Rolex Glossary

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Print Friendly Definitions and Terms of Rolex Watches 904L: Refers to the steel material utilized by Rolex while producing its watches, the specific steel is only used by Rolex not by any other watch company. Papa Smurf – 116618 – white gold submariner containing a bezel along with a powder blue dial. Acrylic crystal: Referring to a certain crystal that has Acrylic also a material with similarities plastic, the advantage of producing them from Acrylic Crystal is that it can be polished. Aftermarket: The components of the watch which area dded by a company after it was produced by Rolex. ALUMINOVA: Refers to the hour makers of the watch which are non-radioactive and organic in nature. Anodized Aluminum: previously the Bezel inserts of GMT and Submariners were made from the metal called Anodized Aluminum. Currently hey use Cerachrome.

APERTURE: Refers to the visible openings on the dial which are small, the indication are shown inside these apertures.

Arabic: Refers to dial hour markers composed of numbers which are standard like 2, 3, 4.

ARBOR: Refers to the special axle or shaft on which the gear rides on.

Arrowhead: Refers to the hour markers designed in the form of arrow head. The Rolex Vintage is composed of such hour markers

ATMOSPHERE: It is utilized as a measure or measuring scale as far water lightness of the case of the watch is concerned.

AUTO ROTOR: Refers to the 1931 invention of Emil Borer related to perpetual moment(Rolex patented).

AUTOMATIC WINDING (also Self Winding): Refers to the mechanical/automatic watch in which the motion of the arm of the wearer directs the mainspring to automatically wound.

Automatic: watch motion that has an exceptional component that winds the watch automatically with the motion of the wrist of the person wearing the watch.

BAGUETTE: Refers to the watch containing an oval or rectangular thin shape. The watch is ladies styled.

BAKELITE: Refers to the Material which is acrylic plus transparent utilized in the bezel, seen in the 1954 model of GMT-Masters.

BALANCE SPRING: Refers to the hair spring, whose job is to supervise the balance’s swing.

BALANCE WHEEL: Refers to escapement which causes division in times into sections of equal nature.

BALANCE: Refers to the controller or supervisor of the watch, is equipped with metal wheel.

Bark Finish: it’s a specific type of finish applied on bezels and president bracelets.

BARREL: Refers to the circular box, which holds the mainspring and is often seen in connection with the gear.

Batman – 116710 – GMT II with a Ceramic bezel(black and blue bi-color)

Baton: refers to specific kind of hands that seem like lengthy rectangles without points.

BEAT: Refers to the number of times per second and often scaled in beats per hour or beats per second.

Bevel: Refers to the corner of Angled nature found in old styled mode cases.

Bezel insert: The insert of a removable nature, which a bezel utilizes to identify various functions such as time elapses etc.

Bezel: it is a ring composed of metal which is placed outside or on the outer side of the crystal.


12 point – Refers to the Bezel which basically contains 12 diamonds

24 diamonds – Refers to the Bezel which consists of 12 huge diamonds and 12 little ones.

Cartouche – Refers to 18k Bezel which has discontinued now.

Domed – together stainless steel and gold – present panache

Engine turned – presently only obtainable in entirely stainless steel – burning lines out 

Fluted – Refers to 18k Bezel composed of Gold having valleys and hills

Polished – Refers to Polished Bezel which does not contain any design

Pyramid – Refers to Bezel in which 2 diamonds and 2 pyramids are repeated.

Ring command – Refers to the name or identity given to sky-dweller.

Rotating – Refers to Bezel containing time feature

Tachymeter – Refers to the tool utilized to identify units per hour as far Daytona models are concerned.

Turn-o-graph – Refers to the Bezel (rotatable) on thunder bird and the model is Date just.

BI-DIRECTIONAL ROTATING BEZEL: Refers to the bezel having the ability to revolve both anti clock wise and clock wise, it is often utilized for calculating purposes.

Black: A color which Rolex uses to explain a dial or bezel inserts.

Blades/Wings: the two center parts of the fold over clasp.

