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The Rolex Yacht-Master II will make you feel like you’re sailing through the Caribbean Sea just like Edward Teach, aka Captain Blackbeard. Its maritime details exude the nautical atmosphere that surrounds the Rolex Yacht-Master II.
This watch is our top pick for summer 2017.
History of The Rolex Yacht-Master II
It all began with the introduction of the Rolex Yacht-Master in 1992, a timepiece especially designed for nautical sportsmen. After its huge success, Rolex introduced models in steel and platinum, yellow gold and steel, a lady version, and a mid-size version.
Fifteen years later in 2007, with the professional regatta competitor in mind, Rolex unveiled the Rolex Yacht-Master II, making it available for the first time in 2010. The countdown was exclusively developed for Rolex, and specifically designed for the starting sequence of professional regattas that can last up to 10 minutes.
The all-new timepiece features a 4161 automatic movement and a 90º rotatable ceramic Ring Commander bezel. Created specifically for the start of the regatta, this watch features the first programmable countdown with a mechanical memory.
Available in Four Metals
As a watch designed especially for regattas since 2007, the Rolex Yacht-Master II is a 44 mm timepiece available in four different metals (steel, steel and everose gold, yellow gold, white gold and platinum).
The watch has a triangular marker at 12 o’clock and a rectangular marker at 6 o’clock, which improves its legibility. The hour hand is distinguished from the minute hand through a luminescent disc strategically placed on the hour hand.
The watch’s mechanical memory can be synchronized really quickly for precision timing at the start of a regatta. It was redesigned in 2015 so that Rolex could offer a guarantee of an accurate chronometer, certified like all Rolex watches. It’s a user-friendly watch despite its complexity.
The countdown programming is accessed easily through the rotatable Ring Command bezel. The duration of the countdown can be programmed from one to ten minutes, and stored by the mechanism. A simple reset returns it to the former setting. Easy-peasy.
The manufacture of this luxurious timepiece took around 35,000 hours, one reason why it is a precise and reliable watch.
It’s equipped with Rolex’s own self-winding mechanical chronograph movement, caliber 4161. The automatic or self-winding movement, uses energy created from the movement of the wearer’s wrist, And can store enough energy to last up to 72 hours.
The rotor is connected to the movement and can freely rotate with each wrist movement. This rotation creates the energy necessary to automatically wind the mainspring, allowing the wearer to freely enjoy their timepiece without the need to wind it.
The Yacht-Master II is shaped with a traversing column wheel and a vertical clutch, giving a precise chronograph start. It also features in the oscillator a patented hairspring—a blue Parachrom from an alloy containing niobium and zirconium, which offers stability through temperature variations. This allows you to sail from Caribbean waters to the Norwegian Sea without worrying about anything but keeping yourself warm.
As a nautical watch, the Yacht-Master II can operate down to a depth of 100 meters. Its waterproof certificate guarantees, through Rolex’s patented Triplock triple water-proofing, outstanding protection. The watch is hermetically sealed, which means it is 100% airtight, and includes an Oysterlock safety clasp that avoids any accidental openings.
If you’re craving for extra comfort while wearing the Yacht-Master II, it’s your lucky day. It has a bracelet extension system, patented by Rolex as Easylink, that allows you to add 5mm to the bracelet length.
The precision of the superlative Chronometer is around +2/-2 seconds per day, extreme precision for an official chronometer. With the Yacht-Master II, you won’t have to worry about having an exact countdown, as it’s extremely precise.
With a few simple maneuvers you’ll be able to program the countdown before the start of a regatta. Once you hear the starting gun and you spot the flag signal, press the upper pusher to start the official countdown. To reset it, press the lower pusher. The countdown seconds hand will return to 12 o’clock and the minute hand will return to the same minute formerly programmed.
Remember to tighten the crown back down against the case after use to ensure its waterproofness.
Who is it for?
As mentioned before, the Rolex Yacht-Master II has been specially designed for experienced sailors. But we also recommend it if you want to feel like Captain Blackbeard sailing the Atlantic—who doesn’t?