Rolex Oyster Perpetual Bubbleback 14ct Pink Gold 1948


100% Genuine & All Original

Fully Inspected, Serviced & Guaranteed

A Carefully Owned & Lightly Used Example

Rolex Oyster Perpetual, Rolex Model Ref 5011

Swiss Hallmarked 14ct Solid Pink Gold Rolex Oyster Case

High Grade Cal.A296, 17 Jewel Chronometer Automatic Movement

Previously Restored Dial with ‘Lance’ Hands and ‘Arrowhead’ Hour Indices

32mm Diameter Case, Excluding the Rolex Super Oyster Screw-Down Crown

Fluted Bezel, Case Body and Screw-Back, all in Immaculate Condition

High Quality Hardwood Presentation Box Included, as Shown

Officially Certified Chronometer, Highly Accurate Movement

High Quality Brown Lizard Strap & Rolex Pink Gold-Plated Buckle

VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee

VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty*

Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery

Free UK Special Delivery

Sold 21st Mar '23
VGW Reference: R1486
Price £6,750 Sold


Out of stock

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Founded in 1905 in England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, the partnership became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915 and moved to its new Geneva headquarters in 1919. The success of the wristwatch can be largely attributed to many of Rolex’s innovations which made the company one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These have included its famous “Oyster” case — the world’s first water-resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and its “Perpetual” — the world’s first reliable, self-winding movement for the wristwatch, launched in 1933. These would form the foundation for Rolex’s Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956. Also and equally importantly, Rolex is known for its sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

During the 1930s and ’40s, Rolex also became quite masterful at courting tremendous publicity and excitement through literally being ‘on hand’ during numerous record-breaking events. These were, for example, swimming the English Channel (1927), breaking the world automobile speed record (300mph, 1935), breaking the sound barrier (1947) and climbing Everest for the first time in 1953. No matter how well orchestrated these events came to be, we have to admire Rolex for becoming masters of self-promotion and capitalising on every opportunity with simultaneous worldwide marketing campaigns.

Of course, Rolex is now so ubiquitous it is almost its own kind of its currency. A Rolex is the watch you want on your wrist when you’re in a Third World country when revolution breaks out and there’s only one seat on the plane – and there’s a guy standing there with a machine gun! You give him a Rolex and he’ll give you the seat!


This is a classic Rolex Oyster Perpetual Bubbleback dress watch, with a charming ivory cream dial carrying ‘arrowhead’ hour indices and original ‘lance’ hands. This is Rolex model reference 5011 containing the Calibre A296 Chronometer automatic movement.

This is one of the earliest Rolex Oyster Perpetuals with a small 32mm Bubbleback 14ct pink gold case. It carries the rare signed Oyster crown and also features the rare and sought after ‘Thunderbird’ bezel, which along with the rest of the case, is in wonderful condition.

This watch is superb throughout and is very much the classic Rolex timepiece, perfectly suited for all occasions and also for everyday use. It has been previously restored to a very high standard and is in wonderful condition.

The Dial

1940s vintage Rolex dials are, we feel, the most wonderful examples of Rolex style, simplicity and elegance. The dial here in ivory cream, contrasts beautifully with the pink gold case, applied ‘arrowhead’ hour indices and Arabic numerals at ‘3, 6, 9 and 12’. It is full of character and 1940s Rolex charm and the original ‘lance’ hands,  and pink gilt centre seconds hand complete the dial perfectly. The absence of a date window only adds to the beauty, symmetry and perfection of this dial.

The hour indices and hands have been carefully hand-painted with green luminous paint, to replicate its 1940s look. The modern Luminova paint used is completely safe as it uses phosphor as a light bank, rather than any kind of the radioactive materials of the original paint. The hands and hour indices have therefore been restored to reproduce the faint luminous glow, very similar to the original effect.

This dial is in stunning condition due to being previously restored to a very high standard and is simply signed ‘Rolex Oyster Perpetual’ and ‘Officially Certified Chronometer’.

The lens has been replaced with a new original Rolex part and so it is fresh and scratch-free.

The Movement

The high grade, Rolex Calibre A296, 17 Jewel automatic chronometer movement is running perfectly following a complete overhaul and service by our vintage Rolex specialist watchmaker. This involves completely dismantling the movement to all its component parts, close examination under high magnification, then using only genuine Rolex replacement parts where required, careful reassembly and lubrication using Rolex specified lubricants.

This particular movement is sparkling clean and winds, sets and runs perfectly, just as it should. When final tested following its overhaul, this watch was found to be keeping superb time to within +8 seconds per day which is outstanding for any watch of this age. We are therefore highly confident in offering this watch with a 12 months warranty on the movement* and we will also be very happy to assist you with competitively priced servicing in the future.

