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Rolex Explorer

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Rolex Explorer 39mm Custom PVD "Gold Tin" 214270 w/...
Rolex Explorer 39mm Custom PVD "Gold Tin" 214270 w/...
$6,495
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
86
US
Rolex EXPLORER 39 Stainless Steel Watch Lumi Dial
Rolex EXPLORER 39 Stainless Steel Watch Lumi Dial
$5,999
Free shipping
Seller
Avi & Co NY
22
US
Rolex Explorer 114270
Rolex Explorer 114270
$4,950
Free shipping
Seller
Govberg Jewelers
125
US
Rolex stainless steel vintage 1956 Explorer
Rolex stainless steel vintage 1956 Explorer
$9,000
Seller
Paul Duggan Co., Inc
38
US
Rolex Explorer I 114270
Rolex Explorer I 114270
$6,160
Seller
Luxury Bazaar
31
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$8,900
Seller
ZWR
 
US
Rolex Explorer 214270
Rolex Explorer 214270
$8,199
Seller
Messina Jewelers
6
US
Rolex Explorer Model 214270 Stainless Steel 39mm Case
Rolex Explorer Model 214270 Stainless Steel 39mm Case
$4,745
Seller
Max Bankin Inc
 
US
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel Black Dial 39mm
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel Black Dial 39mm
$5,875
Seller
Element iN Time NYC
46
US
Rolex SS 39mm Explorer Blue Luminova Dial 214270 Unworn 2016...
Rolex SS 39mm Explorer Blue Luminova Dial 214270 Unworn 2016...
$6,295
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
86
US
Rolex Explorer I 39mm 214270 Steel Oyster Black Dial Watch...
Rolex Explorer I 39mm 214270 Steel Oyster Black Dial Watch...
$5,499
Seller
Diamonds East International
 
US
Rolex Explorer 114270
Rolex Explorer 114270
$5,450
Free shipping
Seller
Govberg Jewelers
125
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$5,195
Seller
Swiss Moves
18
US
Rolex Explorer 214270
Rolex Explorer 214270
$6,150
Seller
Luxury Bazaar
31
US
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel Watch 214270
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel Watch 214270
$5,350
Seller
DeMesy Fine Watches
5
US
Rolex Explorer 214270
Rolex Explorer 214270
$5,199
Seller
Messina Jewelers
6
US
Rolex Used 114270 Explorer I - Ref 114270 - Circa 2003-
Rolex Used 114270 Explorer I - Ref 114270 - Circa 2003-
$5,300
Seller
Essential-Watches.com
14
US
Rolex Explorer I 39mm 2016 Blue Luminescence Dial
Rolex Explorer I 39mm 2016 Blue Luminescence Dial
$6,275
Seller
Element iN Time NYC
46
US
Rolex Steel Explorer 39mm Unworn Box & Warranty Card 214270
Rolex Steel Explorer 39mm Unworn Box & Warranty Card 214270
$5,495
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
86
US
Rolex Explorer 39mm
Rolex Explorer 39mm
$4,495
Seller
Matthew Bain Inc
 
US
Rolex Explorer 114270
Rolex Explorer 114270
$4,950
Free shipping
Seller
Govberg Jewelers
125
US
Rolex Explorer STEEL BLACK DIAL 36MM
Rolex Explorer STEEL BLACK DIAL 36MM
$3,700
Seller
Stein Diamonds
5
US
Rolex Explorer Automatic Stainless 39mm Random 214270 B&P...
Rolex Explorer Automatic Stainless 39mm Random 214270 B&P...
$5,100
Free shipping
Seller
Time Source
6
US
Rolex Explorer Men's Watch M214270-0003
Rolex Explorer Men's Watch M214270-0003
$5,764
Seller
WatchMaxx.com
73
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$3,925
Seller
Radcliffe
23
US
Rolex Used 114270 Explorer I 114270 - Oyster Bracelet - Steel...
Rolex Used 114270 Explorer I 114270 - Oyster Bracelet - Steel...
$5,650
Seller
Essential-Watches.com
14
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Pre Explorer Men's Stainless Steel...
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Pre Explorer Men's Stainless Steel...
$9,500
Seller
DeMesy Fine Watches
5
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer I 1016 Black Matte 34mm Watch
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer I 1016 Black Matte 34mm Watch
$11,747
Seller
Collectors1946
19
US
Rolex Explorer 214270
Rolex Explorer 214270
$6,175
Seller
Pacific Bay Watch Corporation
21
US
Rolex Explorer I 214270
Rolex Explorer I 214270
$5,450
Free shipping
Seller
Govberg Jewelers
125
US
Rolex Explorer 214270 39mm Watch Black Face Box & Booklets...
Rolex Explorer 214270 39mm Watch Black Face Box & Booklets...
$4,750
Seller
Gold Watch Co
 
