Special Forces Rolex at Antiquorum

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Thread: Special Forces Rolex at Antiquorum

  1. #1
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    Default Special Forces Rolex at Antiquorum

    Lot 325 at Antiquorum's auction of "Important Collectors' Wristwatches, Pocket Watches & Clocks" on 10 March 2010:



    Rolex Ref. 6202 Gilt Dial Special Forces Turn-O-Graph Rolex, Turn-O-Graph, Oyster Perpetual, case No. 950471, Ref. 6202. Made in 1954. Fine and very rare, center seconds, self-winding, water-resistant, stainless steel wristwatch with black bezel and a stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet.

    C. Three-body, polished and brushed, screwed-down case back and crown, bidirectional revolving graduated black bezel with red arrow showing the zero point, case back later engraved: J.M. McFadden – Ranger – Special Forces - 1959. D. Black with luminous round, triangular and baton indexes, outer minute/seconds track. Luminous gold skeleton hands. M. Cal. 620, rhodium-plated, 19 jewels, straight line-lever escapement, monometallic balance, shock absorber, self-compensating Breguet balance spring. Dial, case and movement signed. Diam. 35 mm. Thickness 12 mm.

    Estimate: 7,000 USD - 12,000 USD
    Estimate: 5,100 EUR - 8,800 EUR
    Estimate: 7,500 CHF - 13,000 CHF


    Regards

    Jon'.
    Last edited by StampeSV4; 25-02-2010 at 21:22.

  2. #2
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    This is an interesting inscription. There was only one SF Group in 1959 and no Ranger battalions, though Ranger school existed (Ranger units were formed during wartime and disbanded afterwards until the Vietnam War). The chances of someone in 1959 being SF and Ranger qualified are very slim, probably not more than a few dozen people could be described as such. The chances of one of them owning a Rolex are pretty good as the Sub has always been a popular watch with SOF types. The chance of a watch surviving and coming to auction...? Wish I had a contact at Human Resources Command who could look Mr. McFadden up.

    TBH, if I had these kind of funds available on 10 March, I'd put them towards the UDT Bulova.
    Cheers all, Colin

  3. #3
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    That watch has been on sale on eBay. Can't find a link, nor any other info - which seems odd for such a 'rare' beastie!
    M
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    You'd think that the story would have been researched - it would add a lot of value. OTOH, someone would have to have big ones to fake an engraving on such a rare beastie.
    Cheers all, Colin

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    I had a 5508 a few years ago that had a British military service number on the back. I spoke to a ex Mil diver here Tony Groom and his old pals reckoned the number was a Machelot number..(apparently what the navy clearance divers called each other) an early one.... I could not find out anything else about it.....

    Anyway that went to Antiquorum and at first they said they were very excited about it for the New York Rolex auction/retrospective... then they had problems getting watches into the US and they listed it in the Regular Swiss auction as a 'Bond Submariner' which was incorrect.... then they listed it again as it didn't sell and by then they had virtually killed any chance of it being taken seriously. I complained at their ineptitude and they refunded me all charges.....

    Anyway I ended up selling it to a collector in the US...

    Here are a few pictures...





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  6. #6
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    Great photos and not a surprising story - AQ are a business and know next to nothing about watches. And the photos point up another concern I have about the crispness of the engravings on Lot 325.
    Cheers all, Colin

  7. #7
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    Here's another Rolex with an alleged military connection, ebay item 290407874911.



    Here's a couple of photos of the caseback...





    The seller's description is as follows -

    "A Rare Gentleman Rolex GMT- Master 1958 in Very good condition no Crown Guard .

    . The Ref Number: 6542 and serial Number:427327.

    Genuine ROLEX

    The case is in great condition No rust or corrosion.

    The diameter of the case is 37 mm without the winder and 47 mm with the luges.

    The Dial in Mint conditon.

    SINGED ROLEX OYSTER PERPETUAL

    GMT-MASTER

    SUPERLATIVE CHRONOMETER

    OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED

    SWISS-T>25

    The bezel is a beauty.

    The Movement is original and sing Rolex 25 jewels 1030 in working order.

    The Movement has been serviced and running beautifully.


    An unusual feature to this particular watch is the engraved case back. Clearly done by machine and not by hand, it shows the first owners name M.J.MADDEN W2205976 U.S.ARMY".


    Regards

    Jon'.

  8. #8
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    Wear is more consistent with the age of the watch on that one.

    Correction: the seven digit number isn't consistent with the owner being US Army. He should have had an eight digit number. I'm going to check this with my father - I'm sure he still knows his SN.
    Last edited by Nalu; 05-03-2010 at 02:24. Reason: correction
    Cheers all, Colin

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