On Apr 5, 4:00 PM UTC
Rolex Oysterquartz 17000 Stainless Steel Blue Dial
This auction is subject to a 10% buyer’s premium on top of final bid amount (hammer price).
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During the onslaught of the Japanese-led Quartz Crisis of the 70s and 80’s, Swiss watchmakers for forced to adapt to remain competitive in the market, or let themselves be swallowed up by their competition. As a way to deal with the Quartz Crisis, Rolex decided to release their own quartz timepiece in 1977, the Oysterquartz. In 1970, Rolex had released the precursor to the Oysterquartz, the Quartz Date 5100, powered by the Beta 21 movement, the result of a large-scale Swiss collaboration. While the Oysterquartz was loosely based on the ref. 5100, the Oysterquartz’ movement was in a league of its own. With 11 jewels, the latest CMOS circuitry, a 32000-hertz oscillator, and analog thermocompensation to regulate the quartz crystal, the Oysterquartz’s movement was held to just as high a standard as Rolex’s more typical mechanical movements. Besides its unusual movement, the Oysterquartz also features a unique construction in terms of its case shape and bracelet design, with an integrated bracelet attaching to a tonneau-shaped case. Offered as an Oysterquartz version of the Datejust, the ref. 17000 that we have here features an single-link Oyster-style bracelet, a domed stainless steel bezel alongside its entirely stainless steel construction and a rich blue dial that is sure to pull at the heartstrings of any Rolex collection. With Rolex’s signature cyclops lens over its 3 o’clock date window and its unique design, the ref. 17000 is a rich piece of Rolex’s history that has finally garnered the plaudits from collectors that it deserves.
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Vetted & Approved
Est. value range
$4,000 – $6,000
Quartz cal. 5035
Stainless steel integrated single-link bracelet
Watch is in near-mint overall condition. Light wear visible on case. Dial is in near-mint condition with all luminous dots intact. The bracelet currently has 12 links fitted, including one removable link. There is an additional link included on the side. Bracelet shows little stretch.
In typical Rolex fashion, their response to the Quartz Crisis was to completely over-engineer their quartz movement and the watch that it would be housed within, and so this has resulted in the quartz cal. 5035 and the Oysterquartz remaining completely modern and effectively unaged all these years later.