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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1975
    Reference No: 1016
    Case No: 4’150’620
    Model Name: Explorer
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1570, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped “78360”, endlinks stamped “580”, max length 180mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped “VE”
    Dimensions: 36mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    Since its initial introduction in the 1950s, the Rolex Explorer has become an icon celebrating the successful ascent of Mount Everest by Sir Edmund Hilary and Tenzig Norgay. Marketed to explore and withstand the harsh conditions for expeditionary purposes, the Explorer was robust, accurate and reliable. Featuring a 3-6-9 dial configuration, the specific trait was dubbed by collectors as the “Explorer” dial, although it was also featured in rare examples of other sports models produced by the firm.

    Released in 1963, the Rolex Explorer ref. 1016 is arguably the most well-known model due to its long production run. With a classic 36mm diameter case, early examples of the reference featured a glossy gilt dial while later examples featured a matte black dial. The change also witnessed a transition of the luminous material used on the dial from radium to tritium.

    The present example Rolex Explorer ref. 1016 from circa 1975 with a matte dial is offered in attractive overall condition with desirably aged luminous material. Regarded as one of the most underrated references by collectors, this present example will surely please collectors of vintage timepieces.

  • Artist Biography

    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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954

Ref. 1016
A fine and rare stainless steel wristwatch with center seconds and bracelet

Circa 1975
36mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

Estimate
HK$65,000 - 120,000 
€7,200-13,300
$8,300-15,400

Sold for HK$151,200

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIII

Hong Kong Auctions 25-26 November 2021