Tropical 1963 Rolex GMT-Master (Ref. 1675) Gilt PCG W/ RSC Papers, Box, & Military Provenance
The Rolex GMT is the jet-setting icon of the Rolex sports watch family. Like the Rolex Submariner, the Rolex GMT is sophisticated, rugged, and versatile. In 1954 Pan Am started using the newly designed Boeing 707 which allowed for Pan Am to fly transcontinentally and is said to have started the commercially available jet age. In the same year, Rolex received a request from PanAm to create a technical pilot's watch which indicated two time zones simultaneously that could be issued by the airline to their crews on long-haul transcontinental international flights. The original Rolex GMT Master has a fourth 24-hour hand directly displaying the same time zone as the standard 12-hour hand but on a 24-hour scale. This GMT hand enabled the crews to set the watch to GMT or another time zone, and, using the rotatable 24-hour scale bezel, set to the correct offset thus displaying a second-time-zone on the 24-hour scale.
This historically impressive 1963 Rolex GMT-Master ref. 1675 was originally owned by Colonel Bryce R. Kramer who was an Army Major and helicopter pilot during the Vietnam War and a founding member of the Vinh Long Outlaws. The “Outlaws” were the 62d Assault Helicopter Company that consisted of the top specialists from the 11th Air Assault Division from Fort Benning, Georgia. From 1964-1965 the Outlaws were one of the first seven US military units stationed in Vietnam before the first initial buildup of US troops and quickly became known for their effectiveness in supporting the boots on the ground in hostile territory. Since this watch was produced in 1963 it gives us pretty good reason to believe Col. Kramer served his tour in Vietnam with this watch on his wrist. This 1963 Rolex GMT-Master ref. 1675 is also accompanied with Rolex service paperwork and box from 1968 along with detailed information about Col. Kramer and the Outlaws, and a photo of Col. Kramer himself.
|Dial||Glossy Gilt Dial "Tropical"|
|Strap||Rolex 7206 Oyster-Rivet Bracelet W/ 80 End Pieces|
The pointed crown guard case is in excellent overall condition and shows signs of being lightly polished in the past with light chamfers present and honest signs of use. The original redback "fat font" Pepsi bezel insert has achieved an excellent fade and shows almost no signs of use. The Rolex 7206 Oyster-Rivet bracelet with 80 end pieces is stamped 4/65 and is possibly original to the watch is in very strong condition, retaining 12 links with very mild stretch from use.
The original gilt dial has aged to a deep chocolate coloration that reveals some bright golden speckles and displays normal patina for gilt dials from this era, with even spidering throughout. The tritium lume plots have taken on creamy patina, remaining full and round without degradation when inspected under U.V. light. The original gilt hands match the dial perfectly and exhibit no degradation when inspected under U.V. light. The silver date wheel shows closed 9's and 9's which is correct for this era.
The watch comes complete with its original Rolex service papers and box from 1968, a photo of the original owner Col. Bryce R. Kramer, and detailed essays and information on the Outlaws and Col. Bryce Kramer.