Rolex Precision 9ct 1937 Art-Deco
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Restored, Serviced and Guaranteed
A Beautifully Well Cared For & Lightly Used Example
All Absolutely Top Grade and Simply Wonderful Condition
Superb 9ct UK Hallmarked Yellow Gold Rolex Press-Fit Case
Good-Sized 9ct Yellow Gold Case, 23mm x 31mm Excluding the Crown
Beautiful Ivory-Cream Dial with Original ‘Index’ Hands and Mixed Hour Indices
High Grade, 17 Jewel Hand-Wound, Swiss Made Rolex Movement
High Quality Black Leather Strap with Rolex Gold-Plated Buckle
VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty Included*
Rolex Presentation Box Included, as Shown
VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee
Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery
Free UK Special Delivery
The late 1920s and early ’30s saw Rolex at its most creative and dynamic. Having launched the world’s first truly waterproof and commercially successful (Oyster) watch in 1926, this relatively young company, est. 1906, went on to launch its first automatic waterproof wristwatch, the Oyster Perpetual Chronometer in 1934. These groundbreaking achievements are the foundations on which the company we know today was built. However, even at this early stage of development, this highly ambitious company offered a wide range of models to the market, many of which we seldom see today, due to relatively low production numbers.
The wristwatch we see here is just such an example, which if we take a moment to consider, bears little relationship with the pocket watch from which it descended only fifteen or twenty years earlier and which continued to remain popular right up and until the Second World War.
Though not officially referred to by Rolex as the ‘Tank’, there is little doubt this model was produced in response to the success of the Cartier Tank model, released in 1919. This was so called, because the outline of the watch case somewhat resembles the aerial view of the WW1 military tank. Prior to this, all watches were round, reflecting the shape of the movement. However, during the 1920s and ’30s, rectangular case design watches became hugely fashionable, which is why now perhaps, we loosely associate these designs with our Grandfather’s watch.
Finding good examples of any pre-WW2 Rolex has become increasingly hard over the past 10 years, however finding an example of this design is very difficult. Most are in the hands of collectors and seldom come to the market.
Here we have a beautiful Rolex with an incredible rectangular art-deco case which is in beautiful, previously restored condition. Not only is this watch in incredible condition, it also carries the very high grade, 17 jewel hand-wound movement which is running perfectly. This watch is perfectly proportioned and carries a wonderful mix of hour indices and numerals, along with a subsidiary seconds dial at 6.
Many rectangular watches of this period carried dials with ‘art-deco’ influences and this can be seen in the design of the numerals which complement the beautiful art-deco case perfectly. The wonderful yellow gold ‘2 – 4 – 6 – 8 – 10 – 12’ standard Arabic numerals look perfectly in place against the icory-cream dial and are swept by gilt ‘leaf’ hands. Square and rectangular watch dials present certain challenges to dial designers, but here the approach is very simple. This dial is complete with a perfectly proportioned subsidiary seconds dial that replaces ‘6’.
This dial is simply signed with the famous Rolex coronet with ‘Rolex Precision’ underneath at 12 and ‘Swiss’ at the very bottom, below 6.
This dial has been previously restored to a very high standard and remains in stunning condition.
The movement fitted to this watch is the original 17 jewel hand-movement used in Rolex’s highest quality watches of this period. The movement is in very clean condition having just completed a full overhaul and service by our vintage Rolex specialist watchmaker. This means it has been completely dismantled to each of its component parts before cleaning and inspection under high magnification, replacement where necessary with only genuine Rolex parts, then careful reassembly, adjustments and oiling to Rolex specification, before final calibration and testing.
The movement is now running accurately and within expectations of 30 seconds per day. The timing expected of a Rolex movement of this period is within 1 minute per day, and this is our guarantee. The power reserve when fully wound on this movement is 30 hours. We are therefore confident in offering this watch with a 12-month written warranty*.
The movement is signed ‘Rolex Geneva’, ‘Swiss’, ‘Patented Superbalance’ and ‘Seventeen 17 Jewels’.
*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the full list price is paid.
The Watch Case
The case measures 23mm across, excluding the correct Rolex unsigned crown, and 31mm from top to bottom. This may initially seem small until one considers it is 41mm across the diagonal, including the wonderful lugs. This makes this watch a good-sized watch for this period. This case has a press-fit case-back which clicks back into place with a very satisfying ‘pop’.
When acquiring such a watch, especially in gold, it is important to ensure the case shows no wear, no fatigue cracks and no pinholes, particularly around the hinge and corner areas. This type of case is prone to wear and damage in these areas, which is another reason for these watches becoming rare as they can often be beyond repair and restoration. Fortunately, this example has been very well cared for and lightly used, so apart from our usual checks and cleaning, the case has required little work apart from some very light hand-polishing. There are no scratches or dings, and no damage/wear visible to the naked eye.
Inside the case-back is found ‘Rolex Geneve Suisse’ and ‘R.W.C. Ltd’ along with Glasgow UK 9ct hallmarks which date this watch to 1937. This also coincides with the period when Rolex was exclaiming ‘27 Records Universels’ as can be seen on the inside of the case. This celebrates Rolex’s success in winning worldwide competitions which were held for accuracy and reliability during this period.
Externally, the case-back also carries the Rolex case serial number 33432 along with ‘Rolex’ inside the Rolex crown branding. As can be seen, these are clear and distinct, which is a good indication this watch has been lightly used and not over- polished.
Please note – as always, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap and Buckle
A new, high quality black leather strap is fitted along with a Rolex gold-plated 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 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 huge range of straps if you wish here.
Box and Papers
Although there are no original papers with this watch, the reference numbers, markings, signatures and hallmarks are all correct and indicate the date of manufacture as 1937.
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”.
This watch comes complete with a Rolex presentation box, as shown in the photographs.
If you would like to pay by bank transfer we will be pleased to assist you with this and pass on a 3% saving to you. Paying by bank transfer for a 3% saving will not affect your 12 months warranty. 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.
As with all our watches, this watch will be sold under our 14 days no quibble sale or return policy.
We love to find, restore and make available, fine old vintage gold Rolex watches of this rarity, quality and condition. This is a superb, highly collectable (and usable) vintage watch from horology’s most famous name, which will provide an excellent financial investment as well as something to treasure and enjoy! It will make an excellent evening wear dress watch as well as a practical, highly accurate and reliable timepiece to use on an everyday basis.
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. 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.
Please note, we also welcome part exchanges. If you have a watch or a small collection for sale, please contact us as we will be happy to discuss this.
We will also be happy to Service your watch, Repair your watch or Restore your watch, all at ‘sensible’ prices. Please see here.
If you have any questions please call us on 020 7727 7095 or if calling from overseas on +44 207 727 7095.
Please take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.