Rolex ‪ Rolex Explorer 1016 tropical dial 1967

‪ Rolex Explorer 1016 tropical dial 1967

Brand: Rolex
Model: Explorer
Reference: 1016
Gender: Uni-sex
Year: 1967
Material: stainless steel
Dial Color: Black chocolate brown
Dimensions: 36 mm
Watch Movement: automatic
Bracelet/Strap: steel bracelet and WRISTICONS leather strap
Box/Paper: Handmade Leather Travel Pouch
Condition: Good vintage condition

WRIST ICONS brings you the iconic Rolex Explorer with a super cool tropical dial. This is not an artificial made tropical dial; this is the real deal. We love this kind of dials that show their patina built up through the years and standing the test of time. If you want a ceramic fresh Rolex, look somewhere else. If you are looking for some proper vintage Rolex, be my guestA


History of the Rolex Explorer

The Rolex Explorer – which will be unofficially named Explorer 1 after 1971, when the Crown launched the Explorer II – was born in 1953, following the brand’s involvement in several expeditions since the 1930s. In 1953, Tenzing Norgay and Sir Edmund Hillary became the first climbers to reach the summit of Mount Everest. It is now well-known that watches were involved in this expedition, from Smith and, of course, Rolex – with an Oyster Perpetual reference 6098, worn by Norgay (back then still not a proper Explorer, as not fitted with the 3-6-9 dial).


The Rolex Explorer 1016 reference

The story of the Explorer began with two earlier bubblebacks, the references 6098 and 6150 (housing the calibre A296), which were utilized by adventurers and mountaineers at the beginning of the 1950’s. They did not bear the name Explorer, however, nor did they have the Arabic 3-6-9 on the dial that later became synonymous with the model line. Only in 1953, when the subsequent references 6298 and 6350 were introduced, were they fitted with the typical “explorer” dial; the Mercedes hands were also added slightly later.

When Sir Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay climbed Mount Everest on May 29, 1953, Hillary wore a Smith’s watch and a Rolex Oyster and Norgay wore a Rolex reference 6350. At the time of the climb, no Rolex watch was marketed as the Explorer, however Rolex had registered the name as a trademark in Geneva on January 26th of that year. After their successful climb, Rolex commemorated the feat by naming the 6350 the “Explorer.” This was the official start of the model line.

The 6350 gave way quickly to the 6150, which was then replaced by reference 6610. The 6150 and 6610 are very similar but are distinguished by the newer 1030 movement in the 6610, which led to a flatter case back. The 6610 itself was short-lived, only lasting for a few years in the late 1950’s. Rolex continued to advance their technology rapidly and, with the new 15xx calibre movement line, they introduced new Submariners, GMTs, and Explorers in 1959 — models 5512, 1675, and 1016, respectively. With these references Rolex would settle down and concentrate on small tweaks over the next 20-30 years. These models would become the workhorses of the sports line and, because of their excellence in design and construction, have become sought after by collectors.


The movement

The early Explorer 1016 came with what was, at the time, a new “microstella” regulated 1560 calibre movement. These movements were the first for Rolex to certify as “Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified” (SCOC) in the Explorer line and receive this designation. However, the first dials can still be seen with the older “Officially Certified Chronometer” (OCC) text as they had not updated the dials from the older 1030 and 1060 calibre designations.

The movements numbers are engraved on the automatic winding bridge. The 1560 movement, which is seen on Explorer in the early 1960’s, beat at 18,000 VPH and were made until around 1967. As early as 1965 Rolex rolled out the 1570 movement, which beat at a faster 19,800 VPH. The 1570 movement was later upgraded with a hacking function sometime in 1971; this movement then remained the same throughout the rest of the 1016 production run.


Movement characteristics

The Rolex 1570 caliber is an automatic wound movement:


  • Brand:         Rolex
  • Reference:   1570
  • Base: Rolex 3235
  • Movement:  Automatic
  • Display:       Analog
  • Diameter:    28.50
  • Jewels:        26
  • Reserve:      48
  • Frequency:  19800
  • Hands:        Hours, Minutes, Seconds




This piece is in vintage used condition.

As with all of our pre-owned watches this watch comes with a full 12 month warranty with ourselves that will be invoked from the day of purchase.


  • Brand: Rolex
  • Model: Explorer
  • Reference: 1016
  • Year: 1967
  • Condition: used
  • Material: stainless steel
  • Movement: automatic
  • Diameter: 36 mm
  • Caliber: 1570
  • Glass: acrylioc glass
  • Dial: black dial with Arabic markers at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock. Hands and hour markers are filled with tritium luminescent material
  • Bracelet / Band: stainless steel bracelet and WRISTICONS leather bracelet
  • Box/Papers: only watch





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