A highly attractive and rare stainless steel wristwatch with pointed crown guards, gilt "exclamation mark" dial, bracelet, box and  guarantee

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: 1961
    Reference No: 5512
    Movement No: 68'164
    Case No: 694'070
    Model Name: Submariner
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1530, 25 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Oyster riveted bracelet stamped 80. Max length 200mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Folding deployant clasp stamped 3.62
    Dimensions: 39mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by a fitted Rolex box, pouch and guarantee paper dated June 7, 1962
    Literature: For another example of a reference 5512, please see 100 Superlative Rolex Watches by John Goldberger, page 186.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Rolex’s Submariner is an iconic timepiece, which over the span of its 60-year history, has remained true to its original design. While there have been slight modifications, the modern Submariner produced today, reference 114060, looks strikingly similar today as it did when first launched in 1953. Important changes were introduced when Rolex released the reference 5512 in 1959. The case was slightly enlarged from earlier models, and the Submariner’s case now featured prominent crown guards, adding a robust feel to the watch while also serving a functional role to protect the crown. The present Submariner from 1961 is an early example with desirable “pointed crown guards”.

    Collectors will be delighted by the present lot’s stunning condition, with a case that retains strong beveled lugs. The glossy dial with gilt chapter ring further impresses with its immaculate state of preservation. This dial is particularly rare as it displays an exclamation mark at 6 o'clock, believed to signify a lower amount of radium used for the luminous material. By this time, Rolex had realized the health hazards of using radium on their dials, and gradually transitioned to tritium. The luminous markers and matching hands have aged to a lovely cream color, and combined with the faded blue/grey bezel gives the watch a highly attractive, vintage appearance. Accompanied by its original box and guarantee card, it’s a trophy watch for collectors of rare Rolex sports watches.

  • 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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Rolex

Ref. 5512
A highly attractive and rare stainless steel wristwatch with pointed crown guards, gilt "exclamation mark" dial, bracelet, box and guarantee

1961
39mm. Diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

Estimate
CHF15,000 - 25,000 
€13,800-23,000
$15,500-25,800

sold for CHF47,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89

The Geneva Watch Auction: FOUR

Geneva Auctions 12 – 13 November 2016