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Thread: What are your thoughts - EX 11 - 16550 (yr 1988)

  1. #1
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    What are your thoughts - EX 11 - 16550 (yr 1988)

    Evening all. I am after some advice if you would be so kind.

    Having recently brought new and sold to the forum my 216570 (it was too big for me) I want to try the smaller 40mm version. Having looked around there seem to be quite a few 16570 versions about but I have recently come across the transitional model 16550 and understand they are quite rare.

    Reason being, as I understand it, is because of a short production run of approximately 4 years (1985 to 1989) using the calibre 3085 instead of the calibre 3185 used in the later 16570 model.

    I really like the watch and want to buy it but donít really know too much about them, what these are going for, and if there is merit going for this earlier version - potentially paying a premium compared to the later version.

    I have seen one local to me which I have handled and seems quite nice (I may have put finger prints on if shown in photos). It has been serviced by Rolex in 2016, including replacement service dial (no doubt a shame) but I am unsure about condition. It looks ok to me and looks to have had a light rub over at the time of service. (I say as itís in good nick).

    I have taken a few photos and would appreciate the collective thoughts on the watch in general , condition, and value (service dial and polish). Anything scary I should be worried about.

    I am not sure if this is vintage but regardless, I donít know enough about older Rolex to make a call.

    Any assistance appreciated.

    Thank you to this great community.

    Fred






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  2. #2
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    Calling the Rolex experts. Anyone? Or are they that rare? I like the watch but donít know enough about the older versions.

    I meant to also say that it has box and papers (not sure what a full set would contain maybe someone can tell me) and a photocopy of the service letter (not sure why but assume it can be checked).

    As I say any help appreciated.

    Fred


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  3. #3
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    I think these generally sell at a slight premium because the lume tends to age to a creamy yellow thatís very attractive, and is a distinctive feature of many 16550s - as the dial has been replaced in this example I think that this would strongly detract from any collectibility and would not warrant a premium.


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  4. #4
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    What are your thoughts - EX 11 - 16550 (yr 1988)

    If looking specifically for an Explorer 11, Iíd look for a polar 16550 with yellowing lume. They look amazing. The dial is the most important element with these, and where the money is.


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  5. #5
    Off topic but what I would say is that the 40mm Explorer 2 models are great all round watches.
    They are also still reasonable priced for SS Rolex.

  6. #6
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    I just love Explorer IIs and always have. I really must buy one.

  7. #7
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    Shame it has a service dial. If it had an original dial it would be over £5k.

    I did hanker for a 16550 rail dial earlier this year, but these are now fetching 5 figures now. Rare vintage Rolex have truly gone crazy.

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  8. #8
    Grand Master
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    Overpolished

  9. #9
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    Ok chaps I think I have my answer. It appears the service dial kills it, as does the polish for the price.

    I will pass and try to find another.

    I keep looking at Haywood_Miltons as I want an honest one. But no luck as yet. I think I will give him nudge to let me know. Also put up a WTB - let me know if you have one to sell.

    Thanks
    Fred


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  10. #10
    What was the price out of curiosity?

  11. #11
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    6350. Seemed high but I didnít know what/if this version commanded a premium over the 16570. Clearly over polished and service dial the answer is no.




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  12. #12
    Master
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    I think that some 16550 go for more that £6350 but they are usually the white dialed models with their dial turning to an amazing cream colour. Donít really know what the black dials go for..



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  13. #13
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    Thatís very nice. Still like the black dial.


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  14. #14
    Master James.uk's Avatar
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    With service dial... walk on!


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  15. #15
    Grand Master learningtofly's Avatar
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    No point buying one with a service dial and slightly dubious polish - you'd be better off with something newer.

  16. #16
    Master
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    Feeling flush........................

    https://watchesofdistinction.com/pro...ail-dial-1985/

  17. #17
    Master
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    Wow - quick look at C24 and the price range is quite surprising!!

  18. #18
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by verv View Post
    Overpolished
    Surely almost all Rolex from the mid eighties would be polished and some wear as per the pic would be reasonable ?

  19. #19
    Master pacchi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stelmo01 View Post
    ... Explorer 11....
    may be it is my OCD, but guys can we stop calling this the Explorer 11 and call it the Explorer II or 2.

    Thank you

  20. #20
    Master murkeywaters's Avatar
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    What are your thoughts - EX 11 - 16550 (yr 1988)

    I was looking at 16550 a while ago and a true original full set watch is very desirable with a price point to match, especially the polar.

    I also really liked the 16760 GMT and at one point they were less than the equivalent 16710, now they are eclipsing the 16710...

    Mad times with 5 digit Rolex..

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by pacchi View Post
    may be it is my OCD, but guys can we stop calling this the Explorer 11 and call it the Explorer II or 2.

    Thank you
    Youíre not alone, I was going to say the same thing!
    Maybe I missed the eleven different Explorer models?!

  22. #22
    Grand Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mick P View Post
    Surely almost all Rolex from the mid eighties would be polished and some wear as per the pic would be reasonable ?
    That one has lost bevel sharpness and the spring bars are sitting out almost flush with the case sides. Look at the loss of line and distortion on the crown guards in the 4th pic down and compare them to the photo of the cream dial.. and see how frog-like the crown on the clasp has become through heavy polishing.
    Some wear is expected but that has been heavily polished and I would wager not by rolex.

  23. #23
    Master
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    This is my 16550 (which I have been discussing with the OP). It's a late R serial which dates to 1988 manufacture.

    It's had two Rolex services from new and doesn't appear to have lost as much metal as the one originally referred to.

    (The bezel was new at the service but I paid (cheeky s*ds) to retain the original.)




    Last edited by David_D; 17th May 2019 at 20:46.

  24. #24
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    For me white dial is way to go


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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Croman View Post
    For me white dial is way to go
    Thatís the great thing about the Explorer II, you can pick up a dial and hands set for not too much and have both!

  26. #26
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    Thanks everyone for your help on this I have learnt a lot, especially about polishing. My search will continue.

    HAGWE


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