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Today's best 6542, the "Pussy Galore"


curiousbunny

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Correction to last paragraph. 

 

Regards to "vietnam case" in replica,

 

It could be Vietnamese sellers with Cantonese connections.. It could be Cantonese sellers pretending to be Vietnamese. It could also be "Hoa people", the ethnic Chinese in living in Vietnam and Cantonese being the language

 

 

What I'm saying is, the vietnam case is not worth 1,000. And Vietnam is not known for manufacturing percision metal products, that's southern China.

Edited by curiousbunny
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For those who care about history In regard to international relations. and how it affects behaviors of citizens. Continue reading.

 

 

 

The problem with the west, they're too busy thinking of "dog eating jokes" and "cheap labor", not knowing how things actually work logistically in Asia. Numbers of dog farms are tiny compared to Pigs and Cow farms, dogs don't give enough meat and require too long to birth. Billions of dollars of meth and heroin were coming from Vietnam and Taiwan government (the same government the U.S is trying to protect was selling guns and heroin to kids in USA) and the public didn't know. "Here are some guns and drugs, go kill yourselves".

 

Google this, "Kuomintang KMT, heroin and Golden Triangle". That is Taiwan's government. USA know Taiwan is not trustworthy, and Taiwan openly disliked USA, but they need each other. USA used Taiwan island as military buffer zone, and geo-political bargain chip in world trade and power. In a war, Taiwan knows USA would hide military in civilian spaces, forcing China to bomb innocent people in event of war. Media would be "Communist China bombs innocent civilians".. Let's just say, if Taiwan could press a button and magically take over American land without repercussions, they would take time to consider instead of a quick no. 

 

What cause Japan to fight during ww2? 1, the geography of Japan lack natural resources and very little farm land, majority of Japan's food is imported. 2. League of Nations (historic version of UN and World Trade Organization) reduced Japan's economic output by favoring neighboring countries. 3. U.S and Britain cutting resources from Japan. They were running reduced supplies and commodity. Japan joined the Axis. U.S and Britain further cut essentials, raw material and food imports. Allies KNEW it would force Japan to fight or starve. It FORCED Japan to attack China, Philippines, Korea, Malaysia, then Pearl Harbor, USA.  It's the old "divide and conquer" technique Britain used for centuries.  

 

Learn more about Japan's geography, Why Japan's Geography Sucks - YouTube

 

The public media in America was, "Japan is sneaky with surprise attack on Pearl Harbor"... Ignoring it was planned by USA all along.  It made me think, how many people in Asia are still bitter about last century?  Children in Japan are, under president Abe. WW1 created WW2, Germans were angry at WW1 and repayment it forced on Germans, banks funded both home team and enemy team, wrongly blamed the whole Jewish population, it was the main reason for Nazi to win the public vote. Hitler himself was 25% Jewish, his book Mein Kampf was full of anger at WW1, bankers, and "genetically weak people" who let Prussia down.. 11 million people executed, 6 million were Jewish, remaining 5 million were mostly ethnic Germans of weak genetics. He was motivated by Fredrich Nietzsche idea of "ubermensch" or "superman" in English. If you think Hitler was a monster, no, he was a normal human being with bad combination and circumstances. 1, both his parents died with no stable upbringing with constant fear of poverty, he had to learn manipulation to survive. 2, he has strong national pride. 3, resentment for ww1 and payment to "allied countries". 4, ideas motivated by Fredrich Nietzsche who was a very popular philosopher and top ranked professor. Sigmund Freud was also influenced by Nietzche, just not the same way.  He served during ww1, before his Nazis ideas formed. 

 

Watch out for Japan's youth, they don't believe Japan did anything wrong during ww2, 50% (all ages) of Japanese citizens believe western countries is restricting Japan's economic growth, they often look at American products and services and think, "we could do better", "World Trade Organization let Korea take over Japan's TV industry, let Korea lead flash memory and computer RAM".

 

 

 

Google "Gulf of Tonkin incident" and you'd know why Vietnamese immigrants brought guns, drugs and gangs to America. It was background resentment that U.S GI brought more deaths than necessary since it wasn't America's home, more riflemen skirmish than necessary, more years fought than needed.. Agent Orange chemicals not only affected farms feeding communist military, but also civilians on both communist and democracy sides. If democracy won, U.S would meddle in every election affecting Vietnamese citizens daily life for benefit of America. They were thankful for refugee status, but still resentful for that fact. Any racial treatment and slights sting them harder than it would a french or british immigrant family. 

