Rolex Wrist Watch Models: Datejust to Submariner by Mike Moon

By: Mike Moon

The name Rolex is defined as a luxury watch that shows the class, success & perfection of the man or woman wearing it. It's an obsession among high personality to own a precious

watch that complements their professional achievements. The Rolex models that have been most popular in history are:

Rolex Datejust : The Datejust models were introduced with a coin edge bezel, which later were replaced by a new fluted bezel along with a larger crown. In the mid-50's, Rolex

introduced the Datejust (model 6605) with the cyclops, or the magnifying bubble that is placed over the date on the watch's crystal. In 1956, Rolex released a Datejust model called the

"Thunderbird" (model 1625). This watch featured a Turn-O-Graph gold Bezel.

Originally, Rolex offered the Datejust in 18kt yellow gold and after seeing much success, they were offered in stainless steel, white gold, or platinum. By 1962 the two-tone Datejust

models were in circulation. Also around this time, the Datejusts were offered with an option of a Jubilee bracelet, an Oyster bracelet, or a leather strap. Additionally, Rolex replaced the

original four-digit case reference number with a five digit number. Around this time, Rolex also introduced the Oyster date which is very similar to the Datejust, the only difference being

2mm smaller. By then, the Datejust offered the "midsize" which is 80% the size of the original.

Rolex Submariner: In 1953 Rolex underwent stringent experiments, testing the Submariner prototype in deep waters to a depth of 3,150 meters (10,336 ft). The watch withstood the

hardest tests, having survived sub-zero temperatures, as well as the wear and tear of expeditions. Rolex launched the Submariner (model 6204) at the Basel Fair in 1954 although it is

believed that it was actually released in late 1953 and was based on the Rolex Explorer.

On the contrary, the name "Submariner" was not officially patented until around 1960. When

introduced, the Submariner was powered by the A296 movement but was then replaced with the 1030 movement and Mercedes hands, which is more elongated than the modern day

version. In 1955, model 6538 replaced 6204, and the 6205 by 6536 respectively. Model 6536 then became 6536/1, featuring a chronometer version of the 1030 movement. New

Submariner models featured a new scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and an upgraded depth rating of 1,000 feet.

Rolex Cosmograph Daytona: Rolex were forerunners in developing the Oyster and Perpetual. Thus, Rolex was not well known for pioneering chronographs. However the success of the

Cosmograph impelled Rolex to be in the position of being the ultimate "sportsman's" watch. These watches soon adopted the name "Daytona" after being sought out by some of the

biggest names in auto racing in one of the biggest racing communities of Daytona Beach, Florida. In the beginning, the Daytona's were available in two dials, either in black with silver

registers or cream white with black registers. Soon, these dials adopted the name "Paul Newman" after he was seen wearing it in the movie "Winning".

Rolex Day-Date : The Basel fair, the new Day-Date model (model 6511) had a window at the 12 position spelling out the day of the week and the numbered date was shown at the 3

position. Initially introduced as a niche model, The first model (6511) lasted just over a year before it was replaced by 6611. This model featured the new and improved caliber 1055

movement with its free sprung Micro-Stella balance and was the first to be labeled "Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified". This statement guaranteed the watch to remain within +

3.0 seconds per day. With very little design changes over the years, the first modification to the Day-Date was the addition of the "hack" feature in 1972. This allowed the second hand

to be stopped dead while the winding stem was completely pulled out, allowing the time to be synchronized with an accurate source. The Day-Date was available in 18kg gold or

platinum.

Similar to the Datejust model, the introduction of the Quick-set feature also accompanied other modifications for the Day-Date. The introduction of the sapphire crystal not only gave the

watch a much slimmer and better appearance, it also added to the durability and scratch resistance of the watch. The early Day-Date models were waterproof to165 feet (50 meters)

while the current model is safe at depths of up to 100 meters. Another improvement came in 1990 when the "Double Quick-Set" feature was introduced. Model 18238 allowed both the

date and day to be quickly set via the winding stem. Around the same time, Rolex had increasingly expanded their "Crown Collection" to feature a cast of precious stones though they

were available with diamond bezels from their inception.

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