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  1. #1

    Question Defining period crystals for Rolex 1016 Explorer, circa 1960

    Could use some help with the proper "labels," variations offered, and dates of release on crystals for the Rolex 1016 Explorer.

    Specifically, I've been told by Rolex New York that the only replacement crystals they stock for the early models (circa 1960) are the ones with the "cornered-edges," and slight doming. Elsewhere, I've heard that there was only one previous version, which was rounded all the way to the bezel and referred to as the "superdome." But both have the same part number in the Rolex system.

    How many crystal variations are you folks aware of? Does anyone know anything about dates of introduction as they relate to the 1016?

    On a related matter, I've been told that older Rolex crystals do not yellow with age - as some others from the period we are discussing here have been seen to have done. Does that sound right?

    Thanks!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Defining period crystals for Rolex 1016 Explorer, circa 1960 (RE: Dell Deaton)

    Dell,

    I know where you're coming from now. I've recently replaced the crystal on my 1962 vintage Oyster Speedking. I first used a proper Rolex crystal. The current production genuine Rolex Tropic crystal does indeed have a beveled edge and a nearly flat top. I am told this is to emulate the appearance of the sapphire crystal models, and that apparently many Rolex wearers like this look.

    The original crystal was a domed crystal. After I installed the Rolex crystal, I soon decided that even though it was the correct replacement as far as Rolex was concerned, that I preferred the look and feel of the original profile. Though I searched for a while for an old-stock Rolex crystal, I soon settled on a high quality Swiss made generic replacement in the old profile. I have been quite happy with the result.

    I don't know the date of the change, but I'm pretty sure your watch would have originally had the domed version.

    As far as yellowing, I really don't think any high quality acrylic crystal made in the last 40 years or so has much of a problem with that.
    Cary Hurt


  3. #3

    Default Thanks, Cary-- (RE: Cary Hurt)

    Yeah, I've asked this question before (here and elsewhere), but either it's really outside of the mainstream of concerns, or the answer is very hard to nail down.

    Adding to the challenge, I've been told by Rolex Service both here and in Europe that the part number they use for both is the same.

    So it goes.

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