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Selling a Rolex for Cash: Terms You Need to Know

Selling a Rolex is about more than ensuring you get the right amount for the watch. Understanding the importance of authentication and verification when selling is critical, especially when you want to get what it’s worth.

An expert can help authenticate it for you with some of the following factors:

  • Serial number placement and quality

  • The Rolex logo

  • Movement

  • Sound.

  • Date display

  • Design & dial quality

  • Watch weight

selling a Rolex

You also need to understand the glossary of terms used to determine the value of your specific Rolex, which can help you compete with Rolex aficionados.

Terms You Need to Know

2-Line or 4-Line: A dial with only two or four lines of text above the 6 o’clock mark. For example, a 14060M Submariner adds the chronometer certification to the model name and depth rating.

Cyclops: This watch crystal with a built-in magnifier for the date was first released in 1948 on a Datejust model, which was initially made of acrylic, but later sapphire models had the Cyclops affixed separately to the main crystal.

Frog Foot: This is a specific type of Rolex crown, known to Rolex aficionados as the “coronet.” The original design was a five-pointed crown in gold above with a gold outline, with the logo embodying the Rolex slogan, “A Crown for Every Achievement.” This crown appeared on certain Rolex sport watches made in the late 1960s through the mid-1970s.

Glossy Gilt Dial: A type of early Rolex dial where the underlying brass dial blank is exposed that looks golden but was replaced by the matte.

HEV: Short for “helium escape valve,” this was on some Rolex Professional models like the Sea-Dweller, allowing helium molecules to escape the watch during decompression.

Matte Dial: This dial was on Rolex sport watches from the mid-late 1960s through the mid-1980s and featured a flat black surface with white text and painted indices made of tritium.

Mercedes Hands: This handset is featured in many references where the minute hand has a round portion divided into three equally sized parts.

Meters First: This dial showed the meter depth rating before feet.

Neat Font: A dial style found in certain Ref. 5512 Subs, the printing is more standardized and neater than older subs printing, which looked messy.

Oyster: This is a key feature on most Rolex watches consisting of a water-resistant case with a screw-down crown and caseback.

PCG (Pointed Crown Guards): This is a style where the crown guards are pointed instead of being squared or with the “eagle’s beak” guards, which can be found on Ref. 5512 Subs from between 1959 and 1963.

Small Crown: This usually refers to early Subs with a smaller winding crown, such as the 6204 and models.

Tapestry Dial: Occasionally found on 5-digit Datejusts from the late 1970s and 80s, this was a unique design with vertical ridges.

Tropical: Once considered an undesirable flaw, the dials turned a sun-faded brown or orange-colored dial and provided a unique hue on each model. Tropical dials are found in watches made before the 1980s and are rare.

What Determines the Value of A Vintage or Modern Rolex?

Vintage and modern Rolex watches understandably have differing values. While an older watch is often rarer and may have historical significance, a newer watch may have more advanced features and technology. However, regardless of age, there are specific characteristics that a buyer will always look for in a Rolex watch:

  • Original parts, such as the original dial, movement, or bezel

  • The tropical dial

  • Desirable defects, such as a misprint on the dial

  • Overall wear and tear (even a Rolex with some wear and tear can still be valuable)

  • Original box or papers

Sell Your Rolex with American Gold & Diamond Buyers

Selling a Rolex may seem like a complex practice with many moving parts, but this is why you need to find a reputable buyer to get the most value for your Rolex. Contact American Gold & Diamond Buyers for a cash offer on your Rolex watch and get what it is worth!


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