1981 Rolex GMT-Master (Ref. 16758) 18k YG "Hot Lava"
The Rolex GMT is the jet-setting icon of the Rolex sports watch family. The history of this sophisticated, versatile style dates back to 1954 when Rolex received a request from Pan Am to create a technical pilots watch that could indicate two time zones simultaneously. As advances in aviation made transcontinental flights commercially available Pan Am needed a watch that could be issued to their crews on long-haul international flights.
GMT stands for Greenwich Mean Time - the time zone that regulates world clocks and is required for all aviation planning and schedules. The Rolex GMT Master has a fourth 24-hour hand that directly displays the same time zone as the standard 12-hour hand but on a 24-hour scale. The addition of this GMT hand enabled crews to set the watch to GMT or another time zone, and, using the rotating 24-hour scale bezel, correct the offset to display a second-time zone on the 24-hour scale.
This feature is just as useful today, allowing the modern traveler to easily keep track of his home time zone, no matter how far he may have journeyed.
The Rolex Ref. 16758 was first introduced in 1980 shortly after the Ref. 16750 and was in production until 1988. Both the 16758 and 16750 featured the updated Cal. 3075 quick set date movement, but the 16758 included further advancements as well. The 16758 GMT-Master also featured a sapphire crystal and a bidirectional click spring bezel, which the stainless steel model wouldn't see until the GMT-Master II 16760.
This is a truly special timepiece that has jaw-dropping style. The dial has taken on a spectacular patina effect that drastically improves the aesthetic of the watch as a whole. Not only is the patina special, but the 16758 GMT-Master is also very transitional. Though the 16758 features more modern improvements than its stainless steel brother, the watch also retains an earlier style gold rivet bracelet and much-preferred nipple dial configuration. This GMT-Master Ref. 16758 is a unique specialty and would be a proud addition for a discerning collector.
|Dial||Metallic Brown "Hot Lava"|
|Strap||Rolex 18K YG Oyster Rivet Bracelet|
The 18k yellow gold case retains strong and even lugs that display very little wear from use. The brown bezel insert remains in excellent condition showing little wear and a charming subtle fade. The 18K yellow gold Oyster rivet bracelet remains in excellent condition, showing little wear and very light stretch from use.
The rootbeer "Hot Lava" nipple dial is absolutely stunning, the metallic brown dial has taken on a gorgeous patina of vibrant orange flecks consistent across the dial. The tritium lume plots have aged to a nice golden coloration and exhibit no degradation under U.V. light inspection. The original tritium hands have aged a shade lighter than the dial but match the overall look and feel of the watch, under U.V. light inspection the hour hand shows some minor lume loss, the minute, GMT, and sweep-seconds hands all remain fully intact. The gold date wheel is era correct with open 6's and 9's.
The watch just received a full service and comes backed by a 1-year warranty on accurate timekeeping.