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History and Evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master

History and Evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master

More luxurious than the Submariner, sportier than the Datejust, and simpler than the GMT-Master, the Rolex Yacht-Master is the brand’s nautical-inspired luxury sports watch. The Yacht-Master is also one of the younger Rolex watch collections having first made its debut in the 1990s. Join us as we dive into the history and evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master

Yellow Gold Yacht-Master 16628

While Rolex had been a longtime supporter of sailing and experimented with a Yacht-Master dial prototype in the 1960s, it was not until the 1990s that the Crown unveiled a watch officially dedicated to nautical lifestyle. The first model to kick off the YM collection was the Yacht-Master ref. 16628. Crafted almost entirely in 18k yellow gold, it was clear from the onset that Rolex was positioning the Yacht-Master as a sports watch with plenty of style and flair. In fact, at a quick glance, the Yacht-Master and the Submariner share quite a few design traits.

Yacht-Master 16628 with mother-of-pearl dial

The Yacht-Master ref. 16628 features a 40mm Oyster case topped with a bi-directional rotating timing bezel marked to 60 minutes. The Yacht-Master dial is similar to other Rolex Oyster Professional watches with the familiar Mercedes-style center hands, in addition to the mix of round, rectangular and triangular hour markers. To emphasize the opulent nature of the watch, Rolex also offered dial versions with ruby-set hour markers, sapphire-set hour markers, and black onyx-set hour markers. The Yacht-Master includes a date window at 3 o’clock along with the customary Cyclops magnification lens above it, affixed to the exterior of the sapphire crystal.

Yacht-Master 16628B with Ruby-Set Dial

Rolex opted to fit the Yacht-Master with an Oyster bracelet and like all its automatic date/time models of the era, the watch ran on Caliber 3135. Rolex continued to produce the Yacht-Master 16628 until around 2011 and never replaced it with another full yellow gold Yacht-Master after that.

The ladies’ yellow gold Yacht-Master ref. 69628 with a 29mm case and the midsize yellow gold Yacht-Master ref. 68628 with a 35mm case joined the collection in 1994.

The Rolesium Yacht-Master 16622

In 1999, Rolex introduced a brand new version of the Yacht-Master in a metal combination the brand calls Rolesium. While Rolesor is Rolex’s term for combining gold and steel on a watch, Rolesium is the brand’s name for using platinum and steel together on a watch. The Yacht-Master was the first (and remains the only) Rolex Rolesium model.

rolex yachtmaster history

On top of the Rolesium Yacht-Master ref. 16622 ‘s 40mm steel case is a platinum bezel with high polished raised numerals on a sandblasted background. What’s more, the platinum dial also features a sandblasted finish, along with pops of red on the seconds hand and the YACHT-MASTER label.

The Oyster bracelet is fashioned from stainless steel but also combines a mix of finishes with high-polished center links flanked by brushed center links. Therefore, while the Rolesium Yacht-Master ref. 16622 is monochromatic due to its use of white metals, there is plenty of textural interest thanks to the range of surface finishes.

Rolesium Yacht-Master 116622

Rolex also made the Rolesium Yacht-Master with a ladies’ 29mm size (ref. 69622 then ref. 169622 ) and a midsize 35mm size (ref. 68622 then ref. 168622).

In 2012, Rolex replaced Yacht-Master ref. 16622 with the Yacht-Master ref. 116622 , which features an upgraded clasp with the Eaasylink extension system and the blue Chromalight lume instead of the green lume.

Yellow Rolesor Yacht-Master 16623

The Rolesor Yacht-Master ref. 16623 in a two-tone colorway mixing yellow gold and stainless steel joined the lineup in 2005.

Yellow Rolesor Yacht-Master 16623

Interestingly, Rolex already made yellow Rolesor Yacht-Master models but in smaller sizes. The two-tone midsize 35mm Yacht-Master ref. 68623 and two-tone ladies’ 29mm Yacht-Master ref. 69623 were released in 1995 and later replaced by the upgraded 168623 and 169623 references, respectively, in the early 2000s.

rolex yachtmaster history

The Yacht-Master 16623, however, was the first two-tone version in the men’s 40mm size. The 40mm stainless steel case includes an 18k yellow gold bezel, complete with raised numerals in a high polished finish. Furthermore, the two-tone Oyster bracelet of the Yacht-Master 16623 features yellow gold center links flanked by two rows of stainless steel

Rolex eventually discontinued the yellow Rolesor Yacht-Master 16623 in 2016 to make way for another type of two-tone YM, which we will discuss shortly below.

Everose Gold Yacht-Master 116655

In 2015, Rolex released the Yacht-Master 116655, which was not only the first Yacht-Master crafted from Everose gold (Rolex’s patented rose gold alloy) but also the very first Rolex fitted with an Oysterflex bracelet. The Oysterflex bracelet is Rolex’s approach to a black rubber strap, comprised of a metal titanium nickel alloy blade covered in a black elastomer coating.

Everose Gold Yacht-Master models introduced at Baselworld 2015

Additionally, the Everose gold Yacht-Master 116655 includes a black Cerachrom (Rolex’s proprietary ceramic alloy) bezel–another first for the collection. Matching the black bracelet and black bezel of the Yacht-Master ref. 116655 is the black dial, punctuated with rose gold surrounds framing the lume plots and rose gold Mercedes-style hands.

That same year, Rolex also introduced the Everose gold and black Oysterflex Yacht-Master ref. 268655 with a smaller 37mm case size. This new case size effectively replaced the previous ladies and midsize versions of the Yacht-Master as Rolex has now stopped making the 35mm and 29mm editions.

Everose Rolesor Yacht-Master 116621

As previously mentioned, Rolex discontinued the yellow gold and stainless steel Yacht-Master model. However, taking the place of that two-tone version is the new Rolesor Yacht-Master ref. 116621 , which combines rose gold and steel, presented in 2016.

The 40mm stainless steel case of the Yacht-Master ref. 116621 includes a rotating bezel in 18k Everose gold. And like previous versions, the raised numerals on the bezel are high-polished, providing a contrast to the sandblasted background.

Rolesor Yacht-Master 116621

In true Rolex two-tone fashion, the Oyster bracelet of the Rolesor Yacht-Master ref. 116621 includes rose gold center links in between the exterior steel links. The bracelet also comes with the practical Easylink adjustment system on the clasp.

Yacht-Master With Caliber 3235

Just this year at Baselworld 2019 , Rolex unveiled a new batch of Yacht-Master 40 references, all fitted with the new-generation Caliber 3235 automatic movement with an increased power reserve of 72 hours. There’s the Everose gold and Oysterflex Yacht-Master ref. 126655, the steel and platinum Rolesium Yacht-Master ref. 126622, and the Everose gold and steel Rolesor Yacht-Master ref. 126621.

With these new releases, all previous 40mm Yacht-Master ref. 1166xx references are now discontinued.

White Gold Yacht-Master 42 226659

The big news that came out of the Rolex pavilion at Baselworld 2019 was the launch of the Yacht-Master ref. 226659. With its new 42mm case size, this is the biggest Yacht-Master to date and the first to be made in white gold.

rolex yachtmaster history

Similar to its Everose gold sibling, Rolex fitted white gold Yacht-Master 226659 with a black Cerachrom bezel, a black Oysterflex bracelet, and a black dial. Under the solid white gold caseback is also the automatic Caliber 3255 movement.

While the Rolex Yacht-Master has been around for less than three decades, it’s clear that this has been an active part of the company’s catalog. The history and evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master have paved the way for a bevy of sizes, metals, and styles to choose among current-production and pre-owned Yacht-Master models . This is the perfect watch model if you’re looking for a sporty Rolex with some serious flair.

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The Watch Of The Open Seas: History Of The Rolex Yacht-Master

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 White Gold 226629

Instagram: @rolex

In the year 1992, Swiss watchmaker Rolex would debut a new model line at the Baselworld show that was strikingly similar to the already-popular Submariner. It featured the same 40mm Oyster case with a rotating bezel, the same chronometer-certified caliber, and the same Oyster bracelet.

Seemingly the only difference between the two was the white dial of that first Yacht-Master, a style which has never been an option on a Sub, and the inferior depth rating of 100m when compared to the Sub’s 300m.

Yet, the Yacht-Master was well-received upon launch, and with the passing of time, the yachting-inspired model has evolved and pioneered its own path within Rolex’s catalog.

Read on with us as we go back to the beginning and track the catalysts that paved the way for the most recent Yacht-Master release, the Yacht-Master 42 (226659), to become one of the hottest sports timepieces of the year.

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History Of The Rolex Yacht-Master

We’ve broken down our overview of the Yacht-Master into the following segments:

  • Release Of The Yacht-Master

The Submariner/Yacht-Master Theory

  • Mid-Size & Ladies’ Yacht-Master
  • Platinum (Rolesium) Yacht-Master

The Maxi Dial Yacht-Master

  • Two-Tone Rolesor Yacht-Master

The Yacht-Master II

  • Six-Digit Yacht-Master

The Oysterflex Yacht-Master

Keep scrolling to read this guide from its beginning, or use the links above to jump down to a specific point.

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The Release Of The Yacht-Master

The first Yacht-Master watch was launched in 1992 under reference number 16628. It featured a yellow gold case, a bidirectional graduated bezel, and a matching full-gold Oyster bracelet. Its dial was white with black hour indices, while at center were gold Mercedes hands, and beating inside was the 3135 movement.

Rolex Yacht-Master 16628 Yellow Gold

Rolex ref. 16628. Instagram: @m_j_watches

Previous to the Yacht-Master’s introduction, Rolex had not released a new model line in a quarter century. So, why did they go with the Yacht-Master, a design that risked being a detractor from their existing Submariner? Let’s take a look at the inspiration.

The sport of yachting is one which demands precise timing and extreme coordination of the entire crew for optimal performance, particularly in offshore competitions.

Vintage Rolex Daytona Yacht-Master Prototype

Prototype Daytona Yacht-Master ref. 6239. Image: Christies.com

Rolex believed their waterproof and chronometer-grade timepieces to be more than qualified to handle the knocks of a regatta and keep ticking accurately. The brand is also notorious for their marketing prowess, which led them to act quickly in establishing an association with the sport.

Beginning in 1958 with their first sponsorship of a race, the relationship has endured until today, when the brand sponsors over a dozen international yachting events.

Nevertheless, it’s hard to deny that there exists a large gap between first contact in 1958 and the release of the yacht-inspired timepiece in the early ’90s. Why wasn’t the Yacht-Master released earlier on?

Well, Rolex played around with the idea of yachting chronograph early on, though it never materialized. All that’s left of these trials are an extremely limited number of Daytona ref. 6239 chronograph prototypes with a 39mm case (vs standard 36mm) and modified regatta dials.

Unfortunately, the Yacht-Master concept was scrapped and would not reappear until decades later.

Rolex Submariner With Date Window

When it did return, none of the previous Yacht-Master’s DNA was there. Furthermore, the 1992 Yacht-Master was bizarrely similar to the 16610 Sub of the time.

Interestingly enough, Rolex folklore tells of a time in the ’80s when the brand sought to update their Submariner . What resulted was less of an update and more of an overhaul, manifested as what we know now as the first Yacht-Master.

Apprehensive of the repercussions that making such aggressive design changes to their staple offering could bring, the brand chose instead to release the watch intended to be a new Submariner as the reborn Yacht-Master instead.

The move worked, and the new Yacht-Masters started flying off the shelves. The Yacht-Master was perceived as a more luxurious Sub, though its bidirectional bezel proved useful for on-the-fly countdowns which are critical in sailing competitions. The waterproof nature of the Oyster case further cemented the Yacht-Master as the ideal first mate.

Mid-Size & Ladies’ Yacht-Master

In 1994, just two years after the debut of the 16628, Rolex would introduce the same design but in smaller case sizes. These were:

  • Ref. 68628: Yacht-Master “Mid-Size” in 35mm
  • Ref. 69628: Yacht-Master Ladies’ in 29mm

This marked the first time that Rolex ever offered one of their sports models in a smaller case size; all previous instances of case size changes were increases as opposed to reductions. It has been speculated that the smaller cases were intended for the Asian market.

Rolex Yacht-Master Yellow Gold 16628

Yacht-Master ref. 16628. Instagram: @thewatchcentre

In the same year, Rolex also offered the same 16628 but this time with a deep blue dial. Blue dials tend to make for broadly-liked watches, and coupled with the gold case and bracelet, the new version was once again a hit.

