Your guide to picking up a used Rolex
First, Find a dealer.
While Ebay and Craigslist are great for smaller purchases, a Rolex is an investment, even a used one, and you should buy it from someone who knows what they are doing. Talk to reputable watch dealers and collectors in your area. Ask them if they know of anywhere to get great deals on a used Rolex or if they have any in their store.
Purchasing a Rolex from someone reputable will save you a lot of time with no chance for a headache. Will you find better deals on the internet? Perhaps. But you then run the chance of buying something that is completely or partially inauthentic.
Spotting a fake Rolex can be difficult, especially with popular models like the Rolex Submariner or Rolex Datejust. The exterior of the watch may look close to perfect, but the inside is what you’re paying for. Over the years counterfeit watchmakers have learned to imitate Rolexes very well, don’t be over confident.
If something simply sounds too good to be true, it more than likely is. You aren’t going to find a Rolex for $900, not a real one at least.
Learn how to spot a fake
Fake Rolexes can be difficult to spot, especially if they are done well. Here are a few basic tips to help you decipher whether or not it’s a good deal.
Look at the Second Hand. On a real Rolex the second hand moves smoothly without ticking, if you see one that ticks as it moves, it is a counterfeit.
Look at the Date Window. Authentic Rolexes magnify the date while many fakes just have a separate piece of glass.
Check Out the Back. Authentic Men’s Rolexes have smooth case backs and zero engravings the only exception is the Rolex Sea-Dweller, which says “Rolex Oyster Original Gas Escape Valve” on the back in black along with two Rolex logos. Any Rolex other than that with an emblem or engraving is a counterfeit.
Pick It Up. Fake Rolexes tend to be cheap and lightweight. Real Rolexes are made with heavy, quality materials and weight much more. If it doesn’t feel heavier than your Target bought watches, it isn’t a real Rolex.
Get it authenticated
If you decided to skip the first few pieces of advice, which some of you will, then be sure to get it authenticated as soon as your Rolex arrives. Any good watch dealer (or pawnshop) should be able to open up your Rolex and do this for you. Some will do it for free, some will charge a small fee, but either way it is worth it.
Make sure you can get your money back
If you do decide to search online (which lets admit it, thats how most of us do our shopping anyways) make sure you’re smart about it. Sites like Ebay offer a money back guarantee if you are duped by an inauthentic item, but dealing with Ebay isn’t always the quickest or easiest choice you have.
Use PayPal, your funds are held in escrow until everything goes through smoothly. But even then, it can come down to your word vs the sellers word until PayPal steps in and makes a decision for you.
Link a credit card to your PayPal account that can protect against online purchasing fraud. A lot (if not most) cards have some way to do this these days. If PayPal and Ebay are moving slowly, contact your credit card company in the case you get ripped off. Banks are more powerful than you, they will get it handled a lot faster.
Don’t rush it
The most important thing is to take your time and don’t make rash decisions. Do your research. Find out how much the Rolex you are looking at typically goes for new and used. Learn the ins and outs of what to know when going to purchase yours and don’t jump the gun just because you see a good price. The more knowledgeable you are, the better experience you’re going to have.
Happy watch hunting, gentlemen.