Rolex Precision Chronometer Coin Edge 18ct Pink Gold 1942

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SKU: VGW Reference: R765 Category:

Rolex Precision Chronometers are very special watches indeed as they have very high-grade movements designed to meet or exceed the highest standards of accuracy and reliability for their day. This was determined independently and tested and certified at an Observatory, usually Swiss or British, such as Neuchatel Observatory, Geneva Observatory, or Kew Observatory. These official tests of the accuracy and reliability of individual watches were carried out over numerous weeks, and in varying positions and at different temperatures. Only individual watches which passed these very strict tests, qualified and were granted permission to be classed as “Chronometer grade” watches. Furthermore, each year, special Prizes were awarded to the manufacturer which submitted the most accurate wristwatch, and the manufacturer which submitted the highest number of watches which qualified as Chronometers. Manufacturers competed fiercely for these prizes as they were highly coveted and publicised. Just as with the motor manufacturers associated with Formula 1 Grand Prix winners of yesteryear and today, this kind of publicity was priceless. Rolex, Omega, Longines and Zenith were the most successful manufacturers in submitting watches which passed these tests and also winning prizes as outright winners.

During the 1930s and ’40s, Rolex was also, undoubtedly, the most successful watch manufacturer at courting publicity. It managed this by being on hand, or wrist, during many record-breaking events. Such events were, for example, swimming the English Channel (1927), world automobile speed record (300mph, 1935), breaking the sound barrier in 1947 and the conquest of Everest in 1952. No matter how pre-planned or well orchestrated these events became, we cannot blame Rolex for blowing its own trumpet and building its brand. In fact it was being very creative and ahead of the game in capitalising on such events at every opportunity – a small example of which can be seen here, on the inside of the case-back, where it reads (winner of) “31 VICTOIRES”. Some fascinating books have been written about these events, which were as equally amazing then, as the many modern advances in hand-held/mobile technology today. A brief section covers some of these events, as well as some of the history of Rolex, in our FAQs section found via the link at the bottom left of this page.

Rolex Precision Chronometers remain as equally prized today as they were at the time they were made. Rolex produces more Chronometer watches than any other manufacturer and indeed it has done so for quite a few decades. To be classed as a Chronometer today, watches are required to be submitted to an independent Swiss body called the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute, for testing over 15 days at a range of temperatures.

Here we have a beautiful and amazingly well cared for example of a super rare, early 18ct Pink Gold Rolex Precision Chronometer from 1942. This example also has a ‘coin edge’ which is very is seldom seen on a Rolex Precision of this age. It is a very large watch for the period at just under 35mm, excluding the crown and is one of the earliest Rolex Precisions we have seen.

This watch has just completed a full restoration by ourselves, including the movement, dial and case. It is now looking so good and contemporary, with its rare classic Roman dial, it could easily pass for a modern watch today.

The Dial

This simple and highly elegant cream dial has a hint of pink which becomes much warmer in certain lights, as we have tried to demonstrate in the photographs. The ‘art deco’ style features gilt roman numerals which are very rare for a Rolex Precision. The original, restored gilt ‘Leaf’ hands transcribe this beautifully balanced dial, completed with quite a large subsidiary seconds dial at six. This is a very rare dial, although it has been seen before on Rolex Chronometer watches of this period. The dial is correctly signed: Rolex Chronometer along with the Rolex Coronet with ‘Swiss Made’ below the six.

This is the original dial which has been previously restored to a very high standard.

The Movement

As referred to above, this is a Rolex Precision Chronometer movement. This was the best of its day and is highly accurate and reliable. As with all our watches, this is the original movement which has been completely overhauled and undergone close examination and servicing, before testing and calibration by our vintage Rolex specialist watchmaker. The movement is in superb condition having had the benefit of proper care and maintenance and light use throughout its life. When tested on our electronic timegrapher machine, it was found to be running within +6 seconds per day which is outstanding for any watch of this age. We are therefore highly confident in offering a 12-month warranty with this watch movement*.

The movement is signed exactly as it should: Rolex Chronometer, 18 Rubies, Timed in 6 Positions, Patented Super Balance and Swiss Made with the Calibre number 112.

*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only applicable if the full list price is paid.

The Case

Pink gold Rolex watches of this vintage are always special and rare, and are always more sought after. The colour of pink gold often varies, from a very subtle rose pink, to a much darker pink, or red gold which we see more often on modern Rolex watches today. Here it is in the mid-range and slightly more pink than other pink gold Rolex Precisions we currently hold in stock. The size of the watch case is 34.5mm in diameter, excluding the correct unsigned Rolex winding crown. This makes this a large watch by the standards of its day.