The Platinum (Rolesium) Yacht-Master

The next update to the model line would come in 1999 with yet another home-run: the Rolesium Yacht-Master. The new watch featured a stainless steel case and bracelet with a platinum dial and platinum-insert bezel. Rolesium, a term registered by Rolex back in the ’30s for a combination of steel and platinum in a watch, was finally put to use.

The new platinum Yacht-Master ref. 16622 was not only more accessible than the previous all-gold varieties, it was also more versatile. This would lead the 16622 variety to become the face of the Yacht-Master line.

In fact, many online resources erroneously label it the first Yacht-Master ever; this should offer an idea of how emblematic it is in the watch industry.

The 16622 also presented a new dial and hand style that would mark Rolex as a whole through to the modern day. The new Yacht-Master boasted what is now recognized as the “maxi dial”.

Yellow Gold Rolex Yacht-Master Blue Dial 16628

Rolex Yacht-Master 16628 w/ maxi dial. Instagram: @kellokonttori

The maxi dial is characterized by oversized hour indices as well as larger hands at center. To the untrained eye, the difference may be difficult to spot, though experienced collectors will note the change instantly.

The maxi dial became the style of choice for all modern Rolex sports watches, though it got its start in the 1999 platinum Yacht-Master. A Submariner would first feature a maxi dial in 2003, with the release of the 50th anniversary Rolex Submariner “Kermit” (16610LV).

All versions of the Yacht-Master produced after the introduction of the maxi dial would also feature the new dial design. This included the blue, gold, and white dial versions from years past.

The Two-Tone (Rolesor) Yacht-Master

Six years after the Rolesium Yacht-Master came to be, Rolex would once more put on display their mixed-metal Rolesor style in the two-tone Yacht-Master 16623.

Two-Tone Rolex Yacht-Master Blue Dial 16823

Yacht-Master ref. 16623. Instagram: @v.davidofftimepieces

The 2005 debuts possessed a 40mm steel case, a yellow gold bidirectional bezel, and a two-tone Oyster bracelet. As far as dials, many of the previous styles were also available like the black-on-white, though mother of pearl version were also introduced.

It was during Baselworld 2007 when Rolex would introduce the Yacht-Master’s younger and much larger sibling, the Yacht-Master II. Whereas the original Yacht-Master was very close functionally to the Sub, the Yacht-Master II was completely the opposite.

It can be said that the only overlap between the YM and the YMII is be the name, as the second iteration looks like a whole new watch. This time, though, it’s clear that the watch has been designed with the needs of yachting professionals in mind.

Rolex Yacht-Master II In Yellow Gold

The first Yacht-Master II were marked by a 44mm Oyster case, an Oyster bracelet, a white dial,  and a blue Cerachrom (ceramic) Ring Command bezel. The first two references, 116688 and 116689, were made of yellow gold and white gold, respectively.

Powering the YMII was another innovation – Rolex’s in-house calibre 4161. It features the COSC-chronometer certification and 72-hour power reserve that are today’s standard, though they were industry-leading at the time. Most notable, though, was the 4161 movement’s functions.

The new caliber boasted a “ programmable countdown with mechanical memory and on-the-fly synchronization. ” Naturally, the programming of the movement required the use of the Ring Command bezel, a feature which had also never been encountered on a Rolex watch before.

In later years, Rolex would go on to release Rolesor and full-steel versions of the Yacht-Master II, both of which have been relatively successful. The Yacht-Master II has certainly earned a spot in the brand’s catalog, and is sure to stick around for next couple of decades.

The Six-Digit Yacht-Master

Rolex Yacht-Master 116622 Cobalt Blue Dial j

Yacht-Master 116622

Twenty years after it debuted as the 16628, the Yacht-Master would see in 2012 the modernization that had been sweeping Rolex’s other model families.

Aside from receiving a new six-digit reference number (116622), subtle aesthetic changes were also present, as was an outstanding new dial option – the Cobalt Blue dial.

The case was now a “super case”, which retained the 40mm diameter but was styled differently. The bezel was now completely platinum, where previous versions were made of steel with a platinum insert. The Oyster bracelet had likewise been upgraded.

A platinum bezel / platinum dial option was still part of the collection and therefore received the same upgrades. Unfortunately, this iconic “albino” look would be completely discontinued in 2017.

The subsequent and most recent significant change to the Yacht-Master family took place in 2015, when Rolex first introduced the Everose Yacht-Master 40 ref. 116655.

Rolex Everose Yacht-Master On Oysterflex Bracelet

Rolex Everose Yacht-Master on Oysterflex bracelet

The newest iteration of the YM possessed some new features. The case was made of Everose, and the bezel now boasted a black Cerachrom insert. Securing the watch to the wrist was another Rolex first – the Oysterflex rubber ‘bracelet’.

Before the 116655, no Rolex watch had ever sported a rubber band. The brand still refers to it as a bracelet given the metal elements within the band, but these are not obvious even with the watch in the hand.

This same style of Yacht-Master would receive the next update in 2019, when Rolex introduced the Yacht-Master 42 in white gold.

What’s Next?

With the recent changes that the Yacht-Master line has had, it is clear that Rolex intends to keep this model family alive and well for years to come. Consumers are likewise responding to each new release, offering plenty of feedback with their pocketbooks.

If you’d like to read up on any of Rolex’s other model families, make sure to check out some of our extensive watch guides below:

  • History Of The Rolex Cosmograph Daytona
  • Overview Of The Most Luxurious Pilot’s Watch: The GMT-Master
  • How Did The Day-Date Become The President’s Watch?
  • Review Of Rolex’s Longest Running Watch Model
  • Rolex Watches That Could Become The Investment Of A Lifetime
"I have always been a fan of the Yacht-Master, but I had no idea that it didn't exist until the 1990s. Thanks for the information, and thanks for keeping it entertaining. Well done!"

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Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

What makes a Rolex so unique and coveted as a brand on a global level? Apart from the class, it adds to your personality, the true worth lies in its intricacies and the making. It only releases all-new designs on a very rare basis; in fact, the last model launched before the Yacht-Master was the Rolex Daytona in 1964. The Yacht-Master  debuted in 1992, therefore it took the brand 28 years to come up with a completely new model! To put things in perspective, it took them nearly 20 years to create another all-new model, the Sky-Dweller, which was unveiled in 2012. 

Rolex Francis Chichester

It also produced a brand-new stainless steel and platinum Yacht-Master with a cobalt blue sunray dial in 2012, and it became an immediate masterpiece. While we talk about the evolution of the Yacht-Master, we can trace its history back to 1967. 

The Evolution of The Yacht Master: From 1967 to 2021

It innovated like crazy, and one might say that they drove everything they could think of at the wall and waited to see what would stick. The original Yacht-Master is noteworthy since it was the second one to be designed on a nautical motif, following the Rolex Submariner.

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

Rolex designed the Yacht-Master Chronograph before the SEA-DWELLER, which is ironic. I suppose they sought to cash in on the Submariner's enormous popularity as a utility timepiece.

The original Yachtmaster resembles early Rolex Daytona models, although the Daytonas were 36mm in diameter, while the Yachtmaster was 39.5mm. The Yachtmaster Chronograph was never released by the brand in the late 1960s, but it is still a fascinating piece of their design history!

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

Perhaps the Submariner has been Rolex's bread and butter for the past half-century. It  eventually chose to resurrect their old Yacht-Master trademark, and the rest, as they say, is history. If you look closely at the current Yacht-Master, you'll notice that it's practically identical to a Submariner in every manner!

The 40mm Yacht-Master was first presented in 1992 as a Reference 16628 in 18kt gold with a white dial and the Rolex 3135 movement, which was the same movement used in the Rolex Submariner. The Yacht-Master had a triple-lock crown and was water-resistant to 320 feet (100 meters) (10 bars).

The First Yacht Master 1992

The first Yacht-Master was marketed as a more luxurious version of the Submariner. The Submariner was designed for use below, while the Yacht-Master was designed for use above water. If the Submariner was for the Captain/Skipper, Thurston Howell III was for the Yacht-Master (The Millionaire).

In 1994, they released the Reference 69628, a 35mm "Mid-size edition" aimed for the Asian market or for those with smaller wrist sizes. In the same year, they released Reference 69628, a women's 29MM version of the Yacht-Master.

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

It stunned everyone when they debuted the stainless steel and platinum version at BaselWorld in 1999. Rolex refers to Rolesium as a blend of Stainless Steel and Platinum. This was the first model to reintroduce the classic Maxi Markers and fat hands. Since then, it has gradually reintroduced Maxi Markers and big hands to all sports models.

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

The stainless and platinum Yacht-Master dial and bezel were made of platinum, but the watch had little contrast, which presented a dilemma. It was lovely, although it appeared to be albino and lacked vibrancy. This year at BaselWorld, all of that changed when Rolex unveiled the new 40mm Reference 116622 with a striking Cobalt Blue Sunray dial. Rolex also changed the case design with this new version, giving the Yacht-Master a Super case, which means the lugs are substantially thicker.

And now, here we are the newest Yacht-Master novelty: The Oyster Perpetual. Let's deep dive into its technical prowess and features. 

The Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master: 2021 Novelty

The iconic maritime watch, the Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master, reflects Rolex's privileged ties to the world of sailing, which date back to the 1950s. The Yacht-Master, which debuted in 1992, was created with sailors and skippers in mind.

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

It encapsulates the specialties that have existed between Rolex and the world of sailing since the 1950s. This watch in the Professional category, beautiful and racy, brilliantly combines functionality and nautical flair and evolves with ease both at sea and on land.

A stunningly-magnificent piece 

The Yacht-Master is distinguished by its bi-directional rotating 60-minute graded bezel in relief, either formed entirely of precious metal (18 karat gold or 950 platinum) or equipped with a Cerachrom disc in technical ceramic. Against a matte background, polished graduations and numbers stand out. The bezel can be conveniently handled because of its notched rim, which provides great grip.

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

The Yacht-Chromalight Master's display provides an excellent reading in all lighting conditions, including in the dark. The Yacht Master's Oyster casing, with a diameter of 37 mm, 40 mm, or 42 mm and assured water resistance to a depth of 100 meters, is a model of durability and dependability. The caseband is made of solid blocks of Oystersteel steel, a corrosion-resistant alloy, or 18 karat gold.

Like all Rolex watches, the Yacht-Master is covered by Superlative Chronometer certification, which was redefined in 2015. This special designation certifies that each watch that leaves Rolex's workshops has passed a set of tests by the company in its own laboratories and according to its own criteria.

The watch's self-winding mechanical movements, calibres 2236 (Yacht-Master 37) and 3235 (Yacht-Master 40 and Yacht-Master 42) are used in Yacht-Master models. These trends have been multiple patent applications since they are concentrated in technology. Precision, autonomy, shock and magnetic field resistance, ease of use, and reliability are among the features that they offer. Its three-link system allows you to adjust the size and be comfortable, as this magnificent piece of beauty adds grandeur and oomph to your outfit. 

Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

Whether it’s a celebrity wearing these watches or it is a classic hand-me-down collection, the history of the Yacht-Master leaves us all mesmerized and high hopes of the models to come. It surely draws your attention, making you a loyal fan.

Despite its lack of historical significance, the Yacht-Master is the most authentic Rolex on the market. It has the Heiniger luxury that has helped the brand thrive and survive, rather than the Wilsdorf pragmatism that established the business. Whether Rolex aficionados want to acknowledge it, without the passion that lies at the heart of every Yacht-Master made, Rolex would not be the industry's monarch right now.

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The History and Development of the Rolex Yacht-Master

Published on Tuesday 22nd of February 2022 Rolex Watch History

The History and Development of the Rolex Yacht-Master

In the mid-1980s, Rolex were having great success with their line of sports watches that had remained unchanged for many years. However rumour has it that at some point Rolex were looking at redesigning the iconic Submariner . Thankfully Rolex eventually came to their senses and left the design of the Submariner alone. However, the work that had gone into the redesigned watch was rather good and it seemed a shame to leave it on the design room floor. Therefore, in the years that followed, Rolex used the new design intended for the Submariner to make a brand new line of maritime watches for the luxury market, and so the Rolex Yacht-Master was born.

