A rare and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with black dial

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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1966
    Reference No: 6238
    Case No: 1'226'564
    Model Name: "Black Pre-Daytona"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 722, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex pin buckle
    Dimensions: 36mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and buckle signed
    Literature: Similar examples of this reference are illustrated in I Cronografi Rolex La Leggenda, Pucci Papaleo Editore, pp. 278-291, as well as 100 Superlative Rolex Watches, John Goldberger, pp. 128-137.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The reference 6238 is one of the most important chronographs made by Rolex. It is a bridge between the classic chronographs made prior to the 1960s and the Daytona Cosmograph that would follow.

    The Rolex reference 6238 is a direct descendant of the Rolex reference 3525 from the late 1930s, the first Rolex chronograph with Oyster case and screwed crown. It also shares with its predecessors the fact that the dials are monochrome with a tachymeter scale on the outer section.

    Reference 6238 also paved the way to the now iconic Daytona Cosmograph with which it shares certain design elements such as the crown, the pushers, case and indexes. Thus the nickname “Pre-Daytona” given by collectors.

    One cannot help but be seductively lured by this timepiece, the matte black, or so-called “grené” finished dial gives the watch a sleek modern look. These black dials are particularly rare, as the majority of this reference was available with a silver dial.

    The present dial is part of the second generation grené dials with galvanic signature and scales. The “T-SWISS-T” found at the dial’s lower edge by 6 o’clock indicates that Tritium was used for the luminous hands and hour markers.
    The collectability and desirability of the reference 6238 is taking the same ascending path as the Daytona Cosmograph reference 6263/6265 and the overall excellent condition of the present watch along with its ultimate rarity makes it a definite must have for the discerning collector.

  • 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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157

Rolex

Ref. 6238
A rare and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with black dial

Circa 1966
36mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and buckle signed

Estimate
CHF100,000 - 150,000 
€88,000-132,000
$102,000-154,000

sold for CHF150,000

Contact Specialist
Alexandre Ghotbi
Head of Sale
+41 22 317 81 89
aghotbi@phillips.com

The Geneva Watch Auction: EIGHT

Geneva Auction 10-11 November 2018