 

It's not a America's Republican vs America's Democrat issue, both parties would meddle elections in a democratic Vietnam..  Maybe the Vietnamese rep makers has some resentment hidden in prices.

Edited by curiousbunny
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One thing is for sure:

 

"The Vietnam case selling for over $1,000 is testing the market prices."

 

They are selling for $1000 because buyers will pay the price, not because they are 'worth' $1000.  If no one bought them they would lower the price until they started selling or make something else to sell. 

J&W Watch com probably gets a lot more.

S&D, business as usual.

 

I have mentioned before that I have two Yuki cases that I bought direct from Yuki in 2014 (5512 and 5513).  I still have them and will say they are made to an extremely high standard, as high or higher than genuine vintage rlx 55xx cases of the 1970s that I have compared them to.  I also know that some earlier Yuki cases were not as well made and I owned a Yuki '1680' in 2011 that was very good but not quite up to the standards of the 5512 and 5513 from 2014.

 

That being said...if the 'Vietnam' cases will sell for $1000+ it is fine with me...but  I also seriously doubt they are made in Vietnam, a modern watch factory in China gets my vote.  

 

Something else...

Since I completed my 'shortcut 1655' I have looked on the internet to see what genuine 1655 watches are going for.  They are priced at $15,000 to $45,000 (!!) but there is no way to know what they are really selling for so let's say an average of $20,000USD. 

How much $$ did my 'shortcut 1655' cost to put together?  I'm ashamed to say.

 

I also have a complete genuine 1570/75 hack GMT movement in first class condition with genuine nos GMT parts that ended up costing $1500+ above the movement price for the GMT parts.  I will venture to say at today's prices a complete genuine 1575 GMT movement will cost $3500 or more and most likely not be in fine condition like the one I have or be put together with nos GMT parts.  There is no difference at all  between a 15xx movement that left the factory as a GMT and a standard date movement turned into a GMT using all genuine parts.  They both have a serial number beginning with D (for Date) and no GMT identifying marks.  Since the factory refuses to give out any info at all there is no way to tell if it is an all original GMT movement or if it has been converted using all correct and genuine parts.  That's the way it is now and with almost no GMT parts available today there probably will not be many conversions put together in the future.

That's why the 'shortcut' GMT conversions came about but they still need a few genuine GMT parts to function properly.

 

So...subtract $3500 from $20,000 and it says a genuine 1655 case, dial, hands, and bracelet are 'worth' at least $16,500 now.  Wow!  What kind of idiot would pay that much for a few old faded out, half worn out rolex parts?  I might be surprised.

Maybe this is why they are can get $1000 or more for a  good quality replica 'Vietnam' case. 

I doubt many buyers are sticking $200 ETAs in them.   :pimp:

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My two 6542s are each built differently from each other. Both have my bezel and insert, and both have the 4th hand and  the '+' Brevet crown I modified from Rafflestime. 

 

The one I built using the 1655 from Trusty Time uses the DG3804B it came with. I took off the crown guards, which is the most difficult part of this build. I am not talented enough to get that side of the case flat, so it looks a bit 'soft' as though it was over-polished. It's close, and passable, but not perfect. The easy part is that the rest of the setup is used as is, with the exception of the alternating red/black date wheel overlay. There are two setups used on the DG movements for the date window. The standard is set at the ETA position, while the one from some suppliers has the overlay already installed in the Rolex position. The 1655 has it in the correct Rolex position. A 6542 dial (I used the dial that came with this 1655 and put my decal and lume) , alternate red/black overlay installed and it all fits together as it came. 

 

The other 6542 uses a case we called 'Tiger' because it came from a guy named Tiger. They are no longer available having suddenly disappeared years ago. I used this case to build my 6204 as well. It is thin, can be easily made to look thinner still, the stem is case centered, and it can house DG or ETA movement. I have the ETA 2846 slow beat, modified for GMT in it. Same overlay. 