The Rolex Yacht-Master made its debut in 1992, and was the first new design in 25 years (since the Sea-Dweller in 1967). Although it obviously shares its DNA with the rugged steel tool watch that is the Submariner, the Yacht-Master is designed to be a more luxurious offering, appealing to those who spend their spare time relaxing on superyachts above the water, as opposed to working under it. Originally only available in solid 18kt yellow gold, the Yacht-Master was, and still is, the only Rolex watch available in three sizes, with a 29mm - ref 69628, a 35mm - ref 68628, and the most popular being the 40mm variant ref 16628. Its wealthy target market was also well catered for in dial options, with options including various colours of mother of pearl, as well as a deep sunburst blue, with the option of hour markers in ruby-red, sapphire, and black onyx-set. The most popular dial combination being a striking white dial and contrasting black hour markers.

The Rolex Yacht-Master was exclusively available in 18kt yellow gold until 1995, when Rolex introduced a new Yacht-Master in steel and yellow gold. A few years later they added a steel and platinum model, all with the unique sandblasted finish bezel and highly polished raised numerals. An oyster bracelet and polished centre links made them stand out as the dressy luxury option in the Rolex professional line-up. All three metal variations of Rolex Yacht-Master were available in three sizes and various dial options. It wasn't until 2015 that the Rolex Yacht-Master range saw a change in design.

The History and Development of the Rolex Yacht-Master

By the mid-2010s, Rolex had stopped making the solid 18kt yellow gold Yacht-Master, with only the steel/platinum, and steel/yellow gold versions being available until 2015. Rolex also stopped making the steel and yellow gold Yacht-Master in order to make way for a new generation of Rolex Yacht-Master. Rolex are normally trend setters in the world of watches, with many fashion brands trying to replicate the aesthetics of the Rolex range, but with the use of rose gold in fashion getting more and more popular, the Rolex Yacht-Master would be the latest in the range to adopt the ‘Everose’ material (Rolex’s own rendition of rose gold).

As well as the introduction of rose gold, the new generation of Yacht-Master ref 116655 included a first for Rolex, the option of a rubber strap. The soft black rubber of the new ‘Oysterflex’ bracelet has a flexible titanium-nickel alloy core to ensure its strength and flexibility. As well as the introduction of the Oysterflex bracelet, the new Rolex Yacht-Master also had a new bezel, keeping its sand blasted finish with raised numbers, but now made of a black scratch resistant ceramic, giving the bezel a matt black finish to contrast to the highly polished rose gold case.

A year after the introduction of the rose gold on black rubber Rolex Yacht-Master 116655, Rolex replaced the steel and yellow gold line of Yacht-Masters, with a steel and rose gold range of watches. This colour scheme, like the rose gold on rubber bracelet, is available in two sizes, a full sized 40mm watch ref 116621 (replaced with the ref 126621 in 2019), and a reduced size of 37mm ref 268621. This addition to the Rolex Yacht-Master Range means that the collection has three different variations, with two size options for each. The new steel and rose gold model, the rose gold on rubber bracelet model and the steel and platinum Yacht-Master, which is available in a 40mm (ref 126622), and in 37mm (ref 268622) size. This has two distinct dial options, a deep blue dial with a line of red text and matching seconds hand, and a dark slate dial with a turquoise blue line of text and matching seconds hand.

Amongst the new releases at the Baselworld watch fair in 2019, there was a new Yacht-Master to join the line-up. With a new case size of 42mm, the new ref 226659 is the biggest Yacht-Master yet. It has the same black Oysterflex rubber bracelet and black ceramic sandblast finish bezel like the rose gold Yacht-Masters in the range, but this new model is exclusively available in 18kt white gold and gloss black dial, giving the latest Rolex Yacht-Master a contrasting monochrome look.

Today the Rolex Yacht-Master sits in the Rolex Professional Watches range, alongside its bigger brother the Yacht-Master II, being a modern sports watch. The Yacht-Master is generating far more interest in comparison to the supply that Rolex are giving to authorised dealers, and thus the price of the Rolex Yacht-Master on the used watch market is steadily increasing.

Rolex Yacht Master 42

Author: Watches by Timepiece

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A guide to the Rolex Yacht-Master

rolex yachtmaster history

Over the years, the Rolex Yacht-Master watch has grown significantly, becoming one of the most diverse ranges of Rolex watch available.

The evolution of the luxury brand’s classic sports watch has extended beyond imaginable parallels, offering the avid collector various choices in bracelet style, bezel material and case size over three entire decades. As such, the Yacht-Master continues to prove itself a valuable and dependable mainstay within the manufacturer’s current catalogue, despite many models having become discontinued over the years. To define the Yacht-Master by Rolex, one would categorize it as a luxury sports watch, yet the collection can be broken down into two watches that remain incredibly similar to one another, despite a slightly different name.

. One is the Yacht-Master - a watch that can be considered the original sports model designed by Rolex, intended for setting sail with and enjoying whilst sailing aboard a luxury yacht. The Yacht-Master II, however, is designed for more precise functionality. Equipped with all the technology to enable an individual to record regatta timings, this younger distinction of the model is classified as a watch for racing a yacht as opposed to enjoying alongside a ride on one.

rolex yachtmaster history

Whether wearing a Rolex Yacht-Master for aesthetical or practical reasons, however, its sleek looks and refined qualities are characteristics that are sought after far and wide amongst Rolex fans. Like with every Rolex, however, there are some factors to research and consider before investing in your very first Yacht-Master and these include pricing, history and features amongst many others.

What are the differences between the Yacht-Master and Yacht-Master II?

To break down the key differences between the Rolex Yacht-Master and the Rolex Yacht-Master II, here are a few quick facts. The Yacht-Master is available in sizes of 29mm, 35mm, 37mm, 40mm and 42mm and is manufactured in Rolesium, Everose Rolesor, yellow gold Rolesor, solid 18ct yellow gold, solid 18ct white gold and 18ct Everose gold. The watch offers running hours, minutes and seconds and features a date function at 3 o’clock. A bidirectional rotating bezel has a 60-minute scale upon its surface and each model promises a water resistance of 100 meters. The models are offered on an Oyster bracelet or Oysterflex bracelet. The Rolex Yacht-Master II, however, is available in a 44mm size and is offered in a solid stainless steel version, as well as Everose Rolesor, 18ct yellow gold and 18ct white gold. Function-wise, the models offer running seconds with an adjustable countdown timer with a mechanical memory. The watch also features a ring command bezel, along with 100-meter water resistance and is fitted on an Oyster bracelet.

rolex yachtmaster history

A brief history of the Rolex Yacht-Master watch collection

A brief history of both the Rolex Yacht-Master and Yacht-Master II watches is beneficial before investing in a model from this range. Though not introduced until 1992, the Rolex Yacht-Master watch had foundations secured for its release much earlier than that. The brand had partnered with the New York Yacht Club back in 1958, laying down the roots to its heritage in sailing long before the iconic sports watch was conceptualized. By this point, Rolex had ready developed its first waterproof watch thanks to the 1926 Oyster case.

rolex yachtmaster history

In 1966, the Gipsy Moth IV yacht was sailed 29,600 miles around the world by Francis Chichester, who wore a Rolex on his wrist amongst very few other measuring tools including a sextant and nautical chart. Thanks to the Rolex Oyster Perpetual watch he wore during his journey, time could be tracked amongst rough conditions for an entire 226 days whilst at sea. It put Rolex officially on the radar of seafarers as a manufacturer capable of producing robust and reliable tools for facing the challenging conditions experienced at sea.

rolex yachtmaster history

In 1992 the world’s first official Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master was released and was crafted entirely from 18ct yellow gold, cementing its status as a luxury tool watch. Over the next 15 years, Rolex would experiment with various case materials until in 2007, the first Yacht-Master II was born. Sportsmen could utilize this tool watch whilst regatta racing – its chronograph features stood out clearly and legibly across the surface of the dial. A programmable countdown timer enabled the individual to measure the countdown time before a race commences for improved precision and a better start to the competition. With flyback and fly-forward functionality, synchronization with the Race Committee was a breeze.

rolex yachtmaster history

Current Popular Rolex Yacht-Master models

As mentioned, it is the Yacht-Master’s affinity with the sea and its diverse range of styles and case materials that make this collection so widely sought-after within the Rolex watch stratosphere. Paired with cutting-edge technology and primed for yacht race competing, the series has much to offer any luxury sports watch fan. Here are just a few Rolex Yacht-Master watches that have proven their popularity as both a tool and an investment since their release.

Rolex Yacht-Master ref 126622

Rolex Yacht-Master watches made from Rolesium make for an interesting talking point to wear with elegant attire and often make for sophisticated gifts to mark an anniversary or wedding day, especially for those who prefer their wristwatches to exude a very classic look. That said, Rolex packs a lot of modern technology into the design of a Yacht-Master watch such as the model 1266, which not only offers a very compact and manageable case size for those with a slender wrist but has also been forged from a material that is exclusive to the Yacht-Master watch range itself. Stainless Steel and platinum are materials chosen for their robust, corrosion-resistant and luxurious properties, whilst the three-link design of the oyster bracelet creates a timeless look whether paired with elegant or casual attire. Polished middle links and brushed outer links create a unique look against the wrist, especially when you consider that these finishes differ from those seen in the Rolex Submariner and Sea-Dweller models, which instead offer a fully brushed bracelet finish.

rolex yachtmaster history

Rolex Yacht-Master ref 116680

One of the most popular Rolex Yacht-Master watches has to be the ref 116680 with a blue ceramic bezel. Rolex had begun equipping its watches with Cerachrom bezels back in the year 2005. This model was made available in stainless steel, two-tone Everose, or yellow gold, and since it belongs to the Yacht-Master II collection, measures a broad 44mm diameter. As of 2019, Rolex Yacht-Master II watches were equipped with the Calibre 3235 – a trusted workhorse for many of Rolex’s models. Framed inside this striking blue bezel is a white dial adorned with a small second sub-counter in blue at 6 o’clock, along with a countdown that can be programmed for a duration of between 1 and 10 minutes. The programming is memorized by the mechanism so that at a reset it returns to the previous setting and once launched, can be synchronized on the fly to match the official race countdown.

rolex yachtmaster history

Rolex Yacht-Master ref 116655

The Rolex Yacht-Master ref 116656 is, without a doubt, one of the most coveted and popular models from this series of luxury sports watches. The model not only features a matte black ceramic bezel but features a set of two-textured, highly polished and raised numerals upon its sandblasted surface. The watch is fitted to an Oysterflex bracelet, promising all-round comfort and thanks to its unusual choice of contrasting rich black and luxurious pink gold colours, can be enjoyed by both male and female Rolex fans alike. An Everose case and gold serrated ring complete its look, combining nicely with the elegant black bezel, whilst on the display itself, cathedral-type hands and a cyclops date window reside.

rolex yachtmaster history

The Rolex Yacht-Master II ref 226659

Slightly larger in size is the 42mm Rolex Yacht-Master II watch with the reference 226659, which features a stunning 18ct white gold case and bezel with a striking black Cerachrom bezel inlay for precise tracking of elapsed time. The Oysterflex bracelet is just one of the many appealing features of the Rolex Yacht-Master series. Although creating the aesthetic and sporty look of a rubber strap with its outer elastomer rubber shell in black - inside the structure of the bracelet is a series of flexible metal inserts. The Rolex Yacht-Master II ref 226659 debuted in 2019 with the desirable Calibre 3235 secured to the heart of its case, creating plenty of power reserve for those occasions when taken off the wrist, promising superior reliability and accuracy. Its classic black and white gold colourway make it easy to pair wot formal, casual or elegant attire.

rolex yachtmaster history

There will always be plenty of reasons to invest in a Rolex Yacht-Master watch. Having been equipped with a reliable movement and a set of unique features that enable superior regatta timings out on the water, there is little else on the market that matches the supreme craftsmanship and instantly recognizable aesthetics of the iconic Rolex Yacht-Master watch. Whether you have any use for the polarizing watch’s regatta timer feature or not, it is one of the most niche complications watches imaginable. The Yacht-Master will always be a timepiece that holds its value, symbolizing a brand of significant provenance and value.

More Rolex guides

To find out more about which Rolex hold their value you can read more of our guides where we cover all Rolex Nicknames or our classic guide to the Day Date models and our comparision with their sister brand: Rolex vs Tudor .

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There is big news, and there is Rolex big news, and in some ways, ne'er the twain shall meet. At Baselworld this year, Rolex debuted a first for the company: the very first, ever, Rolex delivered on a rubber strap. Now, for most companies this would have little effect on watch enthusiasts other than to evoke (very) tepid interest at best, and boredom at worst – but this is not an ordinary rubber strap, this is an official, designed-and-tested-and-thoroughly-obsessed-over-by-Rolex rubber strap. And thereby hangs a tale.

rolex yachtmaster history

The Yachtmaster, as we have mentioned in some of our previous coverage , occupies a somewhat particular place in Rolex’s lineup of sports watches; it shares water-resistance and a turning bezel with the Submariner (the latter is water resistant to 300 m while the Yachtmaster standard model is water resistant to 100 m). It is certainly not a tool watch; the Yachtmaster is offered in either platinum and steel, or gold and steel (that’s Rolesium and Rolesor, lest we forget) and is either quietly or unequivocally luxurious depending on what size and metal you go for (Rolex makes the Yachtmaster in both 35 mm and 40 mm sizes). 

