The Rolex 17013 Oysterquartz Datejust: A Collector’s Dream

The Rolex Oysterquartz ref. 17013 remains an exceptional chapter in the storied history of Rolex watches, carving out a distinctive niche as a blend of traditional Rolex craftsmanship and innovative quartz technology.

Characterized by its precise Oysterquartz movement which has mouth-watering capabilities such as a thermocompensation feature and a -5/+5 accuracy per month, it showcases the brand’s commitment to quality even as it stepped into the electronic era.

Here’s a closer look at the Rolex Oysterquartz ref. 17013, focusing on its key features, production history, and other interesting details in this detailed Rolex 17013 review.

Key Features of the Rolex 17013

The Rolex 17013 is recognized for its unique blend of precision Swiss craftsmanship and durable materials, making it a noteworthy model in Rolex history. Here’s a look at some of its key components:

External Components

rolex oysterquartz ref. 17013 case

Case and Bezel: The Rolex 17013 features an angular 36mm stainless steel case complemented by an 18k yellow gold fluted bezel. Its standout aesthetics are highlighted by the distinct finishing on the lugs and the fluting detail that captures light.

Crystal: Protection for the dial is provided by a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, ensuring longevity and clarity.

Internal Components

caliber 5035 movement

Movement: At the heart, the 17013 houses a quartz Caliber 5035 movement, an unusual choice for Rolex, which reflects the brand’s response to the quartz crisis during the era of its creation. This movement is noted for its precision and lower maintenance compared to mechanical movements.

Dial: The dial options for this quartz Rolex were varied, but each design maintained Rolex’s signature attention to detail, including the instantly recognizable date window with a Cyclops magnifying lens at 3 o’clock.

Attachment Components: Strap/Bracelet

rolex oysterquartz 17013 bracelet

Bracelet: The reference 17013 comes with an integrated stainless steel and 18-karat yellow gold Jubilee bracelet, providing a secure and comfortable fit. 

The Jubilee bracelet features a five-piece link design. It consists of three smaller, rounded links in the center, flanked by two larger, rectangular links on the sides. This creates a flexible and comfortable bracelet with a distinctive, dressy appearance.

Clasp: The bracelet came with a Crownclasp, which is designed to be almost invisible, creating a seamless and continuous look for the bracelet. When closed, the clasp is hidden, with only a small Rolex crown logo indicating its position.

To open the Crownclasp, you simply lift the small Rolex crown logo, which acts as a lever. This reveals the folding clasp mechanism inside, allowing you to open the bracelet.

Production History

The Rolex Oysterquartz ref. 17013, a distinct model within the Rolex portfolio, boasts a significant chapter in the company’s chronology. Its journey began in 1977, marking the advent of Rolex’s foray into quartz technology, with the production ceasing in 2001.

Here’s a general timeline of its production:

  • 1977: The Rolex Oysterquartz was introduced as a response to the quartz crisis, with the ref.17000 (stainless steel) being one of the first models. The ref.17013, which features a stainless steel case with a yellow gold fluted bezel and a two-tone bracelet, was also introduced at this time.
  • 1980s: The Oysterquartz models, including the ref.17013, gained popularity. They were known for their distinctive angular case and integrated bracelet design, which set them apart from traditional mechanical Rolex watches.
  • 1990s: Production of the Oysterquartz continued, but demand for Oysterquartz watches Rolex produced began to decline as mechanical watches regained popularity. Rolex continued to produce the quartz watches but in smaller quantities.
  • 2001: Rolex discontinued the Oysterquartz line, including the ref. 17013.

During its production span, the ref. 17013 had a relatively low output compared to Rolex’s mechanical watches, totaling just under 25,000 pieces. Its rarity contributes to its collectible nature today.

