Only a few people can make a name for themselves in the contemporary era, and at the same time lead the times. And Hans Wilsdorf, the founder of Rolex, is one of them. This kind of situation that breaks the time boundary is very rare and fully reflects the uniqueness of Wilsdorf and its brand. This brilliant and prolific innovator died in 1960, and he left countless precious heritages for the entire watchmaking industry, especially Rolex.
With his fearless spirit and determination, Hans Wilsdorf made watches popular and made Rolex a famous brand. It has maintained a prominent and respected position for more than a century. Among the many letters he wrote throughout his life, the resolute Hans Wilsdorf wrote in a 1914 letter: ‘We want to be number one … and Rolex watches should be Seen as unique and the best! ‘The goal is very clear.
In fact, Hans Wilsdorf not only shapes people’s perception of the watch itself, but also its positioning, use and potential. In addition, he has always adhered to the eternal value, pursuing extraordinary quality, passion for watchmaking and excellent performance, making Rolex the ultimate model of fine watchmaking. To this day, this spirit of perseverance, persistence, vision and imagination is reflected in Rolex factories, research laboratories and departments, while fully affirming the philosophy that Wilsdorf has been convinced from the beginning. : ‘Everywhere, originality and quality must be our slogans of the future, and every Rolex watch must be the embodiment of superior quality.’
表 Watchmaking passion and the spirit of the times
Hans Wilsdorf is uniquely savvy, fully grasps the pulse and pace of the times, responds to the current situation in a very flexible manner, and can anticipate the changing needs of consumers, making the brand and watchmaking industry first and foremost. From chronograph certification, the world’s first waterproof oyster watch, Perpetual Oscillator to professional models. Hans Wilsdorf wrote: ‘Rolex must think and act differently at all times, which is our greatest advantage.’
This spirit of continuous innovation extends to every possible field, from intellectual property (created the loud and easy-to-remember ‘Rolex’ brand name as early as 1908, focusing on brand registration and protection work), avant-garde marketing, The communication from advertising to spokesperson strategy is an example of leading times.
Vision and value
Hans Wilsdorf adheres to his traditional values and, in addition to prudent actions at the present time, constantly imagines the future and creates a truly timeless brand, which cleverly combines classic and contemporary elements. In addition, he also discovered the wonderful formula that makes products last long, and this is the magic source of the Rolex brand. In his seventies, Hans Wilsdorf still showed his relentless spirit: ‘I am seventy-five years old. However, I am still enthusiastic about the watchmaking industry and often bring fresh ideas. ‘
Audacity and extraordinary beauty
His advice is undoubtedly exactly the same today and in the past: ‘Going forward. Success requires courage and determination.’
Precious and rare platinum is regarded as the most precious metal, and its silvery white color and shiny luster are particularly noticeable. Platinum dates back to ancient Egypt and pre-Columbian times, and was later discovered by Europeans. Platinum has very special physical properties, until the mystery formula of its shaping was deconstructed in modern times. Since then, platinum’s status has remained high, becoming the most remarkable metal at present. Especially under the jewels of jewelry, its charm is far superior to all materials.
Platinum can only be mined in a few regions around the world, such as South Africa and Russia. Platinum is a platinum-based metal. Other members include palladium, rhodium, ruthenium, iridium and osmium. Platinum is one of the densest and heaviest metals in the world and has unique chemical and physical properties such as extraordinary corrosion resistance. However, paradoxically, platinum has a soft texture, elasticity and high ductility, which makes machining and polishing very difficult. At Rolex, the watchmakers who are responsible for the strap and case decoration are experienced and know the fine craftsmanship of platinum polishing.
Rolex uses 950 platinum, this alloy contains 950 ‰ (thousands of parts) of platinum, generally also added ruthenium. Rolex added platinum to the Oyster’s most prestigious weekly calendar watch. Watch fans can recognize the day of the week model with ice-blue dial or Daytona as a platinum model. In addition, platinum is also used in the scale outer ring and dial of the yacht-master platinum-steel model, and the outer ring of the 18ct white gold yacht-master II. The Cerachrom outer ring on steel and white gold professional models is plated with platinum by PVD physical vapor deposition.
‘Officially recognized precision timepiece’-extraordinary precision
‘Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified’ is not only a mark of Rolex watches, but also an official certification of watch accuracy. It is also closely related to the brand’s intrinsic value. ‘Perpetual’ is the same. However, what is the significance of this imprint of quality? What is its origin? Why is it used to explain the concept of ‘precision timepiece’?
