Rolex GMT-Master 1675-8 - Full Set, Solid Gold Nipple Dial
What on earth is a ‘Nipple Dial’?
Let’s rewind the clock to the 1950s. Pan American World Airways, is in talks with Boeing to launch the worlds first passenger jetliner, massively shortening the time between American and European Nations. It does however, present an interesting dilemma. Pilots need to be able to tell time in two places at the same time with a very quick glance. Who does Juan Trippe turn to? Rolex. While worldtimers and GMTs were not a new invention - the way Rolex chose to answer it was incredibly novel AND simple. The addition of a ‘slow’ 24 hour hand that made one revolution per day and a simple change of the bezel to a military 24 hour time would allow the wearer to quickly read time in two places at once. Points awarded here for mechanical simplicity, and execution. The bezel would be in two different colors to represent AM/PM times, and those colors would be the PanAm colors of Red & Blue (naturally). While the watch was developed rather quickly and the first generation 6542 released in the mid 50s, the Boeing Jetliner (the 707) took a little longer to develop. That being said, when PanAm flew the 707 on its maiden flight from New York’s Idlewild Airport (not yet JFK!) to Paris (with onboard catered food from Maxim’s of Paris!) it was the Rolex GMT-Master on the flight crews wrist.
Which leads us to the present example GMT-Master, a second generation 1675. While the 6542 GMT was a great watch, it was not without it's flaws. The 1675 saw the introduction of crown guards, aluminum bezels … and the continuation of a full gold GMT-Master. While the 6542 was also available in all-gold, the 1675 reference gave us the ‘Nipple Dial’. With its signature brown autumnal colors - this is a period favorite. These rare “1675-8” models came with a few types of dials - this one having a matte brown dial with ‘nipple’ indices, called that for their generally small round appearance, punctuated by little plot of lume. These brown matte dials were often prone to chipping - but the one housed in this case is in perfect condition throughout with no signs of any degradation.
The dial aside, the bezel is in excellent condition and had aged to a beautiful faded brown that is even, yet hints at all the adventures this watch was a party to. The case is fixed to a beautiful solid-gold jubilee which is in excellent overall condition, with a concealed clasp making it a little more elegant. Last - but certainly not least - this watch comes with almost all of its Outer/Inner Box, original paperwork, chronometer certificate, calendar card, warranty books, and instructions on how to operate the bezel - which is incredibly rare for any watch of this era! Say it with us - GMT ON JUBILEE! The only way to fly.
*Some marks or spots on the dial are reflections or dust on the crystal and are due to high intensity strobe lighting used while photographing. They are not actually on the watch or visible in natural lighting.
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