Dial Options

rolex oysterquartz dials

The Rolex Oysterquartz Ref 17013 came with several dial options, providing a range of styles for buyers. Some of the most commonly seen dial options include:

  • Champagne dial: A popular choice, featuring a warm, golden hue that complements the two-tone bracelet and yellow gold bezel.
  • Silver dial: A classic option, offering a sleek and versatile look that pairs well with the watch’s stainless steel and yellow gold elements.
  • White dial: Another timeless choice, providing a clean and crisp appearance that enhances the watch’s overall elegance.
  • Black dial: A striking option, offering a bold contrast to the two-tone bracelet and yellow gold bezel, and often sought after for its sophisticated look.
  • Blue dial: Less common, but highly sought after for its unique and eye-catching appearance, often featuring a sunburst finish.
  • Wood dial: Rare and distinctive, these dials feature a wood grain pattern, adding a unique and luxurious touch to the watch.

Each of these dial options may also feature different hour marker styles, such as stick markers, Roman numerals, or diamond-set markers, adding further variety and personalization to the unique timepiece.

Market Value and Demand

The Rolex Datejust Oysterquartz 17013 is a distinctive model within the Rolex collection due to its quartz movement. On the private sales market, its average price is observed around S$6,533, with secondary market dealers typically asking for a higher amount, $8,561, according to WatchCharts.

These numbers reflect prices as of March 2024 and are subject to change based on demand and market fluctuations.

In terms of its popularity, the model holds a particular niche appeal among watch enthusiasts. Its significance lies in its combination of a quartz movement with the classic Rolex Oyster case design. This juxtaposition contributes to its demand, especially among collectors looking for unique timepieces in the Rolex line-up. 

It’s especially valued for its hybrid construction featuring stainless steel and 18k yellow gold elements. Its demand is further bolstered by its volatility in the market, which, as of early March 2024, is higher than that of 93% of other watch models, suggesting robust interest and transaction activity.

Watch enthusiasts and collectors maintain interest in this Rolex model due to its distinct character and relatively limited production run compared to other Rolex models with automatic movements. This interest ensures a steady demand which, in turn, sustains its market value.

Comparison with Other Rolex Models

When comparing the Rolex Oysterquartz ref. 17013 to other models in the Rolex Datejust line, it becomes clear why this particular reference holds a distinctive position. Unlike its counterparts that are powered by purely mechanical movements, it’s equipped with an in house quartz movement, known for its precision.

The following table highlights the main differences between the Rolex 17013 and traditional Rolex Datejust models:

Feature

Rolex Oysterquartz 17013

Traditional Rolex Datejust Models

Movement

Quartz Caliber 5035

Automatic, perpetual mechanical

Material

Stainless steel and 18k yellow gold

Options vary, including full stainless steel or precious metals

Bezel

Fluted yellow gold bezel

Choices of fluted, smooth, or diamond-encrusted

Bracelet

Integrated Jubilee bracelet with gold center links

Jubilee or Oyster bracelets, with a wider range of material combinations

As we saw earlier, the typical market rates in March 2024 for a pre-owned Rolex 17013 range on average from S$6,533 on the private sales market to S$8,561 from secondary dealers. These figures will undoubtedly differ from other models based on material, condition, and market demand.

Furthermore, this Rolex quartz watch retains the iconic 36mm case size standard within the Datejust line (except for the Datejust II and Datejust 41 models). Its two-tone combination of stainless steel and yellow gold makes it widely appreciated for its versatility and luxurious appeal.

In summary, the Rolex 17013 differs from its mechanical siblings mainly in terms of its movement and the specific aesthetic created by its unique combinations of materials. These attributes stand out to enthusiasts who value the superior accuracy of quartz and the distinct mixed-metal design.

