Carrying On.. Ex Point, etc, ...Closing Thoughts...

Vintage Rolex Discussion

Carrying On.. Ex Point, etc, ...Closing Thoughts...

Joined: July 25th, 2010, 6:16 am

February 16th, 2012, 1:58 am #1

Guys,I promise not to raise any more issues on, as at this moment, a subject that essentially cannot have a certain conclusion.

To prevent getting lost, (easy when it comes to this very rather complex and most intractable of the outstanding Rolex mysteries), I will put my thoughts in point form;

1] I do not believe the dot and the line has anything to do with Import Duties. Import Duties would have applied to all watches, but yet only a very small number of watches, mainly professional watches have the markings. I do not have much knowledge on other non Rolex watches, but I have not seen this markings, say, on an Omega of the same vintage, for example.

2] Even today, every country has its own import duty regime, even with the standardising influnce of of the WTO, but I see no distingushing marks on contemporary watches to accommodate this country/market differences.

3] I believe that Tritium was already used in the early 50s on the Panerais, hence,the terms Luminor and Radiomir ,that epitomises Panerai today. Where the Tritium came from, I have no clue. But the Germans during the last Great War was in a race with the US to produce the Bomb, and had facilities in Norway to produce Heavy Water which was essential to the process of producing fissile material for an atomic bomb. Panerai was known to supply their watches to the Germans (German-Italian Axis in WW2), and maybe obtained tritium from the Germans in exchange!( LOL, speculation on my part!) Panerai was aware of the health hazards of Radium , especially as their dials had copious of the stuff.After all, Marie Curie, the disscoverer of Radium, died in 1933 of radiation induced illness,. and of course the poor radium girls...

The reason why Radium continued to be used, when a safer alternative was available, was not clear. Cost? (as i has always thought tritium was more costly). Licensing? (As
Harris' Kodak letter clearly proved).

4]With the Bakelite bezel and Strontium 90 scare, Rolex probably felt it was in its interest to move away from Radium to Tritium. Based on empirical evidence, this would be in the 59/60 time line. At the time, all Rolex dials were marked "SWISS", and Radium was still much in use, Tritium was just being just introduced. During this time, Rolex was experimenting with what was the best way to distingush Radium dials from the Tritium dials, Hence, the multiple variations we see today, Ex point, underline, double prints.

5] We know that the use of these markings disappeared in 63 or thereabouts, and the "new" watches then had "T SWISS T", and "SWISS T


To me the circumstancial evidence is very strong, in particular,

A} That the marks disappeared after 63, and the notation on the dials were standardised on "T SWiSS T", and "SWiSS T

B} NY baanned the sale of products with radium,in 63 (source, Harris?).


C} Tom's discovery of a CB sticker saying " Guaranteed Radiation Safe".

D} Tests carried out by our Dutch friends with a Geiger counter. Others may laugh, but to me this is as scientific as one can get on the issue here, when much said is conjecture and leaps of Faith.


So, for me, until new conclusive, verifiable information comes to light, it is still the "tritium" hypothesis for me. Other hypotheses have been whispered, and no doubt may be logical, but logical may not be the same as "correct'. Still it is good to hear, but people are not saying.. Ah well..Also, the Tritium Hypothesis is also logical, no?

No answer required, just closing thoughts for the time being; I have no doubt this ghost will be resurrected .....LOL!



Last edited by munchiew on February 16th, 2012, 2:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: July 25th, 2010, 6:16 am

February 16th, 2012, 3:15 am #2

1] If Rolex was to issue a document confirming that the Ex dot and underline were for the Canadian for US market, of course they will be right. But for what reason, the need to mark specially these watches? Not for tax reasons, but IMHO , to identify those 'Guaranteed Radiation Free" watches. Good marketing, as well as perhaps in anticipation of new health and safety regulations. NY ban, remember? Why not for other countries? Because the US were the leaders in consumer safety and rights in those days. Still are today. The Authorities in many other countries had little interest in these issues, so there was no need ..