The Yachtmaster’s history goes back to the first introduction of the watch in 1992, although the name, interestingly enough, appears on the dial of a prototype Yachtmaster Chronograph from the late 1960s (a watch so legendary I am actually forced to use the word; one of three known is in the collection of Mr. John Goldberger; we covered it – and a host of other remarkable ultra-rare watches from his collection – in a very memorable episode of Talking Watches ).

rolex yachtmaster history

The term “Yachtmaster” is also, incidentally, used for a certificate of competency in yachting which is issued by the Royal Yachting Association, although we’re unaware of any specific association between the RYA and the Yachtmaster watch.

Now, this newest version of the Yachtmaster does take a few pages from the existing Yachtmaster playbook: 100-meter water resistance, a bidirectional turning bezel, and a dial and hands that echo the Submariner. There are also a couple of features that may make vintage Sub enthusiasts wonder if Rolex mightn’t have an exceedingly subtle sense of humor; the gilt coronet and “Rolex,” and the red lettering, both features which according to HODINKEE founder Ben Clymer would have, had they appeared on a Rolex dive watch, made it instantly the single most popular watch in the modern Rolex inventory. The case is rose gold – Rolex famously makes their own, called Everose, in their own foundry, with a bit of platinum mixed in to prevent discoloration – and the bezel, rather than being some other precious metal (as is the case in the “standard” Yachtmasters) is in black Cerachrom – a very technical-looking matte black that contrasts sharply with the gold case. Somehow, between the rose gold, the Cerachrom bezel, and the new Oysterflex bracelet this manages to be the most luxurious and at the same time most technical Yachtmaster yet (leaving aside the Yachtmaster II, which we recently reviewed right here , but that is a watch that marches to the beat of a different drummer entirely).

rolex yachtmaster history

The two different versions of the Everose Yachtmaster (40 mm and 37 mm) sport different movements; the larger uses the caliber 3135 and the smaller, the newer 2236, which sports the “Syloxi” silicon balance spring (first used by Rolex in 2014).

rolex yachtmaster history

The Oysterflex bracelet is, in a nutshell, quite a piece of work. One of the most endearing traits of Rolex as a company is that it tends to demonstrate what we can only describe as a laudable degree of corporate obsessive-compulsive disorder when it comes to research and development, and it does so, often, without making any sort of fanfare about it at all. In this case we do know a little bit about the Oysterflex, however – it is basically designed to have the hypoallergenic and comfort properties of a rubber strap and the durability and shape-retention properties of a bracelet. 

At the core of the Oysterflex bracelet are metal inserts made of titanium and nickel, which are used to affix the bracelet to the clasp and watch case; over those is a sheathing of “high-performance black elastomer.” “Elastomer” is a portmanteau word, formed from “elastic” and “polymer” and is a general term for natural and synthetic rubbers. In addition to the materials complexity of the Oysterflex bracelet, it is also shaped in a rather unusual fashion – there are ridges molded into the the wristward face of the bracelet, which are intended to allow the bracelet when worn to better approximate the natural curvature of the wrist.

rolex yachtmaster history

They might look a bit odd but in practice, the design works out quite wonderfully; this is easily the most downright comfortable and organic-feeling rubber strap I have ever worn, and like the entire watch manages to be both extremely technical in feel, and very luxurious at the same time; I doubt whether any company has ever taken so much trouble over the design of a strap (for all that Rolex prefers the term “bracelet” in describing the Oysterflex, habit dies hard and you’ll probably find yourself calling it a strap, just as we did). On the wrist, the two stabilizing ridges do exactly what they are supposed to: keep the watch from shifting, as heavier watches on rubber straps are wont to do, without requiring you to have the strap uncomfortably tight. The Everose Oysterlock clasp does a superb job mechanically and also looks fabulous into the bargain; the quality of finish on the clasp and case may not seem terribly elaborate at first, but it is as technically flawless as anything I have ever seen at any price, on any watch.

rolex yachtmaster history

What we have here, in other words, is a very Rolex interpretation of luxury. Yes, this is a gold watch, and a gold Rolex, and wearing a gold Rolex always carries with it, shall we say, certain semiotic complexities. However there is also another side to the watch, and to the Rolex approach to luxury in general: the taking of such pains to produce technical perfection that technical perfection becomes a luxury in itself.

rolex yachtmaster history

The Everose Rolex Yachtmaster, in Rolex Everose, with Everose Oysterclasp and Oysterflex bracelet, as shown, $22,000 in 37 mm, and $24,950 in 40 mm. For more info, check out Rolex.com.

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The Rolex Yachtmaster: history, models, price

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 9

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(NEWS) The Monaco Legend Group will auction a one-of-a-kind Rolex Yacht-Master

The rolex yacht-master dix millionieme chronometre.

The Yacht-Master auctioned on April 22 and 23 in Monaco is one of the most attractive one-of-a-kind contemporary Rolex watches and popped up in the early nineties to celebrate the ten-millionth Rolex watch equipped featuring the Chronometer Certificate.

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 3

Interestingly, it is not a Daytona, a Submariner or a Day-Date but a Rolex Yacht-Master, thus adding additional flavour to our guide as no other model could ever do. May we call it the Rolex Yacht-Master Heiniger ? Yes, we might, but we need to move forward and provide further details.

The Heiniger family and Rolex

The model pictured here was manufactured under the Heiniger family’s leadership at Rolex; they managed the brand since Andre Heiniger was appointed President of Rolex in 1964 through his son Patrick’s appointment in 1992.

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 1

This one-off platinum Yacht-Master is a prototype conceived to celebrate such a milestone and holds all the features found on first-class super-exclusive Rolex timepieces, and adopts baguette-cut sapphires and diamonds replacing the stock indexes plus the “DIX MILLIONIEME CHRONOMETRE” print on the dial, and the calibre 3135’s oscillating mass.

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 7

The Heiniger family had, no doubt, a soft spot for platinum watches ; three unique platinum Daytona also appeared under their management and, according to industry’s rumours, the Daytona 116598 SACO, better known as the Leopard, was among their projects inspired, it seems, by Nina Stevens, Patrick Heiniger’s girlfriend back then.

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 8

However, the Rolex Yacht-Master Heiniger is not a unicorn adorning a watch museum ; it will soon go under the hammer thanks to the Monaco Legends Group, the auction house co-managed by vintage watchmaking guru Davide Parmegiani, the 22 and 23 April.

Rolex Yacht-Master Dix Millionieme Chronometre 5

Given the relevance of the timepiece and its exclusivity, we expect fierce competition among collectors to make this piece theirs. What is the auction’s base price? The current estimation is between one and two million euros , quite a hefty price gap but something hard to predict for any watch expert.

The origins of the Rolex Yachtmaster

When did the Rolex Yachtmaster first appear? It’s hard to define. The name “Yacht Master” was filed for patent by Rolex in 1950 and, according to rumours and several non-confirmed historical sources, marked the brand’s willingness to introduce a new collection atop the top-selling and sporty Submariner; yet, it’s hard to describe the time lapse between patent and the first official commercial release. When we look at the current collection, we can also find inspiration in the most challenging endeavours across the oceans, up to professional yacht racing.

robin knox johnston 1969

For instance, the former includes the expeditions set out by Sir Robin Knox-Johnston . He completed the first-ever solo circumnavigation of the globe, the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race of 1969, but we can’t forget what Sir Francis Chichester achieved, too; he circumnavigated the world from West to East in nine months and one day between 1966 and 1977 aboard the never-forgotten Gipsy Moth IV.

rolex oyster perpetual chichester 1965

During his expedition, Chichester wore a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Chronometer, laying the foundations for what a Rolex watch represents when tested under extreme weather conditions on land, sea and air.

The first Yachtmaster

The first Rolex Yachtmaster dates back to 1992 ; it was marketed as reference 16628 and is the second most recent new Rolex watch after the more contemporary Rolex Sky-Dweller.

primo rolex yacht master 1992

The collection’s timeline has undergone a bizarre evolution compared to similar Rolex watch collections.

Showcasing an 18-carat yellow gold case and bracelet paired with an unusual white dial , it housed the movement 3135 and is undeniably an evolution of the design codes seen on a Submariner, despite the journey to the first edition being unexpected and with plenty of testing prototypes.

Rolex Yacht Master 6239

Was the Yachtmaster pictured above the first attempt ever? It was from a commercial standpoint, not from a product perspective instead. The Yachtmaster moniker first surfaced between 1967 and 1969 when Rolex released a couple of prototypes based on the Daytona , whose case diameter had grown to 39.5 mm. The timepieces mentioned above belong to Italian collector John Goldberger and artist Eric Clapton.

The Rolex Yacht-Master 40 and 37 mm

Here is the Yacht Master’s “bread and butter”, undergoing several evolutions to end up with the model pictured here, as an example, in its gold and steel livery. With Jean-Frèdèric Dufour appointed CEO, Rolex has revisited the entire offering, which includes 40 and 37-mm large models, but has never hit the spot as the most wanted Professional Rolex among enthusiasts. The Daytona , Submariner, or GMT Master 2 are far more sought-after than any Yachtmaster, although the appreciation has steadily grown year after year .

rolex yacht-master 40 126621 sei

Instead, the Yachtmaster’s technical development began with the 2007 Rolex Yacht-Master 2 116680 , whose sailing-professionals-oriented complication proves, alongside a Rolex Sky-Dweller, how much Rolex technicians are up to the task when asked to design a mechanically complicated watch.

Rolesor and Rolesium.

The current Yachtmaster collection with bracelets includes a completely revised range, comprising seven models : four 40 mm and three 37 mm models. They are available exclusively in steel and gold or platinum; some come in Rolesium (steel and platinum), others in Rolesor (steel and gold) such as, for instance, the Rolex Yachtmaster 40mm model in steel and Everose gold pictured here, also available with a black dial and as a 37mm size.

Rolex Yacht Master 40 collezione

Let’s look closer at the Rolex Yacht-Master 40 in Steel and Everose Gold : it combines 904L steel and Everose pink gold, the Rolex-patented pink gold alloy adopting a specific silver and copper percentage to create an alloy capable of offering above-the-average shine, and wear resistance over time.

The Yachtmaster’s bezel

What makes the Yacht-Master unique is the bezel’s design in finish and functionality; it houses mirror-polished raised indexes and numerals on a sandblasted base and comes as a one-piece of gold or platinum. The polished to brushed finish appears on the Oyster bracelet and case sides, lugs included.

rolex yacht master 40 126621 tre

The Yachtmaster is widely considered a more luxurious take on the Submariner and a transition model between a sporty and classic Rolex watch with a gold case, as proved by the slightly curved lugs and the case side, making the Yachtmaster closer to four and five-digit Submariners as less professional than other timepieces belonging to the same product category, as exemplified by the specs sheet. The bezel is graduated but is bidirectional and water-resistant up to 100 metres .

rolex yacht-master 40 126621 uno

Comparing current and first-ever Yachtmaster like the Rolex 69623 or 169622, for instance, lies in the options available: you’ll find the blue dial exclusively available on Rolesium models, while the Rolesor offers a chocolate brown or black dial , lovingly contrasting the case and bracelet’s tones, in our opinion.

The calibre 3235

Since 2019, the Rolex Yachtmaster has housed the latest-gen Rolex calibre 3235. Therefore, all models can run for at least 70 hours when fully wound.

Rolex calibro 3235

The watch is certified as a Superlative Chronometer according to Rolex standards.

The calibre 2236

Instead, the 37 mm model adopts the smaller movement 2236, whose technical specifications differ slightly .

rolex calibro 2236

The main difference is that the Siloxy hairspring with a flat terminal curve , introduced by Rolex in 2014, replaced the Parachrom Blue one.

