Comex question

Discussion in 'Vintage Rolex Watches' started by Pete17, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. Pete17

    Pete17

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    I just saw a 16610 Comex Sub for sale. Comes with service papers.
    There's no mention of the word "comex" on any of the service paperwork.
    Is this normal?
    As with the red subs and DRSD's, I thought they would mention it on the receipts:thinking:
  2. SPACE-DWELLER

    SPACE-DWELLER

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    That IS odd! I would also have expected it to be on the service papers! :thinking:
  3. marcello pisani

    marcello pisani

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    service papers are NOT a guarantee... so you will never see something like "military use" or the word "comex" or anything else that "describes" the watch, besides case number and reference
    number.
  4. SPACE-DWELLER

    SPACE-DWELLER

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    GREAT info, Marcello! :goodpost:

    Huge welcome to TKF! It's an honour to have you here! :thumbsup: :cheers:
  5. marcello pisani

    marcello pisani

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    thanks to you..

    and the honour is mine !
  6. Pete17

    Pete17

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    Thanks for dropping in Marcello, it's great to have someone with your knowledge to help us out from time to time.:cheers:

    We'd love to see some of your vintage beauties if you have the time.:thumbsup:
  7. marcello pisani

    marcello pisani

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    thanks,
    I have in fact a very big record about vintage Rolex watches, what would you like to see ??
  8. Pete17

    Pete17

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    Oh boy, where do I start!

    I recently bought my 1st DRSD, a MKIII model. My pride and joy.
    So I'd love to see any of your DRSD's.
    We have a LOT of red sub and Daytona fans here too.
    Also, while we don't have too many gilt dials here I'm sure the guys would love to see some of yours.

    Feel free to post your favorite watches.
    I'm sure the gang here would really appreciate it.:thumbsup:
  9. xǝloɹ

    xǝloɹ

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    I was doing some reading on the COMEX, military Rolex watches and I thought I saw photos of the case backs with the serial numbers on the inside that match the main case serial number. :thinking:
  10. BASSETHOUNDS

    BASSETHOUNDS

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    If it has the original documents I should have "country code " 119 on them
  11. BASSETHOUNDS

    BASSETHOUNDS

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    Comex is a civil / commercial french diving company . Founded by Henri Delauze . They have no military connection at all . They were the ones that helped creating the pressure tanks that test the Rolex SDDS .
    I'm also pretty sure that there are no matching serial numbers on the inside of the case backs : They have "Batch" numbers or sometimes commemorative inscriptions on the back .
  12. BASSETHOUNDS

    BASSETHOUNDS

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    You can say that again Bo , Mr. Pisani is a world wide reference and a legend in the Rolex world .
  13. Idle Swede

    Idle Swede

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    Funny you should mention Mr. Henri Delauze as we will have an indepth podcast with him on Rolex magazine any time soon.
  14. colemanitis

    colemanitis

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    Welcome to TKF, Marcello. It's a real treat having you here! Enjoy the site! :thumbsup: :cheers:
  15. xǝloɹ

    xǝloɹ

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    This is what I was reading and I may be misunderstanding about COMEX. The red is what I am confused about the serial number. I left the photographs out of the thread.

    http://doubleredseadweller.com/comex_5514.htm

    Rolex COMEX 5514. The Myth by Delgado
    Nothing has capture the imagination of Rolex collectors as the COMEX 5514 and the military sub 5513/17. They hold a very dear place in their harts, as it should.

    The 5514 has now surparsed other COMEX watches as the most popular and the watch to have for any serious Rolex collector.

    The 5514 models was a batch of watches that was specially made for COMEX and its divers and never sold by retailers.. It was delivered after the successful testing of the 5513 with HEV and COMEX made a special order of these watches.

    The magic number that keeps being quoted is that only 154 of these were delivered to COMEX. While that is an urban myth, since there is evidence that many more 5514 were delivered in at least three batches. Each batch has its own characteristics.

    Many of us are under the impression that COMEX got some extra white paint on all their dials, but this is clearly not universal and from the last batch.

    The classic 5514 is as this one with Tritium dial with COMEX logo and big numbers in the caseback, this is the end of the evolution for the 5514..





    The watch below, I purchased from our good friend. Its a 5514 with serial dating it to 1974 and delivered to COMEX in 1975. The serials and caseback numbers correspond. The caseback engraving is correct... but the dial is not what most of us expect..