2] Why are these marks seen largely on the professonal watches, and not the other watches? IMHO again, these watches that were so marked were so marked because they have much higher radiation levels when radium was used, so was the focus of attention. Also, these models had an institutional and corporate market, so these customers may have had some influence on Rolex to clearly show the safety of their products. T on milsub dials?

Non tool watches had small plots, were generally not sold to institutions, so no attention was put on these items. Maybe becauuse of their small plots, the radiation levels were well with safety levels in the first place, even when Radium was being used. So no issues here.
Last edited by munchiew on February 16th, 2012, 7:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: July 9th, 2004, 2:59 pm

February 16th, 2012, 10:53 am #3

Guys,I promise not to raise any more issues on, as at this moment, a subject that essentially cannot have a certain conclusion.

To prevent getting lost, (easy when it comes to this very rather complex and most intractable of the outstanding Rolex mysteries), I will put my thoughts in point form;

1] I do not believe the dot and the line has anything to do with Import Duties. Import Duties would have applied to all watches, but yet only a very small number of watches, mainly professional watches have the markings. I do not have much knowledge on other non Rolex watches, but I have not seen this markings, say, on an Omega of the same vintage, for example.

2] Even today, every country has its own import duty regime, even with the standardising influnce of of the WTO, but I see no distingushing marks on contemporary watches to accommodate this country/market differences.

3] I believe that Tritium was already used in the early 50s on the Panerais, hence,the terms Luminor and Radiomir ,that epitomises Panerai today. Where the Tritium came from, I have no clue. But the Germans during the last Great War was in a race with the US to produce the Bomb, and had facilities in Norway to produce Heavy Water which was essential to the process of producing fissile material for an atomic bomb. Panerai was known to supply their watches to the Germans (German-Italian Axis in WW2), and maybe obtained tritium from the Germans in exchange!( LOL, speculation on my part!) Panerai was aware of the health hazards of Radium , especially as their dials had copious of the stuff.After all, Marie Curie, the disscoverer of Radium, died in 1933 of radiation induced illness,. and of course the poor radium girls...

The reason why Radium continued to be used, when a safer alternative was available, was not clear. Cost? (as i has always thought tritium was more costly). Licensing? (As
Harris' Kodak letter clearly proved).

4]With the Bakelite bezel and Strontium 90 scare, Rolex probably felt it was in its interest to move away from Radium to Tritium. Based on empirical evidence, this would be in the 59/60 time line. At the time, all Rolex dials were marked "SWISS", and Radium was still much in use, Tritium was just being just introduced. During this time, Rolex was experimenting with what was the best way to distingush Radium dials from the Tritium dials, Hence, the multiple variations we see today, Ex point, underline, double prints.

5] We know that the use of these markings disappeared in 63 or thereabouts, and the "new" watches then had "T SWISS T", and "SWISS T


To me the circumstancial evidence is very strong, in particular,

A} That the marks disappeared after 63, and the notation on the dials were standardised on "T SWiSS T", and "SWiSS T

B} NY baanned the sale of products with radium,in 63 (source, Harris?).


C} Tom's discovery of a CB sticker saying " Guaranteed Radiation Safe".

D} Tests carried out by our Dutch friends with a Geiger counter. Others may laugh, but to me this is as scientific as one can get on the issue here, when much said is conjecture and leaps of Faith.


So, for me, until new conclusive, verifiable information comes to light, it is still the "tritium" hypothesis for me. Other hypotheses have been whispered, and no doubt may be logical, but logical may not be the same as "correct'. Still it is good to hear, but people are not saying.. Ah well..Also, the Tritium Hypothesis is also logical, no?

No answer required, just closing thoughts for the time being; I have no doubt this ghost will be resurrected .....LOL!


1. Why do you see specific importation marks in the sense of hallmarks in different countires to signify duties are paid at different times.

2. Tritriated paint was developed and patented by Oakridge Scientists in the US.I know what Panerai claims and I've seen the patent.

