Rolex Explorer 1016 (Circa 1966)

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Model Code: 1016

The first Rolex Explorer was produced in 1953. Since the ‘30s, numerous expeditions were equipped with Oyster watches. The Explorer was born through the rigorous trials faced by climbers on the Everest expedition, where Sir Edmund Hillary would use the Rolex Oyster to achieve one the greatest feats in human history. Rolex would adapt the feedback of the climbers when creating one of history’s greatest tool watches- the Explorer.

The Rolex Explorer 1016 was produced in 1963, enjoying a 26-year tenure in Rolex catalogues- the longest of any Explorer. Emerging after the war, where watches merely required 3 hands to tell the time, the 1016 was an entire upgrade of the 5500 Air-King, notably through its new superlative chronometer movement and a larger 36mm diameter. The sheer brilliance and innovative spirit of the 1016 Explorer made it one of the most functional watches of its day. In a landscape of hyperfunctional modern watches, it is important to consider the historical significance of the 1016 as the original toolwatch.

This example, as indicated from its bracelet, is from circa 1966 and remains in outstanding, all original condition. As Rolex's latest Explorers continue to pay homage to rhe legendary design of the 1016, this legendary watch is a real treasure and a flawless investment.

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