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Baselworld 2019 Celebrates The Handmade Timepieces by RolexTuesday 26 March 2019
Baselworld 2019 Celebrates The Handmade Timepieces by Rolex ⇒ Rolex is one of the most renowned luxury brands in the world that is showcased at Baselworld 2019. The history of Rolex and Swiss watchmaking are intimately connected. Pioneer in the development of the wristwatch, the brand is at the origin of several major watchmaking innovations and has registered over 400 patents in the sequence of its evolution. Today, CovetED brings you a bit more about the history of this incredible brand.
Written by Salomé Peixoto
In 1905, at the age of 24, Hans Wilsdorf founded a company in London specialising in the distribution of timepieces (Rolex). He began by dreaming of a watch worn on the wrist. Wristwatches were not very precise at the time, but Hans Wilsdorf foresaw that they could become not only elegant but also reliable. Rolex now designs, creates and manufactures in-house all the essential components for its watches, from the casting of the gold alloys to the machining, crafting, assembly and finishing of the movement, case, dial and bracelet.
Switzerland is the home where Rolex luxury watches are brought to life thanks to the know-how and dedication of more than 6,000 makers at the brand’s four sites, all pioneers in watchmaking technology. Pictured above is the Oscillator. In a mechanical watch, the oscillator is the guardian of time. Comprising a hairspring and a balance wheel, this regulating organ determines the precision of the watch by the regularity of its oscillations.
Rolex world headquarters is where management, research and development, design, communication activities, sales and after-sales service are found. It is also where the final assembly of the watches from components delivered by the three other locations and final quality control of the finished watches take place.
The Plan-Les-Ouates location brings together all the development and production activities for watch cases and bracelets, from the casting of the gold and forming of the raw materials to the machining and polishing of finished components. Composed of six wings linked by a central axis, it is the largest of the Rolex sites. It is home for the foundry where Rolex creates the 18 ct gold alloys used for its watches – yellow gold, white gold and Everose gold, an exclusive pink gold alloy developed by Rolex.
The Bienne location is the production facility for the movements of Rolex watches. More than 2,000 talented master artisans are involved in the manufacture and assembly of the hundreds of components comprising a Rolex movement. The components, often tiny and of complex geometry, are crafted with an extraordinary precision of the order of a few microns. Such rigorous execution allows 100 per cent of Rolex movements to meet the accuracy criteria of the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). The assembly and regulating of the movements are carried out entirely by hand, by highly skilled watchmakers.
The Chêne-Bourg place nurtures the development and manufacture of the dials, as well as the gemology and gem-setting activities. Here the faces of Rolex watches take shape thanks to a magical combination of high technology and the dial makers’ traditional know-how.
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Source: Covet Foundation