How to Sell Your Rolex Oyster

The 1926 debut of the Rolex Oyster would forever change the history of watchmaking. Besides being the world’s first waterproof wristwatch, the Oyster demonstrated that Rolex—founded in 1905 and thus a relatively new name at the time—could make “tool watches” that were both technically innovative and remarkably elegant.

The Oyster’s innovative case, with its patented way of attaching caseback, bezel, and winding crown to the middle case in a way that completely protected the mechanism, was sturdy yet remarkably understated—a design signature that is still the hallmark of the Rolex Oysters being sold today.

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A Brief History of the Rolex Oyster

In 1926 the Rolex Oyster became the world’s first waterproof and dustproof watch—but that was only the beginning. The following year, Rolex pioneered its “testimonee” concept when celebrity endurance swimmer Mercedes Gleitze wore an Oyster during her entire 10+ hour crossing of the English Channel and the watch emerged in perfect working order.

In 1931, the Oyster made history again when Rolex perfected and patented the Perpetual, the world’s first self-winding mechanism. A few years later, Rolex created the Oyster bracelet: a three-piece design of flat metal links that is still one of the brand’s most distinctive design signatures.

Over the years, the sturdy Rolex Oyster and Oyster Perpetual would serve as the starting point for other Rolex collections, including the Datejust, Explorer, Submariner, and Day-Date.

Can I Sell a Vintage Rolex Oyster?

The answer is YES!

Vintage Rolex Oyster Perpetuals, meaning any Oyster made before 1990, hold their value very well on the secondary market. That’s partly because the elegant design of the Oyster has changed remarkably little since the 1940s, meaning that a Rolex Oyster Perpetual made decades ago is still recognizably a Rolex Oyster—and frequently much more intriguing to a serious watch collector. Case in point: the 1952 Oyster Perpetual, which brought $1.57 million when it was auctioned by Christie’s in 2018.

How Do I Know my Rolex Oyster is not fake?

Rolex is the most counterfeited watch in the world. To be safe, you should only buy a new Rolex from an authorized, official Rolex dealer. When you buy on the secondary market, you can get the same assurance from a seller like Gemma, the WP Diamonds partner site that authenticates and warranties every watch they sell. For more pointers, read our guide on How to Spot a Fake Rolex.

How Much Can I Get For My Rolex Oyster?

Everyone has heard about the million-dollar prices that pre-owned Rolex watches bring at auction. (If you haven’t, then you should read WP Diamonds’ Guide to The Top 20 Most Expensive Rolex Watches.) Like any other watch, the price for a Rolex Oyster will depend on the watch’s rarity, reference number, condition, and the presence—or absence—of its original box and papers.

So, while there’s no guarantee on pricing, we can tell you that the market for pre-owned Rolex Oyster watches is strong. In fact, Rolex timepieces retain their value so well that occasionally owners find a 20 to 50 percent return over their initial investment. If you have maintained your timepiece with regular service appointments from an authorized Rolex service center, you may see prices toward the upper end of that range.

Where Can I Sell My Rolex Oyster?

If you’re hoping to a sell Rolex Oyster watch, look no further! WP Diamonds buys these valuable timepieces regardless of age—as well as Rolex models including the Air-King, Cellini, Datejust, Daytona, GMT-Master, Sea-Dweller, Submariner, and Yacht-Master. As the premier buyer of luxury watches in the world, our process is simple and straightforward. Many people who sell Rolex watches to WP Diamonds have the cash in their bank accounts by the next morning.

Get started by filling out our online form to find out how much your Rolex is worth.

Get an Estimate for Your Rolex Oyster

At WP Diamonds, our entire buying process is designed to make sure that you get the strongest price for your watch. With an aggregate of over 150 years of experience in buying luxury timepieces, jewelry, diamonds, and luxury handbags, our team members are able to quickly and accurately give you an expert valuation of your Rolex Oyster watches or other luxury goods.

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We buy all kinds of Rolex watches from around the world

WE TAKE YOUR SECURITY SERIOUSLY

When it comes to transporting and insuring your Rolex Oyster, we organize this with our insurers and Brinks. We provide you with free and fully insured overnight FedEx label. The safety of your Rolex is of paramount importance to us and, as such, we always open items on camera.

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