Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE Hong Kong Monday, November 25, 2019 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1973
    Reference No: 1655
    Movement No: D'589’437
    Case No: 3’284’848
    Model Name: Explorer II
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1575, 26 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster folded bracelet stamped 7836, endlinks stamped 380, max length 185mm
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel Rolex Oyster deployant clasp, stamped "S,W11"
    Dimensions: 38mm Diameter
    Signed: Dial, case, movement, bracelet and clasp signed
    Accessories: Further accompanied by Rolex Guarantee stamped O.J. Perrin dated 27th June 1975, Rolex service Guarantee, Rolex service invoice, original invoice, instruction manual, product literature and fitted presentation box.

  • Catalogue Essay

    The Explorer II was launched and seen in Rolex catalogs in 1971 as the ref. 1655. The introduction of the new model was a significant milestone for Rolex. Instead of a refined upgrade of the Explorer, the Explorer II is a completely unique watch of its own. Featuring a 24-Hour calibrated bezel, the purpose was to provide speleologists to differentiate between night and day in tremendous caving expeditions. Whilst referred by collectors as “freccione”, it translates to “big arrow”, referring to the oversized and neon-like orange center hand.

    The ref. 1655 was produced in 5 different marks, and two additional service dials known, one with tritium and the other with luminova. The present example is fitted with a Mark IV dial and bezel and further accompanied by the full set of accessories that came with the watch when it was purchased.

  • Artist Biography


    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. 1655
A fine and attractive stainless steel wristwatch with date, 24-hour indication, bracelet, guarantee and presentation box

Circa 1973
38mm Diameter
Dial, case, movement, bracelet and clasp signed

HK$78,000 - 155,000 

Sold for HK$175,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE

Hong Kong Auction 25-26 November 2019