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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1978
    Reference No: 1665
    Case No: 5'193'112
    Model Name: "Double Red" Sea-Dweller
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1570, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, max. length 195mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex expandable clasp
    Dimensions: 39.5mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial and movement signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    When, in the mid-sixties, deep diving operations company COMEX asked Rolex to develop a watch which could withstand extreme depth, neither of the two companies suspected to be in the process of creating one of the most appreciated and iconic diver’s watches of all times: the Sea-Dweller. In fact, a batch of Submariner 5513 was modified with the Gas Escape Valve – the defining feature of the Sea-Dweller. The watches were so much appreciated that another order was placed by Comex, and for this second order Rolex adopted a specific reference: 5514. From there to mainstream commercialization it was a very short step, and in 1967 the Sea-Dweller, ref. 1665, was available to the public. From its inception to circa 1978 (case number about 5.2 million), it was available in what is now considered its most collectible variation: the Double Red dial, so called for oblivious reasons.

    The present watch is indeed one of the very last examples of this legendary timepiece made by Rolex, bearing case number 5’193’112. Its Mark IV dial – characterized by the grainy print and perfectly aligned D and R of “Dweller” and “Submariner” – is preserved in exceptional condition, without a blemish. The only signs of the passage of time are the presence of a very light patina, and of course the perfectly even, intense and extremely attractive color shift of the luminous material.

  • 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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820

Ref. 1665
A fine and rare stainless steel wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, date, "DRSD" dial, gas escape valve and bracelet

Circa 1978
39.5mm diameter
Case, dial and movement signed

Estimate
HK$120,000 - 200,000 
€13,100-21,800
$15,000-25,000

Sold for HK$325,000

Contact Specialist
Ziyong Ho
Specialist
+852 9386 2032
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: FIVE

Hong Kong Auction 28 November 2017