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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1969
    Reference No: 6239 inside case back stamped 6242
    Case No: 2'011'128
    Model Name: Cosmograph Daytona
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 722-1, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, end links stamped 271, max length 190mm.
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex folding deployant clasp
    Dimensions: 36.5mm. Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex fitted presentation box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    At first glance, the present watch appears to be a well-preserved Cosmograph Daytona. The Mk 1 steel bezel, long and thin minutes hand and "Daytona" signature at 6 o'clock are all correct attributes of the beloved reference 6239.

    Yet, a small detail on the inside caseback, which may not be obvious to the casual observer, sets this watch apart from its peers. One would usually expect to find "6239" or even possibly "6238" punched on the inside case back of this watch. Yet, this one bears the reference 6242.

    A cursory search of this reference number hardly yields results. Yet, investigative research shows that these four digits are stamped on the inside case back of the one and only, reference 6262 Yacht-Master prototype.

    One can thus conclude, that Rolex had originally intended to introduce reference 6242 in their line of production, only to scrap the project later. It is even possible that the reference was intended to be made for the mythical Yacht-Master line. Today, only a handful of these "prototype" watches are known on the market, one having resided in the collection of Eric Clapton.

    Having already produced the case backs, Rolex decided to use the existing ones in their regular line of production. The present watch was thus fortuitously fitted with a 6242 case back.

    It is important to note that the present watch is consigned by its original owner. As such, this example is not just a well preserved wristwatch. It provides a legitimate window into the legend of Rolex, enabling collectors to first, imagine what could be, and second, peek into the firm's history to understand of the inner workings of the mythical Rolex factory.

  • Artist Biography

    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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Ref. 6239 inside case back stamped 6242
An extremely rare and interesting stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with bracelet

Circa 1969
36.5mm. Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Estimate
CHF20,000 - 30,000 
€17,300-25,900
$20,700-31,000

Sold for CHF47,500

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
+41 22 317 81 89
[email protected]

The Geneva Watch Auction: SIX

Geneva Auctions 11 - 12 November 2017