The coin edge on this Precision is unusual, because, apart from some WW1 Rolex Officers watches, examples of which you will find elsewhere on this site, we have never before seen a coin edge on a Rolex as early as this. However, the case is all completely original and correctly signed.

The case here is in close to perfect condition and even under high magnification, it is very hard to find any fault. This watch has seen very little use and must have led a charmed life. It has been carefully inspected, cleaned and lightly hand-polished to bring it back to the immaculate condition you see here with no scratches, dimples or marks visible to the naked eye. The case-back is also of full thickness and has never been inscribed. Inside the case-back, all is as expected. It is correctly signed: Rolex, along with the Rolex model reference 4009 and Swiss Geneva 18ct hallmarks. It is also signed: ’31 Victoires’, Haute Precision, denoting how many prizes Rolex had won in Chronometer competitions when this watch was produced. This, along with the movement and dial enables us to date the watch to 1942, The inside of the case-back also carries the Rolex model number 4009, along with Swiss Geneva 18ct hallmarks. The case-back also carries a small 18ct mark on the outside.

As ever, our standard advice applies: Vintage watches should be kept clean and dry at all times.

The Strap and Buckle

The strap fitted is an artisan, green, genuine Lizard skin strap, with a Rolex pink gold plated buckle which we feel contrasts nicely with the watch. However, if a different colour or style of strap is preferred, please let us know and we will do our best to oblige free of charge. We carry tan, conker, dark brown and black in stock, in plain padded leather, crocodile skin or lizard skin, but can also obtain most types and colours of strap from our partners at ‘Watch Obsession’ within 48hrs. Please take a look at their huge range of 18mm straps if you wish, here.

The Box and Papers

Although there are no original papers with this watch, all the numbers and markings on the watch are correct, dating the watch to very close to 1942.

Detailed particulars will be included with our purchase receipt for your interest and security. A separate insurance valuation for the replacement value of this watch will be provided at the time of sale along with our unique ‘Lifetime Authenticity Guarantee’ which states: “If this watch proves to be anything less than 100% genuine, authentic and original, a full refund will be given at any time”.

The watch comes complete with a vintage Rolex presentation box, as shown.

In Conclusion

A beautiful, rare, and highly collectable vintage gold watch from horology’s most famous name, which will provide an excellent financial investment as well as be something to use, wear, treasure and enjoy!

This is a truly first-class example of an early vintage Rolex Precision Chronometer in 18ct Pink Gold, in amazing condition. The watch is ready to use and practical for evening wear or everyday use, as you wish. If treated with care it will make an excellent investment or family heirloom piece and even though vintage gold Rolex prices have risen markedly in the past few years, we still feel great examples such as this are greatly undervalued. As each year goes by and the world market for vintage gold Rolex watches continues to expand, prices will continue to climb ever higher.

We are happy to accept PayPal as this is the quickest method of payment. However, if you would like to pay by UK cheque or by UK bank transfer we will be pleased to assist you with this and pass on a 3% saving to you. Similarly, if you wish to pay by International SWIFT or Bank Wire Transfer we will provide you with our BIC / Swift number and our IBAN number.

Please check the import duties and any taxes your government may apply, these are different for each country and unfortunately out of our control.

We understand there may be some ‘loopholes’ that may help you avoid these charges, however attempting to use these could impact our ongoing ability to serve our growing international customer base.

For those that happen to visit the UK on occasion we are of course more than happy to store your watch until we can meet you in our offices in Kensington, London, and your watch directly to you there.

*Please note – our 12 months’ warranty is only included if the list price is paid.

If you have any questions please call us on 0207 727 7095  or if calling from overseas on +44 207 727 7095 . We await your call and we will be happy to help with any questions you may have about this watch or any of our collection.

Please note, we welcome part exchanges. We will also be happy to service your vintage watch or assist with repairs or restoration as necessary.

Please also take a look at our other fine vintage gold watches.

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Vendor Information

  • Store Name: Vintage Gold Watches London Ltd
  • Vendor: Vintage Gold Watches London Ltd
  • Address: Kensington Pavilion
    96 Kensington High Street
    W8 4SG
    United Kingdom (UK)
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Rolex Precision Chronometer Coin Edge 18ct Pink Gold 1942
Rolex Precision Chronometer Coin Edge 18ct Pink Gold 1942


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