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  1. 1905 - Hans Wilsdorf There is a close relationship between the history of Rolex and its farsighted and innovative founder Hans Wilsdorf. In 1905, when he was 24 years old, he set up a company specialized in horologe. He even conceived that watch would be worn on the wrist. Although the precision of watch was not high at that time, Hans Wilsdorf was able to foresee that wristwatch can not only show its elegance, and it also can be accurate and reliable. In order to convince public to believe the his innovative watch was accurate, he specially equipped the watch with small, precise movement produced by a watch company of Biel. Hans Wilsdorf 1908 - five artful letters Hans Wilsdorf wanted to get a concise and readable name for the watch, and it was easy to remember for any language, moreover, it was sightly on the movement and dial. He said: "I had tried all combinations of letters and got hundreds of names finally, but none of them could make me feel satisfied. One morning, when I sat on the upper desk of stagecoach by way of Cheapside in London, I seemed to have heard the voice of elfin, it whispered a word in my ear:Rolex". Stagecoach 1910 - the pursuit of timing accuracy Although Rolex concentrated on improving the quality of movement initially, it explored actively in the precision of chronometer and got success eventually. In 1910, Rolex became the first watch that obtained the Swiss chronometer certificate issued by Beil's official watch ranking center. Swiss chronometer certificate 1914 Four years later, that was 1914, the British Kew Observatory awarded the "A" certificate to Rolex. At that time, this certificate was generally obtained by marine chronometer. Since then, Rolex become a symbol of precise timepiece. "A" certificate 1919 - Geneva Rolex moved to the international city Geneva that was famous for watchmaking technology, and registered as company "Montres Rolex S.A." in the local. Rolex in Geneva 1926 - the first waterproof watch In 1926, Rolex produced the first waterproof and dustproof watch, which symbolized great progress of watchmaking technology. This watch was called Oyster and it was equipped with airtight case to provide the best protection for movement. Oyster 1927 - the Cross-Channel challenge Rolex must be able to provide conclusive evidence to prove the waterproof of watch. In 1927, young British lady Mercedes Gleitze swam across the English Channel successfully with wearing Oyster. After Mercedes Gleitze swam for more than ten hours to reach the terminal point, the watch that she worn was still intact and working as usual. Mercedes Gleitze 1927 - the concept of brand spokesperson In order to celebrate this historic creation, Rolex published a whole page of article to declare the victory of waterproof watch on the front page of Daily Mail. The successful creation symbolized the emergence of the concept of brand spokesperson for Rolex. Daily Mail 1931 - perpetual movement In 1931, Rolex developed the world's first patented self-winding mechanism - perpetual rotor. This original system is design basis of every modern automatic watch. Perpetual Movement 1933 - flying over Mount Qomolangma Pilots were wearing Rolex Oyster in the first voyage of flying over Mount Qomolangma. They were satisfied with the function of Oyster. Flying over Mount Qomolangma 1935 - laboratory of field test Rolex knew that different environments were the opportunities for Oyster's testing and improvement. The fields like sports, aviation, racing and expedition are excellent laboratories for testing numerous technical functions of watch. A living laboratory 1935 - Sir Malcolm Campbell In the 1930s, Rolex built pleasant happy partnerships with one of the world's fastest drivers Sir Malcolm Campbell in the racing world. On September 4th, 1935, this "King of Speed" sat on his racing car "Bluebird" and worn Rolex, and he set a record of more than 300 miles per hour (about 485 kilometers per hour) in Utah's Bonneville Speedway. Sir Malcolm Campbell broke the world speed record for nine times successively during the period from 1924 to 1935, five of them was on Daytona Beach. Sir Malcolm Campbell 1935 - a letter to Rolex Sir Malcolm Campbell said: "I have worn Rolex for some time, and my watch is still accurate in the difficult circumstances." A letter to Rolex 1945 - the first Datejust In 1945, Rolex launched Datejust and it was the world's first self-winding watch with date display on the dial. The extraordinary Datejust was equipped with Jubilee bracelet created specially for it and fluted bezel, which were distinctive and it was the major model among Oyster series. Datejust was originally designed for men, ten years later, it gradually evolved into varied and colorful ladies watch. the first Datejust 1947 - mysterious