 

The DG3804B and the ETA handstack are both correct for the 6542 and 1675. Rolex didn't change that until later models. The DG3804B and the ETA 2846 are slow-beat so more close to original. 

The Chapter ring measures 26mm, the early 6542 and 6204 used a 13mm minute hand. Later 6542s used the 12mm as is current. 

 

I don't know that I ever heard of anyone making a sapphire bezel, and having a sapphire crystal would make it an homage rather than a replica to me. 

 

Freddy is correct, the 115 crystal was used on the 6542, but being the only model it fit, and date window 1mm to the left (towards the center post) of later models, it is my understanding that 116 crystals were installed from Rolex as well as watchmakers. Both of mine have the 116. 

 

The first pic shows my water slide decal dial, 13mm minute hand and red date. The 2nd pic shows the 'over-polished' side of my DG 6542, and '+' Brevet crown. The third pic is the side view of my ETA 6542. 

 

 

dial.JPG

6542 crown.JPG

Red Crown side.JPG

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I suspect they found contract manufacturers on slow months. Anyone can manufacture in China if you agree to a factory price, however, if Apple offer the same company with a higher price, you must offer same or more to continue.  If Parnis made vietnam cases, there would be near endless supply. All the reps I've seen more mid and north China had too many obvious signs of replica.  

 

Yes, sapphire bezel and front glass would look fake. I like how scratch resistant sapphire is. Another idea is polycarbonate glass and bezel, another plastic and 250 times stronger than acrylic.  However, it turn yellowish after exposure to UV light for extended amount of time. Coat it with UV protection like sunglasses, coat it again with acrylic to prevent UV protection from scratching off..

 

I saw the latest VSF Submariner, it's absolutely stunningly accurate. Wish they could produce a 6542, there is nothing else like the late evening lume of 6542.

 

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My inserts were made of Lexan, the material used on fighter aircraft that is bullet resistant. They've not yellowed at all.

 

The lume on the insert and dial of a genuine 6542 was radioactive. It was discontinued in the last few years for being dangerous. That's when they went with the metal insert. The genuine lume will glow for a very long time, but not anywhere near what they were 65 years ago. Mine glow in the same way, not as long lasting nor as bright as today's lumes. There is no late evening lume of 6542.

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I meant, tritec's superluminova..Would be happy if 6542 had it "repainted"..

 

I saw a seiko lume at the park. Lumibrite  was quite attractive.  Sapphire glass and superluminova on 6542, thats what i like. You could always say you "got it repaired"

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Everyone should have what they want. If an homage 6542 is what you want that's fine. The genuine insert is removable from the bezel, as is mine. I'd think most all are, but I can't speak for others I haven't seen. Removing the paint and lume from an insert to re-lume and paint will depend on the material it is made from, the type of paint used, and finding a way to remove the paint without harming the insert.  

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On 4/14/2021 at 1:06 AM, curiousbunny said:

Let me tell you a secret. The vietnam cases are built in Guangdong, China, Not Vietnam.  Guangdong and southern China has been the technically advanced manufacturing hub for decades.  Most TD get reps from more north. Li/Jtime's case is built in Guangdong, Yuki parts are from Hong Kong. Many suppliers in the south are small time rep makers, but big time legitimate product makers. CNC and laser trimming can easily replicate any watch.

 

 

 

 

I have heard this theory that the Vietnam cases of MQ and Rubytime are perhaps of Chinese origin.  But I am not convinced without careful considerations of the specs.  First, if China is the origin, then why doesn't Helenarou sell the Vietnam quality case? He even has to make his own 5513 caseback but he refuses to try and make an accurate case. (The vietnam 5513 caseback is made by someone else than the Helenaround 5513 caseback).  Secondly, I will say that since the crown guards are left a little too thick, (but are close to late year 5513 cases like 1989 or 1990 5513 crown guards), this does indicate that perhaps the cases are originally made from mass produced stock like in China.  But let's go a little further, shall we?  The MQ, Ruby Time, and there are a  few more dealers from Vietname plus Phong have cases that not only perfectly fit the Rolex 15xx for perfect stem height, but they even have the perfectly made "half moon" shaped cut out for the Rolex case screws that slide around the movement. If China is the origin of the case, is it really correct that someone is just further cutting away to make all of these specs correct?  Or are you saying that a rough block version of the case is made in China and before the internals are cut out for any movement, the rough block is sold to these Vietnam merchants?  Any why are these Vietnam merchants the only people buying these Chinese cases?   To me, a little more evidence exists that the origin of the case is Vietnam more than China. But, the fact that the crown guards are left too thick does say there is a single source which I guess could be China. But I would say at the very least, these Vietnam cases that fit Rolex 15xx movements must be sold in very rough and uncut stages to be made correctly.  Otherwise, if they are cut out for ETA 2824 or 2836 DG 2813.... I just don't see how they could be then perfectly made to fit Rolex.

