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The Rolex Watch Company was founded by a man named Hans Wilsdorf in the early 20th century. In order to make wristwatches more reliable, he used a Swiss manufacturing company to make small parts that kept the timekeeping precise. Since that time, Rolex watches have become world-renown for their high quality and reliability and are available in sports and dress styles. As with many luxury items, replicas may be sold as authentic Rolex watches, but there are a few tricks to determine if a Rolex is authentic, including for popular styles such as the Daytona.
Know your price. Rolex Daytona watches sell for $9,925 and higher. While you can occasionally find a slight discount on Rolex watches from reputable places or people, if the price is significantly reduced, the watch is probably not authentic.
Hold the watch up to your ear and listen very carefully. If the second hand ticks, it is most likely not an authentic Daytona. Rolex uses a mechanical movement that sweeps the second hand around the watch face.
Remove the watchband and look between the lugs (links) at the 12 o’clock position. There should be an engraved “Registered Design” number. Look between the lugs at the 6 o’clock position for a serial number. If either number is missing, the watch is not likely authentic. Rolex watches made after 2002 will also have a Rolex crown logo etched under the 6 o’clock position on the face watch that can only be seen under magnification. While some fakes do have this feature, the etching will be sloppy, off-center or will miss some of the details of the crown.
Turn the watch over and look for a hidden clasp with a Rolex crown symbol on the watchband. If there is no crown or the clasp is visible, the watch is not authentic. In addition, the case back should be smooth and solid metal, not clear.
Hold the watch in your hand. Rolex watches are made out of very high-quality metal, which is heavy. A fake Rolex Daytona will be very light. Check the edges of the watch to make sure the metal is not worn or thin.
The Daytona has an extra seal between the threads on the crown tubes, creating a triple lock seal. Most fake Rolex watches do not have this seal. If you have any doubts about how to determine the validity of this feature, ask an authorized jeweler for assistance.
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