Rolex Precision Model Ref.544 18ct 1954 Oversize
100% Genuine & All Original
Fully Inspected, Serviced & Guaranteed
A Carefully Owned & Completely Original Example
High Grade Rolex Cal.1210, 17 Jewel Hand-Wound Movement
Very Rare Watch Due to the Dial, Case Size and 18ct Yellow Gold
Oversized 18ct Shackman Case, 36mm, Excl. Nipple Crown
Original, Unrestored and Untouched Honeycomb Dial with ‘Leaf’ hands
High Quality Brown Leather Strap and Rolex Gold-Plated Buckle
All In Absolutely Stunning Condition From Every Aspect
Matching Rolex Presentation Box Included, as Shown
VGWL Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee
VGWL 12 Months’ Written Warranty*
Free Worldwide FedEx Delivery
Free UK Special Delivery
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, moving 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.
An extremely rare Rolex Precision gentleman’s dress watch in 18ct gold from 1954. This watch features an original, unrestored and untouched honeycomb dial which carries an even patina and is in very good condition, considering its age. The watch is of a very clean, simple and classic design and is typical of the 1950s. By far the majority of the Rolex Precision UK market were produced in 9ct gold with as little as 10% or less being made in 18ct gold.
This watch is exceptionally rare due to being manufactured in 18ct yellow gold, plus the large 36mm case and the beautiful honeycomb dial. Rolex Precisions were generally produced with a 34mm case and in 9ct gold. Rolex Precisions were produced in several sizes in the 1950s, starting at 30mm in diameter, not including the crown. The majority were 32 and 33mm, with some 34mm. However very rarely, Rolex or their UK case-makers produced oversized 35mm models and even rarer 36mm, such as the example we see here. These are highly sought after watches because the seemingly small difference in size does add significantly to the ‘presence’ and value of the watch.
The dial is original, unrestored and untouched, yet in wonderful condition considering the age of the watch. This watch has seen very light use and the watch case is in superb condition. The movement is also in tip-top condition having just been overhauled and serviced.
The completely original, unrestored and untouched honeycomb dial is perfectly balanced with applied gilt ‘pencil’ hour indices and the Rolex ‘coronet’ at 12. These are matched by the original and unrestored ‘leaf’ hands which are in superb condition and have been cleaned, but not restored to retain their character and originality. They have been affected by some slight pitting which is evident in the photos, taken with a macro lens, however, these marks are hardly evident, if at all, on the wrist.
The dial is signed ‘Rolex’ and ‘Precision’ with ‘Swiss’ at the very bottom, below the ‘6’.
As mentioned above, this dial is original and unrestored. This has been left untouched by our restoration team due to its superb condition. Usually, we restore the dials of the watches we sell, however we decided in this case to leave it alone, due to its unusually good condition and to retain its originality and charm for those who prefer this. It also helps to contrast with almost all of the other watch dials you see on our website, which have been restored. The hands, likewise, have also been left in their original untouched condition.
Please note, studio lights, professional-grade digital cameras, and macro lenses can be very unkind to an unrestored vintage watch dial. Also the dial here measures less than 1.25 inches across, so the image you’re seeing may be between 5 – 25 times larger than the watch itself. Therefore please keep in mind you are seeing many tiny flaws which cannot be seen, or will be very hard to see with the naked eye, even under close examination. Suffice to say, on the wrist, in natural light, this dial looks much better and carries a great deal more charm than the photographs portray.
If you particularly like this watch and you would prefer to have the dial restored, please contact us to enquire, as this can be arranged at cost price.
The watch carries the original, high grade Rolex Calibre 1210 Precision movement, which as can be seen, is in sparkling clean condition. The movement has been completely disassembled, cleaned, inspected and rebuilt using original Rolex parts, only where required, by our vintage Rolex specialist watchmaker. His work is superb and when finally tested and calibrated, the watch was running consistently at +11 seconds per day which is truly exceptional for any vintage watch of this age.
The movement is correctly signed ‘Montres Rolex SA Geneva Swiss’, and ‘Seventeen 17 Jewels’, with the calibre number 1210 and the serial number 68831.
These movements are strong, accurate and very reliable, making the watch perfectly suited for regular everyday use. This particular movement is in A1 condition and with regular servicing every 3-4 years, we would fully expect this watch to run happily for many more decades to come. We are therefore pleased to offer a 12-month warranty on this watch movement*.
*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only included if the list price is paid.
The 18ct gold Rolex case is in superb condition and measures an oversized 36mm, excluding the wonderful nipple crown. The bezel is also very thin making the watch appear larger on the wrist than it measures.
This watch has been beautifully well cared for and after close inspection, the case has simply required a clean and a gentle hand-polish to bring it back to its current, almost as new condition. The case and case-back are each in superb condition, with few marks or scratches visible to the naked eye and importantly, the case-back is of full-thickness and has never been inscribed.
Inside the case-back the markings are all correct for a Rolex watch case made by D. Shackman & Sons, along with the case reference number 544. Shackman & Sons were very high quality case-makers and one of three English case-makers used by Rolex, the others being Dennison & Co. of Birmingham and Britton and Sons, also of Birmingham. The case-back also carries London 18ct hallmarks which date this watch to 1954.
Please note – as ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.
The Strap and Buckle
The strap fitted is a new, very high quality brown leather strap 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 and in plain padded leather, or crocodile skin or lizard skin.
Box and Papers
Although there are no original papers with this watch, the reference numbers, markings, signatures and hallmarks are all correct, dating this watch to 1954.
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 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 Rolex presentation box shown in the photographs is included.
Payment and Delivery
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.
For those who happen to visit London 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 hand your watch directly to you there.
As with all our watches, this watch will be sold under our 14 days no-quibble sale or return policy.
This is a truly first class example of a rare 1957 vintage Rolex Precision which is ready to wear and completely practical for everyday use. If treated with care, it will make an excellent investment or heirloom piece. Even though vintage gold Rolex prices have risen markedly recently, we still feel good examples such as this are still undervalued and as each year goes by and the world market for vintage gold Rolex watches continues to expand, prices will continue to climb ever higher.
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.