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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1963
    Reference No: 6239, further stamped 6238 inside the caseback
    Case No: 923'294
    Model Name: Cosmograph "Double Swiss"
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Manual, cal. 72B, 17 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet, end links stamped 57, max length 175mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex folding clasp stamped 2.62
    Dimensions: 36.5mm Diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

  • Catalogue Essay

    1963 is a year of paramount importance for Rolex, as it marks the birth of one of the brand’s most beloved lines of wristwatches: the Cosmograph Daytona. A true interpreter of its time, the model is a waterproof, sturdy sport’s chronograph powered by caliber 72B - a Rolex upgrade of Valjoux caliber 72 - with high legibility and equal reliability. Astoundingly enough, the model is first sold in the United States, and it will appear in Europe only the following year. The name Cosmograph Daytona itself suggests how deeply Rolex cared for the US market, as it incorporates two intrinsically American themes: the space race, and the Daytona race track.

    The present specimen is one of the earliest representatives of the model, bearing the very early serial number 923’294 which identifies it as part of the earliest batch of Cosmographs made, and furthermore bearing a “Double Swiss” dial. Double Swiss dials are identified by having two “Swiss” designations at 6 o’ clock, one visible and the other mostly hidden by the case. Such a trait is direct consequence of the semi-industrial production process typical of the time: dials made for reference 6238 were employed for some examples from the earliest batch of ref. 6239, most probably either to deplete a stock or to make up for a shortage/delay of appropriate dials. As it turned out, the “Swiss” designation printed on those dial happened to be covered by the new case design of ref. 6239, forcing Rolex to add an additional Swiss designation. In virtue of their rarity and the fascinating insight the offer into the “gears” of Rolex’s workshop at the dawn of the Daytona, Double Swiss examples are highly sought-after and actively hunted down by Rolex collectors.

  • 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.

    View More Works

999

Ref. 6239, further stamped 6238 inside the caseback
A highly rare and attractive stainless steel chronograph wristwatch with "Double Swiss" dial and bracelet

Circa 1963
36.5mm Diameter
Case, dial, movement and bracelet signed

Estimate
HK$470,000 - 780,000 
€51,900-86,200
$60,300-100,000

Sold for HK$500,000

Contact Specialist
Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2030
[email protected]

Ziyong Ho
Specialist
+852 9386 2032
[email protected]

Jill Chen
Specialist
+852 2318 2033
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: SEVEN

Hong Kong Auction 27 November 2018