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Hidden in plain sight

In my opinion the sleeping beauty of the watch industry happens to be one of the most overlooked and less documented pieces at the moment.

The Rolex 1530 is one of the most undervalued references on the market right now.

We have seen a sharp rise in recent years in relation to this model and vintage Rolex prices in general have gone up commanding Patek level auction sales.

At first glance Rolex enthusiast will recognize the case and bracelet on this watch from the OysterQuartz Datejust model. However, for a about a year prior to introducing the OysterQuartz Datejust, Rolex cased an automatic caliber in the same case and bracelet configuration.

This model that came about in 1975 was a direct answer to the Gérald Genta designed sports models that were enjoying much commercial success at the time.

The reference 1530 watches were produced before the case and bracelet were co-opted for exclusive use in the OysterQuartz line and was the first Rolex to include the Sapphire crystal glass.

The bracelet adds to the oddity of this model breaking away from the classic oyster or jubilee bracelets. It is (along with the Oysterquartz) the only Oyster ever designed to include an integral bracelet composed of large flat solid links and is, without a doubt the strongest bracelet ever seen on a Rolex watch.

Dial is from the classic Date / Datejust format but with the particularity ‘to be made up of two parts namely the basic directions hours on a runway and an amphitheater printed with the second, for the 6 o’clock written swiss T and T, every 5 seconds less than 12 hours, a bright spot of tritium was applied.

How many exactly were made is debatable some say 500 others say 1500 but one thing we know for sure is that this model marks history and is an extremely rare find. With pieces going on average from 9000Euros to 15000Euros it is safe to say that this is going to be a hot investment for the future.

Value and rarity is sometimes hidden in plain sight and no other watch stands as a truer testament to this than the 1530.