The Rolex Yachtmaster Oysterflex

At Baselworld 2015, Rolex released the first Yachtmaster with an Oysterflex bracelet , the brand’s patented rubber strap equipped with an inner nickel and titanium alloy, exclusively offered with a 40mm or 37mm gold case. Looking back at the first-ever YM, the Yachtmaster Oysterflex is perhaps the perfect successor to the 1992 Yacht Master.

rolex yacht master 40 oysterflex ref 126655

The first release appeared in Everose rose gold. Such a new generation best embodies the collection’s spirit ; it belongs to the Professional line of watches but is more luxurious, and gold highlights the Yacht Master’s “carrure”.

The new Yachtmaster Oysterflex also introduced the first-ever matte ceramic bezel ; it mimics a Rolesor or Rolesium’s, but the inlay is a single piece of matt black ceramic.

rolex yacht master 42 ref 226658 uno

As with the two-tone models, the 40 and 37-mm case options adopt the 3235 and 2236 , respectively. The new model had a stunning success, and Rolex soon expanded the product range by offering a more generous 42 mm case size (however, the 40 mm model is unparalleled, in our opinion).

rolex yacht master 42 ref 226658

The 42mm collection is available in yellow or white gold , while the 40mm and 37mm models only come with an Everose rose gold case. We think Rolex will soon extend the Oysterflex collection by adopting new case materials.

rolex yacht master 42 titanio ben ainslie

In 2020, Ineos Britannia’s skipper Ben Ainslie was spotted wearing a titanium Yachtmaster 42 during a training session. After the Rolex Deepsea Challenge Titanium RLX ‘s unveil, this proto will likely make it to reality anytime soon.

rolex yacht master 42 ref 226659 occhio di falco

Before moving to the next chapter, remember that we discovered an odd model while surfing the Rolex official website: Rolex Yachtmaster 42 Hawkeye or Yachtmaster Falcon’s Eye , pictured above.

The Rolex Yachtmaster 2

Rolex is a manufacturer whose capabilities include rather mechanically-complicated watches ; it is something most people are unaware of. In the same price range as a Daytona, for example, you can opt for at least two complicated models: one is the regatta-ready Yachtmaster 2.

primo rolex yacht master 2 2007

If an ordinary Yachtmaster is not as “professional” as its siblings, the Yachtmaster 2 is a full-fledged tool watch for professional skippers.

The complicated Rolex: from the Sky-Dweller to the Yacht-Master 2

The Rolex Yachtmaster 2 is bold and hefty; it’s a regatta timer and something you will, on paper, disregard when compared to a Rolex Sky-Dweller. The Rolex Yachtmaster 2 was conceived to provide professional skippers with a wrist instrument capable of accurately measuring the countdown to start a regatta.

rolex yacht-master 2 116680 uno

The link between Rolex and yachting is long-established: the brand has associated its image with several sailing competitions like the Farr 40 or the Sidney–Hobart ever since. Pictured below is a map of the current partnerships.

rolex yachting partnerships

The 5 to 10 minutes preceding the start of a regatta are paramount to any skipper and their crew; last-minute performance before the start is triggered can separate victory from defeat.

Most Regatta watches do not offer a dedicated function but make the most of ordinary chronograph functions. In contrast, the Rolex Yachtmaster II has a dedicated counter on the dial, coaxial to the bezel, equipped with a graduated scale from 0 to 10 minutes and an easy-to-read arrow hand.

The Countdown function: how to activate it.

The timer setting is straightforward and achieved by combining the bezel, crown and button at 4 o’clock in this sequence. The first operation is to rotate the bezel counter-clockwise to activate the small countdown counter adjustment system.

rolex yacht-master 2 116680 due

The bezel will automatically lock after a 90° rotation or when the “Yacht-Master II” writing appears on the right-hand side of the watch (the rotation axis of the crown ideally cuts the wording in two halves). Subsequently, please push the button located at 4 o’clock. Unscrew the crown until it locks in position 1 ; from that moment on, you can control the adjustment of the (jumping) 10-minute scale in one-minute intervals by rotating the crown clockwise.

rolex yacht-master 2 116680 quattro

After stopping the minute counter on the desired value, you need to rotate the bezel clockwise until it clicks into the position where the “Yacht-Master II” writing is again aligned at the bottom (-90 °, back to the original place).

At the end of this rotation, the two-minute scales, located on the bezel and the dial, respectively, will be fully aligned. By screwing back in the winding crown, you can restart the countdown (using the button at 2 o’clock); the red hand in the middle will start running, and the minutes’ countdown will begin .

rolex yacht-master 2 116680 sette

During the countdown, you can stop the hand can by using the button at 2 o’clock or re-set the complete countdown with the button at 4 o’clock (Flyback). The countdown will start from the original position in the second case scenario. When the countdown has finished, the minute’s hand will also stop, while the second’s hand will continue to run indefinitely. The Rolex Yachtmaster II is a chronograph with a Flyback function .

rolex yacht-master 2 116680

The 2017 Rolex Yachtmaster II 116680 reference has replaced the previous reference by introducing a series of updates ; the new version is now equipped with Mercedes-styled hands, thus aligning itself with the family feeling of the other Oyster Perpetual divers, like the Submariner. Moreover, new applied indices located at 12 and 6′ clock have been launched (arrow-shaped and rectangular-shaped, respectively).

Ring Command and calibre 4161

The Ring Command bezel is integrated with the calibre and is an active part of the user experience. The level of complication and perfection this mechanism requires (firm clicks and no play) is more challenging than any other Rolex timepiece, making this watch extremely attractive.

rolex 4161

At the same time, as per the usual Rolex tradition, the complication is concealed through a simplified aesthetic , although the dial is still more complex and crowded than those standards that Rolex has made us accustomed to, and this is one of the reasons why a Rolex Yachtmaster II is rarely a first choice when it comes to selecting a timepiece.

Rolex Yachtmaster Prices

The price list starts with the Yacht-Master 37 mm at 14,450 Euros and grows to the 43,800 Euros needed for a Yacht-Master 2 model in yellow gold . For instance, a more exclusive price list is requested, as with the reference 126655. The listed price range here is updated to February 2023; if you’re looking for a more comprehensive overview, please head to our dedicated article; there, you’ll find a price list and evolution since 2021 regarding the most coveted professional Rolex watches.

(Photo credit: Horbiter®)

Editorial team @Horbiter®

rolex yachtmaster history

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Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Ultimate Buying Guide

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 buying guide

First released at Baselworld 2019, the Yacht-Master 42 is the newest and largest addition to the Rolex Yacht-Master lineup. Historically, the Yacht Master collection has been the only Rolex sports model available in multiple sizes; however, until the release of the Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659, 40mm was the largest case size available. Despite the fact that the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 introduced a new and larger 42mm case to the collection, at the time of writing, the model is only offered in a single configuration: a 42mm white gold case fitted with a black dial, black ceramic bezel, and matching black Oysterflex bracelet.

At first glance, the Rolex Yacht Master 42 reference 226659 appears very similar to the 40mm Everose gold model that is also fitted with an Oysterflex bracelet. Both watches feature black dials, matte black ceramic bezels with raised polished numerals, black Oysterflex bracelets, and Rolex’s in-house Caliber 3235 movement. However, while the core design of the Yacht-Master 42 is shared with the other Oysterflex Yacht-Master watches, the larger case paired with its toned-down monochromatic color profile makes it immediately distinct, and these small changes come together to make the Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659 the perfect poster child for the modern Rolex brand.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Reference 226659

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 White Gold Oysterflex Bracelet 226659

Yacht-Master 226659 Key Features:

– Reference Number: 226659

– Production Years: 2019 – Present

– Case Size: 42mm

– Materials: 18k White Gold

– Functions: Time w/ Running Seconds; Date Display

– Dial: Black w/ Luminous Hour Markers

– Luminescence: Chromalight

– Bezel: Bidirectional, Black Ceramic Insert w/ 60-Minute Scale

– Crystal: Sapphire (Flat w/ Cyclops Lens)

– Movement: Rolex Caliber 3235

– Water Resistance: 100 Meters / 330 Feet

– Strap/Bracelet: Oysterflex Bracelet

– Clasp: Oysterlock Safety Clasp w/ Glidelock Extension System

– Approx. Price: $28,900 (Retail); $33,500 (Pre-Owned)

Click here for our Ultimate Buying Guide on the Rolex Yacht-Master.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Oysterflex White Gold 226659

The History of the Rolex Yacht Master 42

Compared to many of Rolex’s other lines of watches, the Yacht-Master is a fairly young collection, having only just joined the brand’s catalog in 1992. While Rolex originally built much of its reputation by producing tough-as-nails tool watches, the brand had already started to make its transition towards becoming an all-out luxury manufacturer by the 1980s, and the Yacht-Master was created as an unapologetically luxurious take on the brand’s classic sports watch.

The Rolex Yacht-Master largely follows the same overall design as the Submariner, but leans more towards the opulent and luxurious side of things, rather than being a purpose-built underwater timing tool. Both the Submariner and the Yacht-Master feature rotating timing bezels, but while the Submariner’s bezel rotates unidirectionally and features a luminous dot at the zero-marker, the Yacht-Master’s moves bi-directionally and omits the luminous dot in favor of an insert crafted from either solid gold, platinum, or black ceramic. Similarly, all Rolex Yacht-Master watches feature precious metals somewhere in their construction. Even the most humble models that are largely crafted from stainless steel feature solid platinum bezels, and while the bezel insert on the reference 226659 is built from black ceramic, the watch itself is crafted from solid 18k white gold.

Initially, the Rolex Yacht-Master was exclusively offered in solid yellow gold and with a 40mm case. However, over the years, the collection expanded to include other case sizes and materials including both two-tone and Rolesium (a combination of stainless steel and platinum) references. Both a 29mm Lady Yacht-Master and 35mm Midsize Yacht-Master were previously offered alongside the standard 40mm model, but these two smaller versions were ultimately discontinued in favor of the Midsize Yacht-Master 37.

With that in mind, Baselworld 2019 marked the arrival of both an all-new Yacht-Master size and a new material option for the collection. With the launch of the reference 226659, not only was the Rolex Yacht-Master now available with a 42mm case diameter for the first time in its history but it was also offered with a solid 18k white gold case – something that was previously not an option within the standard Yacht-Master collection. While the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 marked a major step forward for the collection, the new 42mm case size is exclusively available for the ref. 226659, and the watch is only available in one single configuration. Given that the Yacht-Master 42 has only been on the market for a couple of years, many collectors speculate that the solid 18k white gold ref. 226659 is just the first of many 42mm Rolex Yacht-Master watches.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 226659 White Gold 42mm Oysterflex

Rolex Yacht Master 42 Defining Elements

For the most part, the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 reference 226659 is a larger, white gold version of the Everose Yacht-Master 40 that is also on an Oysterflex bracelet. However, the ref. 226659 does possess a number of unique traits that make it immediately identifiable and separate it from all other Rolex watches.

42mm White Gold Case

Probably the single most defining feature of the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 reference 226659 is its 42mm case crafted from solid 18k white gold. Not only is this unique because the ref. 226659 is the only 42mm Yacht-Master model, but it also holds the distinction of being the only one that has ever been constructed from white gold. Over the course of the Yacht-Master’s history, it has been created in full 18k yellow gold, Yellow Rolesor (stainless steel and yellow gold), Rolesium (stainless steel and platinum), full 18k Everose gold, and Everose Rolesor (stainless steel and Everose gold). Additionally, there is even a version of the 44mm Yacht-Master II regatta timer that is built from white gold with a platinum bezel, but the reference 226659 is the only iteration of the classic Yacht-Master to be offered in full 18k white gold.

Black Cerachrom Bezel

Just like the 37mm and 40mm Everose gold Rolex Yacht-Master models that are also fitted with Oysterflex bracelets, the Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659 receives a bidirectional timing bezel with an insert that is crafted from Rolex’s proprietary Cerachrom ceramic material. The black ceramic insert is given a matte-sandblasted texture, with raised graduations that feature a high-polish finish for improved contrast. Despite having both a different case size and being made from different materials, the matte black ceramic insert on the Yacht-Master 42 instantly unites it with the rest of the Oysterflex bracelets Yacht-Master watches in Rolex’s portfolio.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Oysterflex 42mm White Gold 226659

Oysterflex Bracelet

The Rolex Oysterflex bracelet is quite possibly the most over-engineered rubber strap in the world – however, to call it a “rubber strap” is a bit misleading. Rolex specifically refers to it as a bracelet within its catalog because the elastomer strap features a flexible metal core for optimum durability and longevity. Additionally, the underside of the strap features a comfort pad that elevates the strap slightly off the wrist, better distributing the weight of the watch and promoting airflow and breathability.

