Stainless steel Rolex quartz watch with Date
Movement: Quartz Rolex caliber 5035 movement
Case: Stainless steel 36mm case with brushed finish and polished bezel, with screw-down case back and crown; stainless steel Oysterquartz bracelet with deployant clasp
Dial: Black dial with applied baton numerals with luminous accents, center seconds hand, and magnified Cyclops date window at 3 o'clock.
Although Rolex first registered a patent for an electronic watch in 1952, their first commercially-available quartz watch--the Quartz Date 5100--was not released until 1970. The Quartz Date 5100 employed the Swiss-developed Beta 21 movement used by companies such as Enicar and Omega, but was only released in a limited quantity of 1000 pieces. Finally, after years of development and testing, in 1977 Rolex released their first completely in-house quartz movement for the Datejust, the caliber 5035.
The caliber 5035 movement has 11 jewels and featured the most sophisticated quartz technology at the time. Additionally, the finish on the Oysterquartz movements is done to an even higher standard than on contemporary mechanical movements. Only 25,000 Oysterquartz watches were released from 1977 to 2001, the present watch being an example of the earliest ref. 17000 with the one line "OYSTERQUARTZ" at the bottom center of the dial while later model had the usual "superlative chronometer officially certified". Very Early Oysterquartz in this condition; unmolested and unpolished are rarely offered.