man In 1947, in order to celebrate the brand's 100,000th officially certified chronometer, Hans Wilsdorf gifted a log type watch to an outstanding gentleman and called him as great minds of the age. However, up to now, his identity has never been disclosed. Mysterious outstanding gentleman 1953 - pioneering watch In the early 1950s, Rolex developed a series of professional watches that not only possessed the function of telling time with sound knowledge of chronometer's precision and waterproof. These watches were designed for professional activities, including deep-sea diving, aviation, mountain - climbing and scientific explorations. Pioneering watch 1953 - Mount Qomolangma In 1953, Sir John Hunt, Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the peak of Mount Qomolangma with wearing Oyster Perpetual respectively. Everest hillary norgay Everest edmund norgay 1953 - Explorer Brilliant achievements of human explorations provided inspiration for the creation of Oyster Perpetual Explorer. Since its launch in 1953, it immediately became the iconic classic watch. Everest Explorer 1953 - Submariner Submariner was launched in 1953, and it was the first diver's watch with waterproof to 100 meters(330 feet). Its rotary bezel allows divers to know time conveniently. First Submariner Perfect partner on land or in the sea. Submariner can operate normally under the sea of 660 feet. All aspects of its functions are excellent. Submariner 1953 - the first intercontinental flights With the advent of jet age in the 1950s, international airlines developed rapidly and the airplanes had to fly across several time zones in a short time, so that it was important for pilots to know different times of different locations on the earth. The first intercontinental flights 1955 - the GMT-Master GMT-Master was specially designed for meeting the demand of pilots. As soon as it was launched, GMT-Master become appointed watch of several airline company, including famous Pan Am. Its remarkable characteristic was the two-tone bezel which marked daytime from nighttime hours. The first GMT-Master 1956 - the Day-Date Oyster Perpetual Day-Date that was launched in 1956 had a prominent innovation: it was available in 18 ct gold or platinum, and it was the first watch with date and week display on the dial, and this was a great technical achievement at that time. As a model of noble watch, Day-Date was only produced with precious metal, it became popular among influential people as soon as it was launched. Day-Date 1956 - leadership Rolex always has a close relationship with many important people who lead the world. Some of them are foresighted, and some of them obtained great achievements, but they have one thing in common-they worn Day-Date. Day-Date 1956 - CERN The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) is the world - class particle physics laboratory, it is devoted to exploring the secrets of the universe with the most advanced scientific research. It also has the world's highest energy particle accelerator. In the 1950s, CERN was one of the laboratories that took the lead in confirming Milgauss watch can enough to withstand up to 1000 Gauss of magnetic flux density. CERN 1956 - Oyster Perpetual Milgauss Milgauss was launched in 1956. It was specially invented for scientific community and it could withstand up to 1000 Gauss of magnetic flux density. Extraordinary antimagnetic function of Milgauss was derived from its internal antimagnetic shield which was beneficial to ensure the normal operation of movement. Rolex specially selected paramagnetic alloys to make two components of antimagnetic shield. After rigorous testing by CERN engineers, it was proved that watch possessed perfect antimagnetic function. Oyster Perpetual Milgauss 1957 - Lady-Datejust Lady-Datejust was the first lady's watch of the Rolex Datejust, a pretty small case contained its elegance and uniquer functions and it was more suitable for lady's slender wrist. Lady-Datejust 1960 - Deep Sea Special In the 1950s, Rolex carried out rigorous and exhaustive testing of an experimental watch, called "Deep Sea Special". By the knowledge gained from the making of the previous two models, the third Deep Sea Special was able to withstand the extreme harsh conditions, including the Challenger Deep waters of the Mariana Trench. Submariner of 1960 Deep Sea Special 1960 - the deepest dive In 1960, the experimental bathyscaphe-Trieste successfully dived into Mariana Trench which is known for the deepest of earth's surface. Naval lieutenant Don Walsh was responsible for the helm, in the company of Jacques Piccard, the Trieste that they took made this unprecedented achievement of deep-sea adventure. Bathyscaphe and Rolex Deep Sea Special experimental watch which was attached to the outside returned to the the surface of