One of the more interesting details about how Rolex has chosen to structure its catalog is that the Oysterflex bracelet (seemingly the most sporty and least formal option) is exclusively equipped to the brand’s solid gold models. Whether fitted to a Daytona, Sky-Dweller, or Yacht-Master watch, all of the Oysterflex-equipped models are crafted from solid 18k gold (either yellow, white, or Everose). At the time of writing, the Oysterflex bracelet is only found on the full 18k Everose gold Yachtmaster 40 and Yacht-Master 37 watches, along with the 18k white gold Yacht-Master 42.

Rolex Caliber 3235 Movement

Despite being 2mm larger than the current Yacht-Master 40, the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 is powered by the exact same Caliber 3235 movement. Designed and manufactured entirely in-house by Rolex, the Cal. 3235 represents the brand’s latest generation of date-displaying mechanical movements and can be found in a number of other date-displaying Rolex watches, including all-time classics like the Datejust and the Submariner.

The Caliber 3235 movement is based around Rolex’s new Chronergy escapement, which features a skeletonized structure for improved efficiency. When combined with Rolex’s proprietary blue Parachrom hairspring and a redesigned gear train and mainspring barrel, the Caliber 3235 offers users an increased power reserve of 70 hours, which represents a significant step up from the 48-hour reserve offered by its predecessor. Additionally, despite its improved efficiency, the Rolex Cal. 3235 movement adheres to the same incredibly stringent ‘Superlative Chronometer’ precision standards, which permit a maximum timekeeping deviation of -2/+2 seconds per day.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Oysterflex Bracelet White Gold Reference 226659

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Price and Availability

The Rolex Yacht-Master 42 reference 226659 has only been around for a couple of years, so it is still in production and available for purchase from retailers and boutiques. However, as anyone who is familiar with Rolex watches will tell you, finding the model you want brand-new and available for immediate sale is virtually impossible and for many highly popular references, there is no way to buy a brand-new Rolex without spending a significant amount of time on a waiting list. As a result of this lack of availability on a retail level, many buyers turn to the secondary market, where they can add a Rolex Yachtmaster 42 ref. 226659 to their collections without the wait.

How Much is a Rolex Yacht-Master 42?

As of 2021, the retail price for a brand-new Rolex Yacht-Master 42 reference 226659 is $28,900, which represents a $1,600 premium compared to its 40mm Everose gold counterpart. However, due to the fact that the white gold Yacht-Master 42 cannot be purchased at a retail level without being on a waiting list, pre-owned prices exceed their brand-new values and you can expect to pay a premium of several thousand dollars if you wish to skip the line and add one to your collection today.

Where to Buy a Rolex Yacht-Master 42

Since the Rolex Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659 is still in production, you can technically still buy it brand-new from Rolex retailers and boutiques – just as long as you are willing to wait out the cue. A similar story exists for most of the popular modern Rolex models; however, compared to the steep premiums that many of the brand’s stainless steel sports watches trade hands for on the open market (which can frequently reach values in excess of 100% above their brand-new retail prices), the comparatively reasonable premium of a few thousand dollars to skip the line for a reference 226659 Yachtmaster 42 means that buyers often opt for a pre-owned example, where availability is immediate and guaranteed.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 18k White Gold Oysterflex 226659

Rolex Yacht-Master 42: A Modern Luxury Sports Watch

Rolex may have originally built much of its legendary reputation by building tough and reliable sport and tool watches, but the brand’s days as a manufacturer of utilitarian timekeeping devices have long since passed. These days, Rolex is an all-out luxury brand and it is arguably the single most famous luxury label in the entire world. The thought of a military branch supplying its troops with Rolex Submariner watches has become almost comical given that countless people all around the globe are unable to buy a Submariner, despite being more than willing to pay full retail price for one. In fact, the Rolex Submariner is so in-demand that most people are willing to pay far more than the brand-new retail price, just to skip the multi-year waiting list and add one to their collections.

Despite Rolex’s transition towards becoming a luxury manufacturer, it has never stopped producing reliable and finely crafted sports watches. However, the nature of its sports watches has certainly evolved to take on a more luxury-oriented approach, just like the brand’s positioning within the greater watch market. Rolex was producing sports watches back in the 1950s and 1960s and although its products were always considered to be premium timepieces, they were hardly regarded as luxury items, let alone status symbols.

These days, Rolex sports watches are some of the most iconic and desirable luxury timepieces in existence, and wearing one has become a universally recognized symbol of success and personal accomplishment. As a result of the implicit connotations that they carry, modern Rolex sports watches need to do more than just be tough and reliable; they also need to offer a bit of flash and match the opulent and exclusive image of Rolex itself.

The Yacht-Master 42 reference 226659 is the perfect poster-child for the modern Rolex brand. Its monochromatic color profile paired with its matte black ceramic bezel and black Oysterflex bracelet makes the watch inherently casual and sporty, and at first glance, you’d be forgiven for thinking that this was a humble stainless steel model. However, at its core, the Yacht-Master 42 ref. 226659 is a $30k solid gold Rolex. Wearing a Rolex watch has become a universally recognized status symbol, but Rolex is not a brand known for making over-the-top, statement pieces. The white gold Yacht-Master 42 is the perfect statement piece for those that do not want to make a statement, and that is precisely why the reference 226659 is the perfect poster-child for the modern Rolex brand.

Rolex Yacht-Master 42 42mm 226659 Oysterflex White Gold

About Paul Altieri

Paul Altieri is a vintage and pre-owned Rolex specialist, entrepreneur, and the founder and CEO of BobsWatches.com. - the largest and most trusted name in luxury watches. He is widely considered a pioneer in the industry for bringing transparency and innovation to a once-considered stagnant industry. His experience spans over 35 years and he has been published in numerous publications including Forbes, The NY Times, WatchPro, and Fortune Magazine. Paul is committed to staying up-to-date with the latest research and developments in the watch industry and e-commerce, and regularly engages with other professionals in the industry. He is a member of the IWJG, the AWCI and a graduate of the GIA. Alongside running the premier retailer of pre-owned Rolex watches, Paul is a prominent Rolex watch collector himself amassing one of the largest private collections of rare timepieces. In an interview with the WSJ lifestyle/fashion editor Christina Binkley, Paul opened his vault to display his extensive collection of vintage Rolex Submariners and Daytonas. Paul Altieri is a trusted and recognized authority in the watch industry with a proven track record of expertise, professionalism, and commitment to excellence.

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Starting a Rolex Collection? Here Are 7 Watches You Need to Know

Here are the reigning kings of the crown..

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Rolex Submariner, GMT Master and Daytona

Collecting Rolex can be daunting, even for experienced collectors. Getting your hands on the right Rolex can be like capturing the Iron Throne. Unless you’re one of Rolex’s most loyal customers—that means buying multiple high-priced pieces a year—you will probably have to pick your Rolexes up on the secondary market. Enter Paul Altieri, founder of the new and pre-owned timepiece e-tail portal Bob’s Watches , who is known for being a trusted Rolex dealer as well as a serious Rolex collector in his own right.

We asked Altieri for his recommendations on the best Rolex models to collect, from a beginner’s piece to the reference that will affirm your status as a collecting king. And, for the final recommendations, Robb Report ‘s digital watch editor, Allen Farmelo, offers up two of his favorites. These choices lean toward affordable vintage pieces that are a good starting point for those into the older Rollies.

Rolex Submariner Ref. 116610

Rolex Submariner Ref. 116610

Now one generation old, the Submariner 116610 is perfect if you’re just dipping your toes into Rolex collecting. Here we have a classic in the Rolex roster and one that isn’t impossible to find on the pre-owned market—unlike quite a few Rolex references.

“It’s the iconic model, it’s still what Rolex is known for, even with the Daytona, the GMT and all the other models they’ve got, the Submariner is still the quintessential Rolex,” says Altieri.

Prices are varying quite wildly on Rolexes as of late, but a clearn 116610 with box and paper (always desirable) will trypically run you around $12,000 on the pre-owned market.

Rolex Pepsi GMT-Master II Ref. 126710

Rolex Pepsi GMT-Master II Ref. 126710

Arguably Rolex’s most recognizable model, the “Pepsi” GMT Master II is the modern version of a classic 1950s world-traveller’s watch. The Pepsi earned its nickname for its blue and red bezel. Developed in 1955 to help Pan Am pilots keep track of time during transatlantic flights, the fourth hand can be set with the 24-hour bezel to set the second time zone. Prior to 2018, the latest Pepsi was released in white gold on an Oyster bracelet, but when the new steel version with the Jubilee bracelet came out at a more affordable price, they sold so fast they had an instant and significant return on investment.

The watch retails for an entirely reasonable $10,900, but good luch finding one at retail without playing the waiting-list game—likely for years on end. On the secondary market, you can expect to pay over $20,000.  

“There’s long waiting lists and it’s still selling for a significant premium over retail.” So how can you get your hands on one? “Here’s the thing: If you’re a loyal customer and you’ve bought a bunch of watches from a Rolex store and you have a good relationship with your local AD (authorized dealer) and you want to put your name in and you’re willing to wait for a long time, then yes, you can get one,” says Altieri.

Rolex Pepsi models, no matter the decade of production, go for well beyond their original retail price, so even if you can’t get a new one, a vintage model is still a great investment. A 1990s Pepsi Rolex GMT-Master Ref. 16700 (note the five-digits, indicating aprevious generation) is only slightly more than the retail price of the brand new six-digit reference. But if you have some extra cash to throw down, then we recommend buying one from the Pepsi’s prime era—when it was a useful tool watch during the dawn of public aviation. That will require dipping back even one more generation tot he four-digit era to the 1670, which may require a bit more investigation into condition, originality, service records and all the other concerns of acquiring a vintage timepiece.

Rolex Daytona Ref. 116500

Rolex Daytona Ref. 116500

The Rolex Daytona Ref. 116500 was introduced in 2016 and discontinued in 2023. It was the first Daytona to feature a Cerachrom bezel—a patented Rolex ceramic material that is resistant to both scratches and ultraviolet rays. Prior to this Daytona release, the model had not received a major update since 2000, when Rolex began equipping it with its first in-house movement, the caliber 4130. It had previously come with a Zenith-made El Primero movement, which the watchmaker had used since 1988.

“I think they nailed it in terms of sizing, the dial, and the Cerachrom bezel,” says Altieri. “I think white is still a little bit more preferred over black currently, but that could change. It’s kind of a flashback to the 6263 model that they were making in the late ’60s and ’70s and that model has done well. So, it’s a great watch and it’s still selling for a significant premium.”

The model from the ’70s sold for around $1,100 to $2,000 and now sells for between $85,000 and $110,000. The Ref. 116500 at retail was $12,400 (the same price for the white dial or the black dial), but is commanding around $30,000 as of this pubication. As always, keep your eye on the Rolex market for fluxtuations, but Daytonas generally only go up.

Rolex Skydweller Ref. 326934

Rolex Skydweller Ref. 326934

Currently Rolex’s most complicated watch, this one is a clever travel watch that follows multiple time zones while showing the month using the 12 markers around the dial. The bezel acts as a dial that allows you to select which function you’re adjusting with the crown. Unique, useful, and very cool.

“This is a fantastic watch—a lot of the real horological watch people out there were excited to see something come out from Rolex that had a complicated movement with a calendar,” says Altieri. “They made it with a blue dial and a black dial [at first], but the blue dial is more desirable. It’s a bit more difficult to get.”

Originally selling for $14,000 at retail, as of this publication you’re going to find them on the pre-owned market for around $24,000.

Rolex Daytona Paul Newman Ref. 6263

Rolex Daytona Paul Newman Ref. 6263

In certain circles, this Rolex is considered a grail watch. And let’s be frank, if you’re just beginning to collect you’re likely not going to start with this million dollar baby. If you’re already looking ahead to the future however, this could be one of your end-goals in Rolex collecting.

The Ref. 6241 Daytona is known as the John Player Special because of its black-and-gold coloring that looks like the livery of a 1972 Formula One car sponsored by cigarette maker John Player & Sons. The 6241 was manufactured prior to the ’70s between 1966 and 1969 and less than 300 examples of the model in 18-karat yellow gold were ever produced.

“I…was really happy to add it to my collection,” says Altieri. “Like almost all the watches in my collection, it found me. There is a local real estate developer in my area that bought this watch brand new at Bucherer in Switzerland. He wore it his whole life, but when he found out how much it was worth now he didn’t feel comfortable wearing it anymore. He read about my collection and knew I’d pay full value for it, so he came to see me and I bought it.”

