James Bond Rolex Ref. 6538 with Tiffany Dial: The Importance of Details in Determining Value

In the horology world, details make a big difference in value, from a few thousand to hundreds of thousands or more. It comes down to four major areas of consideration we call the 4Q’s (qualities of): maker; rarity and exclusivity; condition and originality; and, provenance and freshness to market.

Collectors of Rolex particularly take note of small differences. It can be anything from a patent pending engraving on the back of a Sea-Dweller’s case to a colored lacquer dial referred to as a “Stella” on a Day/Date.

The Rolex Ref. 6538 big crown is a particularly coveted item for Rolex collectors on its own. Referred to as the James Bond watch, this Submariner had an important cameo in the Bond film Dr. No. A shot cuts to the watch as Agent 007 uses it to time a bomb going off. Though Bond is a fictional character, the fact that he wore the watch gives this Submariner a particular  status and provenance, resulting in pricing between $17,000-25,000.

Here we have another Ref. 6538… but it has an extra characteristic that makes it rare Instead of the Rolex crown and script below 12:00 o’clock, this one is signed by Tiffany & Co. as a co-branded venture with Rolex. To have such a renowned retailers mark on the dial elevates the desirability two fold. Christie’s has one coming up for auction tomorrow, December 14, 2012, Lot 88. We see the details kick in, upping the cost at least twofold. You can be sure there will be many bidders trying to obtain this rare watch. View more details here.

Estimate: $40,000-60,000

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  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Davis-Statton/100000245728466 Davis Statton

    Sean Connery indeed wore a Submariner in Dr. No, but it was in Goldfinger that he used it to check the time just before the bomb went off. A great scene, he lights a cigarette and uses the flame to see the dial.

  • http://delldeaton.com Dell Deaton

    Further to the correction provided by Davis Statton, the 6538 Submariner model became the second James Bond Rolex in the movies when it first appeared in Dr No. The most historically significant scene there is when Agent 007 checks Geiger Counter function by moving a probe across its radium dial. Bond a’la Radium Girls (sadly).