water from the deep sea of 10916 meters (37800 feet), ans both of them were still functioning normally. Deepest dive Bathyscaphe-Trieste 1960 - Daytona Beach Daytona Beach, Florida. Daytona Beach was a legend as the world capital of speed for it was long, flat and firm, with hard-packed sand. There were 14 world land speed records set between 1904 and 1935 at Daytona Beach, five of them were set by Rolex-wearer Sir Malcolm Campbell. With time goes by, the sandiness deteriorated. In 1959, a "Super Speedway" was built, that was the Daytona International Speedway. This new amphitheatre of motor racing quickly become one of the most prestigious endurance car races in the world and it enjoyed equal popularity with the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Although its surface was no longer sand, Daytona was still racing area of the Rolex 24-Hour at Daytona. Daytona Beach 1963 - the Cosmograph Daytona The new-generation Cosmograph Daytona was launched in 1963, and its name was derived from a classical landmark - Daytona. Cosmograph Daytona was robust and waterproof, and it was equipped with speedometer-applique bezel for calculating average speed. The First Cosmograph Daytona 1963 - the French diving company Comex Rolex collaborated closely with the French diving company - COMEX. Divers of COMEX worn Rolex Sea-Dweller watches during their working in the deep sea. Under the leadership of Henri Germain Delauze, COMEX was once forerunner in deep-sea diving and remains a world-renowned iconic enterprise in hyperbaric engineering and underwater work. The cooperation between Rolex and COMEX is as strong as ever today. The headquarters of COMEX is located in Marseilles, and it specially developed a hyperbaric tank for testing the Rolex Deepsea watch. Comex 1967 - the Sea-Dweller Oyster Perpetual Sea-Dweller was launched in 1967, its possessed waterproof to 610 meters. In order to meet the demand of professional deep-sea divers, it was equipped with helium escape valve to release helium from the gas mixtures during the long-playing decompression process in hyperbaric chambers, so that it could prevent the watch from being damaged. Sea-Dweller 1971 - the Explore II Rolex launched Oyster Perpetual Explore II which was specially designed for polar explorers, speleologists, and explorers who devote to challenging limits. The watch was equipped with a distinctive 24-hour hand which could help the wearers to distinguish day from night in polar or in the underground cave. Explore II 1976 - Rolex Awards for Enterprise To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Oyster, Rolex specially held Awards for Enterprise to praise the courageous, faithful people for they pay efforts to address great challenges. Each Rolex Award for Enterprise is given for innovative project or ongoing project from all over the world. Rolex hopes that people can improve their lives, protect the world's natural and cultural heritage. These projects are involved in all aspects of humanity by expanding knowledge or improving the earth's ecological environment. Rolex Awards for Enterprise 1978 - Sea-Dweller 4000 Rolex launched Sea-Dweller 4000 with waterproof to 1,220 meters(4,000 feet). Sea-Dweller 4000 1985 - 904L stainless steel Rolex was the first leading watchmaking brand to select 904L stainless steel to produce stainless steel case. This material is always used in the high-tech, aerospace and chemical industry, its excellent anti-corrosion can be comparable with the precious metal, it can show unique luster after a final polish. 904L stainless steel 1992 - the Pearlmaster The Lady-Datejust Pearlmaster which was the new interpretation of the Lady-Datejust was launched. Pearlmaster 1992 - the Yacht-Master Rolex launched Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master in 1992. It was the first Oyster professional watch that was available in three sizes of case(29, 35 and 40mm), and it was the concentrative expression of close relationship between Rolex and nautical sport. Yacht-Master 1992 - Rolex & Yachting Rolex is honorary sponsor of many famous maritime events around the world. Yachting 2000 - 4130 movement The idea and assembly of 4130 movement were exclusively completed by Rolex, and the Cosmograph Daytona designed in 2000 only consists of 290 components( far fewer than standard chronograph) and shows its simplicity.  