In the vintage Rolex watch world, the Rolex Daytona is a champion of its own. However, the scenario was initially entirely different when now-vintage Daytona was introduced.
The Daytona chronographs were not famous at all among the collectors.
However, vintage Rolex Daytona models have today became holy grail among watch enthusiasts, commanding astronomical prices.
And one of the most coveted vintage Daytona watches is the reference 6265, nicknamed as the “Big Red”.
Today, we will take a look at spotlighting features of the vintage Rolex Daytona reference 6265 “Big Red”.
Rolex Cosmograph Daytona: The Origination
Since the 1930s, Rolex had been already manufacturing chronograph timepieces. However, in 1963, the brand introduced a chronograph model, offering a particular name to it for the first time.
The new chronograph reference 6239 was dubbed the “Cosmograph”.
However, what more interesting is that the reference was not yet a Daytona.
- In 1964, Rolex added the name “Daytona” with the term “Cosmograph” on the watch dial.
- However, the term “Daytona” highlighted the brand’s collaboration with the Daytona Speedway in Florida.
Today, the watch is yet officially known as the Cosmograph Daytona, but it is more commonly referred to as the “Rolex Daytona”.
Moreover, the vintage Rolex Daytona reference 6239 watch features 38mm case diameter and two pump pushers.
The two pump pushers are fitted on the case for activating the dial’s chronograph function.
However, Rolex produced yellow gold and stainless steel versions of the reference 6239.
All the iterations feature a metal tachymeter scale.
The Unique Dials
The Rolex Daytona flaunted some signature design detailing like contrasting dial registers.
However, the three subsidiary dials in different colour tone increased the legibility of the main dial.
Additionally, some Daytona models also feature the exclusive “exotic dials”.
While the famous actor and racecar driver Paul Newman wore a Daytona with the exotic dial, they are now popularly known as “Paul Newman” dials.
However, some spotlighting features of Daytona Paul Newman dials include –
- A stepped-minute track in a contrasting hue
- Stylised sub-dials featuring Art Deco numerals along with square tips
- Running seconds-counter consisting of digits 15/30/45/60 rather than only 20/40/60.
The Rolex Daytona “Paul Newman” watch is one of the most expensive and coveted vintage models today.
The Vintage Rolex Daytona: Evolution
In the mid-1960s, Rolex introduced the Daytona reference 6240, also often known as a prototype or transitional reference.
However, the watch flaunted the screw-down chronograph pushers instead of the pump-style pushers.
The screw-down pushers eventually refined the water-resistant capacity of the Rolex Daytona.
Thus, the Rolex Daytona reference 6240 watch was the ever first Daytona to feature the label “Oyster” on the dial.
Following the ref. 6240, Rolex unveiled the Daytona reference 6262 and the Daytona reference 6264 in the late 1960s.
- While the reference 6262 featured a metal bezel, the reference 6264 came with a black plexiglass bezel.
- However, Rolex equipped both the Daytona watches with pump chronograph pushers.
- But the manufacturer offered an upgraded movement to power them.
- The movement was a manual-wound Calibre but with a higher frequency rate of 21,600beats/hr.
Finally, Rolex released the last versions of the manual Daytona in the early 1970s.
It included the Rolex Daytona 6263 reference with black bezel and our today’s highlight Daytona reference 6265 with the metal bezel.
The Rolex Daytona “Big Red” Silver Dial Reference 6265
Rolex released the vintage Rolex Daytona “Big Red” ref. 6265 in stainless steel and silver dial in 1979.
The watch comes with a 38mm case and tachymeter bezel.
Moreover, Rolex fitted the timepiece with screw-down chronograph pushers, testifying that it was an “Oyster” water-resistant version.
Early iterations of the Rolex Daytona reference 6265 featured a Twinlock screw-down winding crown.
However, Rolex equipped the later editions with a larger Triplock screw-down winding crown.
Among the different dial designs of this specific reference, the Daytona 6265 comes with the coveted “Big Red” dial.
- However, the dial is named after the red oversized Daytona label that arches over the sub-dial at 6 o’clock position.
- What makes this Daytona more attractive is the Panda-style dial on a silver background.
- Moreover, the dial is accentuated with an applied Rolex crown and applied-baton hour markers.
- Rolex also developed a black dial version of the Daytona “Big Red”.
- But the Rolex Daytona “Big Red” with Panda dial looks ideally more appealing.
The vintage Rolex Daytona 6265 “Big Red” features luminous tritium plots and the engraving “T SWISS T” below 6 o’clock.
However, Rolex fitted the steel Daytona “Big Red” with an Oyster steel bracelet, featuring solid links and a 19mm lug width.
The Rolex Daytona “Big Red” Ref. 6265 is highly desirable among the collectors, and it is becoming harder to acquire in the second hand market.
Thus, if you are looking to sell vintage Rolex Daytona “Big Red”, it is likely to command a premium from potential Rolex watch buyers.
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