 

Lastly, if China really is the source of these Vietnam cases that can be cut out to fit Rolex, then for God's sake, why can't we buy some of the rough cuts ourselves and machine them on our own please?

Edited by RickFlorida
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I think you are onto something. If China was pumping these out, I feel like they would have trickled into the TDs, Helenarou, Raffles. Instead we get things like the BP Factory approximations being sold. 
 

I have a different theory. Go back 15yrs or even more. I believe that the “Vietnam” versions/parts WERE the ultimate counterfeits that probably made a handful of people rich. The OG Frankenstein’s that made it through auctions successfully, etc. Things were low-key for a reason and even if they came out of China???, the trickery and large $$$$$$$ returns kept it underground’ish.  
 

As time went on, thanks to forums like this and VRF and general Internet expansion the jig is basically up. Remember characters like Orchi and when NDTrading hit eBay? That was sort of the turning point in my mind. 
 

That brings us to 2021. While you will always have “purists” or pi55ed off people who paid $$$,$$$ for a genuine  vintage that never leaves the safe, or got scammed In the early days—

 

I think most people just want the Aesthetic of the vintage Rolex with the Rolex logo on the dial. I have attended snobby GTGs and the Frankens are starting to show up. There is no attempt to deceive, and most people are truthful about the origins of their non-Rolex-Rolex. Most people are accepting. To hell with those who aren’t. 
 

10yrs ago I used to obsess about crown guards, bezel inserts, dial text. (Things that only really matter in macro photos or under a loupe). Now, I stumble across cool dials that while not 100% accurate are simply nice to look at!  Same with cases and inserts.

 

Build/Buy what appeals to you, to the aesthetic you prefer. None of us are fooling anyone wearing our 6542, 6538’s out in public. I am all for Franken-Frankenstein’s these days. If I saw a 6542 in public I would ask them if they know “Phong, Ruby, or MQ” and watch their expression. 😉😃


So Vietnam/Vietnamese is just a label to differentiate the closest counterfeit vintage parts and not necessarily the actual origin source. 

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Good points, Ronin.  And let me please add that not only does Helenarou have to have someone make his caseback that does fit 5513 but is clearly different than the more rounded casebacks of Vietnam, but when Yuki was making cases, he too had a totally different case in my opinion from these Vietnam cases.  Now, it has been speculated that Phong shapes the cases after they are made from the Vietnam source. But was Yuki really doing that?   I don't know why I think this but I feel like Yuki and Helenarou didn't have the same source of the Vietnam cases.   I still have a gut feeling the current vietnam cases do not come from China. Or at the very least, they are not coming from a large mass production facility.  But I have no real proof and am just going by my gut.

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8 hours ago, RickFlorida said:

Good points, Ronin.  And let me please add that not only does Helenarou have to have someone make his caseback that does fit 5513 but is clearly different than the more rounded casebacks of Vietnam, but when Yuki was making cases, he too had a totally different case in my opinion from these Vietnam cases.  Now, it has been speculated that Phong shapes the cases after they are made from the Vietnam source. But was Yuki really doing that?   I don't know why I think this but I feel like Yuki and Helenarou didn't have the same source of the Vietnam cases.   I still have a gut feeling the current vietnam cases do not come from China. Or at the very least, they are not coming from a large mass production facility.  But I have no real proof and am just going by my gut.

 

TC Sub had the perfect 1;1 case from China, before going legitimate becoming Ginault. 

 

Standard CNC is 0.005 inches / 0.12mm accuracy, pushing 0.0005 inches for more advanced factories. There is literally no reason they couldn't 0.99:1 a watch by now other than rep-factories using old tools.  China has the highest number of CNC operations for decades being the world's factory. The only explanation would be, these rep factories are old watch factories struggling to sell in age of cellphones and android/apple watches.

