Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date
Why We Love it
Why We Love it–
In Rolex's impressive 111-year history, the brand has released a veritable arsenal of models that have become classics. Many of these bear the moniker "Oyster Perpetual." While the name Oyster Perpetual doesn't designate a particular model or line, it does signify a few things. First, that the watch will have the trademark Rolex Oyster case. Second, that the movement beating inside that Oyster case will be Rolex's famed Perpetual movement.
Rolex first patented the Oyster case in 1925, but the quest for a waterproof and dust-proof case began shortly before the First World War. The cases of the Great War and the early 1920s came in two or three pieces with an inner case that shielded the movement (then a manual-wind movement) from the wet, dusty conditions of the battlefield. The Oyster case of 1925 represented the culmination of ten years of development. It gained notoriety in 1927, when Mercedes Gleitze became the first British woman to swim across the English Channel, wearing - you guessed it - a Rolex. A series of advertisements followed, featuring smiling flappers holding their Rolexes in fishtanks.
As with the Oyster case, the Perpetual movement saw many iterations before finally being perfected in the 1930s. Rolex's first automatic movement quietly debuted in 1931, without the fanfare that followed the introduction of the Oyster case. The movement was met with some consternation from purists who decried the "extreme novelty" of a self-winding watch. Nevertheless, Rolex could see that they had struck gold with the Perpetual movement. They continued to develop and improve it over the years, establishing a line of watches that would stand as an alternative to Rolex's sportier models.
The Oyster Perpetuals of the 1960s and 1970s remain some of Rolex's best-loved timepieces. Elegant, with clean lines, the watches are nevertheless sturdy, coming in stainless steel or 18k yellow or pink gold. The Perpetual, Rolex cal. 1570, movement has a straight-line lever escapement and a Breguet balance spring. Meant to be worn every day, the Oyster Perpetual Date combines elegant looks with rugged dependability.
Produced from 1963 to 1980, the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date Reference 1501 resembles the better-known (perhaps more sought-after) Datejust, particularly the more commonly-recognizable Ref. 1601/1603. The most obvious resemblance is the milled bezel, a gorgeous feature similar to those found on Turn-O-Graphs of the era. Artfully designed, the fixed bezel is raised at hour intervals with hash marks in between, drawing the eye outward from the center, producing a wonderful radiant visual effect that is mirrored in the sunburst pattern of the grey dial.
For a discerning collector who would like a vintage Rolex, but doesn't necessarily want to spring for a Datejust, the Oyster Perpetual Date Ref. 1501 presents an attractive alternative.
Analog:Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
Since our pieces are vintage or pre-owned, please expect wear & patina from usage and age. Please read each item description and examine all product images.
We back each Analog:Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
Please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.
Shipping & Returns
Shipping & Returns+
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states.
Most of our products are on hand and will ship directly from our headquarters in New York City. In some cases, watches will be shipped directly from one of our authorized partners.
We generally ship our products via FedEx, fully insured, within 5 business days of purchase. An adult signature is required for receipt of all packages for insurance purposes. Expedited shipping is available at an additional cost. We are also happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
Returns must be sent overnight or by priority international delivery, fully insured and paid for by the customer. A restocking fee may apply. Watches must be returned in the same condition as initially shipped.
We welcome international buyers, please contact us prior to purchase for additional details on shipping and payment options.
Rolex Oyster Perpetual Date