am married to a "runaway" wife... 


Ooops I thought you meant a 'runway' wife, you know one of those delectable women running up & down the fashion runways. 


Yes, Mounir, it's fun being married to a hot babe while wearing a Rolex or any one of the other fine watches that litter my collection.


Which is 'why' I married her, of course. I needed a high fashion, exquisite blonde woman to compliment my 18K watch.


Of course, monsieur, that is your fantasy about Americans who have respect for fine craftsmanship, wine and beautiful women. After all, isn't that what everyone who comes to America imagines..? Streets paved with gold, expensive cars at their beck & call, ad infinitum..?


But the reality is different: There are poor people in America and there are rich people, and it is the prerogative of the successful to buy an expensive watch... as opposed to a Casio. After all, who wants to wear a cheap piece of plastic, which is most probably poisoning one's skin and body through osmosis...?  Damn those chemicals. Wow... you can't even drink some bottled water without risking contamination... so imagine what poisons that Casio is pumping into your body as we speak? 


So now we know it's better to wear gold than plastic. Isn't this a fun Blog, Mounir -- You learn something new everyday.


By the way, I have been married for forty years to the same exquisite woman (who by the way, has an MA in math -- So she ain't stoopid)… and we have raised beautiful, well-educated children who contribute to society.


I have owned my business since 1966 and it's very successful... so I can wear any watch I want because it’s the Raison d’être… 


(I hope you ditch the Casio… or at least buy a stainless steel one...lol… you should live a long life, a life full of criticism of others so they can remember there are those out there who judge a person negatively when they’re “...hiding behind a piece of gold”)   


“…. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA…”

joe6263
joe6263

@micropoint  Thanks for your fast reply and great article I wish if I could go and visit Rolex. I think I will have to apply to be a Rolex trained watchmaker first before I get a look. 


Thanks 

Joe.

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@Ilijam  I love Omega -- My first watch was an Omega. Now I have whole bunch of them; my favorite is the Pie Pan from the mid sixties with 24 jewels, etc. ...the first expensive watch I purchased in 1971... 

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@Ilijam Yes it was originally developed by JLC... but it its design was implemented by the top three watchmaking *factories*... 


As for Rolex, it's a consumerism watch -- Yes it is noticed...so are people with multiple hair coloring...  It's a simple design; in the past, it used the mechanics of Omega, ETA, Zenith, etc; in fact any of the high end brand movements. I'm really happy you like Rolex, but personally, I find them rather pedestrian and a watch some dude that wants to impress some babe would have weighing down his wrist. 


As far as being wrong on my facts, read betwixt the lines; I don't have the time to explain the entire history of the World of watchmaking in three small paragraphs... but it's clear what a Rolex is and yes they are as good as the gold that surround their movements and the Awe they create when worn in a social setting. I prefer craftsmanship....

Ricardo Narchi
Ricardo Narchi

@Ilijam Omega ? Congrats ! Wonderful watch ! Have you ever seen the (Classic)15,000 Gauss ?.... Gee... it is marvelous !

Ricardo Narchi
Ricardo Narchi

@ChristianNyegaard @teddyremillardlang  Teddy, I don't wanna "disagree", but it "may be" and not "it is"... Rolex says: A Rolex can be recognized if you are in a Basketball Arena or in a black tie event" (something like that...). And it is true. Rolex is the TOP OF MIND in Luxury watch brand. Rolex is not the most expensive watch brand, but it can be recognized easier than the other brands by non watches fans. In this case, you are completely right ! We don't have 2.000 people per day buying watches being who respect the art of watchmaking. What is undeniable the Rolex massive marketing investment and the material quality of the watches. Hublot is trying to do the same (F-1, Word Cup, tribute to personaliies, and so on), Breitling is going in the same way as well.

JessePiatte
JessePiatte

@MarkCarson @JessePiatte Depends on which line of Rolex your referring to, it is simple the secrecy is not hiding some great watch mind in a jar somewhere it is really hiding how simple of a company they are. 


teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@MounirSoughayar @teddyremillardlang 


Oh... thank God, Mounir -- you have decided to put an end to the provocateur mode and evidence your true background and education -- Thank you. 


There are many on the I-Forums who 'flame' at others for this or that choice that fails to coincide with their own standards. I confess that I find such prattle argumentative and not productive. I also confess that I am not a major backer of the newer Rolex's and I find some of the people who buy them to be superficial... but that's my personal assessment and has little to do with the personal reasons this or that individual has elected to wear the Rolex. C'est la vie.

