1978 Rolex Daytona (Ref. 6263) Black Dial "Big Red"

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The first Rolex Comosgraph was launched in 1963 and produced in stainless steel, 14k, and 18k gold versions until 1969, the Daytona name came in 1964 when Rolex decided to brand the 6239 Cosmograph reference "Daytona" to appeal to the auto racing culture of the United States and was also an official sponsor of the Daytona 500 auto race held in Daytona Beach, FL. The Daytona continued to evole through the 70s, with the references 6263 and 6265, which introduced the text "Oyster" on the dial which symbolized that the Daytona line of wristwatches were now waterproof with the use of the revolutionary screw-down pushers for operating the chronograph and a 7mm trip-lock crown.

The vintage Rolex Cosmograph range features a high contrast dial layout which eventually became its iconic identifier and made the Daytona a standard of design, setting itself apart from an otherwise vast selection of chronograph wristwatches. The Rolex Daytona ref. 6263, AKA the “Big Red”, is one of the most sought-after vintage Rolex Daytona's with its bold dial characteristics and classic sports watch feel.

Stock #
Brand Rolex
Style Daytona
Model 6263 
Serial 55XXXXX
Size Men's
Material Stainless Steel
Dial Matte Black "Big Red"
Millimeters 36
Strap Rolex Oyster 78350 Bracelet W/ 557B End Pieces



The strong case has been lightly polished in the past showing only light signs of use. The acrylic UPH bezel is in overall excellent vintage condition showing some light signs of use and aging. The case retains its original mk.2 screw-down pushers and "Rolex" signed trip-lock crown. The later Rolex 78350 Oyster bracelet with 557B end pieces remains unpolished with light signs of use and retains 11 links, showing almost no stretch from use.


The matte black dial is exceptional, showing no flaws. The silver subsidiary dials have taken on a nice vitage patina, showing some aging. The trapizoidal markers remain in excellent condition, showing no corrosion or wear. The tritium lume plots all remain intact and have achieved a nice creamy coloration, under U.V. light inspection the 9 o'clock lume plot is only lume to show very minor degradation, the rest of the lume plots remain full and round. The original tritium hands match the dial perfectly and show no lume loss or degradation under U.V. light inspection. 


None. the watch is functioning and keeping time perfectly, previous service history is unknown.

The story + buyer's guide

Rolex Daytona

The Daytona name came in 1964/1965 when Rolex decided to brand the 6263 Cosmograph reference order to appeal to the auto racing culture of the USA and was also an official sponsor of the Daytona 500 auto race held in Daytona Beach, FL. We love the vintage Cosmograph range of due to the fact that they have a high level of contrast which is something the modern Rolex Daytona range of timepieces has lost due to the completely monochromatic look of the dials found on today modern reference range.

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