Rolex Rolex Datejust 1601 yellow gold  white dial 1973

Rolex Datejust 1601 yellow gold white dial 1973

Brand: Rolex
Model: Datejust
Reference: 1601
Gender: men/unisex
Year: 1973
Material: yellow gold
Dial Color: silver
Dimensions: 36 mm
Watch Movement: automatic
Bracelet/Strap: leather strap with original Rolex buckle
Box/Paper: Handmade Leather Travel Pouch IF ordered at WRIST ICONS
Condition: good

This is a rare opportunity to buy a 1973Rolex Datejust with a yellow golden case. Rolex Datejust models are not so rare. But Datejust models featuring a yellow golden case with an immaculate white dial; they are really rare. So pull the trigger and treat yourself on a lavish yellow golden cased and white pie-pan dialed Datejust!


History of the Datejust

The Datejust has set the bar for luxury watches since 1945, when this Rolex© marvel became the archetype for the modern watch. Inspired for and by the ocean, the Datejust’s revolution was a fully waterproof, automatic chronometer framing a date in the window--the first of its kind the world ever knew..

The 1960s saw Rolex working to secure their place at horology’s top table, with an increasing focus on the sort of small, incremental changes to their range that all add up to huge improvements right across the board.

It brought us the ref. 1680 ‘Red’ Submariner, the first in the series to include a date complication, as well as its bigger, Comex-inspired sibling, the Double Red Sea-Dweller.

Mid-decade, the ref. 1601 Datejust was launched. With a caliber upgrade from the previous Cal. 1065, it was now powered for the first time by Rolex’s own 1500 series. Built around the architecture of the base Cal. 1530, early versions used the Cal. 1560, and received a further update in 1971 with the Cal. 1575, which brought with it the convenience of a hacking function.

While neither movement was outfitted with a Quickset mechanism, to give wearers the ability to change the date by using the crown, it was the 1500 calibers that introduced the cam and jewel system that created the instantaneous midnight change, still used by Rolex today.

From their first in-house series of calibers, the 1560 and 1575 were to become benchmarks in the world of mechanical watch movements, for their accuracy and resilience. Beautifully simple and extremely robust, they are highly regarded even today for their engineering excellence.

Inside this Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust 1601 houses a mechanical automatic self-winding Rolex caliber 1575 movement. The 1575 was the start of the second generation of the 1500 series calibers. They released this movement in 1971 and it remained in use until 1981. With a 25 jewel self-winding automatic movement, it had a Rolex p/n 7980 balance assembly with Microstella screws, a Bregeut free sprung hairspring. It also had a frequency of 2.75 Hz/19,800 vph. Furthermore, the KIF Flector shock absorbers protected the 1575. Also, it used a traditional stone lever escapement and had a power reserve of 48 hours.

Moreover, they also used this movement in two more of today’s most highly coveted vintage watches. The watches themselves emerged in every conceivable permutation of bezel and dial detailing, with either yellow gold or two-tone Rolesor cases, or as the version we have here at WRISTICONS, in a handsome yellow gold.

At the traditional 36mm diameter, before Rolex introduced a 41mm model to the range, the Datejust 1601 is not a watch that shouts for attention. It has a quiet reserve that brings with it a versatility to match with a wider range of situations. It is the model to wear in both business meetings and by the pool, as well as on the journey between the two.




Our Datejust is a perfect example. This example is in excellent pre-owned condition and has a yellow golden 36mm size case with a chronometer rated automatic movement.  This 18k Gold Rolex Datejust is just a beauty. It has a really rare mint white piepan dial.

  • Case-the case of this Datejust with its vintage yellow gold structure gives the watch a warmer and much softer appearance than steel or white gold, but without the brashness that can come with an new yellow  gold piece, the case of our 1601 glows rather than shines. The case has been polished in the past but the case is fat and the lugs are even. The beautiful thing about this piece is the fact it was mostly worn on a leather strap. Because of this fact the case has almost no bracelet marks. The crown is perfectly aligned! Both the serial- and reference number are perfectly intact and visible: 3876XXX dates the watch to around 1973.
  • Dial-Originally this was a gentleman’s Rolex Datejust (1601) featuring a perfect mint white pie pan dial, with all lume dots perfectly intact and a creamy patina.  The dial is finished with yellow gold index hour markers. The watch has a plexi glass crystal and an external cyclops date aperture at 3 O'clock. The yellow gold stick indexes catch the light beautifully due to their beveled edging and the surrounding fluted bezel sets the whole watch apart as a modest statement of discreet luxury. These dials are fairly uncommon due to the fact white dials weren’t used often in the 1601’s. And even If you find one, most aren’t as perfect as this example.
  • Strap: the watch comes with a brown crocodile strap made by Jean Paul Menicucci and an original gp Rolex buckle.
  • This particular watch comes without its original box and all relevant paperwork.


This particular watch has just undergone a full service. This work was carried out by our Rolex authorised watchmaker using Rolex parts.

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: Datejust
  • Serial number: 3876XXX
  • Reference: 1601
  • Year: Circa 1973
  • caliber: 1570
  • Case: It has a yellow case with screw down case back. Good yellow gold case that has light wear from use. It has a fluted yellow gold bezel
  • Dimensions: 36mm diameter;
  • Crystal: Plexiglass
  • Dial: white pie-pan dial with applied yellow gold baton hour markers, black inner minute divisions with five minute markers,  yellow gold baton hands with luminous inserts and center seconds, date aperture at 3
  • Caliber: automatic-winding caliber
  • Bracelet/Strap: brown crocodile strap made by Jean Paul Menicucci and an original gp Rolex buckle.
  • Lug Width: 20mm
  • Box/Papers: No
12 month warranty
14 day returns