Rolex - Geneva Watch Auction: FOUR Geneva Friday, November 11, 2016 | Phillips

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: 1953
    Reference No: 6352 stamped 6350 (strikethrough) and 1.54 inside the caseback
    Movement No: 87'388
    Case No: 28'506
    Model Name: "Big Bubble" or "Ovettone"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 775, 18 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex pin buckle
    Dimensions: 34mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and buckle signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by fitted presentation box with outer packaging, product literature and guarantee confirming the sale of the present watch on April 8th, 1956

  • Catalogue Essay

    The Rolex Reference 6352 is, along with reference 6350, the predecessor of one of the brand’s most successful models – the Explorer. In 1953, Sir Edmund Hillary made history by being the first person to ascend Everest. On his wrist, he was wearing a Rolex reference 6352 that would inspire the crowned brand to launch a model to commemorate this major human achievement. The present example of a 6352 is especially well preserved, but also stands out with its rare dial. At 12 o’clock is found a depth rating – a highly unusual designation found on few Rolex watches made during the early 1950s. During these formative years for the brand, Rolex experimented with many different dial and case configurations, marking the development and refinement of their first “tool” watches. The caseback features two reference numbers, one marked 6350 with a strikethrough, and a second reference number engraved 6352 at 90°- a common practice for Rolex at the time, as they strove to minimize the waste of spare parts. This stunning reference 6352, with its beautiful black honeycomb dial and gold applied hour indexes is a smart, eye-catching addition for a sports watch collection.

  • Artist Biography


    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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Ref. 6352 stamped 6350 (strikethrough) and 1.54 inside the caseback
A very attractive stainless steel wristwatch with black "depth rated" honeycomb dial, guarantee and box

34mm. Diameter
Case, dial, movement and buckle signed

CHF5,000 - 7,000 

Sold for CHF15,000

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89

Geneva Watch Auction: FOUR

Geneva Auctions 12 – 13 November 2016