Blue: color utilized to explain bezel inserts and a dial.

Blueberry: a word used for GMT blue bezel inserts, its basically a slang word.

Bombay lugs: A styled Lug rising to the center point in Vintage Date just.

Box & Papers: Refers to the original box of the watch and papers which the purchaser gets upon the purchasing the watch.

BOY’S SIZE WATCH: Refers to the watch which is manufactured for boys, it is 2mm smaller then men’s watch.

Bracelet: the metallic band

Bubble back: The word used for the case back of early models which were automatic.

Bubbleback : Refers to the professional term used for Rolex perpetual Models produced earlier.

Buckles:Ardillon – traditional tang and buckle

                            Deployant (deployment) – closing buckle( Butterfly Type)

                            Fold over – typical (specialized)and date just

                            Hidden – “clasp less” flair on contemporary jubilee and president bracelets


Argentinian bracelet – Refers to the specific president bracelets manufactured in Argentina for some time.

Hecho in Mexico – Refers to the specific president bracelets manufactured in Mexico for some time.

Integral – Refers to discontinued angular bracelet seen in old oyster quartz model

Jubilee – Refers to the link containing 3 little middle pieces

Oyster – Refers to middle link bracelet comprising of sports model.

Pearl master – Refers to the oyster bracelet composed of edges which are round

Strap – Refers to Ardillon buckles containing leather straps.

Cellini: Type of Rolex watches not equipped with water resistance and automation.

Cerachrome: Refers to the ceramic material use to compose bezel inserts on Submariner and GMT etc.

Ceramic (Cerachrom): Refers to the phenomenon when ceramic material is utilized in bezels of popular Rolex watches such as GMT and Submariner etc.

Chronograph: Refers to the tool which can show the standard time and also contains features such as a stop watch.

Coke Dial: A slang word used for bezel inserts composed of red or black color and which are found in GMT models

Coke: A slang word used for bezel inserts composed of red or black color and which are found in GMT models

Concealed Clasp: The clasp fastener is hidden under the links of the bracelets, seeming to have a incessant smooth bracelet.

Crown Guard: Refers to the two metal lumps seen on the case of the watch that border the crown and prevents it from getting damaged. It’s a very common feature.

CROWN GUARDS (also Shoulders): Refers to the rails bulging from the case of the watch. Crwon Guards protect the watch from harmful damages.

Crown: Refers to the winder having round shape that facilitates time adjustment.

Crystal: Refers to the screen of plastic or glass that protects the dial of the watch from any kind of damage.

Crystal: Used for protection of watch dial and is composed of plastic or glass.

CUSHION CASE: Refers to the case which has round edges and whose shape is square.

Cyclops: The professional term for the bubble seen on the date window is Cyclops.

D link – Alternate term for jubilee link which is hollow.

Daimier – Refers to the link composed of solid gold and is same as jubilee links.

Date just: A popular Rolex Model equipped with features such as ability to display the day of a particular month.

Date: Date is basically a feature found in Rolex watches, as the name indicates it is the ability of the watch to show the month’s day in a numerical way.

Daytona Cosmograph: These are the Daytona’s which are equipped with a chronograph of mechanical nature.

DCI (Decompression Illness): Refers to the specific condition which divers can face due to extraction of nitrogen bubbles in the blood and main tissues.

Deep Sea: it’s a sports watch produced by Rolex, it’s basically a diving watch and can plunge much deeper as compared to the submariner model.

Dial: “Dial” is the professional word used for the face of the wrist watch, dial is the area from where one tells the time.


Bordeaux – Refers to a dial which is colored, the dial begins red in the middle and converts to red as it motions closer to the edge.

Concentric circles – Refers to circles which are three dimensional and rise from small to big.

Diamond – The dial composed of hour markers of diamond.

Houndstooth – 3 colored checker design close to the cloth design of the similar name

Lapis lazuli – Refers to the dial composed of natural mineral stone, the stone is of blue color having ribbons.