MounirSoughayar
MounirSoughayar

@teddyremillardlang @MounirSoughayar OK guys am going to stop the irony and just say that everyone has his own personal whims and fantasies. I don't wear a Casio, which I wore before when they were the first watches to display so many new electronic info like altitude, temp. and the like. I can afford a Rolex or more, but I wear since long a descent good quality self winding watch with day/date display, good font clarity, sapphire lens with enough water resistance for medium depth air SCUBA diving and this is all I require personally from my watch, as I would rather spend the extra money I need to buy a high end gold and whatever else watch, on my other whims and on the many other potential whims which are popping up like mushrooms nowadays in this over over-consumption society.

Cheers.

muhammedflaifil74
muhammedflaifil74

Listen dumb ass Mounir, and your slut with you, if you can't afford a Rolex go buy your stupid Casio.

teddyremillardlang
teddyremillardlang

@JessePiatte I use my AP skeleton, Classique, everyday in my chocolate factory(s); it has the 2120 movement and has been in continuous use since I purchased it. I have two like this and one AP with the lack of markers, so three 2120's and they keep absolutely perfect time -- Of course they have 38 & 36 jewels. They seem to be solid and can take a being worn daily.


As for their craftsmanship, one only had to look at the incredible hand made movements thru their sapphire lens. 
I do have Rolex's but they pale by comparison -- It's a different class of watch; Rolex's are very fine; I just object to the reason most executives flaunt this watch

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

Hmmm, I was not aware that Coke was priced higher than Pepsi and was considered to be a premium product over Pepsi. So maybe not the analogy I would have used, but I understand your concept. And yes I would care greatly if Coke put Pepsi in their bottles and sold it as Coke. But if the bottle was made by Pepsi, I would not care at all. Again, maybe not the right analogy for Rolex. Cheers.

JessePiatte
JessePiatte

Well it's like coke vs pepsi, how does coke sell the same product for more money? MARKETING a built brand mystic, an image. Rolex has done just that. I mean would you buy coke from them if you knew the inside of the bottle was made by pepsi? Rolex has found away to get pepsi to make the inside and they sell it as coke 


ChristianNyegaard
ChristianNyegaard

@teddyremillardlang @ChristianNyegaard @Ilijam


As I said, it felt implied. Of course the finishing on one of my Pateks is better then on my Rolex, but they are different beasts made for different things. I'd much rather have a sub on my arm doing quite a lot of things where I'm not going to put on a Patek.


The craftmanship in the Rolexes that needs to be respected is the sheer quality per watch per dollar. They are rock solid (and of course there will always be some that malfunction with the volume of watches produced) and they do what you expect them to do.


Where my previous APs have been amazing, but somewhat frail watches, the Rolexes I've had and have are beautiful in their simplicity and ability to just work without me having to worry about scratching up a bezel or intricatly finished bracelet.


I love both approaches for various uses and reasons. Apreciating one does not have to exclude the apreciation of another.

Ilijam
Ilijam

As somebody here said, to each his own, and your opinion of Rolex is just as legitimate as mine is (and I do repeat, never have I had a Rolex, nor plan to) - but, once again, you are basing it on eronious facts. 

Sure, Rolex is bought by very many people, and many of them are people who equate the name Rolex with "I have money for an expensive watch". Among a million people that buy them every year, there will be at least a million different characters. As for Rolex using Omega or ETA movements, of that I am not aware. Really don't think they did, but I could be mistaken (please post an example of such a watch here, I'd like to see it). They did use Valjoux, Angelus, Cortebert, Zenith (only El Primero between the years 1988. and 2000.). The only way it could be considered that Rolex used ETA is if we take into account that Valjoux, whose chronographs Rolex used, was folded into ETA - but that was only after Rolex stopped using Valjoux, so it would be quite a strech. But now I'm just nitpicking. 

Rolex is a marketing wonder, and I must admit I don't understand why vintage Rolex watches command such abnormally high prices, but they are fantastic watches nontheless, brilliantly conceived and executed, they have probably the best cost to benefit ratio in the industry, and the company has had some truly big achievements in the past (blown out of proportion by their superior marketing capabilities).


Ilijam
Ilijam

It is truly great, not to expensive either...

MarkCarson
MarkCarson

@JessePiatte  - So "was" = "used"  (not uses) Zenith movements and never used ETA movements. Which is what I thought.

brava
brava

@MarkCarson @JessePiatte Ah well, only the 4030 was Zenith based. Rolex, as stated below has never used ETA movements although they did use Valjoux chronograph movements before the 4030. And if you dig deeper into the past you will find that they used movements from a plethora of suppliers.

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