Rolex Explorer I - 1975

Rolex Explorer I - 1975

Soup to nuts, the Rolex Reference Explorer is one of the most beautiful sports watches ever designed.

In production for nearly three decades, the 1016 Explorer is the direct descendant of Rolex's original mountaineer's watch, used during the first ascent to the top of Mount Everest in 1953. These were watches designed to be tough as nails and capable of operating effectively in the harshest conditions known to man. It really doesn't get more badass than that.

Featuring the traditional non-date 3,6,9 dial layout, the 1016 is what most people think of when you hear the words "Rolex Explorer". While 1016s were made in fairly large numbers for a consumer public who couldn't get enough of them, they have, in recent years, become incredibly hot on the collector market, and finding clean examples has definitely become a challenge.

This particular example dates from circa 1975 (40th birthday, anyone?) and is one of the sharpest examples we've found in quite some time. With incredible thick lugs and a beautifully patinated matte dial and handset, we don't see this one lasting long. This guy is really, really sharp.

Whether it was diving to the lowest point or climbing to the highest, you've got to hand it to Rolex - they know how to build one hell of a sports watch!


Stainless Steel Oyster case is approximately 36mm (excluding crown). Rolex Reference 1016. Circa 1975.

Overall condition:  Case is in excellent condition overall, retaining its sharp lugs with only light signs of wear from age and use.  Matte Tritium dial is in exceptional condition with beautiful even patination to luminous plots. Handset shows strong even patina.  Original case back and signed crown.

Includes one 20mm analog/shift Peat Strap and two 20mm nylon straps by Crown & Buckle.

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