4130 movement 2002 - MENTOR AND PROTÉGÉ The Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative was founded in 2002, and many worthies from every artistic field will provide talented individuals with one to one mentoring through this unique project. Over the past ten years, the creative community of Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative has expanded across different continents and cultures, and now there are more than 80 major creative artists of different generations and backgrounds are taking part in this project. MENTOR AND PROTÉGÉ 2005 - CERACHROM bezel To ensure the sturdiness and durability of watch, Rolex developed patented Cerachrom bezel for Oyster specific professional models. Because it was made from special ceramics with great hardness, corrosion resistance and scratch resistance, it still will not fade under ultraviolet irradiation. Its diamond polished surface presents an exceptional luster. The 24-hour markers are coated with a thin layer of platinum. CERACHROM CERACHROM bezel 2005 - blue Parachrom hairspring After five years of research, Rolex created the blue Parachrom hairspring with paramagnetic alloy. It is unaffected by magnetic fields and its shock resistance is up to 10 times. Historically, the blue hairspring was only equipped to the most accurate timepieces. Parachrom hairspring 2007 - Yatch-Master II Oyster Perpetual Yatch-Master II regatta chronograph is the world's first watch equipped with a programmable countdown with a mechanical memory. In this unique and complicated watchmaking installation, its movement and case, as well as the Ring Command that exclusively designed and developed by Rolex, three of them constitute an innovative system and interact. This regatta chronograph allows yachtsmen to cross the line as soon as possible after the starting gun. Yatch-Master II 2008 - Rolex Deepsea Rolex Deepsea was specially designed for extreme underwater exploration. The innovative Ringlock system allows crystal to withstand water pressure equivalent to a weight of more than three tonnes. The depth that Rolex Deepsea can dive into is not deeper than a few purpose-built research submersibles, but it is deeper than most of the submarines, even more than 100 times beyond the depth that any human could physically survive. Deepsea 2012 - Sky-Dweller Rolex launched innovatory Oyster Perpetual Sky-Dweller which was designed for world travelers. It was equipped with elegant case with diameter of 42mm and readable, adjustable dual time zone display; and it also was equipped with particularly innovative annual calendar named Saros, its inspiration was derived from an astronomical phenomenon and it requires only one adjustment per year. To set its functions quickly and easily, it was also equipped with a new interface which consists of the rotatable Ring Command bezel. Sky-Dweller 2012 - reaching the deepest place on earth On March 26th, 2012, filmmaker and National Geographic Explorer in Residence James Cameron descended into the Mariana Trench, he renewed the record of solo deep-sea diving and become the first solo dive into the deepest point on earth. Before this, there was only two-man Trieste expedition of 1960 had conquered Mariana Trench. and the only dive into the trench since the two-man Trieste expedition of 1960. Only one passenger was on both voyages: a Rolex watch. Deepest 2012 - Deepsea Challenge Rolex Perpetual Deepsea Challenge is a experimental diver's watch with waterproof to 12,000 meters(39,370 feet). This watch was completely developed and produced by Rolex, it could withstand extreme pressure of deep-sea, and it set a record of the deepest diving watch in the world. Deepsea Challenge 2013 - Formula 1® In order to keep close relationship with motorsports, in 2013 Rolex entered into a long-term partnership with Formula 1® Racing and served as Official Timekeeper and Official Timepiece. Formula 1® The following links may help you know Rolex better: Air King: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1400-the-evolution-of-rolex-air-king/ Datejust: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1420-datejust-the-most-iconic-rolex/ Day Date: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1655-the-day-date-in-rolex-history/ Daytona: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1362-paul-newman-and-mcqueen/ Explorer: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1371-rolex-explorer-history/ GMT-Master: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1441-rolex-gmt-master-a-skywalker-in-time-zone-traveling/ Milgauss: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1406-how-to-resist-the-magnetic-power-rolex-milgauss/ Prince: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1416-rolex-prince-doctors-watch/ Submariner: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1675-different-generations-of-rolex-submariner/ Sea-Dweller: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1727-rolex-deepsea-legend/ Turn-O-Graph: http://www.watchtalkforum.com/topic/1731-rolex-datejust-turn-o-graph-review/