As we all know, all Oyster Perpetual watches today are precision timepieces. The word ‘officially recognized precision timepieces’ on the surface confirms this, and it also symbolizes the brand’s relentless pursuit of excellent precision timekeeping. It has been a pioneer in the development of precision watches since the early 20th century.
In 1910, one of Rolex’s models became the first watch in Switzerland to receive official certification of a precision timepiece. In 1914, similar Rolex watches were awarded the ‘A’ precision timepiece certification by the famous British Kew Observatory.
The brand has fully explained the significance of this famous title at every important moment in the pursuit of precision timepieces. Until about 1957, this title was finally finalized. From the word ‘Chronometer’ to ‘Officially Certified Chronometer’, it was finally named ‘Superlative Chronometer Officially Certified’.
Perpetual Oscillation-Autonomous Perpetual Motion
The Perpetual Rotary Oscillator is the basic component of every Oyster watch and a classic Rolex design. This design celebrated its 80th anniversary in 2011 and set an important milestone in the history of modern watchmaking. This self-winding system, invented by Rolex in 1931, requires only a very small wrist swing to obtain energy and inject power into the movement, so that the watch continues to move. In addition, the device allows the wearer to establish a direct connection with the watch.
When the watchmaker opened the Oyster case, the first thing he saw was the permanent-moving rotor. This half-moon-shaped rotor was free to rotate around the central axis wheel, and this automatic winding device would be hidden intermittently as the rotor moved. Or show it out, giving people a glimpse of the famous automatic loop wheel, whose unique red design contrasts with other golden gears. On the automatic movement of the chronograph movement, the watchmaker can also see the capitalized name of the watch model, such as the engraved red ‘DAYTONA’ and the blue ‘YACHT-MASTER I I’. The shapes and colors are harmonious and the quality of the decoration is flawless. Even hidden in the watch’s case, this device still displays the brand’s signature features, elegant and charming.
Balance wheel-an important part of Rolex’s precise operation
的 The Rolex watch, known for its precision performance, is equipped with two inseparable components: a balance spring and a balance wheel. However, the two important devices that have been combined with each other have different degrees of attention, and their eyes mostly fall on the hairspring. The outside often forgets that the rhythm of this fine hairspring is always accurate, thanks to the inertia effect produced by the balance wheel connected to it. Moreover, this neglected balance wheel can effectively ensure the regularity of the balance swing assembly. Therefore, the importance and technicality of the balance wheel are by no means inferior to the famous slim spring.
The balance wheel and star-shaped fine-tuning nut developed by Rolex combined the advantages of the two major watch adjustment methods at that time. One was a balance wheel with adjustment screws, and the other was a tool called a spinner. The former uses the same principle to ensure high accuracy (the screw placed on the periphery of the ring can adjust the rotational inertia), but the disadvantage is that once it is installed in the movement, the function of the balance swing component cannot be adjusted. The latter, which is more widely used, is adjusted by a trimmer and can adjust the balance swing component in situ. However, this method is less accurate and may even make the device unstable in the end.
The ingenuity of the fine-tuning nut is that it can effectively improve the variable inertia of the adjusting screw and the balance wheel, allowing the watchmaker to precisely adjust the balance wheel that has been fixed in the case of the movement. The star-shaped design of the nut helps tighten and fine-tune any position.
Small window convex lens——enlarged date display
Small window convex lens was invented by Rolex in the early 1950s. It is assembled in many oyster watches and can magnify the date display by 2.5 times. This innovative design not only makes the date easier to read, it also becomes a major symbol of Rolex.
‘I believe that the new case combined with the new mirror and the optical zoom display will bring a new look to the watch.’ ─ ─ Hans Wilsdorf
At the beginning of the launch, the convex lens and the mirror surface were integrally formed with plexiglass. Since the 1970s, Rolex has been equipped with a new scratch-resistant sapphire glass surface, and the small window convex lens has evolved from this. This convex lens is also made of sapphire crystal and is assembled on the glass surface.
The 窗 small window convex lens is an indispensable aesthetic element of the Oyster watch, and has evolved to this day. Today, this convex lens is equipped with an anti-reflective coating for easy reading of the date display, once again quoting the brand’s thoughtful design for the wearer.