Today's offering showcases this fine and very rare early Rolex Oyster, made while the company was building its early Oyster line.
Presumably built very close to the creation of very first Oyster in 1926, this Oyster has the lowest serial number we have seen for this reference, and it likely is one of the earliest Rolex Oysters made.
Without question one of the company's greatest contributions to horology is in the area of waterproof cases. The Rolex Oyster case birthed the idea of the modern sport watch as we know it and was a key catalyst for the initial widespread acceptance of the wristwatch.
Several events worked to greatly popularize the watch: Sir Malcolm Campbell's land speed record attempt where he achieved a speed of 272 mpg, all done while wearing perfectly functioning Oyster. And, of course, perhaps the most well-known early event in the company's history: Mercedes Gleitz's English Channel swim
wearing an Oyster. Following the historic event, Rolex took out a full-page ad in the Daily Mail introducing the Oyster.
Unlike many watches from this style from this era, it is not a small boys size watch. While not large, it is mens size that measures 32mm without the crown, and the large crown adds another 4mm.
It is fully Rolex down to its original onion style crown and original hands and even has a mineral glass crystal. It even still has its original lead waterproofing gasket. It's a really honest watch.
Note that we cleaned the case in an ultrasonic since the photos were taken. It presents much cleaner now.
Its chrome plated Oyster case with screw down bezel is in original condition. It presents nicely on the wrist and shows spots of wear to the underside.
At first look its dial appears original...but after careful examination I think it's a very nice and very old restoration, nearly as old as the watch. The lacquer has turned a sepia tone from the effects of radium and aging. Powering the watch is its Rolex caliber 885 handwound movement.
Interestingly the back shows a serial no: 20,251 what appears to be factory stamped over 47,621 and the movement plate marked jewels has an area factory marked out in X's.
One of our watchmakers has just disassembled it down to the last screw and cleaned and oiled the movement. It continues to run extraordinarily accurately. For the finishing touch we have installed a brand new Teju lizard strap making it ready for immediate enjoyment.
Included with the purchase is a one-year C.O.T. warranty on the movement and its function, a custom printed Connoisseur of Time Certificate of Authenticity, and a new timing certificate attesting to its performance.
Country of origin: Switzerland
Serial no: 20,251 what appears to be factory stamped over 47,621
Year built: c. 1926
Functions: Hours, Minutes, Subsidiary Seconds
Designed for: Men
Case material: Chrome plated
Case condition: Honest original condition. It does not appear to have ever been polished and it presents nicely on the wrist. The back has spots of wear and the wrench grooves on the back and bezel are strong and undamaged, which is uncommon.
Crown: Original Rolex screw-down onion crown with good threads
Dial: Silver, signed Oyster, luminous Arabic numerals, railroad minute track, top lacquer coating has warmed to a sepia tone. At first look its dial appears original, but after careful examination it may be a very nice and very old restoration, nearly as old as the watch.
Dimensions: 32mm wide (excluding crown - the crown adds another approx. 4mm) by 38mm long lug tip to tip
Hands: Original, blue steel, luminous
Movement type: Rolex, manually wound, nickel finished, correctly signed, 15-jewel lever movement with Breguet overcoil hairspring, index regulator
Band: Teju lizard, fully stitched, padded, brand new and unworn. We also stock a variety of others straps in various prints, skins, and colors. Please ask us if you're interested.
Width between lugs: 16mm
Crystal type: Mineral glass, excellent condition
Serviced: One of our watchmakers has just disassembled it down to the last screw and cleaned and oiled the movement. It continues to run extraordinarily accurately.
Timing: Timed to precision on a state-of-the-art computerized system. Your watch is important to us, and we will take care of it for its lifetime. We provide the best after sale care in the business with an experienced team of watchmakers both of whom each have over forty years of experience and a large number of parts.
Warranty: 1-year international warranty. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
Box/Papers: BOX - Connoisseur of Time watch presentation box; PAPERS - Custom printed Connoisseur of Time Certificate of Authenticity; New timing certificate
Returns: 7 days full refund. 100% satisfaction guarantee
We offer a 100%
satisfaction guarantee for all of our watches. If you are in any way
unsatisfied with the watch we will fully refund the purchase price anytime
within 7 days after the watch has been received. Our goal is to exceed our
client's expectations throughout the buying experience.
All watches are packaged carefully and mailed double boxed in specially
constructed, reinforced shipping boxes designed for high value items. All
watches are sent fully insured with signature required. Most of our domestic
shipping is done through FedEx. At times we will also use USPS Express Mail,
and we can accommodate most requests for your preferred carrier.
International shipments are sent USPS International Express Mail or FedEx.
The purchase price will be the declared value of the merchandise on any
required customs forms. The payment of all customs duties, tariffs, and
taxes are the responsibility of the buyer.
Also note that water resistance of vintage watches can no longer be
guaranteed and is not covered under the watch's warranty. We do not
recommend getting a vintage watch wet, even one that was originally designed
to be waterproof.