These Chronometer grade movements are very strong, very accurate and very reliable making this watch perfectly suitable for both evening wear and everyday use. This movement is in superb, sparkling clean, A1 condition and with regular servicing, say every 3 – 4 years, we would fully expect this watch to run happily another lifetime!

The movement is correctly signed ‘Rolex Perpetual Chronometer’ and ‘Swiss Made’, with the reference number N74780.

*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the list price is paid.

The Case

The Rolex Oyster, 14ct pink gold Bubbleback watch case measures 32mm in diameter, excluding the Rolex Oyster screw-down crown. This watch case has the very sought after ‘Thunderbird’ bezel which, along with the rest of the case, is in excellent condition.  The bezel is always one of the most prone parts of a watch to damage, however here it is in excellent condition and shows very few signs of corrective polishing. This indicates this watch has only seen careful, occasional use. The case has simply been given a careful professional inspection and clean and a very gentle hand-polishing to bring it to the wonderful condition you see here.

The screw-down case-back is nicely polished, of full-thickness and importantly, has never been engraved.

Inside the case-back all is correct and as expected: Signed ‘Geneva Swiss’, with the early Rolex scroll signature and Swiss Geneva 14ct hallmarks. The case also carries the model reference number 5011 and this number can also be found clear and distinct between the lugs at ’12’.

The case serial number 641512 is very clear and distinct and found on the outside of the case, between the lugs at ‘6’. This number dates the watch to 1948.

The case has the screw-down Rolex Oyster crown and screw-down case-back, each complete with new rubber seals. However, although this watch was specified as waterproof when new, this has not been tested and it is not guaranteed. As ever our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.

Box and Papers

Although there are no original papers with the watch, the numbers and markings are all correct, dating this watch to 1948.

Detailed particulars will be included with our purchase receipt for your interest and security. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value of this watch will also be provided at the time of sale along with our unique ‘Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee’ which states: “If this watch proves to be anything less than 100% genuine, authentic and original, a full refund will be given at any time”.

The hardwood presentation box shown in the photographs is included in the sale.

The Strap & Buckle

A new, high quality brown lizard strap has been fitted, along with a matching pink gold-plated Rolex buckle. However, if a different colour or style of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to oblige free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown and black straps in stock in plain padded leather, crocodile skin or lizard skin. We can also obtain most types and colours from our partners at ‘Watch Obsession’ within 48hrs. Please take a look at their Hirsch range of 19mm straps if you wish here.

In Conclusion

We have here a superb example of a 1948 vintage gold Rolex Oyster Perpetual Bubbleback in immaculate condition. It is the classic Rolex automatic of the period, the evolution of which remains in production to this day. It is completely practical for every day and much more interesting, charming and individual than the modern equivalent. With careful use and if treated with care, this watch will make an excellent investment and heirloom piece.

Even though vintage Rolex prices have risen markedly in the past few years, we still feel fine examples such as this, have a very long way to go. We say this because as every year passes, the global market for vintage Rolex watches is expanding rapidly, with a subsequent effect on prices.

In summary, this is a highly collectable vintage watch from horology’s most famous name, which is ready to wear, use, treasure and enjoy. It will also provide excellent reliability and a sound financial investment – as long-lasting as the watch itself!

We guarantee you will never be disappointed with this watch! From every aspect and no matter how closely you look, it is immaculate and cannot be faulted.

A word on our prices – We always try our hardest to acquire the very highest quality watches we can find, before restoring them to the highest possible standards and presenting them for sale. We then offer these at the fairest prices we can, taking into account our pre and post sales care and service. This approach means we will never be the cheapest, but nor will we be the most expensive. Indeed there are some well known stores in West London which are highly successful charging between two to three times the price you see here. We, therefore, consider our prices to be fair, given the quality of watches we have to offer.

We are happy to accept PayPal as this is the quickest method of payment. However, if you would like to pay by UK cheque or by UK bank transfer we will be pleased to assist you with this and pass on a 3% saving to you. Similarly, if you wish to pay by International SWIFT or Bank Wire Transfer we will provide you with our BIC / Swift number and our IBAN number.

Please check the import duties and any taxes your government may apply, these are different for each country and unfortunately out of our control.

We understand there may be some ‘loopholes’ that may help you avoid these charges, however attempting to use these could impact our ongoing ability to serve our growing international customer base.

For those that happen to visit the UK on occasion we are of course more than happy to store your watch until we can meet you in our offices in Kensington, London and deliver your watch directly to you there.

If you have any questions please call us on 0207 727 7095  or if calling from overseas on +44 207 727 7095.

Please note, we also welcome part exchanges.

Please take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.

Thank you.