Swiss Only, Claw Dial 1803 Rolex Day-Date in Rose Gold
It is a little-discussed fact that rose gold is substantially less common than yellow or white gold in vintage Day-Date production. But, where Rolex are concerned, not all vintage rose golds are quite consistent. The alloy was constantly evolving throughout the very lengthy run of the 1803. Early Day-Dates, such as this 1962 example, sport a much more rose tone and warmer patina. But the charm runs deeper here, as every detail is just a little more special than you might expect.
Starting with the dial, the Swiss only signature indicates a lack of tritium. That’s because the claw-shaped indices for which this style of production is named incorporate radium plots under the claws which no longer luminesce, same with its gold handset. Those claw markers are exclusive to the Day-Date and mark the earliest production of the 18XX series watches, debuted after the first 6510 and 6511 Day-Dates.
Rolex ceased production of rose gold watches somewhere in the early 1970s and only resumed in the late 1990s. These vintage rose gold cases are prized by many collectors for their varied composition and tone, much in the same way a Sub collector will analyze the tone of a tritium plot (albiet far more niche).
This example has a spectacular dial, with clear slightly aged champagne tones and little spotting. Its case is lightly patinated with relatively full lugs. There are no visible large dents or bashes. It comes as a naked watch from a well-regarded Dutch retailer.
Find this 1803 here from Vintage Times Amsterdam for 16725 USD.