 

As I said earlier, you pay a modern factory to manufacture a batch of your design. Be it 100k or 200k for a batch, presumably the low end pricing.. These CNC/laser trimming factories are open to public, anyone can hire them. Anyone American, German, Vietnamese, Japanese or dirtyknees.

 

China, every year import high numbers of modern machinery from Germany, Japan and United States. They're beginning to import  ASML's lithography from Neatherlands, Intel and AMD factories in Silicon Valley are exclusively using ASML Holdings for computer chipmaking, including their top tier CPU. Maybe you could design your own microchip in near future in China. More importantly, anyone can work in China. Corporations send employees to China every year to over-see production.  China's declining population, reducing by half in next 30-50s years. another half in 40-50 years. It's becoming South Korea and Japan in terms of labor shortages. 

 

Looking at the best Rolex Submariner, 3135 movement's balance bridge and balance wheel is a giveaway..  3D laser scanners and XRF alloy analyzer/spectrometers are not difficult to source in a manufacturing country. They couldn't replicate 1:1 because they're not using the exact alloy. Rolex blue spring, wheel and bridge aren't expensive in terms of materials. They're some of the cheapest metals you could buy.

 

Modern 3D printing are phasing in new era of manufacturing of metallurgy.  

 

Since vietnam case is perfect, why wouldn't they continue production, cases are over 1k and vietnam has extremely relaxed regulations for counterfiet products being a communist country, more relaxed than china.

 

 

 

Edited by curiousbunny
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Vietnam's average income is $2,000 per year. Selling complete watches for $500 continuously would make sense. 

 

 

 

Rolex couldn't produce enough watches to meet demand despite expanding their factory.   Swiss Watch Exports Decline, Leaving Industry More China-Reliant - Bloomberg.. Rolex isn't rare in Chinese cities, women are buying much as men. French Bordeaux wine are now inflated to $700-$1000 for a brand name bottle because of chinese customers demand. It flies off the shelf in Hong Kong. If you're white, open a bottleshop while pretending to be French. Customers would line your entrance and you couldn't stack the shelves fast enough..

 

Southern china has advanced manufacturing technology, and neighbors vietnam... Countless rep-makers are from north or mid china.. Rep-maker, TC - Sub's website once called existing rep factories, chinese version of hicks or rednecks.

 

Next to Hong Kong is Shenzhen, Huawei's headquarters, more 5G patents than U.S or any country in Europe.. In fact, Huawei is suing Verizon Wireless for stealing Huawei's technology. How ironic things are becoming. Warren Buffet invested 20-30% into BYD, located Shenzhen, China's electric car. Tencent and TikTok located in the same city, Shenzhen.

 

 

However, China doesn't have much welfare or safety net for the poor and retirees, United States does. which is odd since china is communist... China's market is wild wild west, anything goes, anything sells. Regulations are few.. Low regulation is why replica-watches actually have a community and rep-makers are responding to community demands.. Have you seen the latest VSF Submariner? People are selling subs they sunk 1.5k modifying.

 

 

 

 

Edited by curiousbunny
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3 hours ago, curiousbunny said:

 

TC Sub had the perfect 1;1 case from China, before going legitimate becoming Ginault. 

 

Standard CNC is 0.005 inches / 0.12mm accuracy, pushing 0.0005 inches for more advanced factories. There is literally no reason they couldn't 0.99:1 a watch by now other than rep-factories using old tools.  China has the highest number of CNC operations for decades being the world's factory. The only explanation would be, these rep factories are old watch factories struggling to sell in age of cellphones and android/apple watches.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think I see what you mean. But you do realize that the mass production we see with excellent replication skills is never for vintage Rolex, right? That is the frustrating part. But as you kind of mention in your other posts, it's all amount quantity to make the costs low.   I tried to have my sterile Vietnam 5513 case 3d Scanned and made into a CNC file, (I had MQ make me a sterile version of the 5513 case thinking it would be less risk if I have local watchmakers service my Rolex 1520 movement), but the cost way too high for a school teacher like me.  I had quotes of like 3,000 on average just to high resolution scan the case and caseback but then also have it built into a CNC file so that all you had to do was press a button or email the file and someone could reproduce the parts.   I suppose we could pool our money and have a perfect case and caseback 3d scanned and made into a CNC file and then those that chip in would have the file ready to go if we want a vintage rolex case.  The other other problem is if you only have one case and caseback made even if you have the CNC step file, the cost to make one unit may exceed the Vietnam 5513 case.  This is another reason I gave up.

