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First introduced in 1956, the Rolex Day-Date has remained as the brand’s signature status watch. Designed to be the embodiment of prestige, the Day-Date was the first waterproof, self-winding chronometer watch to feature a day display – spelling out the day of the week on the dial, in addition to the date window. The Day-Date was the first watch to indicate the day of the week at the 12 o’clock position, and the date in the three o’clock position, representing an innovation that made watchmaking history. Hence its name, the Day-Date. It is also famously referred to as the Rolex “President”, as it has become the preferred watch of many leaders from all over the world. It is even multilingual – reading the day of the week in 26 different languages: English, Spanish, Arabic, German, Chinese, Danish, Basque, Catalan, Ethiopian, Finnish, French, Greek, Hebrew, Dutch, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Latin, Moroccan, Norwegian, Farsi, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Swedish, and Turkish.

Aside from the Datejust, the Day-Date was the only other Rolex watch ever made with the OysterQuartz movement. This revolutionary movement significantly increased the precision of watches from before – representing a future that Rolex believed in at the time. Today, Rolex OysterQuartz watches are extremely rare and hard to find, as there were only about 25,000 ever made before their production stopped after only 25 years. OysterQuartz watches are made within the Rolex Day-Date and Datejust collections only.

Day-Date reference numbers include: 118399, 118398, 118388, 118366, 118348, 118346, 118339, 118338, 118296, 118239, 118238, 118235, 118209, 118208, 118206, 118205, 19018, 18958, 18956, 18948, 18946, 18346, 18308, 18248, 18239, 18238, 18078, 18048, 18039, 18038, 18026, 6611, 6511, 1807, 1804, 1803

Day-Date OysterQuartz reference numbers are: 19019 and 19018

As the Day-Date has earned the nickname “the President” with its reputation as being the watch of choice for many leaders and influential people, it has been commonly associated with accomplished, older, and more established people. However, the Day-Date has become more popular and seen on the wrists of more younger people today, including younger celebrities. Some of these celebrities include Grammy-winning singer Bruno Mars, rapper Drake, former Spice Girl Victoria Beckham, comedian Aziz Ansari, and singer, Justin Bieber.

One of the most flashy and eye-catching Day-Date is the rainbow dial model, the 128345RBR. As if Rolex couldn’t add enough bling to their watches, the rainbow dial Day-Date comes studded in diamonds all over not just the entire dial, but on the bezel and center links of the President bracelet as well. To add some color pops to the bling are various colors of sapphires set as the hour markers – fittingly, in the colors of the rainbow. The Day-Date 128345RBR comes equipped with the Calibre 3255 movement, giving it a 70-hour power reserve as well as impressive magnetic resistance.

Another notable model of the Day-Date is with the anniversary dial – with an olive green dial, fitting the brand’s characteristic use of the color green to celebrate anniversary. This particular Day-Date model, the 228235, was released in 2016 to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Day-Date collection. Complementing its olive green dial is its 18ct Everose gold 40mm case, fluted bezel, and President bracelet. This special edition model also comes equipped with the Calibre 3255 movement.

In 1977, Rolex introduced the 3035 movement – which was revolutionary with the new quickset function that made setting the date on the Day-Date and other watches easier than ever before. Newer Rolexes all have the quickset. The best way to tell if an older Rolex has the quickset is by using its model number in order to check the watch’s details. To set the correct Day and Date with the quickset function, follow these simple steps:

  1. Pull out the crown to the first notch
  2. To change the date and time, turn the crown in the counter-clockwise direction until you reach the correct date
  3. To change the day, pull out the crown to the last notch and turn clockwise until you reach the correct day
  4. After adjusting your Rolex to the correct day, date, and time, be sure to screw the crown back into the case to keep the movement protected from water and other debris.

Spotting the differences between any real and fake Rolex watches will have various different tells depending on the replica. Some of the most common found on counterfeit Day-Date watches include:

  1. Weekday window: Misalignment of the day of the week in the day aperture at the top of the dial, or any differences in the text – such as its font, size, spacing, etc. are usually an indication that the watch in question is fake. Also, misalignment or difference in the actual weekday window itself.
  2. Date window: If the number of the date isn’t placed evenly centered in the middle of the square that reads it – with equal spacing on all sides of the number – it is usually a sign it’s a counterfeit watch. Also pay close attention to the font of the number(s), as any difference in the text is also an indication that it is fake most times.
  3. Rehaut: On authentic Day-Dates (or any Rolex watch, really), the inner side of the bezel or the “rehaut” is engraved with the text “R O L E X” along with the watch’s serial number. On real Rolex watches, each letter of the word, ROLEX, are perfectly aligned with each minute marker on its rehaut. If the engravings are even slightly mispositioned, it is usually an indication that the watch is fake.
  4. Clasp: The details and engraving on the clasp is another place to find possible discrepancies between a real and fake Day-Date. If the font, spacing, or size of the engraved text on the clasp look different in comparison to on the clasp of a real Day-Date watch, chances are it’s a replica. Same goes for the engraved Rolex emblem on the clasp – any slight difference, no matter how slight, is likely an indication of the watch not being real. Even the thickness and depth of the engraving can tell you about the watch’s authenticity if it differs at all from the engraving on a real Rolex clasp.
  5. Weight: A difference in the weight when comparing 2 watches is another usual giveaway of their authenticity, or lack thereof. For reference, the weight of an authentic Rolex Day-Date is about 215g/0.47lbs. Generally speaking, replica Rolex watches weigh less than real Rolex watches because they are usually made with cheaper material that weighs less. That being said, it’s still possible to run into a replica that weighs more than an authentic Rolex as well – although less likely. If you are able to hold a real Rolex in one hand and the watch in question in the other hand, just a difference in the weight – whether lighter or heavier – is a tell-tale sign the watch in question is fake.

As one of Rolex’s most classic dress watches, the Day-Date is another worthwhile investment. Since it was first launched in 1956, the Day-Date has since become a highly coveted among watch collectors, referred to by Rolex itself as “the ultimate status watch.” Several factors make the Day-Date a great investment piece. With its timeless aesthetics and sensible functionality, you can wear one for years and find that it depreciates very little – if at all. Day-Date watches are not cheap in any capacity – made in 18k gold or platinum, with price tags to match, giving them excellent resale value. With a simple streamlined appearance, it offers a versatile look that makes it a popular watch of choice for Rolex fans.

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