If you’re fresh to the hobby of watch collecting, just be prepared that, like many watch collectors, your interest may develop into full-blown obsession that can find you hunting down rare birds worth seven figures. We have warned you!

Rolex Two-Tone Submariner Ref. 16803

rolex yachtmaster history

Two-tone watches are a Rolex speciality, and while tastes seem to bring this combo of steel and gold in and out of fashion, there’s been enough time since the first two-tone Sub came out in 1984 for the 16803 (or 16813, which is identical but with a movement upgrade) to have become timeless. And they’re not crazy expensive—yet.

I own one, and it took me forever to get past the weird associations I had with two-tone from my childhood, but once I did I fell in love with it. The tritium models are special to me, because the lume turns a warm yellow, and it just complements the gold nicely. You’ll need to get one before around 1997 to get the tritium lume. Mine is from 1984, the first year of the two-tone Sub, which is cool because I can just rattle that off and give the watch its place in history.

Prices for these range a bit based on condition and whether it has box and papers or not, but one can expect to get a clean example for a little over $10,000 as of this writing. Later models will have various bracelet upgrades, including solid end links and folding clasp with gold to match the center strip of the bracelet. If you prefer blue over black, look into a “Bluesy,” which is this watch with blue dial and bezel insert. —Allen Farmelo

Rolex DateJust Ref. 1608

rolex yachtmaster history

Arguably the most iconic of all Rolexes—yes, even more so than the Submariner or Daytona—the DateJust first came out in 1945 and was the first watch to switch the date “just” at midnight, or was it that the date was always “just?” Whichever fable you ascribe to, the DateJust is one of the most noticable Rolexes in the world.

The older four-digit models are the one to get, because of the very cool pie-pan dials. This refers to the downward sloping minute track on the outer edge of the dial, which is divided into sections, somewhat like a pie-pan. The downside to a four-digit is the movement—it lacks the quickset date that was introduced around 1979. So you’re going to have to spin that crown a lot to get the date aligned with reality.

The 1608 comes in stainless steel and features a white gold fluted bezel, a Rolex signature. It is understated enough to be worn with anything at all, from jeans to a tux, and the prices aren’t too crazy. You can still get them in the high $3000 range sometimes, but for a really clean example you should expect to pay around $5,000. —AF

Paige Reddinger

Watch & Jewelry Editor

As Robb Report's watch editor, Reddinger is immersed in all things horological. She has visited the top manufacturers in Switzerland and Germany, attended high-profile auctions and met with nearly…

Allen Farmelo

Allen is Robb Report's digital watch editor. His writing and photography have appeared in Fortune, Hodinkee, WatchTime, International Watch and many others. When he's not obsessing over vintage…

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Russia Through The Lens

Russia Through The Lens

Alexander Lodygin, the Russian who invented the lightbulb

Russian Light Bulb

Who invented the lightbulb? Here’s a question that will certainly spark discussion! (pun intended).

In addressing this question, historians Robert Friedel and Paul Israel  list 22 inventors of incandescent lamps prior to  Thomas Edison . They conclude that Edison’s version was able to outstrip the others because of a combination of three factors: an effective incandescent material, a higher vacuum than others were able to achieve and a high resistance that made power distribution from a centralized source economically viable.

Amongst the 22 inventors, one of the most interesting and unique histories is that of the Russian  Alexander Nikolayevich Lodygin. 

Lodygin was born in the Tambov Governorate on October 18, 1847 .  His parents were of a very old and noble family (descendants of  Andrei Kobyla  like  Romanovs ), but of very moderate means. He studied in military schools and served in the  71st Belev regiment, but after graduating from the Moscow Infantry School in 1868 he retired from the military and worked as a worker at the  Tula  weapons factory for four years.

In 1872 he decided to go to  Saint Petersburg  to attend lectures at  Saint Petersburg Institute of Technology  and to start working on, of all things, an  electrical helicopter (yes, in 1872 !). This machine would have needed some sort of artificial lighting that would have had to be electrical. He therefore decided to start his helicopter work by developing a source of electrical light for it .

The very same year he applied for a Russian patent for his  filament  lamp (he used a very thin  carbon  rod, placed under a bell-glass). He also patented this invention in Austria, Britain, France, and Belgium. In august of 1873 he demonstrated prototypes of his electric filament lamp in the physics lecture hall of the Saint Petersburg Institute of Technology.

For the next couple of years he conducted experiments with electric lighting on ships, city streets, and so on, until he was finally granted the Russian patent (patent number 1619) for his invention on July 11, 1874 .  In 1874, the Petersburg Academy of Sciences awarded him with a  Lomonosov  Prize for his invention of the  filament lamp  and Lodygin established the Electric Lighting Company, A.N. Lodygin and Co

In 1875 he became very interested in the  socialist  ideas of the  Narodniks , which will prove NOT to be the most fruitful connection to have a short five years later, when  Narodniks killed Emperor  Alexander II of Russia . The obvious repressions against their organization that immediately followed forced Lodygin to emigrate to France, first, and then to the United States.

In the 1890s he invented a few types of lamps with metallic filaments. He was very likely the first scientist to use a  tungsten  filament, as he got yet another a patent for that (US Patent No. 575,002  Illuminant for Incandescent Lamps , Application on January 4, 1893 ). He later sold his patent  to  General Electric  in 1906, the very company that began the first industrial production of such lamps.

Ironically, without a doubt, Lodygin invented an  incandescent light bulb  before Thomas Edison , but it was not commercially profitable. The lamp with a tungsten filament is indeed the only design used now, but in 1906 they were too expensive.

Several Lodygin’s ideas were implemented much later, even after his death. In 1871 Lodygin proposed an autonomous  diving apparatus  that consisted of a steel mask, natural rubber costume,  accumulator battery  and a special apparatus for  electrolysis of water . The diver was supposed to breathe the oxygen-hydrogen mix obtained by electrolysis of water.  The invented diving apparatus was very similar to modern  scuba equipment !

Now, isn’t that a pretty incredible and unique story?

P.S. In case you were wondering, the feature picture of this post is the photograph of a very modern, retro-looking, incandescent light bulb that is becoming very trendy, especially in hip places, here in Russia . I took the picture in a beer house on the top floor of a building in the center of Moscow, because I liked how the round glass reflected the view from the panoramic windows, against the backdrop of a black wall.

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Yacht-Master

Un orologio-strumento prezioso

Tecnico ed elegante, lo Yacht‑Master è un affidabile strumento nautico da indossare al polso.

La sua lunetta bidirezionale graduata consente una misurazione e una lettura precisa degli intervalli di tempo durante la navigazione. Grazie alle innovazioni che racchiude, questo orologio‑strumento offre una leggibilità ottimale e il massimo comfort in ogni circostanza.

Lunetta bidirezionale graduata Precisione e leggibilità al polso

La lunetta bidirezionale graduata 60 minuti in rilievo è uno degli elementi più caratteristici dello Yacht‑Master. Interamente realizzata in metallo prezioso – oro Everose 18 ct o platino 950 – o dotata di un disco Cerachrom in ceramica nera ad alta tecnologia, è parte essenziale dell’identità dell’orologio.

Con numeri e indici lucidi che si stagliano chiaramente su uno sfondo opaco, la lunetta garantisce una lettura ottimale degli intervalli di tempo, ad esempio del tempo di percorrenza tra due boe. La dettagliata graduazione del primo quarto d’ora, inoltre, accresce ulteriormente la precisione di lettura dei tempi di navigazione.

Il meccanismo girevole bidirezionale fa leva su un anello con 120 tacche che consente una regolazione agevole e precisa al mezzo minuto più vicino. Infine, la lunetta presenta un bordo zigrinato che la rende facile da manipolare in ogni circostanza.

Oro, Rolesor e Rolesium Leghe preziose e combinazioni esclusive

L’oro Rolex è parte integrante dell’identità dello Yacht‑Master: le leghe di oro 18 ct giallo, bianco ed Everose sono composte per 750‰ di oro puro e di una miscela d’argento, rame e palladio e sono tutte interamente elaborate e colate nella fonderia propria del Marchio.

Lo Yacht‑Master in oro Everose 18 ct è proposto in due diametri, 37 mm e 40 mm, e per entrambi è disponibile anche con quadrante con pavé di diamanti. Solo lo Yacht‑Master 42 si declina in versioni in oro 18 ct giallo o bianco.

Nelle declinazioni in versione Rolesor Everose dello Yacht‑Master 37 e dello Yacht‑Master 40, l’oro Rolex è associato all’acciaio Oystersteel, una lega particolarmente resistente alla corrosione: la lunetta e gli elementi centrali sono in oro Everose, mentre la carrure , la corona di carica, il fondello e gli elementi laterali sono in acciaio Oystersteel.

Gli Yacht‑Master 37 e Yacht‑Master 40 sono disponibili anche in versione Rolesium, un abbinamento di platino e acciaio. Coniugano una lunetta in platino con una carrure , una corona di carica, un fondello e un bracciale in acciaio Oystersteel.

Titanio RLX Robustezza e leggerezza

Il titanio RLX ha fatto il suo debutto nella gamma Yacht‑Master nel 2023. La lega di titanio grado 5 selezionata da Rolex si distingue per la sua leggerezza e per la sua resistenza meccanica e alla corrosione. Il ricorso a questo metallo per la cassa e il bracciale dello Yacht‑Master 42 ha consentito di ridurre il peso dell’orologio di circa un terzo rispetto a un orologio simile in acciaio. Il titanio RLX è difficile da lavorare e il suo utilizzo ha richiesto la messa a punto di specifici processi di fabbricazione.

Le superfici, che abbinano diverse lavorazioni e finiture – lucida, brillante e satinata tecnica –, sono la vetrina dell’eccellenza e del know‑how di Rolex in questo ambito. Lo sguardo è catturato dal delicato mix di texture e di luce, che mette in contrasto la finitura lucida sulle spallette di protezione della corona e la lucentezza della finitura brillante sugli spigoli superiori delle anse con l’opaco della finitura satinata tecnica, particolarmente marcata, visibile sul resto della cassa e del bracciale.

Bracciali, fermagli e sistemi di allungamento Comfort e sicurezza al polso

Visualizzazione chromalight e lente d’ingrandimento cyclope per una leggibilità ottimale.

Lo Yacht‑Master presenta due caratteristiche esclusive di Rolex che accrescono la leggibilità: la visualizzazione Chromalight e la lente d’ingrandimento Cyclope.

La visualizzazione Chromalight offre una leggibilità ottimale a prescindere dalle condizioni di luce. Una sostanza luminescente viene applicata dagli esperti del Marchio sulle lancette e sugli ampi indici dalle forme semplici – triangolo, tondo e rettangolo – caratteristici degli orologi Professionali Rolex. Questo materiale si distingue per il suo colore bianco vivo alla luce del giorno ed emette un intenso bagliore blu quando l’orologio si trova in un ambiente buio.

Presentata nel 2008, la visualizzazione Chromalight è stata ottimizzata nel 2021 per offrire un intenso bagliore blu più a lungo. Con le sue prestazioni, questo materiale luminescente si spinge ben oltre gli standard richiesti dalle norme orologiere.

Progettata per migliorare la leggibilità del datario, la lente d’ingrandimento Cyclope è una firma al contempo estetica e tecnica del Marchio. Quest’invenzione di Rolex, brevettata all’inizio degli anni ’50, è realizzata in zaffiro praticamente antiscalfitture – proprio come il vetro dell’orologio – e beneficia di un doppio trattamento antiriflesso.

Calibri 3235 e 2236 Prestazioni superlative

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A History of Moscow in 13 Dishes

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Le Corbusier’s triumphant return to Moscow

rolex yachtmaster history

The exhibition of French prominent architect Le Corbusier, held in The Pushkin Museum, brings together the different facets of his talent. Source: ITAR-TASS / Stanislav Krasilnikov

The largest Le Corbusier exhibition in a quarter of a century celebrates the modernist architect’s life and his connection with the city.

Given his affinity with Moscow, it is perhaps surprising that the city had never hosted a major examination of Le Corbusier’s work until now. However, the Pushkin Museum and the Le Corbusier Fund have redressed that discrepancy with the comprehensive exhibition “Secrets of Creation: Between Art and Architecture,” which runs until November 18.

Presenting over 400 exhibits, the exhibition charts Le Corbusier’s development from the young man eagerly sketching buildings on a trip around Europe, to his later years as a prolific and influential architect.

The exhibition brings together the different facets of his talent, showing his publications, artwork and furniture design alongside photographs, models and blueprints of his buildings.

