Rolex. A fine and rare stainless steel automatic wristwatch with gilt 4 line dial and big crown  Submariner '4 Line', Ref: 6538, Circa 1956

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Lot 13Y
Rolex. A fine and rare stainless steel automatic wristwatch with gilt 4 line dial and big crown
Submariner '4 Line', Ref: 6538, Circa 1956

Sold for £ 62,562 (US$ 81,395) inc. premium
Rolex. A fine and rare stainless steel automatic wristwatch with gilt 4 line dial and big crown
Model: Submariner '4 Line'
Reference: 6538
Date: Circa 1956
Movement: 25-jewel Cal.1030 automatic, adjusted to 5 positions and temperatures, No.N69****
Dial: Black gilt, 4 line, luminous dot hour markers, baton quarters, gilt outer minute divisions, gilt Mercedes hands with luminous inserts, centre seconds
Case: Brushed and polished tonneau form, screw down back, inside back date coded III.56, screw down big crown, No.158***
Strap/Bracelet: Brown crocodile
Buckle/Clasp: Associated steel buckle
Signed: Case, dial & movement
Size: 37mm

Footnotes

  • The Rolex Submariner 6538 was supplied for just four years but it has become one of the best known and sought after of the Submariner models. Its general defining features are the over size (8mm) crown, lack of protective crown guards and gilt dial. The gilt dial comes with gilt hands which are unusual for a stainless steel case but typical for this date. These features mean that it is instantly recognisable and since it became the adopted watch of the James Bond film character played by Sean Connery, rather famous too.

    One defining feature of this particular watch is that is has a chronometer rating, indicated by the four line description above 6. Printed are meters first depth indication, Submariner in a different tone to the other writing and Official Certified Chronometer split over two lines.

    The calibre 1030 movement was available in both normal and Chronometer versions for this reference and this is the rarer of the two. The watch therefore would have had extra scrutiny and adjustment to get it through the rigorous test to gain a chronometer certificate. It is a rare sub-category of the reference 6538.

    The present owners father bought this watch second hand in 1970 for £20 as he could not afford a new watch for diving. Little did he realise he was buying into the Submariner legacy and has become one of the touch points for collectors the world over.
Contacts
Rolex. A fine and rare stainless steel automatic wristwatch with gilt 4 line dial and big crown  Submariner '4 Line', Ref: 6538, Circa 1956
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