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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1979
    Reference No: 1019
    Movement No: M'712'617
    Case No: 6'137'006
    Model Name: Milgauss
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1580, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Oyster bracelet, reference 78360, end links stamped 558, max length 185mm.
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 40mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex warranty, product literature and fitted box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    It was whilst working in magnetic environments that scientists at the Geneva-based CERN - Centre Européen de Recherche Nucléaire (European Organization for Nuclear Research), realized their need for a timepiece that could withstand the adverse effects of these fields on their timepieces.

    The Milgauss was the result of the direct collaboration between Rolex and CERN, a watch that could withstand the effects of the intense magnetic fields the CERN’s engineers and scientists were working in. Deriving its name from the Latin “mille”, meaning thousand, and “Gauss” representing the unit measure for magnetism, the Milgauss could withstand exposure of up to 1000 Gauss with no effect on accuracy, whereas a typical watch movement can only withstand up to 70-90 Gauss.

    In the early 1960s, the newly introduced Rolex Milgauss reference 1019, like the present lot, replaced the original two versions: references 6541 and 6543. Significantly thinner than its predecessors, it was manufactured until 1990 and was available only in stainless steel.

    An extremely niche tool watch, the Milgauss was never a commercial success and consequently production numbers were low. Being from the late 1980s, its dial features luminous dots placed outside the applied hour markers, and its distinctive hands are in matte finished aluminum.

    The present example comes full with Rolex guarantee, paperwork and fitted box which along with its large diameter and excellent wearability make a great value proposition to the connoisseur of vintage wristwatches.

  • Maker Bio

    Rolex

    Swiss • 1905

    Founded in 1905 England by Hans Wilsdorf and Alfred Davis as Wilsdorf & Davis, it soon became known as the Rolex Watch Company in 1915, moving its headquarters to Geneva in 1919. Like no other company, the success of the wristwatch can be attributed to many of Rolex's innovations that made them one of the most respected and well-known of all luxury brands. These innovations include their famous "Oyster" case — the world's first water resistant and dustproof watch case, invented in 1926 — and their "Perpetual" — the first reliable self-winding movement for wristwatches launched in 1933. They would form the foundation for Rolex's Datejust and Day-Date, respectively introduced in 1945 and 1956, but also importantly for their sports watches, such as the Explorer, Submariner and GMT-Master launched in the mid-1950s.

    One of its most famous models is the Cosmograph Daytona. Launched in 1963, these chronographs are without any doubt amongst the most iconic and coveted of all collectible wristwatches. Other key collectible models include their most complicated vintage watches, including references 8171 and 6062 with triple calendar and moon phase, "Jean Claude Killy" triple date chronograph models and the Submariner, including early "big-crown" models and military-issued variants.

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178

Rolex

Ref. 1019
An attractive and rare stainless steel anti-magnetic wristwatch with centre seconds and silver dial with guarantee and box

Circa 1979
40mm. Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Estimate
CHF15,000 - 25,000 
€14,100-23,500
$15,400-25,700

sold for CHF35,000

Contact Specialist

Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Watches, Continental Europe and the Middle East

41 79 637 1724
aghotbi@phillips.com

The Geneva Watch Auction: XI

Geneva Auction 27 - 28 June 2020