The Rolex GMT-Master II is one of Rolex’s most classic and iconic watches, made famous in the late 1950’s by pilots and people working in different time zones, the original blue and red bezel combination has become a highly desirable piece. Rolex did not stop there, they have since released many colour variations including red and black, blue and black, all black, dark and light brown and more recently a black and dark grey and black and green colour combination.

Whether you choose to have it on the sporty looking oyster bracelet or the elegant classic jubilee, the Rolex GMT Master II is an excellent watch, however setting the time for multiple time zones can be difficult. No doubt there are many GMT Master II owners who do not know themselves how to set it properly, so today we are going to explain how to set the Rolex GMT Master II.

Before diving into the setting process, it's crucial to familiarise yourself with the various features of the Rolex GMT-Master II to understand what you are trying to do. This watch boasts several functions, including the ability to display three time zones simultaneously, thanks to its distinctive 24-hour rotatable bezel and additional hand. The first step, maybe an obvious one, in setting your Rolex GMT-Master II is to unscrew the crown. 

The crown is located on the right side, unless you have the newer left-handed GMT Master II, of the watch case and is typically screwed tightly to ensure 100 metres of water resistance. Gently unscrew the crown by turning it counterclockwise until it springs out, this is position 1, in this position you can wind the watch up if you need to.

Rolex GMT

Source : Hodinkee

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Source : Time & TIde

Once you have the crown unscrewed, gently pull it out to the second position. You should feel a distinct click when the crown reaches this position. In this position, you can adjust the date by turning the crown clockwise or counterclockwise, depending on whether you want to advance or set back the date. However, this is done using a ‘jumping hour hand’ meaning the date wheel does not move like on most other watches, you move just the hour hand to change the date over. This might seem like a nuisance as you will need to rotate the hour hand 2 times around the dial to get the date to advance or set the date back but it means setting the time is much quicker. Once you have got the date set you can now set the hour hand, the smaller one of the two, to your local time zone.

In the third position, pulling the crown out gently to the final position, you can adjust the minties hand like you would a normal watch. Move the minutes hand around the dial to get to the desired time in minutes of the time zone you are currently in. However, setting multiple time zones can be a bit confusing and tricky and whilst you can just simply set the time zones with the hands in any positions, there is an easier way to avoid getting lost.

Source : Hodinkee

To make things easier, especially if you want to track and use another time zone, it will make life much easier if you move all the hands until they are pointing to twelve o’clock. Then, pull the watch crown out to position 3 and rotate the minutes and hours hand until the long thin hour hand is telling you the time back home, if you are on holiday abroad, or maybe a different time zone that you work in. Next, you are going to want to push the crown into position two and set both the date and local hour hand to your local time (the time it is where you currently are). Once you have done this, you can now safely screw the crown in on your Rolex GMT Master II as the time has now been completely set. But, you can now only track two time zones, to track a third you need to use the bi-directional rotating bezel.

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