3. Do you seriously believe that the Allied forces would leave any fission or fussion material in Axis hands immediately after WW2, all the nuclear scientists went either east or west.The US AEC was formed to pull in all fission and fusion material both military and civilian stockpiles into and under its direct control, supervision and distribution network.

4. Strontium 90 and Tritium were cheaper than Radium.

5. The very first world wide radiation in the workplace convention came into effect in 1962, formerly signed by the UK in 63 and Switzerland in 64. This fundamantal changed local laws, eg you see the first spray booth and application of paint laws introduced soon afterwards in 1964 for Switzerland. Radium was highly controlled in the workplace, tritium and strontium 90 were seen as safe in comparison.

As I've said repeatedily, until these dials are subject to lab testing just running a geiger over them is not enough, as constituents such as zinc sulfide change which is radiactive itself with its specific radiactive daughters eg radon 39 ( from memory) their properties quite quickly decay, in radium it becomes radon gas.

Secondily each batch of lumi material may not have the same degree of radiactivity. Hence maybe why we see  that only some of the 1956 to 1959 GMT bezels were in excess of strontium 90 safe limits in the December 1959 onwards recall............a 'hot' batch maybe. We know they used strontium 90, why do we assume its only in bezels, just because its well documented.

If the recall hadn't have happened we wouldn't have known about Sr 90 use by Rolex and just assume radium to tritium...................

Lets not forget that the US Military were using Strontium 90 from the early 1950's in its radiluminesence in personnel and deck markers.

 I do not question the good work of the Dutch guys, they have put the sticks in the ground it now needs to be built on.

So the nutty question when did Rolex first use tritiated paint..................and where did they get it from?

RC Tritec a lumi paint supplier used in the rest of the Swiss industry is on record as saying the Swiss industry changed to tritium in 1962. So what created these lower radiactive readings pre 62? Secondily is tritium any less or more radiative per gram than radium or strontium, radium has a different spectrum which is more harmful? I would appreciate an answer to that question when using a geiger.

 Do we also have the possibility that other things are also in play here?

The very first AEC inspection of Rolex USA is 1965, the maximum no of years an exemption licence is awarded for is 3 years and between routine inspections is 3 years( unless problems found), it states the Rolex had been making its returns of watch shipment details as required to the AEC for some time, AEC had no control over radium so these would be tritiated watch sales. So strangely if the inspection was for arguements sake at the edge of the 3 year time span for licence and inspection that would put the possible first date for use of tritium under exemption licencing as 1962......strange coincidence to RC Tritec commencement date. The next AEC inspection was 1968, which then set up the 71 inspection........maybe a pattern forming here?

The January 1961 release of tritium by AEC for use with diasl also set limits and adherence requirements of the material to dials and hands, the 65 AEC inspection mentions QC reports and the 68 Inspection mentions specifically M&B adherence and rejection QC reports. M&B were the lumi appliers..................so what submission and testing was required to be conformed to and at what date did Rolex achieve compliance post January 1961?

Interesting debate, which I'm sure will bubble along for a while............lab sampling lumi material should resolve any difficulties

regards

John
Last edited by fatboyharris on February 16th, 2012, 3:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: January 23rd, 2005, 9:30 pm

February 16th, 2012, 10:58 am #4

but wont tell us

---Perpetual Knowledge---
-Perpetual Knowledge-
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Joined: January 24th, 2005, 7:38 am

February 16th, 2012, 11:12 am #5

...and excellent use of the word 'member'

KT
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Joined: July 9th, 2004, 2:59 pm

February 16th, 2012, 11:14 am #6

but wont tell us

---Perpetual Knowledge---
Interesting debate all the same and makes the site more vibrant and if anything for me makes me question more and more of what I see  and for people new to vintage Rolex a massive piece of knowledge and understanding imparted from many really interesting people bringing experience as well as research into context.

