A very fine and rare stainless steel wristwatch with center seconds, black lacquer “tropical” dial and bracelet

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  • Condition Report

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1966
    Reference No: 1016, inside caseback stamped II.66
    Movement No: D14’371
    Case No: 1’382’898
    Model Name: Explorer
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1570, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel riveted Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped “7206”, endlinks stamped “80”, max length 185mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped “4,66”
    Dimensions: 36mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    Launched in 1963, the ref. 1016 featured an upgraded caliber with an increased waterproof capability of up to 100m. Early examples of the ref. 1016 were fitted with “glossy” black lacquered dials and Rolex later replaced them with matte black dials towards the end of 1966, the reference was discontinued in 1989.

    The present example of a Rolex Explorer ref. 1016 belongs to one of the last examples fitted with a “glossy” black lacquer dial bearing a 1.3 million serial from circa 1966. Immediately drawing one’s attention is the attractive “tropical” brown patina that has developed over the years through age giving the present example an exemplified vintage appeal. Furthermore, the luminous material on the “Swiss-T<25” dial has aged beautifully and uniformly developing a buttery hue and remains perfectly reactive under UV light. Fitted with a riveted Oyster bracelet stamped fourth quarter of 1966, the present specimen is without a doubt an attractive and original example of one of the most iconic professional tool watches from the 20th century.

  • Maker Bio

    Rolex

    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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Rolex

Ref. 1016, inside caseback stamped II.66
A very fine and rare stainless steel wristwatch with center seconds, black lacquer “tropical” dial and bracelet

勞力士,「Explorer」型號1016,精細罕有,精鋼自動鏈帶腕錶,備中心秒針、「Tropical」棕色亮漆面錶盤,約1966年製

Circa 1966
36mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

Estimate
HK$140,000 - 270,000 
€15,900-30,600
$17,900-34,600

sold for HK$175,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi

Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031

WatchesHK@phillips.com

 

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: X

Hong Kong Auction 10 July 2020