    At first glance it looks like a regular 5513..



    But when you turn it over, the usual Rolex COMEX engraving and below at the six o'clock position and almost not visible is a small number "2XX"

    Everything else checks out including the non comex dial..

    I have done a little research on this and it seems that some of the earlier batches with small lettering did not come with COMEX dial at all. This is why we see some early 5514 with glossy replacement dials with white gold around the markers. This is because some have been sent back to Rolex and the original non COMEX matt dials have been replaced with later COMEX glossy dials.


    The caseback.

    There are about two types of casebacks.

    1. The early watches had Rolex COMEX across the caseback

    2. The later watches had large numbers with Rolex Comex around the caseback

    Finally to make it more confusing. The COMEX Serial numbers came in about three sizes, small, medium and large.

    I apologize that I cannot go into more details at this time as something's are better not published at this time.

    Conclusion

    In terms of value, I think most collectors prefer the COMEX logo on the dial but its a correct watch for these early watches NOT to have a COMEX dial.

    These unique watches are treasured by collectors as they represent the unique blend of two companies.

    I think its befitting to close this with an email conversation with a former COMEX diver and these are some interesting tidbits that he shared with me. After all, as a friend, Mr. Pisani always reminds me, these are not just watches, but tools that divers used when they were putting themselves in harms way. We must remember the divers always.
  16. marcello pisani

    marcello pisani

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    comex

    first of all thanks for the warm welcome !!
    about the many questions and points in this thread :
    1) there is no connection between case number and COMEX delivery number : the first is engraved between the lugs and many times also in the inside of the back ( early 5513 of the 1st and 2nd batch had only the last 3 digits engraved instead of all numbers ) : BUT there are some series of 5514-1665 WITHOUT the case number engraved in the inside of the back ( same
    thing that happens with a batch of 5517 for the British MOD ) ;
    2) the COMEX delivery number can be seen in most comex watches ; it's progressive and the range depends on the reference :
    -- series from 0 up to around 1000 : 5513 and 5514
    --series 2000 : sd 1665
    -- series 3000 : 16660 and 16600
    --series 5000 : submariner 1680
    --series 6000 : sapphire glass submariner ( 16800 and 16610 )
    a) the comex number in the first two batches of 5513-4 can be : small-medium ( with 2 different sizes ) and big.
    b) other series of 5514 and the rest have a big comex number ( with different fonts depending on the batch ).
    3) in the first batch of 5513 sold to Comex in 1972 according to Comex enployees: 2/3 of the watches arrived WITHOUT the "comex" dial ( so with a NON logo dial ) , but 1/3 HAD the damned "comex" logo on the dial , like this one :
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    I'm 100 sure of what I have written above as :
    A) in these years I had in my hands some other watches from this early batch with this kind of COMEX
    dial with exactly the same fonts in the letters ( that are a little different from those you see in later batches , that in fact have "thiner" fonts ) ;
    B) in the present watch we have hands-indexes-tritium pearl with exactly the SAME shade ( hands and
    indexes are obviously NOT repainted ).
    C) last but not least : I had in these years the chance ( I live 400 km. from Marseilles ) of speaking with
    former comex workers/divers who all confirmed me these informations.
  17. ryan5446

    ryan5446

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    Thanks for sharing Marcello

    Here is a closeup of a first batch 5513 logo dial

    [​IMG]
  18. marcello pisani

    marcello pisani

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    yesssssssssss !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    letters are very "bulky" : the letter E has this particular "heavy" shape.
  19. BASSETHOUNDS

    BASSETHOUNDS

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    This is really getting interesting :thumbsup::thumbsup:

    I mean interesting for two reasons .. I will not hide that the 1665 COMEX dial is my grail watch and hope to "find" a genuine specimen one day and on that same note as some may know I'm fairly active on another forum's "watch out " section . There we try to locate counterfeit Rolex items and have them removed if possible . We all know and Mr.Pisani probably better then anyone that COMEX watches and more particularly COMEX dial are being copied and passed off as authentic . So all this detailed info that can help us determine the counterfeits is very useful .

    It is here that it would be great to have the possibility to consult MR Pisani on those sometimes doubtful cases , were other are flagrant .. unfortunately some counterfeiters are getting really good . Therefor we should be careful to post openly certain details to preserve the possibility of detecting the "mistakes" by those counterfeiters
  20. Pete17

    Pete17

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    Great info Marcello. I'm learning heaps here!