Although Rolex is famous for constantly improving their watches, the timepieces tend to maintain the same overall aesthetic throughout the years. In fact, today’s Submariner, GMT Master, and Daytona watches look remarkably similar to those from the 1950s and 1960s. This is part and parcel of the Rolex magic—a signature style that is instantly recognizable. However, this no longer applies to the Air King. In fact, current iterations of the Rolex Air King models look absolutely nothing like preceding models.
The Air King made its debut in 1945 as a tribute to British air force pilots of the era. The Air King timepiece was typically regarded as an entry-level Rolex watch with its smaller 34mm size, minimalistic three-handed dial, and more accessible price point. As one of the longest running Rolex collections still in production today, there have been so many different Air King references throughout its history. But we’ll focus on a few of the most popular Air King references in the secondary market, as well as a quick look at the most current version.An early model in the collection, the vintage Air King ref. 5500 launched in 1957 and enjoyed a more than 30-year production run and plenty of variations.
For instance, the mens Rolex stainless steel Air King 5500 housed two different automatic movements—the Caliber 1520 and the Caliber 1530. There are also the mens Rolex two tone Air King 5501 versions, in addition to the gold-plated ref. 5502 and ref. 5506 models. Interestingly, there’s also the Air King ref. 5504 that sported an Explorer case! Additionally, Rolex also made the Air King Date ref. 5700 models for specific markets, which as its name suggests, boasted a date window. In the mid-1970s, Rolex unveiled the Air King ref. 5520—the first gold-filled model of the collection.
As a research scientist with a passion for fine timepieces, I have always been on the lookout for the watch that would best match my work and life passions. If you also fit that category, then look no further than the Rolex Milgauss, and especially the unique anniversary edition reference 116400GV (“glass verte”) with the green sapphire glass. It is a watch with a unique history that stands out from an all too common Rolex lineup and that was designed for scientists… Let’s explore why that is.
While I will not give you a full history of the Rolex Milgauss, I want to brush on the important highlights. The Rolex web site and various blog posts do a thorough job of documenting the history, in particular this post is one of the better ones I have found on its history.
You also don’t need to know much about the inner workings of a mechanical watch to realize that a magnetic field is one of its sworn enemies. Briefly, mechanical watches (even the best ones) use a balance wheel containing a hairspring that is used to regulate the movement, it’s the watch’s heartbeat, if you may. Mess with the hairspring or balance wheel and you will end up with a watch that runs too fast or too slow… Therefore, in situations where the watch is exposed to a magnetic field, components of the watch can be magnetized and thus be disrupted.
The reliability and precision of an ordinary mechanical watch can be affected by a magnetic field of 50 to 100 gauss. But many scientists are exposed to much higher magnetic fields during the course of their work. Rolex’s solution was the Milgauss, created in 1956, the first watch of its kind. Hence the name of the watch, mille being French for thousand.
With the Yacht-Master 40 Everose with Oysterflex strap arguably stealing the show at last year’s Baselworld, luxury fake Rolex UK have taken the opportunity at this year’s event to add an Everose Rolesor gold edition to the collection. Also featuring a chocolate dial, the new Yacht-Master offers a distinctively softer colour scheme than the masculine matte-black dial and bezel of last year’s edition.
Striking to say the least, this black-and-gold version of the Yacht-Master defies conventional Rolex norms down to the “Oysterflex” bracelet in matte black. Available in 37mm and 40mm cases, the Everose gold timepiece is affixed to a matte black Rolex-exclusive Cerachrom ceramic insert with polished and raised black numerals and indices. The matte black dial is a first in the Rolex Yacht-Master collection. Power is sourced by size: the 37mm uses Caliber 2236, the 40mm, 3135. Both are mechanical automatic movements. The bracelet boasts a patented “longitudinal cushion” system for maximum comfort. The Oyster case is water-resistant to 300 meters, the case middle is milled from a solid block of Everose gold, and the trademark “cyclops lens” magnifying date window at 3 o’clock makes for clear legibility.
The matte-black Rolex Yacht-Master 40 proved to be a real show-stopper at Baselworld 2015, and the Swiss brand took the opportunity to introduce a new Everose Rolesor gold model to the esteemed collection at this year’s exhibition.
In fact, there is a case to be made that the new 40mm Yacht-Master is one of the few “full-sized” Rolex timepieces that appeals to women as well as men. This idea is reinforced by the introduction of the timeless Oyster bracelet in place of the sporty rubber Oysterflex strap.
The Breitling Superocean 44 is fitted with a sturdy thick case measuring 44 mm in width and 16.7 mm in thickness. Available on three different straps —leather Superocean, rubber Ocean Racer and rubber Diver Pro— or on the Professional stainless steel bracelet, this watch has all the right attributes to become a daily wearer and to be submitted to the daily abuse of any watchlifestyler. Robust, yet good looking, the Superocean is also built to last and withstand the abuse from all types of marine activities.
Actually, the 44mm Breitling replica watch is not too large, it can perfectly fit you wrist, the links of the bracelet can be adjusted to make it suit appropriately. With brushed casing, the watch will not easily get scartches. This Breitling replica features a black rubberclad diving bezel, which is uni-directional rotating, the height of the bezel makes the whole dial have a deep level, thick sapphire crystal also allow the replica watch to withstand a great pressure in diving.
Conceived as a diver’s watch, the Superocean 44 comes with a depth rating of 2,000m/6600ft. The dial is matte finished, well balanced with numerals at 9 and 6 o’clock and available in five different ‘Abyss’ variations —yellow, orange, red, blue, and white— with just a hint of color on the word ‘Superocean’, the seconds hand and the border around the date aperture.