Linen – Refers to specific finishing on Rolex dials and looks more like a linen paper. The dial also contains particles of fiber

Mother of pearl – Refers to the material extracted from the shell of Tahitian abalone, since it has pattern which is natural, hence no 2 is same.

Onyx – Refers to the solid black stone dial

Pave – Refers to the whole surface of the Rolex watch or Dial.

Pie pan – obsolete panache of dial. The outside edge of the dial approaches in a descending order like a pie pan upside down.

Pyramid – Refers to the dial composed of a pattern which is grid, every square in the grid is equipped with 3-D pyramids. The pyramids are directed towards the crystal.

Quadrant – Refers to the dial containing four different quarters which are usually painted, or at least two are painted.

Serti – Refers to dial made from diamond, the Rolex submariners and GMT dials fall in this category.

Sigma – Refers to the statistics or figures mentioned on the outer part of the terms SWISS or TSWISST. Its presence is identification that white Gold is utilized to manufacture Hour markers in the watch.

Stone dials – Dials composed of natural materials and minerals like onyx etc.

Tapestry – refer to the stripes which are vertical and can be seen on the whole dial.

Tuxedo – Refers to the dial in which two colors are being utilized which are usually white and silver.

Vignette – Refers the dial which is colored, it begins with blue in the middle and converts to black as it reaches to the edge.

Wood – it as old dial style not applicable now, it basically consists of dial surface fully covered with wood.

Diamond Bezel: It is the Bezel composed of diamonds.

Diamond Dial: The term is used for dial having hour markers made of diamond.

DIVERS’ EXTENSION: Refers to the specific type of extension in the bracelet of the watch used by divers.

DOUBLE NAMED WATCHES (also Co-Branded): Refers to the Co-branded watches having two company names written on the dial.

DOUBLE QUICK SET: Refers to 1990 feature facilitating quick setting of day and date.

Easy Link – Refers to the system of extension utilized in the brand new solid link Oyster bracelets.

EBAUCHE: Refers to the movement blank, it does not contain any balance or mainspring.

ELAPSED TIME ROTATING BEZEL: Refers to the bezel of rotating nature seen on diver models, it helps in tracking the time which has elapsed.

END PIECE: Refers to the piece of metal or hollow metal which facilitates the attachment of the case with the bracelet via spring bars.

ESCAPE WHEEL: It is the final gear in the train as far as lever escapement is concerned; it is equipped with special kinds of teeth that get alternatively locked or unlocked through the movement of the balance.

ESCAPEMENT: Facilitates smooth and controlled flow of power from mainspring to the gear.

Expansion rivet – Refers to the rivet link that facilities in comfortable wearing through stretching.

Face: same as above

Fat lady- 16760 – GMT master in black and red bezel

FLIP LOCK CLASP: Refers to the clasp utilized on specific bracelets or to be more precise oyster bracelets. These locks are mostly seen in diver’s watches.

Florentine finish: Rare finishing (cross hatch pattern) seen on presidential bracelets.

Fold over – Refers to the oyster links developed through metal folding intended to develop a link as opposed to casting.

G.M.T: Full form is Greenwich Mean Time.

GAS ESCAPE VALVE: Refers to the valve which facilitates helium particles to escape from the case of the watch while decompression.

GAUSS: is the CGS unit of measurement of a magnetic arena.

Genuine: Originally manufactured and developed by Rolex.

Gilt: it is basically the printing in Gold or off white color on the dial.

Glide Lock – Refers to the system of extension utilized in the new deep sea and submariner.

Glossy: Refers to the coating on the Dial.

GMT: Abbreviation for Greenwich Mean Time

Gold through clasp: The word is basically used to identify “gold through the clasp” version of submariner model 16613. The timer is armed with a buckle having 18k gold.

Green: it is basically the color which Rolex utilizes to celebrate an occasion or an event for example on 50th anniversary of submariner green bezel was used.

GUILLOCHE: Is basically a French word meaning engine turned.

Hack: Refers to the phenomenon which happens when crown is dragged out and the motion comes to halt.

