Rolex Datejust Oysterquartz Ref. 17000, Circa 1987
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Every brand with the kind of tenure Rolex has is going to have a dark horse or two lurking in its back catalog, and in recent years, the watches produced for the Oysterquartz range have emerged as unexpected late bloomers from the Crown’s past. There’s been an overall change in attitudes towards the quartz-powered watches made by important establishment brands like Rolex during the "quartz crisis"– brands that had almost exclusively used automatic and/or manual wind mechanical movements in their watches before the “quartz crisis” of the ‘80s. These watches represent an unprecedented period of change in Rolex’s history and a period of incredible uncertainty in the world of horology in general, and they’re also undeniably handsome pieces that offer a unique twist on the beloved Rolex Datejust and Day-Date look.
Featuring an integrated bracelet design, a decidedly angular case shape, and the generally carefree ownership of a quartz-powered watch, Oysterquartz watches like the beautiful ref. 17000 from 1987 seen here have the beloved and familiar design touches of a classic Rolex, but with their own distinct personality. It’s a period-specific vibe that places the Oysterquartz perfectly in time with the outrageous side vents and sharp angles of a Ferrari Testarossa or the over-the-top futurism of a Porsche 930 Turbo with a flachbau slant nose package. ‘80s, yet timeless.
The ref. 17000 Oysterquartz Datejust example we have available here ups the rarity of the typical Oysterquartz Datejust with a seldom seen, but highly collectible blue dial. This piece is ideal for the collector looking for an unpolished Oysterquartz as its case is both untouched and as sharp as the day it left the factory. Its dial is flawless and the watch boasts all of its original tritium lume on both the dial and handset. The only sign of age this stunning Oysterquartz displays is the warm, golden yellow hue its lume has taken on over the years – the perfect touch of patina on a watch like this in our opinion.
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