 

Whatever it is, it is going to get turned over by whoever is in the opposing camp, I'm not sure I would want to be Moses bringing the word of GOD to the masses, it might need more than 10 Commandments

 

regards

John
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Joined: September 8th, 2003, 7:26 am

February 16th, 2012, 12:39 pm #7

Do not expect any big news 'from the Lake' !!!!
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Joined: October 12th, 2006, 4:29 pm

February 16th, 2012, 1:50 pm #8

are visiting the Forum to fully understand what confusion they have created.
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 11:47 pm

February 16th, 2012, 2:10 pm #9

Guys,I promise not to raise any more issues on, as at this moment, a subject that essentially cannot have a certain conclusion.

To prevent getting lost, (easy when it comes to this very rather complex and most intractable of the outstanding Rolex mysteries), I will put my thoughts in point form;

1] I do not believe the dot and the line has anything to do with Import Duties. Import Duties would have applied to all watches, but yet only a very small number of watches, mainly professional watches have the markings. I do not have much knowledge on other non Rolex watches, but I have not seen this markings, say, on an Omega of the same vintage, for example.

2] Even today, every country has its own import duty regime, even with the standardising influnce of of the WTO, but I see no distingushing marks on contemporary watches to accommodate this country/market differences.

3] I believe that Tritium was already used in the early 50s on the Panerais, hence,the terms Luminor and Radiomir ,that epitomises Panerai today. Where the Tritium came from, I have no clue. But the Germans during the last Great War was in a race with the US to produce the Bomb, and had facilities in Norway to produce Heavy Water which was essential to the process of producing fissile material for an atomic bomb. Panerai was known to supply their watches to the Germans (German-Italian Axis in WW2), and maybe obtained tritium from the Germans in exchange!( LOL, speculation on my part!) Panerai was aware of the health hazards of Radium , especially as their dials had copious of the stuff.After all, Marie Curie, the disscoverer of Radium, died in 1933 of radiation induced illness,. and of course the poor radium girls...

The reason why Radium continued to be used, when a safer alternative was available, was not clear. Cost? (as i has always thought tritium was more costly). Licensing? (As
Harris' Kodak letter clearly proved).

4]With the Bakelite bezel and Strontium 90 scare, Rolex probably felt it was in its interest to move away from Radium to Tritium. Based on empirical evidence, this would be in the 59/60 time line. At the time, all Rolex dials were marked "SWISS", and Radium was still much in use, Tritium was just being just introduced. During this time, Rolex was experimenting with what was the best way to distingush Radium dials from the Tritium dials, Hence, the multiple variations we see today, Ex point, underline, double prints.

5] We know that the use of these markings disappeared in 63 or thereabouts, and the "new" watches then had "T SWISS T", and "SWISS T


To me the circumstancial evidence is very strong, in particular,

A} That the marks disappeared after 63, and the notation on the dials were standardised on "T SWiSS T", and "SWiSS T

B} NY baanned the sale of products with radium,in 63 (source, Harris?).


C} Tom's discovery of a CB sticker saying " Guaranteed Radiation Safe".

D} Tests carried out by our Dutch friends with a Geiger counter. Others may laugh, but to me this is as scientific as one can get on the issue here, when much said is conjecture and leaps of Faith.


So, for me, until new conclusive, verifiable information comes to light, it is still the "tritium" hypothesis for me. Other hypotheses have been whispered, and no doubt may be logical, but logical may not be the same as "correct'. Still it is good to hear, but people are not saying.. Ah well..Also, the Tritium Hypothesis is also logical, no?

No answer required, just closing thoughts for the time being; I have no doubt this ghost will be resurrected .....LOL!


dot dial that releases as much radiation as an old Panerai and THIS dial is definitely unmolested....
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Joined: July 9th, 2004, 2:59 pm

February 16th, 2012, 3:24 pm #10

are visiting the Forum to fully understand what confusion they have created.
Just a lot of 'anoraks' getting excited about why their watches no longer glow in the dark and why some watches have a bit extra on a dial compared to others.

A much todo about nothing.

regards

John
Last edited by fatboyharris on February 16th, 2012, 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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