A Rolex watch is the ultimate status symbol. With its fine craftsmanship and elegant design, Rolex SA is one of the most coveted luxury watch brands in the world. As a result, counterfeits are common. You don’t want to spend a large amount of money on what you think is a genuine used Rolex, only to find out that it was a fake. Here’s how you can tell if a Rolex is authentic:
Rolex watches include a serial number stamped between the watch lugs at the 6 o’clock position. You will need to remove the bracelet in order to find this. An authentic watch will have a deeply engraved serial number.
You should be able to hold it to the light and see a slight glow around the edges. A fake will have worn down or sloppy engraving, as the process counterfeiters use is not exact enough to replicate the clean Rolex serial number.
There are a few different crown logos you should see on an authentic Rolex. There is one at the top of the watch face. Some fakes fail to even include this, but if they do you can still spot inconsistencies or flaws. A real Rolex has a perfectly centered, slightly raised crown logo.
Another surefire way to spot a fake is to use a microscope or magnifying glass to find the tiny crown etching in the glass covering. This is located at the 6 o’clock on Rolex models made after 2002. Since this is so small, you may need a professional jeweler to examine your watch for it.
The case back is another area to examine to tell the difference between an authentic and a fake. This part of your Rolex should be absent of any etchings or engravings, except in the case of a few rare models. Many knock-offs include engravings to appear more authentic, but in actuality, it’s one of the easiest ways to spot a fake.
The case back should also be made of metal, not clear glass. Sellers of knock-off watches sometimes include a clear case back to try to dazzle buyers with the inner workings of the watch. However, to an experienced buyer, this is a clear indication that the watch is not real. In the history of Rolex, they have created a very limited number of the clear case back watches, and all were exhibition models.
The smooth motion of a Rolex’s second hand is one of the hardest things for fraud manufacturers to replicate. The second hand should move 8 times in a second, which to the naked eye appears close to continuous motion. Knock-offs, since the craftsmanship is not as exact, will often have shaky second hand motion.
A side effect of this second hand motion is the unique sound of a Rolex. Whereas most mechanical watches will have a telltale ticking sound as the second hand moves, a Rolex should make a quicker, less distinct sound. If you hold a watch to your ear and hear a ticking, you can be certain it’s not a real Rolex!
Along with these tips, there are other ways to spot a fake, such as the fact that knock-offs are usually lighter and made of lower quality metal. You can also check that the Cyclops properly magnifies the day date. However, the absolute best way to avoid buying a fake Rolex is to buy from a high-quality, reputable dealer.
At Precious Metals Refinery, we buy and sell pre-owned Rolex watches. Our expert appraisers ensure that every Rolex that we buy and sell is absolutely authentic. If you purchase your pre-owned Rolex watches from us, you will be certain you are not purchasing a knock-off. If you sell us your Rolex you can be sure that our expert appraisers are trained to give you the most for your watch.
Ready to sell your Rolex? Learn more and schedule your free no-obligation evaluation today!