Rolex - The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE Hong Kong Monday, November 25, 2019 | Phillips
  • Manufacturer: Rolex
    Year: Circa 1961
    Reference No: 5512, inside caseback I.61
    Movement No: D27’663
    Case No: 6'XX’388
    Model Name: Submariner
    Material: Stainless steel
    Calibre: Automatic, cal. 1560, 25 jewels
    Bracelet/Strap: Leather
    Clasp/Buckle: Stainless steel pin buckle
    Dimensions: 40mm diameter
    Signed: Dial, case and movement

  • Catalogue Essay

    The Rolex Submariner is with no doubt one of the world’s most iconic wristwatches. Designed for exploring the deep depths of the ocean, vintage submariners are now somewhat of a luxury, commanding high values with a respected following worldwide. With the reference 5512 fitted with a glossy “four-liner” dial already a rare bird, it is even rarer to have access to photocopies of the original owner from Japan wearing the watch. A watch once owned by Keinosuke Hara, a Japanese motorcycle enthusiast and engineer who once designed and built at Tokyo Hatsudo Company, the present reference 5512 is an attractive watch with an important provenance from the world of motorcycling.

    The reference 5512 Submariner was first introduced to the public in 1959, with an important upgrade of crown guards which are witnessed in all Submariner models till date. The earliest reference 5512 Submariner featured square crown guards, however only minimal quantities were produced as diver’s found it challenging to operate the crown whilst gloved. With the feedback received, Rolex immediately stopped its production on square crown guards and decided to feature pointed crown guards for practicality.

    The present example is a Rolex Submariner reference 5512 fitted with a black glossy “four-liner” dial was purchased by Mr. Hara on 10th January, 1962 in Haiwaii on his way back to Japan after his trip to the Daytona Beach Motorcycle US Grand Prix. The sentimental Submariner ref. 5512 was gifted to his son Jun Hara in 1985 and has remained in the safe ever since, until now.

  • 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. 5512, inside caseback I.61
A very rare and attractive stainless steel diver’s wristwatch with sweep center seconds, black glossy “four-liner” dial

Circa 1961
40mm diameter
Dial, case and movement

HK$250,000 - 500,000 

Sold for HK$350,000

Contact Specialist

Thomas Perazzi
Head of Watches, Asia
+852 2318 2001

The Hong Kong Watch Auction: NINE

Hong Kong Auction 25-26 November 2019