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Date Steel & Yellow Gold...
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Date Steel & Yellow Gold...
$3,975
Seller
Element iN Time NYC
46
US
Rolex Vintage Rare 1963 Explorer Oyster Perpetual Precision...
Rolex Vintage Rare 1963 Explorer Oyster Perpetual Precision...
$6,990
Seller
Anaheim Watches
 
US
Rolex Explorer I 36mm Stainless Steel Black Dial REF: 14270
Rolex Explorer I 36mm Stainless Steel Black Dial REF: 14270
$4,400
Seller
Sea Wave Diamonds
53
US
Rolex Unworn 214270 Explorer Oyster Perpetual 214270 - Domed...
Rolex Unworn 214270 Explorer Oyster Perpetual 214270 - Domed...
$5,550
Seller
Essential-Watches.com
14
US
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel Watch 114270
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel Watch 114270
$4,650
Seller
DeMesy Fine Watches
5
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Precision 5500 Black 34mm Watch
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Precision 5500 Black 34mm Watch
$3,000
Seller
Collectors1946
19
US
Rolex Explorer 214270 Pre-Owned
Rolex Explorer 214270 Pre-Owned
$5,475
Seller
Pacific Bay Watch Corporation
21
US
Rolex Explorer 14270 Oyster Perpetual Black Dial Stainless Steel
Rolex Explorer 14270 Oyster Perpetual Black Dial Stainless Steel
$3,795
Free shipping
Seller
Quality Diamonds
 
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$3,600
Seller
Private seller
 
US
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel 39mm
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel 39mm
$5,545
Seller
Element iN Time NYC
46
US
Rolex Explorer Stainless Steel w/Brown Suede Strap - 6610
Rolex Explorer Stainless Steel w/Brown Suede Strap - 6610
$8,000
Free shipping
Seller
Certified Luxury Watches
 
US
Rolex Explorer 36mm Stainless Steel Black Dial Mens Automatic...
Rolex Explorer 36mm Stainless Steel Black Dial Mens Automatic...
$4,513
Seller
Jewels in Time
 
US
Rolex 1038 Zephyr style 18k & steel rare dial c.1986
Rolex 1038 Zephyr style 18k & steel rare dial c.1986
$4,150
Seller
Vintage Watch: Fabsuisse
17
US
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel 39mm Watch 214270
Rolex Explorer Men's Stainless Steel 39mm Watch 214270
$5,650
Seller
DeMesy Fine Watches
5
US
Rolex Watch Mens 40mm Explorer Stainless Steel 214270 Random...
Rolex Watch Mens 40mm Explorer Stainless Steel 214270 Random...
$6,990
Seller
Anaheim Watches
 
US
Rolex Mens SS Explorer 39mm - 214270
Rolex Mens SS Explorer 39mm - 214270
$4,995
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
86
US
Rolex Pre-Explorer Brevet Vintage
Rolex Pre-Explorer Brevet Vintage
$5,300
Seller
Phil Abrams Fine Jewelry
 
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$4,900
Seller
Radcliffe
23
US
Rolex Explorer 114270 Stainless Steel Black Face Perfect...
Rolex Explorer 114270 Stainless Steel Black Face Perfect...
$3,945
Seller
Max Bankin Inc
 
