ROLEX Daytona


Below is a quick « check list » of what you should be looking at when considering a Daytona ref. 6240.

It is estimated that about 1.750 Daytona ref.6240 in steel were produced. It was the only Daytona reference produced in just 1 metal (steel) although rumours say 2 were made in yellow gold.

The reason is simple: the 6240 is a true prototype. It was made to answer the demand of Rolex clients for a true waterproof Daytona.

In end-1965 Rolex decided to take the existing Daytona ref. 6239 and has sawn the case to fit in some new screw-down pushers « millerighe » (in italian « thousand lines »). The rest of the 6240 is perfectly identical to the 6239 (small Daytona dial) with 6h tritium dot on the « W » of « T SWISS T ». Inside 72B movement with 2 or 5 lines engraved. Serial is 1.2m up to 1.4m. Arguably some will say « Solo » dial were fitted in the early assembly phase of the 6240. Maybe. They certainly look good!

In late 1966 the 6239 dial is now fitted with a large « Daytona » so is the 6240 of that period. It is still not waterproof. Movement can be 72B or 722-1. The watch serial is 1.4m to 1.6m.

In mid-1967 the watch is finally waterproof and Rolex decided to celebrate this achievement by a new dial for the 6240 adding the word « Oyster »! This is the 3rd dial of 6240 and one year after (1969) this dial will be used for the launch of Rolex best seller: the Daytona 6263. Serial should (always conditional with Rolex!) be exclusively 1.6m for this dial. Movement 722-1.

As an aside we find more than unlikely the existence of any « exotic » dial (aka. Paul Newman) in the ref. 6240. First those exotic dials appeared around serial 1.59m on the 6239 and 6241. By that time Rolex was proud to signal the waterproof achievement on the 6240 dial with the « Oyster » mention. None 6240PN with serial 1.658.xxx/1.659.xxx have « Oyster » on the dial. So why would Rolex bother doing a specific dial for the non PN and leave the PN without Oyster? Hmm..

Also given the commercial failure of the exotic dial in late 60’s/early 70’s Rolex has accepted from Singer only about 5% of the whole dial production per reference. Given that 6240 was a prototype why would they ever combine the two without reference of the waterproof while they immediately switched to the reference 6263? Unlikely in our humble opinion.


When buying a 6240 check:

•Dial: small Daytona? Large Daytona? Oyster dial? Solo?

•Dial silver type: silver sundial? black? Subdials white or silvery?

•Lumes: under UV light glow green & vanish after a few seconds (tritium) or blue (luminova) or nothing (bad..). All perfect or some melted or disappeared ? (Often 3h or/and 9h due to watchmakers work over the years). We observed that for 1.2m serial the 6h dot is on the W of « SWISS ». For 1.4m serial it is well under the T SWISS T.

•Pushers: prototype millerighe or MK0 (Rolex did try a few different); Often one can see brass under the nickel layer which is a good sign.

•Bezel: which generation? Should be MK1

•Case: check distance hole vs edge. Width of the lugs? Satin finish? Any stamp on the lugs?

•Engraved ref/numbers: check/compare. Any sign of repolish near the lugs/edges?

•Bracelet: 7205 with 71 end links?

•Clasp year code matching serial period?

•Backcase: ref number? CRS? XXX? Earlier 6240 has all 6239 back case. Then 6240 seen from 1.4m to 1.6m but 6239 still possible.

•Movement number: 72B then 722-1?

•Original papers:  we actually never came across original papers for 6240.


(This is not exhaustive – just a quick check list – in case you notice some inaccuracy please reach out. Rolex is a statistical gamer more than an exact science!)