Hans Wilsdorf, the founder of Rolex and Tudor, one of the greatest watchmakers of all time, described the creation of Tudor as “a watch that our agents could sell at a more modest price than Rolex” without losing out on quality or cheapening the Rolex brand. Needless to say, the relationship with Rolex and Tudor has always been symbiotic. Although they target different markets, they share innovation and technology and are widely loved within the watch world. While the Oyster Case, shared by Rolex and Tudor, now seems ubiquitous, the value and innovation it ushered in – like dust and water-resistance – were pivotal and remain features still critical in everyday watch wear.
In 47’ Tudor borrowed the Oyster case for the first time and never looked back. As with earlier Tudor’s watches, they and Rolex shared an even closer relationship compared to today’s brand overlap. Back in the day, Rolex would place already assembled Tudor movements into Rolex cases, hence the appearance of Rolex text and logos on crowns, dials, cases, etc. Nowadays, while the relationship is a bit more nuanced, the interrelatedness and closeness of the two brands make some of the early Tudors fascinating.
The 4463 is a reference spread across many years and dial variations. It is an important watch as some consider It Tudor’s very first sports watch. This version of the 4463 was created in the early part of the 1940s which we can infer by the dial layout. What makes this variation most interesting and intriguing is that, while there were other variations preceding, this watch was the inspiration for the modern Tudor Oysters seen today.
The case is a compact 34mm stainless steel and a Rolex patented oyster crown. There are very little dings and issues with this polished case, especially for an older watch, and it is in great physical condition with very slight wear that certainly provides some character. The crystal however does have multiple large scratches that could benefit from a proper repair.
The Dial and Hands
The dial has some real vintage charm with a slightly off white, cream-colored dial and golden patina speckle that brings out the watch’s 1940 origin. The text that reads “Tudor Oyster” and the vintage rose shield logo, coupled with the “shock resistance” text is crisp and legible.
The chapter ring does show some fading in spots. Additionally, the dial features only even-numbered, applied Arabic indices in yellow gold with odd number indices as small yellow gold studs. From what we have gathered, this is a very neat and uncommonly seen dial variation.
The movement in this piece is the cal. 59. A manual wind, sweeping second, 17 jewels, workhorse produced circa early-mid ’40s. The watch is running and keeping good time. The service history is unknown.
|Location||New York City|
|Movement||Manual Cal. 59|
|Case Material||Stainless Steel|
|Band Material||Leather Strap|