US
Rolex Used 14270 Explorer I Ref 14270 -
Rolex Used 14270 Explorer I Ref 14270 -
$5,100
Seller
Essential-Watches.com
14
US
Rolex Explorer I 39mm Blue Luminescence Dial 03/2017
Rolex Explorer I 39mm Blue Luminescence Dial 03/2017
$5,785
Seller
Element iN Time NYC
46
US
Rolex Explorer 214270 39mm 2015 Model No Date  Box & Booklets
Rolex Explorer 214270 39mm 2015 Model No Date Box & Booklets
$5,250
Seller
Gold Watch Co
 
US
Rolex Vintage Rolex Explorer Men's Steel Watch Mod. 1016
Rolex Vintage Rolex Explorer Men's Steel Watch Mod. 1016
$10,950
Seller
DeMesy Fine Watches
5
US
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Chronometer Stainless Steel...
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer Chronometer Stainless Steel...
$7,485
Seller
Sumpters Jewelry
7
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$5,295
Seller
H1912
 
US
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel Black Dial 39mm  (Basel 2016))
Rolex Explorer I Stainless Steel Black Dial 39mm (Basel 2016))
$6,195
Free shipping
Seller
Watch Noble
5
US
Rolex SS Explorer 114270 Model 36mm SEL Oyster Bracelet
Rolex SS Explorer 114270 Model 36mm SEL Oyster Bracelet
$4,350
Seller
Austins Watches Inc.
86
US
Rolex Explorer
Rolex Explorer
$6,000
Free shipping
Seller
Fine Watch Bank
10
US
Rolex Explorer 39mm Stainless Steel 214270 Mens Watch
Rolex Explorer 39mm Stainless Steel 214270 Mens Watch
$5,730
Free shipping
Seller
Interwatches
15
US

Reach the Summit with the Rolex Explorer

The Explorer is Rolex's easy-to-read minimalist watch. It features a stainless steel case, black dial, and three hands - you don't need anything more for a simple, robust outdoor watch.

Highlights

  • Plain aesthetics
  • Medium-sized: 39 mm diameter
  • In-house caliber
  • Chromalight luminescent material
  • Waterproof to 100 m (10 bar)

A Reliable Companion on Mount Everest

The Explorer got its name after Sir Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay were the first to conquer Mount Everest. The watch has belonged to the Rolex portfolio since 1953 and was born out of the Oyster Perpetual Chronometer, which had been used by climbers for scaling high peaks since the 1930s.
The members of the first Himalayan expeditions appreciated the robustness and precision of Rolex timepieces. Both the climbers and their watches had to brave icy winds and extreme temperatures as low as -50°C (-58°F). Hillary and Norgay were members of the 1953 British expedition to Mount Everest led by Colonel John Hunt. Rolex equipped the team with their watches, and Norgay supposedly wore a precursor to the Rolex Explorer when he reached the highest point on Earth. The "Explorer" inscription on the dial only appears on versions which were produced a few months after the expedition. The models from this period have reference number 6350 and are worth five-figures.

Buying Advice for the Rolex Explorer

If you're looking for a subtle Rolex that's not necessarily recognizable as such at first glance, then the Explorer is for you. Models with reference numbers 6610, 1016, 14270, and 114270 are suitable for thinner wrists, as their diameter is only 36 mm.
The newer version 214270 is medium-sized at 39 mm in diameter. Therefore, the Explorer is somewhat of an understated Rolex. It's a sporty watch that has proven its dependability during expeditions in harsh conditions. It's not just a sports watch though, as you can't deny it has a certain elegance; it would go just as well with a nice suit.
The older 36-mm Explorers cost around 3,000 - 4,000 euros, depending on their condition. Collector's versions from the 1960s are much more expensive and cost more than a new Explorer, which runs around 6,000 euros.
There aren't many alternatives to the Explorer from other brands if you're using strict criteria. The closest is the 40-mm Grand Seiko. It has a similar simple design, is easy to read, waterproof to 100 m (10 bar), and has a comparable price.