  2. You may have your own understanding of how do a movie endow a wristwatch an unique charm. Of course the watch itself must have certain value in collection, taking the eletronic watches that have been worn by Bond's actors, do anyone still remember and take care of them? Rolex Submariner James Bond was known for being worn by the lead actor in the moive and it created a collecting fever, even had a widely called nickname by the fans that was not named by its company. It's an interesting but not the only one example in the watch field. Another two outstanding examples are Rolex Daytona Paul Newman and Explorer Steve McQueen. To explore the stories of these examples is funny and helpful for the watch fans to slight understand the selling and moving of Rolex or other brands watch and the trend of the start effect. Paul newman in Daytona Ref.6239 on 1995 Magzine Paul Newman Rolex Daytona Rolex has launched its chronograph series since 1937 that used Valjoux movement, but it didn't catch much attention in the following decades at that time and didn't have a prominent sales result. In 1960, Rolex re-designed and renamed its chronograph watch as Cosmograph(Ref. 6239, used Cal.Valjoux 72), and its most outstanding feature was to directly engraved the tachymeter on the bezel rather than on the dial like the traditional way. Cosmograph was soon being popular among the race drivers and was named Cosmograph Daytona after the Daytona Beach that was a well-known place for racing in Florida. Cosmograph combined various features of modern professional sports watches, including Oyster waterproof design, mechanical chronograph movement, Oyster buckle and average lap speed bezel. The other more acceptable rumor of the origin of Daytona came from another story: when Rolex finished assembling a Cosmograph, the American Daytona racing opened conincidently, so Rolex sent Cosmograph to competite for the official timer of the convention, and finally won the competition, then Rolex named it Daytona. Cosmograph 6238-6239 The early watches of Rolex Cosmograph Daytona had special colour dial that was called Exotic dial today: white dial with black registers or black dial with white registers, and the indices in the registers have square marks. Other features that were different from modern Oyster Perpetual Cosmograph Daytona released in recent years included manual winding movement(Ref.16520 in 1988 used Zenith EI Primero), stainless steel non-Oyster cases, non-screw-down pushers(the later 6263 and 6265 adopted screw down pushers), non-Triplock crown. The Daytonas that had these features were the models we later called Paul Newman, they all had a higher value in collecting than other types (so, someone insisted that only Ref.6239 and Ref. 6241 were the authentic Daytona Paul Newman!). Daytona 6241 Paul Newman Paul Newman in "Winning" Wearing Daytona The reason why Daytona that had Exotic dial was called Daytona Paul Newman was still being variedly discussed. The most romantic and widly-spread version was that Paul Newman wore Rolex Daytona(Paul Newman) in the racing movie "Winning" in 1969. But the authors of "The Best of Time: Rolex Wristwatches" Dowling and Hess thought: Paul Newman didn't wear Daytona in the moive, and the nickname Paul Newman Daytona came from a poster of "Winning", that Paul Newman was wearing a Daytona, which firstly attracted many movie fans attention and caused a panic purchasing, then created a fever among worldwide fans. So far, the movie and the poster at that time have been viewed by the fans, but still can not get an unit result. Paul Newman in Rolex Daytona Paul Newman What interesting was Paul Newman had never admited or dennied these gossips in any occation, because a ledgend would be more attractive with a bit mysterious and arguement. Anyway, what we could ensure was that Paul Newman indeed deeply loved Rolex Daytona and wore it in many occations which James Bond and Submariner could not do. Poster for the Movie "Winning" A few Kinds of Rolex Daytona Daytona 6231 Daytona 6239 Paul Newman Cosmograph Daytona Paul Newman 6241 Daytona Paul Newman 6263 Cosmograph Daytona 6263 Steve McQueen Rolex Explorer Explorer II 1655 As the example of Paul Newman and Rolex Daytona Paul Newman, the story between moive star Steve McQueen and the Steve McQueen Rolex Explorer was also attractive and mysterious. Steve McQueen Steve McQueen Most people believed that the reason why Rolex Explorer II Ref.1655 was called Steve McQueen was Steve McQueen had worn it in the movie and it became popular after that. The question was Explorer II Ref. 1655 was produced in the early 1970s and was discontinued in 1985, while Steve McQueen had only played a few moives in the early 70s before his dead in 1980. The only shot that could clearly identify he was wearing a Rolex is "The Hunter" issued in 1980. Through several shots that we could see the watch, we found the features of its bezel, crystal and bracelet were more like a Submariner rather than an Explorer II. But ledgends would be more interesting with its mysterious