 

I have friended like 12 Chinese wholesalers of replica watches on Facebook. I've asked every single one of them if they could please find me a 1:1 vintage rolex case.  Every single one of them has said no. So yes, you are correct that China has the capabilities as you mention.  But they are 100% not making vintage rolex cases, at least the finished ones.  I have found out from an Italian watchmaker what the thread and pitch is of the 5513 and 1680 Rolex case.  But that's as far as I got.

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You can try contacting a Hong Kong company to see if they could 3D scan for cheaper.

 

Hong Kong's English proficiency is 51% of its populations, education system was formed by British educators and still connected to UK by its special administration. It's a short drive into Shenzhen, mainland China, shorter drive than New York from Brooklyn to Bronx.

 

Shenzhen is named "Silicon Valley of China", you could literally find almost anything there in terms of manufacturing contract and custom parts.

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Good idea.   In order to 3d scan the internal contours correctly and get it all correct like the half moon shaped cut out for the Rolex casing screws, you need a very specific type of 3d Scanner. I forgot the brands but only like 2 brands make a scanner for high precision details.  Plus, it's a lot of work and skill to then turn that into a CNC file.   Now luckily, we could tell the technician that the caseback screw threading is 31 mm diameter and 0.5 pitch metric size with 60 degree thread profile.  And we all know the thread for the casetube is 3.00 mm x .35 pitch.  This way, after the super high resolution 3d Scanning does it's job of the internal and external contours, the technician should be able to create a CNC file for us to simply upload to any service to produce it from stainless stock.

 

Another idea I have is perhaps we could find a young person who is going to engineering school and has access to the software to do this.

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What software is it? We can pirate a free MatLab, license is $2000 but easily found online. maybe github. AutoCAD might be able to pirate, but open-source versions are widely available, I never learned to use them. We're talking replica watches, now i'm talking pirated software... It feels bit dirty.

 

If all else fails, ask if the company can perform complete service in Shenzhen. It's an economic zone with capitalist reforms, practically zero communist/socialist policies within the city borders. Almost all the companies are private or corporately owned. Last few years, Trump was talking trade deficit negotiations and intellectual property while American companies were investing billions in this tiny city, buying up land and office space. 

 

If Shenzhen proves successful to China, further capitalist cities will pop up everywhere. Foreigners were restricted from buying land a few decades ago, this was exciting news to American corporations.. How long before China becomes democratic, lol?

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Only ETA's have ever been perfectly cloned unfortunately.  I just wish China would at least perfectly clone balances like Rolex balances or the main plates but they just only clone things that are convenient.  it looks like the 75% cloned Rolex 3135 is the best we will ever get but like 75 or 85% of the parts are interchangeable but that is it.

1 hour ago, curiousbunny said:

What software is it? We can pirate a free MatLab, license is $2000 but easily found online. maybe github.

 

From what I understand, when technicians reverse engineer something into a CNC step file by precision 3d scanning, they of course first scan the items internally and externally (the watch case should be easy to scan with the caseback off for the internals), it is then created into a "point cloud" for th eoverall surfaces external and internal.  But then it needs to be put into something like SolidWorks or one of the Auto Cads like you mentioned.

I have Fusion 360 which can be used to create toolpath codes for CNC so maybe I will try this summer to see how far I get.

Edited by RickFlorida
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I'm unaware which type of codes each company work with. AutoCAD and SolidWorks are safe bet.

 

Does your local library offer you Lynda account? Free AutoCAD lessons are available, if not, Open Course Ware, Coursera and Ed-X give free university level education courses. MIT, Harvard, Stanford, Cambridge, Oxford, all free. If you're willing to spend, Udemy, Udacity, SkillShare, and Lynda will have AutoCAD and SolidWorks lessons.  Costly option is your local community college or university for a few courses

 

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