Buying Tips

  • Vintage watches starting around 3,000 euros
  • New watches starting around 5,000 euros
  • Collector's pieces worth over 10,000 euros
  • Pre-2010: 36-mm diameter case (reference number 1016)
  • Since 2010: 39-mm diameter case

Twinlock Crown and Easy-to-Read Seconds

The Explorer's design benefited from the watch's first-hand experiences in the mountains. It was equipped with a fully stainless steel bracelet and the characteristic Rolex Twinlock crown. Some versions of the 6350 models already had the distinctive hour hand with a large circle towards the tip. Rolex still uses this design in countless models. The luminescent circle is divided into three parts to ensure readability when the minute hand overlaps the hour hand, and to provide a secure frame for the lume. Rolex hasn't confirmed the meaning behind the design, but the hands are referred to as Mercedes hands, as they resemble the car company's three-point star logo.

Optimal Legibility

One characteristic mark of the early Explorer that remains the same to this day is the large Arabic numerals at three, six, and nine. The rest of the hour markers are line indices, except for the down-facing triangle at 12 o'clock.
The bright white of the indices and numerals makes for a stark contrast against the black dial. It's easy to tell the time right away with one look at the dial. The hands, numerals, and indices contain the luminous material Chromalight, making it possible to read the watch easily even in the dark. Rolex is unique in their use of Chromalight, which glows blue, as most manufacturers use Superluminova, which glows green. Rolex used tritium until the late 1990s, and Superluminova from 2000 to 2008, when they replaced it with Chromalight.

The Authentic James Bond Watch

The Explorer has only undergone a few changes over the years. A notable change occurred in 2010, when the case size was increased from 36 to 39 mm. The case is made of 904L stainless steel, a type which has proven itself as especially scratch and corrosion resistant. Water can't do much damage to the watch either, thanks to its screw-down case back and Twinlock crown with a double waterproofness system. The Twinlock crown can be found on all Oyster collection models. Thanks to it, you can take the watch swimming and snorkeling, as it's waterproof to 100 m (10 bar).
In 1989, Rolex modified the dial, shape of the case, and indices. These watches, with reference number 14270, still have the smaller case size of 36 mm. The indices are made of 18-karat white gold to prevent tarnishing. Before this change, the Swiss manufacturer had produced the Explorer with reference number 1016 for a quarter century. If you're searching for a vintage Explorer, a 1016 model is a good choice, as there's a large selection available at moderate prices.
Furthermore, this Explorer is the most authentic James Bond watch of all: Bond author Ian Fleming owned an Explorer with reference number 1016. And while his hero has worn various brands in films, from Rolex to Seiko to Omega, he's always worn an Explorer in the novels. In the 1963 novel On Her Majesty's Secret Service, Fleming describes how Bond reads the large, luminescent dial numbers on a black watch from the Oyster Perpetual family. The description fits Fleming's Explorer perfectly.
The predecessor to the 1016, the Explorer with reference number 6610 from the late 1950s, is even rarer. Therefore, it usually sells in the five-figure range.

Other Details

  • Precise: runs -2/+2 seconds a day
  • Certified by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC)
  • Twinlock crown protects against water and dust
  • Non-magnetic Parachrom hairspring (newer models)

Special, Non-Magnetic Hairspring

The new Rolex Explorers produced after 2010 bear reference number 214270. They're easy to spot due to their larger cases, which house the in-house caliber 3132. According to Rolex, the movement deviates from the reference time by a maximum of two seconds a day. It easily fulfilled the requirements set forth by the Official Swiss Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC) and received the official COSC certificate. The movement's balance spring is made of Parachrom, a special alloy, which is unaffected by magnetic fields. The Milgauss from Rolex offers even more protection against magnetic fields, as its movement is protected by a shield made of ferromagnetic alloys. The designs of the Milgauss and the Explorer resemble each other, but the Milgauss is also available with a white or blue dial. Additionally, the Milgauss is slightly larger with a case diameter of 40 mm.
The Paraflex shock protection system, developed by Rolex, protects the 3132 caliber against shocks. The automatic movement ticks away at 28,800 alternations per hour and has a 48-hour power reserve.

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