Buying and Selling Tips

As a buyer, you should be vigilant of a pre-owned Rolex Oysterquartz 17013’s condition when purchasing it. Here are some key points to consider:

  • Authenticity: Ensure the piece has genuine Rolex parts. The watch should come with its original bracelet, which is integral to its design.
  • Movement: Because it’s a quartz watch, the movement should be checked for function and originality. The Oysterquartz should have a Rolex caliber 5035 or 5055 movement.
  • Condition: Examine the watch for signs of wear and tear. The crystal should be free of scratches, and the bracelet should show minimal stretch.
  • Service history: Ask for the watch’s service history. Regular servicing is crucial for maintaining the performance of the quartz movement.
  • Original parts: Verify that the watch has its original parts, especially the dial, hands, and bracelet. Replaced or aftermarket parts can significantly reduce the watch’s value.
  • Price: Research current market prices for the Oysterquartz Ref 17013. Prices can vary based on condition, rarity, and originality. Ensure you’re paying a fair price.
  • Seller reputation: Buy from a reputable dealer or seller with positive feedback and a good return policy. Avoid deals that seem too good to be true.
  • Box and papers: While not always available, having the original box and papers can add value and authenticity to the watch.
  • Warranty: Check if the seller offers any warranty, especially if the watch hasn’t been serviced recently.
  • Try it on: If possible, try the watch on your wrist. The Oysterquartz has a distinct feel and weight compared to other Rolex models, so make sure it’s comfortable and suits your style.

If you’re a seller, the following tips can help you earn some good profit from your investment:

  • Research the market: Understand the current market value of the Oysterquartz Ref 17013 by checking recent sales and listings. This will help you set a realistic price.
  • Gather documentation: If you have the original box, papers, and service records, make sure to gather them. These can significantly increase the value and attractiveness of your watch to potential buyers.
  • Condition check: Assess the condition of your watch. Note any scratches, dents, or wear, and be transparent about these in your listing. The condition will directly impact the price.
  • Professional photos: Take high-quality, clear photos of the watch from various angles, including the dial, bracelet, caseback, and any identifying marks or serial numbers. Good photos can make your listing stand out.
  • Service and cleaning: Consider having the watch serviced and cleaned by a professional before selling. A well-maintained watch is more appealing to buyers and can command a higher price.
  • Choose the right platform: Decide where to sell your watch. Options include online marketplaces (e.g., WatchBook, WatchCharts, Chrono24), watch forums, social media, or through a reputable watch dealer or consignment shop.
  • Set a fair price: Based on your research and the condition of your watch, set a competitive and fair price. Be open to negotiation, but also know your bottom line.
  • Create a detailed listing: In your listing, include detailed information about the watch, its history, any service it has undergone, and its current condition. Be honest and transparent to build trust with potential buyers.
  • Be responsive: Respond promptly to inquiries and questions from potential buyers. Good communication can help close the sale.
  • Secure transaction: When finalizing the sale, ensure the payment method is secure. If selling online, consider using a platform with buyer and seller protection. If selling in person, meet in a safe, public place.

Precautions for Both Parties

Here are some handy precautions you can use whether you’re a buyer or seller:

  • Price research: Consult the current market value from trusted sources. As of March 2024, the average private sales market price is around S$6,533, with dealer prices potentially higher.
  • Physical inspection: If possible, inspect the watch in person. This grants you peace of mind as a buyer or allows you to demonstrate the watch’s good condition as a seller.
  • Dealer reputation: Work with reputable dealers or platforms that offer authentication services.

By adhering to these guidelines, buyers and sellers can confidently navigate the market for the Rolex Oysterquartz 17013.

Final Word

The Oysterquartz 17013 is indeed a collector’s dream due to its rarity and the unique narrative it holds within the Rolex saga. It signifies Rolex’s adaptability and attention to craftsmanship, even when embracing quartz technology—a departure from its mechanical roots. 

Key Takeaways

  • The Rolex Oysterquartz ref. 17013 is recognized for its distinctive blend of a quartz movement with the classic Rolex design ethos. It stands out as an anomaly within the Rolex catalog, blending traditional aesthetics with an electronic timekeeping mechanism.
  • The ref. 17013 is easily identifiable by its notable combination of stainless steel and 18k yellow gold, giving it a visually appealing two-tone appearance. The fluted yellow gold bezel and the crown are its key features, enhancing its luxury appeal.
  • The Oysterquartz Datejust ref. 17013 is a collectible due to its relatively short production run and unique place in Rolex’s history. The interest it has gathered over the years sustains its impressive S$6,533 market value as of March 2024.

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