Rolex Cyclops – What is it?
Cyclops is synonymous with Rolex watches, especially the vintage ones. It is actually a magnifier which rests on the glass dial, just above the date window, making it easier to read the same. Watch lore and stories associated with Rolex reverberate with anecdotes and reasons for such a design change. It seems Hans Wildorf’s wife had a difficult time reading the date, which prompted him to find a practical solution.
This new addition offered a 2.1x magnification. Problem solved! Moreover, this small change also offered Rolex a new identity.
Since the early 1950’s Rolex watches have been sporting tiny crystals over the glass dial in their casual and professional series. The year 2005 also saw the introduction of anti-reflective coating on the underside of glass crystal for enhanced visibility.
Date magnifiers are available in different shapes and sizes. Some of them are mentioned below.
1. Square – A square Cyclops boasts an array of sizes; from 4.5 mm to 7.0 mm with the thickness varying from 0.85 mm to 1.4 mm.
2. Round – This one is uncommon and mostly seen on classic Rolex watches. The size ranges from 3.5 mm to 6.5 mm.
3. Bullet – This one typically embellishes a day-date window.
Cyclops was introduced by Rolex in the 1954 Basel watch fair. The DateJusts sported this one-eyed glass element, followed by Turn-O-Graph and GMT Master ( Sports Rolex ). Incidentally, a couple of models do not have Cyclops due to the thickness of the crystal glass and also because of its shape.
Adding and Removing Cyclops –
The crystal lens can be added and removed but this requires some skill, tools and patience. However, the classic acrylic crystals cannot be detached as they are moulded to form one single piece whereas the newer sapphire crystals can be eased from their seat.
Do it yourself ( DIY ) –
To add one you will need the following –
1. Cyclops – the shape and the size will depend on your watch.
2. UV Glue. Special glue which dries after it is exposed to sunlight. It simply means you get ample time to position the Cyclops.