HACKING: Refers to the 1972 introduced feature stopping the second hand of the watch. The second gets stopped due to pulling out of the winding crown.

HAIRSPRING: same as Balance Spring.

HALLMARK: Refers to the professional stamp and mark identifying that the metal is used is genuine and pure.

Hands: Refers to the different time showing hands in the watch such as Hour hand and second hand etc.

Head: all the things accept the strap or bracelet.

Helium escape valve: Refers to the Valve which prevents the crystal from getting damaged, especially one is rising from deep depths.

HERMETIC: Refers to the complete seal of air or dust from entering.

High polish: Refers to styles of polish related to bezels, bracelets and cases.

Holes case: same as lugs

Hollow – Refers to the link whose center is resonating

HONEYCOMB DIAL: A model of Rolex containing a texture like Honey Comb.

HOROLOGY: 1— Refers to the science and art of manufacturing pieces of time.

HUNTERCASE: Refers to the specific case often seen in pocket watches or even in early wrist watches.

INCABLOC: Refers to the standard shock absorbers as far as watches are concerned.

Index: specific kind of dial hour maker like sticks or hash. It is basically the Standard dial for watches of Rolex Brand.

INDICES: Alternate term for watch dial’s hour markers.

James Bond: it is basically Rolex Oyster perpetual( Submariner) seen in the James bond movies and popular actor Ian Fleming is also being seen as wearing it.

Jewels: Precious jewels installed inside the watch to decrease friction and to increase the movement life. The Jewels can be ruby or diamond.

Jubilee: more sophisticated link – 3 minor middle pieces

Kermit – 16610lv –original 50th anniversary submariner  with green bezel

L.N.I.B. – Abbreviation for like new in box

LADY PRESIDENT: Alternate term for Rolex Date just armed by president bracelet.

Link: Refers to the building block of the bracelet, a link can adjusted i:e removed or added to make the watch compatible with the wrist of the customer.


LocTite – Refers to the fluid applied to threads of screws.

Lollypop –A term used for second hand where the glowing dot is at the actual tip.

LOUPE: Refers to the tool utilized for identifying and inspecting very small parts and markings of detailed nature.

LUGS: Also known as horns and can be seen as pointed edges on both side of the case.

Luminova – Refers to materials which are not radioactive and are used in hour markers.

MAINSPRING: Is the spring responsible for providing motion force to the gear trains.

Manual – Specific motion of the watch that requires winding of manual nature every day.

Masterpiece: it is an alternate word for pearl master watches which are equipped with gemstones of heavy nature.

Maxi dial – Refers to the dial which contains hour dots which are oversized. It is used for descrbing GMT or Submariners.

MECHANICAL: Refers to the movement utilized in watches or time pieces which are traditional.

MERCEDES HANDS: Refers to a specific style of hands utilized in sports watches.

Meteorite: Refers to the dial manufactured via original space meteorite.

MICRO-STELLA: Refers to the screws put into operation for adjusting the balance.

MID-SIZED WATCHES: Refers to specific Models of Rolex which are approximately equal to 80% the size of men’s watch (standard).

MILLED EDGE: Refers to the case having coined edge, can be notcied in the cases of Rolex Oyster.

Mint: It is basically a watch which is near to the factory and which has gone through some service.

Mk 1, MK 2, etc. – collector’s word to distinguish variations in dials as duration passes.

MOON PHASE: Refers to the dial displaying changes in lunar cycles.

MOP or Mother of Pearl: shell of Tahitian Abalone produces a material which is natural called mother of pearl.

Morellis finish – cross hatch pattern finishing that can be noticed on presidential bracelets.

Movement – Refers to the part of the watch which makes the watch Run.

N.O.S. – The word which is used for the old parts that are never sold.

New or Unworn: it is basically a watch which is equipped with papers along with boxes, which has never been utilized or worn by anyone, though has been sold by Rolex at some point of time.

Nicknames – Hulk – 116610 – Refers to green ceramic bezel submariner and SS green dial

NITROGEN NARCOSIS: Refers to the toxic effect of nitrogen on the body, may result in death as well.