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Irina Antonova, director of the Pushkin Museum, said, “It was important for us to also exhibit his art. People know Le Corbusier the architect, but what is less well know is that he was also an artist. Seeing his art and architecture together gives us an insight into his mind and his thought-processes.”

What becomes obvious to visitors of the exhibition is that Le Corbusier was a man driven by a single-minded vision of how form and lines should interact, a vision he was able to express across multiple genres.

The upper wings of the Pushkin Museum are separated by the central stairs and two long balconies. The organizers have exploited this space, allowing comparison of Le Corbusier’s different art forms. On one side there are large paintings in the Purist style he adapted from Cubism, while on the other wall there are panoramic photographs of his famous buildings.

Le Corbusier was a theorist, producing many pamphlets and manifestos which outlined his view that rigorous urban planning could make society more productive and raise the average standard of living.

It was his affinity with constructivism, and its accompanying vision of the way architecture could shape society, which drew him to visit the Soviet Union, where, as he saw it, there existed a “nation that is being organized in accordance with its new spirit.”

The exhibition’s curator Jean-Louis Cohen explains that Le Corbusier saw Moscow as “somewhere he could experiment.” Indeed, when the architect was commissioned to construct the famous Tsentrosoyuz Building, he responded by producing a plan for the entire city, based on his concept of geometric symmetry.

Falling foul of the political climate

He had misread the Soviet appetite for experimentation, and as Cohen relates in his book Le Corbusier, 1887-1965, drew stinging attacks from the likes of El Lissitsky, who called his design “a city on paper, extraneous to living nature, located in a desert through which not even a river must be allowed to pass (since a curve would contradict the style).”

Not to be deterred, Le Corbusier returned to Moscow in 1932 and entered the famous Palace of the Soviets competition, a skyscraper that was planned to be the tallest building in the world.

This time he fell foul of the changing political climate, as Stalin’s growing suspicion of the avant-garde led to the endorsement of neo-classical designs for the construction, which was ultimately never built due to the Second World War.

Situated opposite the proposed site for the Palace of the Soviets, the exhibition offers a tantalizing vision of what might have been, presenting scale models alongside Le Corbusier’s plans, and generating the feeling of an un-built masterpiece.

Despite Le Corbusier’s fluctuating fortunes in Soviet society, there was one architect who never wavered in his support . Constructivist luminary Alexander Vesnin declared that the Tsentrosoyuz building was the "the best building to arise in Moscow for over a century.”

The exhibition sheds light on their professional and personal relationship, showing sketches and letters they exchanged. In a radical break from the abstract nature of most of Le Corbusier’s art, this corner of the exhibition highlights the sometimes volatile architect’s softer side, as shown through nude sketches and classical still-life paintings he sent to Vesnin.

“He was a complex person” says Cohen. “It’s important to show his difficult elements; his connections with the USSR, with Mussolini. Now that relations between Russia and the West have improved, we can examine this. At the moment there is a new season in Le Corbusier interpretation.” To this end, the exhibition includes articles that have never previously been published in Russia, as well as Le Corbusier’s own literature.

Completing Le Corbusier’s triumphant return to Russia is a preview of a forthcoming statue, to be erected outside the Tsentrosoyuz building. Even if she couldn’t quite accept his vision of a planned city, Moscow is certainly welcoming him back.

All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

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IMAGES

  1. Discover the Rolex Yacht-Master II Ref. 116681

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  2. Rolex Yachtmaster History

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  3. Welcome to RolexMagazine.com: The Complete History Of The Rolex Yacht

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  4. Welcome to RolexMagazine.com: The Complete History Of The Rolex Yacht

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  5. Rolex Yachtmaster History

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  6. Welcome to RolexMagazine.com: The Complete History Of The Rolex Yacht

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VIDEO

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  2. Modified Rolex Yachtmaster 😵‍💫

  3. First Titanium Rolex Yacht-Master in Store

  4. Rolex yachtmaster 2 cal.4160 service

  5. Rolex Yacht-Master 40mm Oystersteel & Everose Gold Watch, A Month On The Wrist!

  6. My First Rolex Watch (Rolex Yacht -Master 40 )

COMMENTS

  1. The Complete History Of The Rolex Yacht-Master

    Rolex originally introduced the 40mm Yacht-Master in 1992 it was a Reference 16628 in 18kt gold, with a white dial and 3135 movement, which was the same movement used in the Rolex Submariner. The Yacht-Master had a triple-lock crown, and it was water resistant to 100 meters (10 bars) which is 320 Feet. Essentially, the first Yacht-Master was ...

  2. Rolex Yacht-Master

    The Rolex Yacht-Master is a luxury sports watch manufactured by Rolex and first introduced in 1992 as Reference 16628 in 18-karat yellow gold. In 1994, Rolex released a lady's model (69628) and a mid-size model (68628) at 35mm, marking the first time in Rolex history that a professional series watch was available in smaller than the standard ...

  3. Rolex Yachtmaster History

    When the Yacht-Master was first introduced in 1992, it seemed to capitalize on the success of Rolex's first nautical inspired watch, the Submariner. The original Yacht-Master may have been a redesign of the Submariner, though it looks like early Rolex Daytona models. There were many changes, including the size, which was slightly bigger than ...

  4. History and Evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master

    SALE $3,850. ARTICLE DATE 09/26/2019. History and Evolution of the Rolex Yacht-Master. More luxurious than the Submariner, sportier than the Datejust, and simpler than the GMT-Master, the Rolex Yacht-Master is the brand's nautical-inspired luxury sports watch. The Yacht-Master is also one of the younger Rolex watch collections having first ...

  5. Rolex Yacht-Master Overview & History: The Captain's Watch

    The Watch Of The Open Seas: History Of The Rolex Yacht-Master Rafael Dominguez 2019-12-13T10:56:56-05:00. Instagram: @rolex. In the year 1992, Swiss watchmaker Rolex would debut a new model line at the Baselworld show that was strikingly similar to the already-popular Submariner. It featured the same 40mm Oyster case with a rotating bezel, the ...

  6. Rolex Yacht-Master Ultimate Buying Guide

    History of the Rolex Yacht-Master. While we wouldn't be introduced to the very first Yacht-Master until 1992, Rolex's history with sailing actually dates back to 1958, the year the Swiss watchmaker partnered with the prestigious New York Yacht Club. By then, Rolex had already garnered a reputation for making great waterproof watches with ...

  7. Rolex: The Evolution of the Yacht-Master

    The original Yachtmaster resembles early Rolex Daytona models, although the Daytonas were 36mm in diameter, while the Yachtmaster was 39.5mm. The Yachtmaster Chronograph was never released by the brand in the late 1960s, but it is still a fascinating piece of their design history!

  8. Rolex Yacht-Master

    The History and Development of the Rolex Yacht-Master. In the mid-1980s, Rolex were having great success with their line of sports watches that had remained unchanged for many years. However rumour has it that at some point Rolex were looking at redesigning the iconic Submariner. Thankfully Rolex eventually came to their senses and left the ...

  9. A guide to the Rolex Yacht-Master

    A brief history of both the Rolex Yacht-Master and Yacht-Master II watches is beneficial before investing in a model from this range. Though not introduced until 1992, the Rolex Yacht-Master watch had foundations secured for its release much earlier than that. The brand had partnered with the New York Yacht Club back in 1958, laying down the ...

  10. The History of the Rolex Yacht-Master

    Hey Everyone and welcome back to the Bob's Watches video series. Now, we know it's a pretty rare occurrence for Rolex to issue a new model, so when the Yacht...

  11. A Week On The Wrist: The Rolex Yachtmaster 40mm With Oysterflex

    The Yachtmaster's history goes back to the first introduction of the watch in 1992, although the name, interestingly enough, appears on the dial of a prototype Yachtmaster Chronograph from the late 1960s (a watch so legendary I am actually forced to use the word; one of three known is in the collection of Mr. John Goldberger; we covered it - and a host of other remarkable ultra-rare ...

  12. Rolex Yacht-Master

    Sailing occupies a special place in the world of Rolex. In 1958, the brand partnered the New York Yacht Club, creator of the legendary America's Cup. Rolex then formed partnerships with several prestigious yacht clubs around the world and became associated with major nautical events - offshore races and coastal regattas.

  13. The Rolex Yachtmaster: history, models, price

    The first Rolex Yachtmaster dates back to 1992; it was marketed as reference 16628 and is the second most recent new Rolex watch after the more contemporary Rolex Sky-Dweller. The collection's timeline has undergone a bizarre evolution compared to similar Rolex watch collections.

  14. Rolex Yacht-Master 42 Ultimate Buying Guide

    The History of the Rolex Yacht Master 42. Compared to many of Rolex's other lines of watches, the Yacht-Master is a fairly young collection, having only just joined the brand's catalog in 1992. While Rolex originally built much of its reputation by producing tough-as-nails tool watches, the brand had already started to make its transition ...

  15. Rolex History

    From the creation of the Rolex Awards for Enterprise to the launch of the Yacht-Master, discover the history of Rolex from 1971 to 1992 on rolex.com. ... The year 1992 heralded the arrival of the Yacht-Master. This new model reinforced the ties between Rolex and the sailing world.

  16. Rolex Yacht-Master History

    The introduction of the Yacht-Master ref.16628 was in 1992, a full 18kt gold wrist watch [with white dial] with Rolex caliber 3135 movement, as used in the Submariner and Sea-Dweller for example. Although the watch is fitted with a triplock crown, it is only water resistant till 100 meters (10 bar). Anyone who is going to use a gold watch for ...

  17. History of the Rolex Yacht-Master

    The Rolex Yacht-Master is a relatively young model and many believe the Yacht-Master began in 1992 with the introduction of the first 16628. Yacht-Master However, yachting is one of the sports which Rolex has supported through sponsorship for decades (since 1958), and first debuted a "sailor's watch" in 1965 when a small number of 6239 ...

  18. Rolex Yacht-Master Overview & Features| Watch Chest

    The Yacht-Master II was designed specifically with the professional sailor in mind. To provide synchronization at the starting sequence of a yacht race, this new model is a regatta chronograph and features the first ever programmable countdown with a mechanical memory. Rolex Yacht-Master II 116680 in Steel with a White Dial.

  19. Review: Rolex Yacht-Master 16622

    A Brief History of the Rolex Yacht-Master . The first Yacht-Master was introduced in 1992. It was the first time Rolex had introduced a brand new model since 1964 - when they unveiled the Daytona. The Yacht-Master 16622 was released in 1999 and was the first watch to be made of Rolex's combination of platinum and steel, known as Rolesium.

  20. The 7 Rolex Watches Every Collector Should Know

    Rolex Pepsi GMT-Master II Ref. 126710. Arguably Rolex's most recognizable model, the "Pepsi" GMT Master II is the modern version of a classic 1950s world-traveller's watch. The Pepsi ...

  21. Alexander Lodygin, the Russian who invented the lightbulb

    In 1871 Lodygin proposed an autonomous diving apparatus that consisted of a steel mask, natural rubber costume, accumulator battery and a special apparatus for electrolysis of water. The diver was supposed to breathe the oxygen-hydrogen mix obtained by electrolysis of water. The invented diving apparatus was very similar to modern scuba equipment!

  22. Rolex Yacht-Master

    Lo Yacht‑Master 40 e lo Yacht‑Master 42 sono animati dal calibro 3235, un movimento meccanico a carica automatica particolarmente preciso e affidabile interamente sviluppato e prodotto da Rolex. Il calibro 3235 vanta numerosi brevetti ed è dotato della spirale Parachrom e dello scappamento Chronergy, entrambi resistenti a campi magnetici ...

  23. A walking tour of central Moscow—through both real and fictional history

    This tour of Moscow's center takes you from one of Moscow's oldest streets to its newest park through both real and fictional history, hitting the Kremlin, some illustrious shopping centers, architectural curiosities, and some of the city's finest snacks. Start on the Arbat, Moscow's mile-long pedestrianized shopping and eating artery ...

  24. History of Moscow

    Early history (1147-1283) The first reference to Moscow dates from 1147 as a meeting place of Sviatoslav Olgovich and Yuri Dolgorukiy. At the time it was a minor town on the western border of Vladimir-Suzdal Principality. In 1156, Kniaz Yury Dolgoruky fortified the town with a timber fence and a moat.

  25. Le Corbusier's triumphant return to Moscow

    History Science & Tech Russian Kitchen Le Corbusier's triumphant return to Moscow. Culture Oct 11 2012 George Butchard The Pushkin Museum celebrates the work of Le Corbusier, who more than once ...