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    Sale 1348

    Important Pocket Watches and Wristwatches

    12 November 2007, Geneva

  • Lot 36

    Patek Philippe. An extremely fine, rare and large stainless steel chronograph wristwatch


    Price Realised  


    Patek Philippe. An extremely fine, rare and large stainless steel chronograph wristwatch
    Signed Patek Philippe, Geneve, ref. 530, movement no. 862'843, case no. 508'294, manufactured in 1942
    Cal. 13''' nickel-finished lever movement stamped twice with the Geneva seal, 23 jewels, bimetallic compensation balance, micrometer regulator, the silvered matte dial with applied steel square-shaped and Arabic numerals, outer railway five minute divisions and tachymetre scale, two subsidiary dials indicating constant seconds and 30 minutes register, in large circular case with downturned lugs, snap on back, two rectangular chronograph buttons in the band, stainless steel Patek Philippe buckle, case, dial and movement signed
    36.5 mm. diam.

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    Accompanied by Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with silvered dial, applied steel hour markers and tachometre scale in 1942 and its subsequent sale on 4 December 1942.

    This watch is an extremely well preserved and previously unrecorded example of the celebrated reference 530 chronograph in stainless steel. To date, only five other references 530 cased in stainless have been offered at auction or published in literature. These watches are all, without exception, proudly-cherished trophies in the world's most distinguished private watch collections.

    Reference 530 was introduced to the market in 1937 and is one of Patek Philippe's rarest chronograph models. Predominantly known to be cased in either yellow or rose (pink) gold, the stainless steel version is amongst the scarce specialities amongst collectors of complicated Patek Philippe wristwatches. Whereas the gold version is known to have been in production during at least two decades until the mid 1950s, it appears that the stainless steel version was only available during a short period of time, mainly in the early 1940s. One may safely assume that at this epoch, especially during World War II and the years immediately afterwards, stainless steel was the more accessible case material - not limited to watch manufacturers and without regulations imposed by customs.

    Reference 530 is the larger version of the better known reference 130, Patek Philippe's classic chronograph retaining the timeless Calatrava design. However, reference 530 stands out by its impressive diameter overshadowing its smaller "sister model" by a substantial 4 mm. Another important element for this stainless steel version is the width between the lugs, an astounding 21.5 mm. Only a few examples of the gold reference 530 feature such impressive case proportions.

    The present watch furthermore impresses by it overall very good condition. The case shows only little wear and has not suffered from overpolishing. In fact, its proportions remain crisp, most evident to the beholders eye are the sharp edges of the lugs. It is exceedingly difficult to find any reference 530, either in gold or steel, retaining its original case proportions to such extent. The dial reflects a great shine with no signs of any restoration and enhances the overall look of this legendary wristwatch.

    The model is illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, p. 265.