The Official Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex

The Official Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex

The Official Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex

Rolex is widely regarded as one of the most important watch companies in history. The sheer number of Rolex watches sold each year is a testament to their quality. A Rolex is more than a watch – it is a status symbol. For many, owning a Rolex watch brings pure joy. That joy, in turn, creates a huge demand for these luxury timepieces. Great demand also attracts a booming counterfeit market and; unfortunately, buyers can be tricked into handing over their cash for a fake Rolex; all the while thinking it’s the real deal. So, if you’ve decided that you’re ready to invest in a Rolex, it is important to take the time to understand what you are purchasing and How To Spot a Fake Rolex.

If you’re looking for a real quality watch to buy that will last you more than a lifetime, there is really a no better choice than a Rolex.

Over the years it has withstood the test of time and has proven to be not only durable but a great investment too. Some folks purchase a brand new model from an authorized Rolex dealer and thus do not need to be concerned about buying a watch that may not be 100% genuine Rolex.

But for those looking to save money by buying a pre-owned Rolex watch, or used Rolex, or even a vintage Rolex watch; we here are a quick tutorial guideline to help you with your purchasing decisions. A good used Rolex watch can last a lifetime and is a great asset to pass down to future generations.

However, counterfeit fake Rolex watches are getting much better and becoming increasingly more difficult to identify. Bob’s Watches, compile a list of the ten best ways to spot a fake Rolex. Watch their video on how to spot a fake Rolex. Here they are:

Real Vs Fake Rolex Watches

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Real Vs Fake Rolex Watches

Rolex timepieces are one of the most coveted luxury items in the world. So, consequently, there is a huge market for replica (fake) watches. Most of these fraudulent watches are made in China but research shows that production is spreading throughout all of Asia. These forged timepieces typically sell for $25 to $200 and the quality has gotten increasingly better over the past years.  The modern Rolex Datejust collection and Rolex Submariner are prime targets for these replicas.

Even experienced dealers can get fooled by bogus watches. Some knock-offs are easy to spot right away, while others, more sophisticated; counterfeit Rolex watches may be much more challenging to identify. With that said, it can be difficult for a novice to know how to tell if a Rolex is fake. To help protect yourself from dishonest sellers and imitation merchandise; Here is a list of the hallmarks of a genuine timepiece. Read carefully to ensure that you are not fooled by counterfeit watches.

Before You Begin, Know Your Seller

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Before You Begin, Know Your Seller

The easiest way to prevent the purchase of a reproduction or phony wristwatch is to buy from a reputable and trusted seller. There are plenty of reputable dealers. But it never hurts to do your homework to ensure that you get a genuine timepiece. Google does a very good job of showing you the most established, trusted retailers; to help safeguard against non-genuine models from entering the market.

Think that’s enough? Think again. Your due diligence should not end there. Many of these trustworthy dealers provide a guarantee of authenticity with every sale.

Beware Of Ebay & Craigslist Reproductions

On the other hand, websites such as eBay and Craigslist are only platforms that bring buyers and sellers together; thus are not accountable for what is being sold. Such sites are often plagued with fraudulent goods and it’s difficult to find trusted and honest Rolex vendors. It could be a dangerous place if you don’t already know how to tell a fake Rolex. For that reason, eBay or Craigslist not recommended.

Rolex Only Produces Quality Timepieces

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Rolex Only Produces Quality Timepieces

Rolex is one of the most coveted luxury brands on the planet known for quality, durability, style, and prestige. The company uses the best steel on earth called “904L steel”; which is more rust and corrosion-resistant. Rolex also makes alloys and rolls its own precious metals; to ensure the exact integrity of every watch. Everything is crafted to absolute perfection; so take a closer look at the case, crown, hands, bezel, bracelet, and clasp; if anything comes across as sub-par quality, then you can be pretty sure it’s not the real deal.

The Top Ten Ways To Spot A Fake Rolex Or Counterfeit

1- Serial & Model Number Stamping

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Serial & Model Number Stamping

Fake vs. Real Rolex Serial Numbers

The serial and model numbers on a genuine Rolex are deep and perfectly marked in solid, very fine lines that will actually glow in the light at an angle like a diamond cut edge. Conversely, the numbers on a fake, or replica; are typically made up of faint tiny dots due to a lower quality marking process. In other cases, these numbers on counterfeit watches will have a sandy-like appearance from being “acid etched” as shown in the photo above on the left.

