A Rinaldi “Big Crown” 5510 At Antiquorum Hong Kong – Vintage Panerai and other iconic timepieces under the loupe at Perezcope

Among watch lovers, the identify Antiquorum has lengthy turn into synonymous with counterfeits and malpractice. In their newest catalogue for his or her “Important Modern & Vintage Timepieces” public sale happening on April 25, 2021 in Hong Kong, Antiquorum introduced a uncommon Rolex “Big Crown” Submariner Ref. 5510 with elusive 3-6-9 (Explorer) dial. One have a look at the dial suffices to grasp its origins. Luciano Rinaldi. That’s proper, Rinaldi didn’t restrict himself to faking classic and Pre Vendôme Panerai – earlier than the sketchy Panerai got here alongside, Rinaldi had already faked every little thing else, Rolex, Omega, Breitling, Longines, you identify it. Remember the albino GMTs with bizarre PanAm matriculation numbers on the again, or the Omega Seamaster 600s with Comex Janus 2 engravings? Rinaldi was the mastermind behind all of those fakes. Panerai was a straightforward goal, a watch model with out discernible historical past that allowed him and his son Samuele to wreak havoc as they happy. Antiquorum and Rinaldi labored hand in glove for the reason that mid Nineteen Nineties.

Lot 249: Rolex Ref. 5510, “Submariner”; so-called “James Bond” “Big Crown”

An incredible trying watch at first look however completely faux. Not simply the dial, the case is faux too.

LOT 249

Auction hyperlink: LOT 249 – Rolex Ref. 5510, self-winding, diver’s, centre-seconds; “Submariner”; so-called “James Bond” “Big Crown”; chrome steel (Antiquorum)

One look between the lugs makes this very clear. First, the typeface is totally off. Secondly, Modèle Déposé, actually? That just isn’t a factor on Ref. 5510. That kind of designation was discontinued years ealier. As you possibly can see within the comparability under, the unique watches featured solely the case quantity between the lugs at 6 o’clock.

Comparison case numbers

Between the lugs at 12 o’clock isn’t any higher. Again, the typeface is totally off and as an alternative of Registered Design, the case options lengthy discontinued Brevet + engravings.

Comparison reference quantity

The within the caseback is totally off too. Rolex watches from this period often bore a tough manufacturing date on the within of the caseback. In case of this distinctive Ref. 5510 batch, extending from case quantity 361800 to 362299 (500 items), the date was 1.1958 which stands for first quarter of 1958.

Caseback stamps 362062 (left, faux) vs. 362006 (unique)

The current watch is on no account faux. It is tough to consider that anybody, not to mention the specialists of an public sale home, may fall for one thing this.

Blast from the previous

Antiquorum bought a number of comparable watches prior to now. The “Big Crown” Ref. 5510 under which was bought on March 28, 2008 in New York, featured the identical type of Rinaldi dial as the topic of this text. The watch bought for USD 61,360. That is sort of a sum for 2008, particularly contemplating that no less than the dial is faux.

Auction hyperlink: Lot 329 – So-Called “James Bond”, Ranger Dial Rolex, Ref. 5510 (Antiquorum)

Later that yr, once more in New York, Antiquorum bought a Rolex Submariner Ref. 5513 with a barely totally different Rinaldi dial for USD 50,400. Again, an unbelievable sum of money for a 5513 in 2008. Obviously, these Rinaldi 3-6-9 Explorer dials have been believed to be real on the time.

Rolex Submariner Ref. 5513 with faux Rinaldi Explorer dial

Auction hyperlink: LOT 474 – Ref. 5513, Explorer Dial (Antiquorum)

Several comparable items had already been bought by Antiquorum earlier:

2007: LOT 206 – Ref. 5513, “Ranger Dial Submariner” Rolex (Antiquorum)

2004: LOT 195 – “Ranger Dial” Rolex Submariner, Ref. 5513 (Antiquorum)

2004: LOT 386 – Rolex, “Submariner”, Ref. 5513 (Antiquorum)

2002: LOT 15 – Rolex, “Submariner”, Ref. 5512 (Antiquorum)

In 2017, Antiquorum bought as soon as once more a Rolex Submariner Ref. 5513 with faux Rinaldi Explorer dial however this time the dial was correctly declared. Well kinds of as they said the dial was reprinted when in actuality it was fully faux. Antiquorum disclosed these details because the cat was lengthy out of the bag. The watch fetched solely CHF 12,500.

Auction hyperlink: LOT 585 – Rolex Submariner 5513 Explorer so known as “Rinaldi dial” pointed crown guard (Antiquorum)

At the time of the sale, folks have been shocked to see Antiquorum overtly providing a watch with a faux dial. The public opinion was that counterfeits must be taken out of circulation and never be reinserted into the market. One by no means is aware of the place these items may find yourself and the way a lot injury they might nonetheless trigger.


The watches listed on this article are simply the tip of the iceberg. Submariners with the sort of dials have been typically privately bought amongst collectors. Rinaldi fooled all of them. The monetary injury triggered was enormous. Collectors and auctioneers quickly grew to become conscious of Rinaldi’s numerous scams and his popularity and identify went down the drain, a lot so, he disappeared from the face of the earth. After his dying in 2016, his son Samuele inherited a watch assortment consisting of a number of hundred items, an enormous pile of unsellable rubbish. This is when Rinaldi fakes began reappearing available on the market.

Thank you on your curiosity.

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