No Date (non-date): The term is used to explain watches having no date features; however the term is not used officially by Rolex.

No holes case – Refers to the case without lugs of pierced nature.

OCTAGON CASE: Refers to the case equipped with sides which are 8, the shape is same as a stop sign.

OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED CHRONOMETER: Refers to the wording visible on the dial introduced by Rolex in 1949.

Oval –Refers to the old jubilee links which are oval in shape.

Overhaul – Refers to the process of complete service as far as movement is concerned , service can be related to disassembly, ultrasonic cleaning and oiling etc.

OVETTONE (or Ovetto, or Ovitone): Refers to the nick name given to bubble back.

Oyster: it is basically a large or big center link bracelet, mostly seen in sports watches or models.

Panda: it refers to the specific color of Rolex Daytona, which is self-possessed of white dial and black sub dials.

Patina – Collectors use this terminology for something that with time changes its color, the phenomenon is not considered a damage rather its preferred and desirable.

Paul Newman: 6239 – physical wind Daytona with unusual dial – white dial with black sub dials – in the picture “winning”.

PCG – Abbreviation for pointed crown guards

PEDOMETER: Refers to the 1770 watch design having pocket which was self-winding.

Pepsi – Terminology used for bezel inserts which are red and blue and which are used in GMT models.

Pepsi Dial: A slang word used for bezel inserts composed of red or blue color and which are found in GMT models.

PERPETUAL MOVEMENT: Alternate term for automatic movement

Pierced lugs – Refers to Holes which can be seen at the sides of the case, these Holes facilitate the access to spring bars of the bracelet.

Pink or Rose: 18k pink gold watches are explained through a slang term for example pink watch.

PIVOT: Refers to the part of arbor which is turned down.

PLATE: Refers to the specific part of the movement that facilitates other plates as well as bridges.

PRECISION: it is the professional word specifically used by Rolex to label their watch movements.

President (or Presidential or Day Date): manufactured via solid gold, has smaller middle section as compared to oyster and has a high end bracelet.

Pussy galore – 6542 – Named after the 007 bond girl who wore the Rolex GMT .

QUARTZ MOVEMENT: Refers to the specific function of movement seen in the quartz watches.

Quartz: A specific kind of Rolex watch composed of mechanical properties as opposed to electrical properties. Quartz watches operate through batteries.

QUICK SET: Refers to the 1970 feature that facilitates quick setting of the date through winding crown.

Radium – Refers to material of glowing nature used in hour makers, before 1950 vintage watches are equipped with radium.

REFERENCE NUMBER: Refers to the model number which can be seen on the case back of the watch.

REGISTERS: Refers to the Dials (extra function) seen on the watch which is equipped with chronograph.

Rehaut: The inner reflecting ring placed above the dial is called Rehaut.

Rivet – oyster link that has a lid on the lateral that is riveted on to pelt the resonating nature of the link

Rolesium – technical term used for a Rolex watch which contains stainless steel and platinum together.

Rolesor – technical term used for a Rolex watch which contains stainless steel and yellow gold together.

ROLLESOR: Refers to the mixture of gold and stainless steel on the case of the watch, it’s a specific term used by Rolex.

Roman –Refers to Hour markers which contain Roman numbers like I”, “V”, “XI

ROMAN-ARABIC DIAL: read California Dial.

Root beer – bezel inserts (Brown and Yellow) used for GMT II and GMT models.

ROTATING BEZEL: utilized in sports watches and is equipped with functions such as auditing times of decompression etc.

ROTOR: Refers to the wavering weight utilized in motion of automatic nature.

RUBY: Same as Jewel.

Sapphire crystal – Refers to a crystal which is cut at an angle of 45 degrees to make it stronger 8 times as compared to mineral glass crystals. However one cannot polish it.

Satin – it’s the name of a polish style usually applied on cases and bracelets as well.

SELF WINDING: Same as Automatic Winding.

SERIAL NUMBER: can be seen on the back of the watches case, it is the identity number or digit of the watch.

