FS: Early circa 1979 ref. 16030 SS Datejust cal. 3035 w/ Rare Gray Dial

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FS: Early circa 1979 ref. 16030 SS Datejust cal. 3035 w/ Rare Gray Dial

Joined: May 7th, 2006, 5:02 pm

December 5th, 2016, 10:03 pm #1

Up for sale is this classic Rolex ref. 16030 Oyster Perpetual Datejust with steel case and “Castellated” engine-turned steel bezel. This is one of the earliest quickset caliber 3035 models that I have ever come across with a 5.7 million serial number dating to circa 1979. This transitional Datejust model is very pleasing in that it still retains the vintage charm and warmth of an acrylic crystal and Tritium luminous while also incorporating the convenience of the more modern quickset date change and accuracy of a higher beat movement. Making this Datejust even more special is the very uncommon silver-gray dial which changes depending on the angle it is being viewed from. There are times when the white print seems to completely disappear! This beautiful dial is stunning from any angle and is absolutely Near Mint+ with its original Tritium lume dots showing a lovely patina. The watch overall is in Excellent vintage condition with thick lugs and nice sharp edges. This great early transitional Datejust also comes on a very tight oval-link Rolex USA Jubilee bracelet that also happens to be nice and long.

The VRF asking price for this uncommon and very early ref. 16030 Datejust with rare gray dial is $2,875 USD OBRO. Simply mention that you saw the ad on VRF Market and you get the preferred price. Fully insured worldwide shipping at cost. Payment by Bank Wire preferred. Paypal is also OK with split fees (+2% to the buyer). Other payment options upon application. Payment must be made in US DOLLARS. Watch will ship upon full clearance of the funds, as well as any necessary bank vetting.

CASE & BACK: Classic 36mm stainless steel Oyster case that looks to have been previously lightly polished but still retains thick lugs and sharp edges. The watch shows normal wear from use commensurate with age, particularly to the polished sides of course, but no heavy dings — Excellent overall vintage condition for a more than 35-year-old watch. The correct model # 16030, as well as the older style "Registered Design," & full case SN of 5.7mil are also perfectly legible between their respective lugs. As mentioned above this is one of the earlier serial numbers one will find for the quickset, higher beat Datejusts with the cal. 3035 under the hood. The outer caseback also has some superficial scratches and some residual tool marks to the knurling, Very Good+ cosmetic condition overall. The inner caseback shows no corrosion and bears all correct period nomenclature and a “16000" reference, which was the standard practice at the time in Datejust casebacks regardless of the exact model.

DIAL & HANDS: Absolutely stunning and Near Mint+ original silver-gray sunburst dial with textured bar markers and thicker ones at “6” and “9”.
This is one of those magical dials that changes tone depending on how you look at it, varying from gun-metal gray to pure silver. The original white dial printing is all present, as are the original small Tritium plots that have acquired a wonderful biscuity patina. This dial is essentially flawless to the naked eye. Original Tritium-filled stick hands have a lovely creamy patina of their own if perhaps slightly lighter than the dial luminous and are Near Mint with only very minor signs of aging, as is the baton sweep seconds. All in all, a fantastic and uncommon Datejust dial in stunning condition!

CROWN: The signed steel Rolex Twinlock crown is Excellent cosmetically. It screws down tightly and pulls out to the winding, quickset date-change and hacking time-setting positions as designed.

CRYSTAL: The low-sided acrylic Cyclops crystal is largely scratch free on the face with only some older scratches to the sides, Excellent condition, and the date magnifier is clear and strong.

BEZEL: This engine-turned steel bezel with model-correct "Castellated" pattern is very nice with all the fine details crisp and barely softened by time. This is a great vintage look on a steel DJ and Rolex has not made this bezel pattern in decades. It is easily in Excellent+ condition with only a few minor nicks.

MOVEMENT: This 16030 features Rolex's cal. 3035 27-jewel automatic Chronometer-grade movement with 6 total adjustments. The 3035 was an evolutionary leap in Rolex movements and embraced the higher beat revolution of the 1970s in the quest for greater accuracy. Supplanting the legendary 15xx series this 3035 was introduced circa 1977 and beats at 28.8k per hour as opposed to the older cal. 15xx’s 19.8k per hour. This more advanced movement also finally incorporated true quickset date change via the crown, a big step up in convenience for the wearer. I believe this watch was last serviced about 3 years ago and by a reputable watchmaker here in New York. It is running strong, keeping great time with patented instantaneous shutter-like date change near midnight and has a strong power reserve. This is guaranteed to be the case at the time of shipment.

BRACELET: This great Datejust comes on a period correct genuine Rolex USA-made round link Jubilee. The bracelet and ends have no reference #s, which is correct for a USA Jubilee, but the end piece fit is nice and flush. This bracelet has very minor stretch with only superficial swirls and a small scuff to the signed buckle, which looks like it has been lightly detailed in the past. It is easily in Excellent+ condition and is also quite long — it should fit up to a 7 3/4" wrist at full length and probably up to 8” if necessary.

As a matter of policy, I make NO guarantees for the water resistance of this watch, especially as I have opened it to take pictures.

This classic Rolex 16030 Datejust is offered with a 3-day inspection period from the date of receipt and may be returned for a full refund (less any shipping costs incurred by the buyer). This refund is unconditional and once I get back the watch in exactly the same condition as it was sent to you, your money will be refunded. Of course, once the 3 days are over the sale will be considered FINAL.

Thanks for looking,

Joined: December 2nd, 2013, 7:50 am

December 5th, 2016, 10:41 pm #2