The vintage Rolex Datejust buyer’s & collector’s guide

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About the book

An ambitious attempt to capture the magic of forty-five years of Rolex Datejust.

What is it about?

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The book covers the history of the Rolex Datejust between its introduction in 1945 and 1990. 

Some historic context is provided before describing all the significant generations of Datejusts that were introduced between ‘45 and ‘90, starting with Ref. 4467 and ending with the first sapphire crystal models. 

You will find an extensive buying guide with tips and tricks to empower you to evaluate vintage Datejusts and avoid issues such as fakes, poor restoration jobs, and unoriginal parts. 

Tables of references, calibers, bracelets and more are included for quick and easy referencing, combined with detailed macro and microscope images to help you identify the correct parts for your watch.

Of course you can also just skip through the pages and admire all sorts of beautiful common, not-so-common, and downright exotic Datejusts, photographed by the author and a select group of vintage dealers and collectors who have contributed to the book.

Table of contents

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Ordering a book sight-unseen can be uncomfortable. Have a look at the table of contents to see if this work covers what you are looking for. 

  • Introduction

              Why Rolex Datejust?

              Why vintage?

              Why this book?


  • Methodology and disclaimer

              Evolving insights

              Limitations in sources of information


  • The watch world before Datejust

              Rolex during the war

              Rolex before Datejust

  • Rolex Datejust generations

              Ref. 4467 – Where it all began

              The 5030 & 5031 references

              The 6xxx references

              The Datejust Turn-O-Graph

              The 65xx Lady Datejust

              The 16xx references

              The 68xx and 69xx Midsize and Lady Datejust 

              The Oysterquartz Datejust

              The 16xxx references

              The 68xxx and 69xxx references

              The 162xx references

  • Buying a vintage Datejust

              Why some pragmatism makes sense




              Set content

              The myth of the unpolished watch

  • Popular models and features compared

              16xx vs. 16xxx vs. 162xx

              68xx vs. 68xxx

              69xx vs. 69xxxx

              Acrylic vs. Sapphire crystals

  • The parts that make a Datejust


             Dials & hands


             Boxes & papers

             Chronometer certification

  • Value development

             A vintage Datejust as an investment

  • Datejust reference list
  • Serial number list


Created with Sketch.
  • Release 1st print: late march 2022
  • Language: English
  • No. of pages: 219
  • Type: Hardcover in landscape orientation
  • Dimensions: A4 landscape, 18mm thick
  • Warning: the font is quite small in order to fit all the content in a compact package. If you have trouble reading small typeface, this might not be the book for you.
  • Legal note: This book is not endorsed, supported or acknowledged by Rolex or any of its affiliates in any way, shape or form. It is the fruit of one independent author’s labor and ideas. All information presented should be interpreted as the author’s vision. The content has been professionally checked for legal compliance and copyright infringement and all rights owners are credited in the book. This is not a Rolex product.