SHOCK ABSORBER: Specific system preventing the balance staff from being damaged especially if the watch falls or gets dropped due to any reason.

SKELETON CASE: Refers to transparent Model, in which one can view the internal operations of the watch, the transparency is at the back as well as front.

SKELETON HANDS (or Skellete): Refers to the hands on a wrist watch that are cut out.

Solid – Refers to the links which are a single piece (solid)

Specially applied finish on some president bracelets and bezels– the gold is “imprinted” to appear like tree bark, though design is currently not in use as far as Rolex watches are concerned.

SPELEOLOGY: Refers to the education and examination of caves. It was for these ‘cave dwellers’ that the Rolex Explorer II was intended.

Spider dial- Alternate term for black dial which is glossy.

SPRING BAR: Refers to the push pin having ability to pass through both side of the lugs, spring bar facilitates the bracelet’s holding onto the case.

Stainless Steel: it is basically a category of metal which is non precious and which is utilized for the manufacturing of Rolex watches.

Steve Mcqueen – is cisible in the prevalent movie “Le Mans” on the wrist of the actor, the name of the watch series is explorer II

Stick – Alternate term for index, basically is a type of hour marker.

Sub-dials –Refers to the area which is sunken on a dial and which indicates information. Sub dials can be seen or found on Rolex Daytona.

Submariner or Sub: The submariner is a well-known model of watch produced by Rolex in the year 1954, having the unique ability to resist water and moisture. It is basically a sports watch.

SUBSIDIARY SECONDS (or Sunk Seconds): Refers to the small dial indicating seconds in the watch.

SUPER BALANCE: Refers to the design of balance wheel for the Auto Rotor Perpetual movement.

Super-Luminova – The glowing material(Non-Radioactive) seen on the hour markers of all dials since 1998.

SUPERLATIVE CHRONOMETER OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED: This wording is still utilized today and was introduced by Rolex in 1957 to substitute the previous wording which was “Officially Certified Chronometer”

SWEEPING MOVEMENT: Refers to the motion of second at 5-8 times per second.

Tapestry Dial: A design like a vertical ridge which covers the whole dial.

TELEMETER: it is a special measure or scale engraved on the outer side of the chronograph, it is used to measure the distances of objects which are remote.

Thunderbird – it is basically a bezel (original turn-o-graph). It was named for the acrobatic team from Airforce.

TONNUEAU CASE: Refers to the case which is shaped like a barrel.

TOOL WATCH: it is a specialized concept linked to watches which are designed for sports related and professional tasks.

Transitional fold over – following generation fold over link

TRAVEL CLOCK: Alternate term for purse watches and refers to protected 2 DK5

TRIPLOCK: Refers to the screw down crown technology of Rolex which had the feature of sealing(triple seal) against harmful dust and water.

TRITILIM: Refers to the glowing material utilized on the hour markers of the wrist watches since 1950; however the material was stopped from being used after introduction of Luminova in the year 1998.

Tritium – radioactive glowing material utilized from 50’s till mid 90’s

Tropical dial– The dial patina found usually in models which are professional.

TWIN LOCK: Refers to the screw down crown technology of Rolex which had the feature of sealing (twin seal) against harmful dust and water

Two-tone (or steel & gold, 18k & gold, Tu Tone or 2-Tone):  The term is used to describe a watch which is manufactured or composed through two dissimilar metals. In most of the cases the metals are yellow gold and stainless steel

UNI-DIRECTIONAL ROTATING BEZEL: Refers to the rotating bezel often seen in Dyers Models and can only motion in and anti clock wise way.

Unpolished – The professional term used for a watch that has never been polished.

Vintage Rolex: A word used for any Rolex watch which is 30 years or more.

White gold surround – The “vessel” that grips the glowing material on contemporary Rolex dials.

White: 18k yellow white gold watches are explained through a slang term for example white watch.

WINDING STEM: Refers to the process in which crown is fixed on the shaft on an end.

Yellow: 18k yellow gold watches are explained through a slang term for example yellow watch.