facebook pixel
  • 100% Certified Authentic

    Bob's Watches
    100% Certified Authentic

    At Bob's Watches, your trust is very important to us. We believe that buying a pre-owned Rolex watch online should be simple, honest, and straightforward. To that end, we guarantee that every Rolex watch on our site is 100% authentic, comprised entirely of Rolex parts. Our mission is to be the leading trusted online source for selling and buying authentic pre-owned Rolex watches. We stand behind this authenticity guarantee with a full money back refund on any watch not found to be completely genuine.

  • JOIN / LOG IN
100% Certified Authentic

Bob's Watches
100% Certified Authentic

At Bob's Watches, your trust is very important to us. We believe that buying a pre-owned Rolex watch online should be simple, honest, and straightforward. To that end, we guarantee that every Rolex watch on our site is 100% authentic, comprised entirely of Rolex parts. Our mission is to be the leading trusted online source for selling and buying authentic pre-owned Rolex watches. We stand behind this authenticity guarantee with a full money back refund on any watch not found to be completely genuine.

BOB’S WATCHES

ROLEX BLOG

To Polish or Not to Polish

November 22, 2016

BY Ed Estlow

SHARE

Your Rolex has been running fine for several years. But you’re the responsible type. You have the oil changed in your car every 3000 miles. You rotate the tires. You have your furnace checked every two years. You paint your house every seven.

And so it is with your Rollie. Every five years you want to have it cleaned, lubricated, and regulated back to factory specs.

So you take it to your authorized dealer for service. And they do a fine job, of course. And that fine job includes polishing the case. Your watch really looks brand new – and it runs that way too.

But here’s where the controversy begins. The scenario I just described horrifies some collectors.

You see, patina – the scrapes and dings, the fading lume and bezel (on a Submariner or GMT-Master, for instance), all the marks of the watch’s life well-lived – are gone. And in the case of many vintage watches, so is the value.

Polish

Vintage Sub with Patina Markers and Leather Band

Now, the last several years, Rolex has taken design and development steps to lessen the effects of patina. Better lume in the form of Chromalight. The use of 904L stainless steel, a material more durable and scratch resistant than previously used steels. Sapphire crystal instead of plastic.

Sapphire Crystal Rolex Blackout

Sapphire Crystal Rolex Blackout

All these improvements mean that in 30 or 40 years, the watch you buy new today will have gathered less patina than the same model from 30 or 40 years ago carries now. Is this good or bad? Well, you have to decide that question for yourself. If you are a collector/ connoisseur/ aficionado, you may answer one way. If you want a gorgeous looking and running mechanical marvel on your wrist, you may answer another.

You see, the question of whether or not to polish is a difficult – and personal – one. Not unlike whether or not a person should get a face lift. Or use age-defying skin cream. Or keep the body and engine of their car in tip-top shape, cosmetically as well as mechanically.

Let’s take a closer look at that car question for a minute. If you’ve ever been to a vintage car show, you know that everybody is gathered around the ’55 Chevy or well aged Ford Sunliner that’s either all-original or has been restored to perfection. Either way, the paint is gleaming, and the engine bay is spotless. Anything else is a work in progress, and is stated as such by the owner because no car guy wants to own up to a run-down, scratched up, paint-faded, rusted out ugly ride.

Sunliner

Photo Credit: Hugh Llewelyn

And yet, dollars to donuts, you’ll find one of those very guys – one of those owners with a pristine 60 year old car – wearing an old GMT-Master ref. 1675 with a scratched case, a stretched bracelet, and a faded Pepsi bezel.

So what gives? Why is a Sunliner from 1955 different than a Submariner from the same year? Why would a connoisseur treat the maintenance and upkeep of one any different than the other? Well, as my therapist once told me, there is no answer to any question that starts with “why.”

Should you get that case polished when you send your prized Rolex in for service?

You, my horological friend, will have to decide.

WATCHES YOU MIGHT LIKE

SHARE

Leave a Reply

  • This error message is only visible to WordPress admins

    Error: API requests are being delayed. New posts will not be retrieved.

    There may be an issue with the Instagram access token that you are using. Your server might also be unable to connect to Instagram at this time.

    Error: API requests are being delayed for this account. New posts will not be retrieved.

    There may be an issue with the Instagram access token that you are using. Your server might also be unable to connect to Instagram at this time.

  • Get The Best Deals - Buy A Rolex
    Sell A Rolex

    "The most trusted place to buy or sell a used luxury timepiece" – WSJ

    Bob's Watches is an independent watch dealer and is not sponsored by, associated with and/or affiliated with Rolex, or any other brand listed. Bob's Watches only sells pre-owned watches and provides its own warranties on the watches it sells. Rolex Datejust, Rolex Day Date President, Submariner, Presidential, Explorer, Sea Dweller, Super President, GMT Master, GMT, YachtMaster, Prince, Milgauss, MasterPiece, Air King, Cosmograph Daytona, and PearlMaster, etc are all registered trademarks of the Rolex Corporation. All brands including Brequet, Cartier, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe, Ulysse Nardin, Breitling and Omega, etc are trademarks of their respective owners.