1940s steel vintage Rolex Oyster watch (4013)
1940s rare early stainless steel vintage Rolex Oyster watch. The case measures 32 x 34 mm, and has an Oyster patent winding crown. The case is signed Oyster Watch Co., Geneva- Swiss, and numbered 54443. The fine quality Rolex manual wind movement is signed Rolex Swiss Made, with 15 Rubis and numbered. The dial has black Arabic numerals at the quarters, an outside minute track with fine blued steel ‘Breguet’ style hands and red centre sweep seconds hand. The dial is signed Rolex Oyster above the centre.
A stylish example of the iconic Rolex Oyster watch in wonderful condition!
The Rolex Oyster
Following the end of World War I, global trading resumed and Rolex watches were being sent abroad, particularly to the the hot and humid tropical countries of the British Empire. Many of the watches were found to have rusted on arrival following a long damp voyage!
Hans Wilsdorf (co-founder of Rolex) was determined to produce a ‘water-proof’ watch and commented;
“We must succeed in making a watch case so tight that our movements will be permanently guaranteed against damage caused by dust, perspiration, heat and cold. Only then will the perfect accuracy of the Rolex watch be secured.”
The Rolex Oyster watch was produced a few years later in 1926 with a ‘three-piece’ case, (the front and back screwing into the body). An iconic design that has become probably the best selling waterproof wristwatch.