and misunderstanding parts and the facticity would be less necessary with the impression and conception of super stars that had deeply rooted in humans minds. Steve McQueen and TAG Heuer Monaco Compared with the controversial of Steve McQueen Rolex Explorer, another watch TAG Heuer Monaco Chronograph Steve McQueen that was also known for Steve McQueen was indeed worn by Steve McQueen in "Le Mans" in 1969. TAG Heuer had ever launched the re-edition later. Classics Monaco Chronograph Steve McQueen Sylvester Stallone to Officine Panerai and Arnold Schwarzenegger to Audemars Piguet suddenly came to my mind. Could Luminor SLYTECH and AP Offshore T3 be the next century ledgends? Let's wait and see. Audemars Piguet Offshore T3 Audemars Piguet Offshore T3 Featuring in the Terminator III Moive terminator3 Pre-Vendome SLYTECH Submersible
  3. history of explorer I Until nowadays in many rolex watch fan’s mind, they might still think explorer I was released to commemorate a great task of human being by creating a record of climbing on May 29th, 1953 (team members including Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay etc), the fact somehow was partly true. We know that since 1933 rolex had been an official supporter of Himalayan expedition and later Everest expedition by offering each explorer with its wristwatch, but Rolex wasn’t the exclusive supporter, it said that when Edmund Hillary climbed up on the top of Everest, what he wore was a watch from British supporter Smith, and what Tenzing Norgay wearing was the Explorer. The Explorer was actually based on the already existing workhorse and durable bubbleback, rolex further revised and updated it for more suitable active and adventurous customer. First prototypes of Explorer to be used was reference 6098 and 6150 which both were used movement A296, but didn’t bear the name of Explorer at the time, two watches were design to be with white dials and leaf shaped hands. Actually you can see from the above pic, Tenzing Norgay was wearing the Explorer when climbed on Everest, the watch indeed had the typical black dial and 3 6 9 luminous Arabic number, though hands were not our well known Mercedes hands today (later showed up only in a small number of ref.6350) but a purely luminous straight hands, the luminous dot on center second hand were larger than today’s. Worth mentioning that on this Explorer whose dial was marked as word “Precision” rather than “Explorer”. Explorer Ref. 6350 These models were changed to reference 6298 and 6350 in 1953 when they were equipped with the iconic Explorer type of 3 6 9 Arabic dial and later applied with Merceded hands. Therefore, before Hillary and Norgay climbed on to the top of Everest, the name of Explorer wasn’t used. Rolex had registered the trademark of Explorer in Geneva on Jan 26th, 1953, so here came the name of Explorer after Hillary and Norgay climbing up the Everest, that is “Explorer” began to be added on ref. 6350 after the successful climbing of 1953. Anyway, ref.6350 was truly made for Explorers, it had a highly readable dial design, its case was also particularly strengthened and uses special lubricant to make the watch practicable between -20 degree to 40 degree. Ref. 6150 was discontinued in 1959 and replaced by ref.6610. advertisement of Explorer Ref. 1016 in 1975 an Explorer Ref. 6150 auctioned at Antiquorum an Explorer Ref. 6298 auctioned at Antiquorum honeycomb styled dial of Exoplorer Ref. 6350 In fact, ref.6610 and ref.6150 were majorly the same, yet ref.6610 was using the new cal.1030 movement and the back is more flat. After five years of production of ref.6610, it was replaced by ref.1016 which was the most famous edition with the longest production in all the Explorers until replaced by Ref. 14270, explorer 1016 somehow was like 6610 from semblance, but movement changed to 1560 and water resistance increased from 50m to 100m. During the production time, 1016 also changed quite often. First generation of 1016 made some changes in 1975, from cal.1560 movement updated to caliber 1570 movement with hacking, and oyster bracelet changed to solid steel bracelet. an Explorer Ref. 6610 auctioned at Antiquorum Explorer Ref. 1016 timeless Explorer Ref. 1016 In 1989, ref.14270 was grandly published on market with great expectation and surprise. In addition to keeping the name of Explorer and Mercedes hands, the conception of ref.14270 was fully different from 1016: movement cal.3000 with higher frequency, sapphire crystal, updated case and dial. These updates made the style of 14270 full of a feeling of elegance and modern, but the sporty and explorer style of 1016 was still unforgettable for most the rolex watch fans, plus with only a small amount, price of 1016 also skyrocketed, currently 1016 on market almost doubled the price than brand new 14270 14270 In 2001, the