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  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1978
    Reference No: 1665
    Movement No: D215’135
    Case No: 5’225’786, repeated inside caseback and stamped 1665
    Model Name: Sea-Dweller, “Mk IV”
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1570, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet stamped “93150”, endlinks stamped “580”, max length 175mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp stamped “H”
    Dimensions: 40mm diameter
    Signed: Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed
    Accessories: Accompanied by Rolex guarantee stamped Mappin & Webb Ltd, London dated 2nd May 1978, two green passport holders, outer packaging and fitted presentation box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    Launched in 1967, the Rolex Sea-Dweller ref. 1665 was developed to cater towards professional underwater divers needing a watch that could withstand deep pressure underwater. While the Submariner ref. 1680 had a depth rating of 660ft (220m), the Sea-Dweller ref. 1665 comes in deep at 2000ft (610m) tripling the ref. 1680.

    The Sea-Dweller saw the ingenious addition of a helium escape valve. When working in helium-rich atmospheres, tiny helium molecules would seep through the crystal and rubber gaskets into the watch and create pressure once the diver had surfaced. This would usually result in the crystal popping off. The development of the valve was meant to prevent this issue by letting the gas escape the watch case and easing the pressure. Today, Rolex worked with a number of divers and organizations around the world to aide in the Sea-Dweller's development, the name Sea-Dweller itself is a direct nod to the fact that the model had been developed to meet the demands of scientists living - or “dwelling” - under the sea. Following the positive results obtained with these companies, Rolex went on to publicly commercialize the model.

    While early examples of the Sea-Dweller ref. 1665 featured two lines of inscription in red above the depth rating earning its nickname the “Double Red”, later examples featured a dial without the red writing. The present example ref. 1665 “Double Red” from circa 1978 with a 5.2 million serial is belongs to the Mk IV variant with a dotted texture of its red texts. Preserved in attractive overall condition it is also accompanied by its original guarantee and presentation box.

  • 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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952

Ref. 1665
A fine and rare stainless steel diver’s wristwatch with center seconds, date, gas escape valve, bracelet, guarantee and presentation box

Circa 1978
40mm diameter
Case, dial, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

Estimate
HK$160,000 - 300,000 
€17,700-33,200
$20,500-38,500

Sold for HK$441,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2031
[email protected]

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: XIII

Hong Kong Auctions 25-26 November 2021