Most people realize that old Rolex sports watches like Submariners, Daytonas, GMTs and Explorers go for fabulous money even in stainless steel. This week we are showing a couple of unusual Rolexes that you rarely see and that are highly collectible. The one on the left is an example of one of the few limited editions Rolex has ever made — the King Midas. It weighs an amazing 191 grams. Because these watches weren’t popular at the time and are usually beat up, we rarely pay over the gold value, which is approximately $5,300. However, because this Rolex had never been worn, plus it had its original papers, we paid $6,500 to a California dealer. As you can see, it has an unusual shape and Rolex marketed it as being made of “several blocks of gold.”
The watch on the right is a Rolex beta, and was the first watch ever made in quartz by Rolex – circa 1970s. Rolex was so afraid of the Japanese quartz invasion in the 1970s and ’80s that it banded together with Omega and other Swiss brands to create the first Swiss quartz watch. It is speculated that they made between 500 and 2,000, and most show up in bad condition worth about $5,000 to $7,000. I bought this one from a Minnesota estate and we paid over $15,000 for it because it had its original box and papers.
Rolex made a number of unusual, specialized watches – including those in the shape of the Little Drummer Boy, and sterling silver watches with rhinestones to commemorate the 1952 coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
If you have any unusual Rolexes, working or not, we are one of the top buyers in the world. Remember, I wrote the book on Rolexes. Look me up online. We buy all Rolexes: men’s, women’s, new, old, working or nonworking — pay us a visit. If you need an appointment in St. Petersburg or Tampa, give us a call or email JeffreyPHess@aol.com.
JEFF HESS, Owner & Appraiser