CASE DIAMETER: 40mm
CASE MATERIAL: STAINLESS STEEL
BRACELET MATERIAL: STAINLESS STEEL
The 16550, a transitional reference, is the watch that formed the modern look of the Explorer II. Produced for a slender four years between 1985 and 1989, it's certainly the rarest of the neo vintage Explorers, it's also the one with the most variety. Rolex crammed in a lot of subtle changes in that short period, the designers must have had a few too many caffeinated drinks!
The watch is equipped with the caliber 3085, a serious upgrade from the previous 1655: it features a quick-set date, hacking seconds, a 42-hour power reserve, and an independent adjustment of the GMT hand, allowing the wearer to track multiple time zones. The earlier versions had white gold markers and non-rail dial, then rail dials and then black surrounds with non-rail dials, like the example we have for sale. These models are known for turning a creamy colour, this is only seen with the 85/87-year serials, they now fetch huge money as the defect is highly desirable and unique to every watch.
The dial and hands have aged beautifully on this example and will continue to do to as time goes on, the case is still nice and full and the bracelets is in great condition but more importantly, is original to the watch, showing its L code. The watch benefits from having its box, papers and booklet still intact.