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What costs more… the Rolex or the engraving?

engraved rolex submariner

At Engravers Guild, we like to think we’re a modest bunch. But, that said, we do feel rather self-satisfied when such esteemed news outlets like The Daily Telegraph are still catching up with us.

Followers of this blog will not have been able to overlook our continual coverage of prized auction lots… often defined by their engraving.

A watch gifted by Steve McQueen and another gifted by Elvis Presley have both featured on our web pages, and been a showpiece for us in the value that an engraving can bestow.

And just this week we noted that the Tele has just caught up with our understanding, writing a feature using our same examples.

Still, to give credit where credit’s due, the venerable newspaper has brought our attention to something that we were previously not aware.

Namely, Steve McQueen was such a prolific giver of Rolex wristwatches that there is another coming under the hammer this year in the autumn.

The esteemed auction house, Philips in Geneva, has on their books a Rolex Submariner that was given by the Hollywood star to his stuntman, Loren James.

A nice story. But where the watch really comes to life is in the engraved message on the back.

Inscribed into the reverse of the timepiece are the words: “Loren the best damn stuntsman in the world, Steve”.

The writer of the Telegraph article notes that any watch claiming an association with Steve McQueen it likely to enjoy a hefty uplift… but with such evidence of the provenance like this, the price is likely to “go into orbit”.

With a 600,000 USD suggested sale price, the cost is already eye-watering to most.

But, by the standard for such pieces, some believe that represents a bargain.

Time will tell just how much the market really thinks it’s worth. But, if it might be slightly out of your range, do think about one of our beautifully engraved gifts as an alternative.