ref. 114270 replaced 14270 by using cal.3130 movement. Regardless of the antique Explorer ref.6350, 1016 or the previous generation of 14270 or the current 114270, rolex Explorer has always been the watch with simple and clean design both from appearance and function, steel bracelet, automatic movement, black 3 6 9 dial… it’s really not eye catching enough from first sight. But maybe right just because of its simplicity, the longer time you know Explorer you will find it with greater and greater attraction and charming. More surprised phenomenon is that not just male watch fans, though females are highly appreciated Explorer by its modern and sporty casual style. Many watch fans had asked questions like why Explorer such a simple watch is capable to be sought after by worldwide fans with such unexpectedly high price. But we just love it without reasons. Main difference between 14270 and 114270 Movement: 14270 – cal.3000, 27 jewels 114270 – cal.3130 31 jewels, both movements are excellent movements Bracelet: both use the same clasp, however, 114270 adopted solid end links on the bracelet Explorer I-214270 was debuted at Baseworld 2010 and increased size from 36mm to 39mm with cal.3132 movement. history of Explorer II Rolex Explorer II, sometimes it may be referred to as the “Steve McQueen” rolex, in spite of the fact we never see he wore one, however it being one of the most sought after wristwatches nowadays. First show up was in 1971, with the prototype reference as 1655 which basically was an addition new edition to GMT Master Ref.1675. The first Explorer II watch, ref. 1655, featured an extra hour hand (in a bright orange color) for a 24-hour notation. Rolex claimed that Explorer II was specially designed for Speleologist, cave explorers or some sort of adventurers, cause once got into the darkness cave without a ray of light, they might lose sense of direction quickly, without telling day or night certainly can’t tell it was 4am or 4pm. Plus cave adventure may inevitably ran into rocks around, the rotatable 24 hour notation relatively not reliable enough, so rolex changed it to fixed 24-hour notation in sake of security of these adventurers. Let’s just leave aside whether they gonna lose direction-sense or not, early release of Explorer II ref.1655, market welcome was actually quite flat, but rather popular among some professionals who need pay more attention on timezone changes like pilots. But however, Explorer II now is one of the most collectible rolex models. The movement used in Explorer II was exactly the same as movement used in GMT Master models, caliber 1570 and 1575 movements were used for ref.1655. during the entire production period of 1655, only some small details are changed by rolex, besides the different bracelet rolex used during the 1970s (riveted, folded and later on, solid), the second hand went from a straight shaped “needle” to a hand with two circles, one on long end and another on the short end. Also the color of 24-hour changed from orange to red-orange and the font on dial had some tiny differences on later models. Until 1984, rolex polished a new Explorer II ref.16550, updates including sapphire crystal, a caliber 3085 movement with double bridge and a white dial apart from the black dial model. Biggest change should be the shape of the hands, especially the 24-hour hand that was changed from a small red-orange arrow shaped hand to a long and sleek designed red 24-hour hand with a white arrow at the end. Somehow, 16550 had some issues, like the white paint on dial faded to a more creamish color, the black dial model also suffered issues as well, having cracks in glossy finish. Therefore, 16550 model is also referred to as a transitional model cause new model ref.16570 was launched in 1989. The 4-5 years production period of 16550 is a very short production time in rolex history. New model Explorer II 16570 applied with a rather new movement caliber 3185, apart from bracelet, can be found only one major update from previous model, and that is the use of black hour marker rings and hands on the white dial version. Similar with Submariner and GMT Master, new model of the cream-dial has white gold hour markers and hands. Since the emerge of Explorer II, it was like the addition version of GMT Master, however its popularity has never fall behind GMT Master, aside from the aesthetic reason, its name of explorer may let people full of imaginations, or affected by the popularity of its predecessor explorer 1655, or the vague legend of Steve McQueen, all these factors make Explorer II even more popular and welcomed. After all, simply depending on a tiny watch, you will have the experience of imaging yourself being an explorer or a famous star, which is just an irresistible temptation.
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