Rolex Datejust 1600/8 'Red Jasper'

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Among the various Rolex hardstone dials, Jasper is one of the most beautiful and sought after.

If I would tell you Rolex made many truly unique watches, you would probably think I misused the terminology and would not consider all these thousands “one-off” examples that are, in fact, unique by default. Dials made by the help of mother nature; therefore, al having slightly different structure and patterns.

Rolex started the use of stone dials in their production during the end of the 1960s. Until 1978 these dials were exclusively available for precious metal Datejusts. So the only plexiglass-model stone dials are from the 16xx series. The production turned out to be quite challenging as the minerals could easily break during the process of carving out the date window. This also being the reason why many (especially early examples) do not have any markers. It is a happy coincidence that the aesthetics of this simplicity is so attractive.

The first generation is signed “T Swiss T’. As we know, the “T’s” stand for tritium. An often-made comment is that people question the authenticity since there is no tritium on the dial and usually not in the hands either. However, these stonedials used the same cliché to print the text as a usual dial. Applying of luminous material is the last step in the process anyway. So just like on regular dials from this period where no lume is present, it still reads “T Swiss T” because of a generic tampon lay-out.

The early stone-dial options consisted of Onyx, Tiger Eye, Lapis, Malachite and Jasper. Last mentioned has 3 varieties: green Jasper, "Bloodstone"/ Heliotrope (Green Jasper with red Hematite inclusions) or red Jasper. The tone of red can vary and this one is very bright and intense. Truly mesmerising.

Stone dials are beautiful due to the natural variation of the stones used, but they’re also quite fragile. Many of them have developed cracks or rips over the years. To the untrained eye this dial is perfection in and of itself, and without a loupe you will not encounter any discrepancies. However, with a 10X magnifying loupe one can find a few tiny scratches in the surface of the dial. One of them running through the last letters of the word "superlative" and "officially". Furthermore there is a hairline running from the corner of the date aperture to the edge of the dial. Other than these common irregularities it is one of the best looking stone dials in history with a spectacular color, and remarkably rarer than most others like Lapis, Onyx and Tiger Eye.

Typically, stone dials are found in Rolex’ most luxurious model: the Day-Date. It is rare to find one cased in a precious metal Datejust, especially a beautiful 18K yellow gold variant with smooth bezel, which is a rarity by itself. This ref. 1600/8 dates to 1972 and comes on a riveted Oyster bracelet in matching metal and stamped the same year. Simplicity at its finest, but extraordinary special for those who know.


Packages are generally dispatched within 2 days after receipt of payment and are shipped within the Netherlands by Registered Mail through the Dutch carrier PostNL and for other countries by Fedex. Consult us if you prefer another method of shipping. For most destinations tracking is available.