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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Good morning folks,
I am hoping you wonderful people could help me out here. Ihave these two watches that were given to me by my father who got them from ourcousin and they appear to be both Rolexes and I hope authentic. While I realizethat it is hard to authenticate it without it in your hand I was wondering ifyou all could help me if you think they would be worth either getting back toworking condition or full restoration or what you guys think?
The first is a GMT Master is a 6542 from what I can find theserial number makes it about 1958. The bezel is missing and I understand thatfinding a replacement will be expensive but doable if in the right hands. I dohave the bracelet but it is off of the watch at this time.
The other is a little harder. There are no marking inbetween the lugs but a serial number and case number on the back of the case.The number above the serial number is 3131 and the serial number dates it at1948. If you can help me identify this one it would be great.
As I said any thoughts on having it restored or what haveyou please let me know. I would like to wear them but if they aren’t worth theexpense having them fixed then I won’t.
Thanks in advance.
gmtmaster.jpg Photo by mcook7373 | Photobucket
goldrolex.jpg Photo by mcook7373 | Photobucket
Sorry I couldn’t post the pictures directly I’m new to message boards and can’t figure out how to do that.

 

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Both look genuine to me, your GMT Master should house the cal. 1030.
Nice.
 

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OK
Welcome.
Be prepared for a shock!
Your first piece is Model 6542, making it an early (50s) GMT-Master 1. It was launched in 1954. So very early piece
Even in 'fair' condition it is worth $8000 to $12000!!!

ADDITIONAL NOTE: It uses a caliber 1036 movement, not a 1030 (that has no instant calendar feature)

The second (3131) is a fairly early Oyster Perpetual (termed bubbleback) from the 40s.
Rolex launched their first automatic in 1934

In SS its still probably worth $1000 and in gold $1300 to $1800 (fair condition)

I would love to own either of them. Great pieces of early Rolex history

Regards
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you all for the info. My other question would be, would it be worth having them restored or just cleaned up and a bezel found or what would be your course of action for these? Like I said they hold sentimental value for me and Im not so concerned about their monetary value as I will never get rid of them but would it be worth having them cleaned up and serviced and/or restored to like new or what would you do with them?
 

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Welcome.
Be prepared for a shock!
Your first piece is Model 6542, making it an early (50s) GMT-Master 1. It was launched in 1954. So very early piece
Even in 'fair' condition it is worth $8000 to $12000!!!

ADDITIONAL NOTE: It uses a caliber 1036 movement, not a 1030 (that has no instant calendar feature)

These all have date and cal.1030.

http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/watches/rolex-a-rare-stainless-steel-dual-time-5674620-details.aspx

6542 with 1030T

https://www.collectorsquare.com/luxprice-index-montres/prix-montres-rolex-gmt-master-6542.htmlr

Another 6542 with a cal. 1030.

Rolex GMT-Master
 

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Thank you all for the info. My other question would be, would it be worth having them restored or just cleaned up and a bezel found or what would be your course of action for these? Like I said they hold sentimental value for me and Im not so concerned about their monetary value as I will never get rid of them but would it be worth having them cleaned up and serviced and/or restored to like new or what would you do with them?
Very, very carefully oiled and serviced to movement, and new bezel fitted
Do NOT allow anyone to clean or touch the dial.
That dial has a patina that only 50+ years can give, it must not be changed.

Adam
 

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This watch has the same set-up as the subject, and has the 1030 calibre movement.

Another with the same model number, as seen inside the case back.

 

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I think these are found with cals. 1030T, 1035 and 1066 depending on production date. Rolex wasn't as careful in their recordkeeping as people like to believe.

Also, aftermarket replacement bezels can be had for a few hundred dollars. A good watchmaker who knows vintage Rolex ought to be able to assist with this. An original Rolex Bakelite GMT bezel would be five figures at least, if one could even be found. Should look something like this when done:

6542_ST13.jpg

Both are very nice watches. Very historic.
gatorcpa
 

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Gatorcpa.
Let me explain.

The Base Caliber is 1030.
It was introduced 1950.
Self Winding
Sweep Seconds
Shock Protecting
Round Shape
MARKED: '1030' is on the bridge for self winding mechanism
Size 28.5mm X 5.85 mm

In 1957 Rolex introduced two additions to the 1030 'Base Caliber'

The 1035 and 1036.
Self Winding
Sweep Seconds
Shock Protecting
Progressive calendar (1035)
Instant Calendar (1036)

Round Shape.
MARKED: '1030' on the bridge for self winding mechanism!!
Size 28.5mm x 6.66

So the base caliber is 1030 and that is always marked, BUT I can assure you that the date function changes the movement (and size) to 1035 or 1036 depending if its progressive (I doubt it) or Instant.

Hence 1036 caliber.

Adam
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS: The Rolex Report, John E. Brozek
 
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This watch has the same set-up as the subject, and has the 1030 calibre movement.

Another with the same model number, as seen inside the case back.

Answered above
Adam
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I just really want to thank everyone for your help and thought on this. I have sent them in and am going to get an opinion when an expert has them in their hands and can look at movements and confirm all is correct. I am looking forward to having them serviced and a new bezel on the gmt and then keep them serviced and wear them and enjoy them. That's what they were made for right?
 

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I just really want to thank everyone for your help and thought on this. I have sent them in and am going to get an opinion when an expert has them in their hands and can look at movements and confirm all is correct. I am looking forward to having them serviced and a new bezel on the gmt and then keep them serviced and wear them and enjoy them. That's what they were made for right?
Absolutely.
But make sure no one trys to clean or replace that GMT dial (or the Oyster!)
adam
 
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Discussion Starter #15
Sorry to resurrect the old post but I felt like I had an update. I sent both watches to John Brozek at quality tyme. He has been a joy to work with thus far, he has really walked me through the process and calmed my nerves when the registered mail from the USPS went of the radar and freaked me out lol! Work has started on them and we both discussed and agreed on not changing hands or dials on either watch and not polishing the case much to leave the patina that has formed over the years, especially on the bubble back. I am also getting a reproduction bezel and insert as I don't have 5 figures to spend on an bakelite one. I am still about 3-4 weeks out on getting the pieces back. Anyway once I get the pieces back I will take pictures to see how everything went. Thanks to this website and John, I will be bringing back 2 vintage pieces back to life. My wife may not be as happy since now all I want is watches but as my mother always use to say, this too shall pass! Thanks again!
 
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