2- Stampings

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Stampings

Real vs Fake Rolex Stampings

Replica watches come in different grades and the really low-quality phony ones don’t even bother to put the Rolex name or famous crown logo on the watch. This, of course, is a dead giveaway that you are dealing with an inauthentic piece.

3- Movement

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Movement

If you open up a watch, the movements should be a dead giveaway.

The movement that powers a Rolex is an exercise in master watchmaking skills. A replica watch cannot match the craftsmanship, dedication, precision; and knowledge invested into each genuine caliber bona fide movement; will always have “Rolex” engraved on it, which you can only see if you open up the watch.

Something else to consider is that the majority of the brands watches have mechanical movements; so if you’re looking at a quartz, that could be a red flag; since only, a very limited quantity of quartz watches throughout their history have been produced.

4- Dial

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Dial

You can tell the watch on the left is fake because of the difference in quality

The dial of an original is perfect, so if you see any uneven fonts, inconsistent spaces between the lettering, smudges; and/or misspellings on the watch then it is absolutely a fake.

5- Cyclops

Guide On How To Spot a Fake Rolex - Cyclops

The cyclops on the left does not magnify the date enough. A real Rolex would magnify the date by 2.5 times

The Cyclops, in Rolex parlance, is the magnifying lens above the date window on the face of their watches. On a genuine timepiece, the Cyclops is convex and magnifies the date 2.5 times for ease of readability. If, on the watch, you’re considering; the magnification lens is flat and the date isn’t magnified as such, then you are dealing with a forgery.  To spot counterfeit watches you need to pay close attention to every detail.

6- Waterproof


A Rolex Submariner undergoing a water test

Rolex wristwatches are built to be waterproof; while forged versions will not withstand a proper water test. However, experts strongly discourage using a water test if you doubt that the piece is real since it will likely ruin the watch; preventing you from being able to return it. If you believe you have a non-genuine timepiece have it inspected by a reputable professional.

7- Weight


Real vs Fake Rolex Weight

A genuine Rolex will have some weight to it; because they are exclusively manufactured from the finest materials. A counterfeit watch will feel lighter and flimsy due to cheaper construction materials.  If your watch doesn’t have any heft to it you are likely dealing with a counterfeit.

8- Clear Caseback

Clear Caseback

Fake Clear Caseback vs Real Rolex Case Back

With the exception of a couple of very rare vintage models produced in the 1930s; Rolex does not equip their watches with clear case backs, so beware of replica watches that have a clear window with a view of the movement on the back of the watch’s case.

9- Caseback Engravings – Real vs Fake Rolex

 Caseback Engravings


A real Rolex will almost never have engraving on the back. Engravings on the back almost always mean the watch is a forgery.

Except for just a few rare instances, like the vintage Rolex Sea-Dweller, COMEX, Military watches; and some older rare models; Rolex does not engrave the exterior of their case backs with words, logos, or pictures (a majority of the time). If the watch you’re looking at features engravings on the back of the watch’s case; then chances are you have a fake Rolex or imitation replica watch. In addition, some authentic older lady Rolex Datejust models like the 6917, 69173, and 69174 have “Stainless Steel” and “Registered Design” on the back.

10- Micro-etched Crystal – Real vs Fake Rolex

Micro-etched Crystal

Micro Etched Crystal

In 2002, Rolex began micro-etching a tiny crown logo at the 6 o’clock position on the crystal that protects the dial. If you’re looking at buying a Rolex made in 2002 onward, look for this marking for proof of authenticity. Since it’s so small, it is difficult to see with the naked eye.  This detail also makes it difficult for counterfeit watches to include.

How To Spot a Fake Rolex

Eliminate Risks When Buying Authentic Rolex Watches

Eliminate Risks When Buying Authentic Watches

While there are countless people who are incredibly happy with their watches; there are some owners who are looking to sell a Rolex. When you’re in the market for a pre-owned wristwatch you want to be absolutely sure of your choice before making it final; so eliminate the risk of ending up with an imitation watch by trusting in Bob’s Watches. You won’t find counterfeit watches on their site.  That is because specialists have done the homework for you, so you can rest easy knowing that any timepiece you buy from guaranteed to be 100% genuine.