The stunning collection of vintage and used Rolex Air King watches at Open for Vintage shows off the brand’s distinctive design – which was ultimately created to meet the needs of the pilots of the Royal Air Force during the Second World War.
Hans Wilsdorf, founder of Rolex, presented the Air King collection to the pilots battling in flight to honour their efforts. The design of the Air King reflects the legendary and resilient exterior of the pilots that battled in war.
The watch is simple, robust and has an elegant design that sets it apart from the rest of the series: Air Tiger, Air Lion and Air Giant. Its simplicity and manual wind-up instantly became very popular within the aviation industry - a feature entirely developed and manufactured by Rolex. It was a no frills timepiece that outlived its siblings and drew in many admirers and buyers over the years, and continues to today.
The Air King design features a 40mm case and 904L steel, solid-link Oyster bracelet and clasp. Rolex uses the 904L stainless steel material when maximum resistance is required for any possible corrosion that could happen whilst working within particular industries. The designs also feature the distinctive black dial encasing and the numbers 3, 6 and 9 numbers are illuminated, making it easy to read at a quick glance. There is also a prominent minute scale for navigational time reading.
The Air King remains a beautiful timepiece even after it has endured some of the harshest environments due to the highly resistant materials used which make it a sought after timepiece among a range of industries and individuals. It is because of its robustness that the Air King is often referred to as the ‘Warrior Watch.’
We at Open for Vintage, have much respect for the Rolex Air King collection. It is practical, classic and legendary.
A vintage Air King can be hard to get your hands on, so we have done the hard work for you, all you have to do is decide which one (or two) you are most attracted to, sit back and wait to become the proud owner of a classic Rolex Air King.