Replica Gmt-Master-II Rolex Low Price Sale
The last installment of our GMT story ended with the first of the new generation: the Replica Gmt-Master-II Rolex. The birth of the GMT-Master II in 1983 heralded a number of new innovations to the line that still stand today, 35 years later. The first and arguably most important was the introduction of an independently settable 24-hour hand. This enabled the wearer to quickly move the 24-hour hand forwards or backwards (via jump hours) independently of the hour hand. In conjunction with the rotating bezel, this meant that the watch could track time in three time zones. The first using the regular hour and minutes hands and the second by monitoring the independent 24-hour hand. If you wanted to monitor a third, it could be done by rotating the bezel and monitoring a third time zone against the bezel markings.
The GMT-Master II (GMT2) story begins with ref. 16760, powered by the new Caliber 3085, which was based in the Caliber 3035. It was the first GMT-Master to have a sapphire crystal and where other sports references had received sapphire crystals during their transitional models, the transitional GMT-Master (ref. 16750) had an acrylic crystal. Sapphire crystals were, by this time, fitted to the Explorer 2 also, as they were much more hard wearing and helped with waterproofing qualities. Interestingly, the Explorer (ref. 1016) and Submariner non-date (ref. 5513) continued to use acrylic until the late-1980s. The ref. 16760 was housed in a particularly thick case with thicker crown guards, hence its nickname Fat Lady. Collectors have also dubbed this watch the Sophia Loren, due to the exaggerated lines and curves of the case shape you just can't get away from these Italian nicknames with vintage Rolex.
Up until the GMT2, Rolex had offered two bezel insert variations, Pepsi and all-black. The new line of watches was offered with a third option that kept with the cola-flavored drink theme, this time a black and red Coke insert. These inserts are totally interchangeable and so collectors can easily get three different looks from one watch by simply switching inserts. I must, however, urge some caution in suggesting simply switching bezel inserts. It is, in fact, quite an easy task to complete and takes only a few minutes, but the cost of Rolex parts seems to have skyrocketed in recent years and so be aware that buying spare inserts isn't as cheap as it used to be. It is, however, still cheaper than buying another watch!
Six years later Rolex updated the GMT-Master II line with the ref. 16710. This watch featured the new Calibre 3185 (based on the base Calibre 3135), which was very similar to the previous calibre. The most noticeable difference with the updated model was the slimmer case. This change in profile of the watch was welcomed by buyers, who had felt that the thickness of the Fat Lady's case was too much. The watch was a huge success and remained in the brand's line up for 18 years until 2007.
This series also saw a return of the two-tone and gold versions of the GMT-Master. The gold watch was ref. 16718 and was available as a black dial with all black bezel insert and also as a brown dial with bronze colour bezel insert. Each watch has its own unique character and the two variations are strikingly different on the wrist. The two-tone watch was similarly available as either black dial and black bezel insert or brown dial and bronze and gold insert the Root Beer GMT. The soleil or sunburst finish on the brown dial gave the watch an added dimension and when these dials catch the sun wow, there's nothing quite like it.
I often say this and it's never been truer than it is at the moment Rolex collectors love the detail. Every letter, dash, font size, coronet variant all matter and enable collectors to keep an overview of the chronology of each reference. An 18-year long run meant that there were a number of changes and variances to the 16710. Rolex began giving the steel watches codes depending on the bezel inserts fitted at the factory. The letters A, B and N were used to signify Coke, Pepsi and black respectively. So, there was now a 16710A (Coke), 16710B (Pepsi) and 16710N (black); triplets in the family but not all identical.