• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 1413

    Rare Watches Including Important Private Collections

    16 May 2016, Geneva

  • Lot 93

    Rolex. An extremely rare and attractive stainless steel automatic dual time wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, date, bakelite bezel, double red printing, bracelet, blank guarantee, GMT-Master card, brochure and box

    SIGNED ROLEX, OYSTER PERPETUAL, 50M-165FT, GMT-MASTER, REF. 6542, CASE NO. 112'927, MANUFACTURED IN 1955

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    Rolex. An extremely rare and attractive stainless steel automatic dual time wristwatch with sweep centre seconds, date, bakelite bezel, double red printing, bracelet, blank guarantee, GMT-Master card, brochure and box
    Signed Rolex, Oyster Perpetual, 50m-165ft, GMT-Master, ref. 6542, case no. 112'927, manufactured in 1955
    Cal. 1030 automatic movement, 25 jewels, black dial, luminous dot, baton and dagger numerals, luminous Mercedes hands, central hand for the second time zone, sweep centre seconds, magnified window for date, tonneau-shaped water-resistant-type case, revolving blue and red bakelite bezel calibrated for 24 hours, screw back stamped IV.55, screw down crown, stainless steel Rolex Oyster riveted bracelet, deployant clasp stamped 2.55, case, dial and movement signed
    38 mm. diam., overall bracelet length approx. 180 mm.


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    With Rolex period blank Guarantee, GMT-Master card and brochure, presentation box and outer packaging.

    Reference 6542, the first GMT-Master model, was introduced in 1954, fitted with a bright acrylic or bakelite bezel insert, black gloss dials with gilt printing and cases without crown guards.

    The present GMT-Master is not only a very early example of this legendary model but most importantly an exceptionally rare variant, distinguished by the "double-red" printing of the depth rating 50m -165ft and the designation GMT-Master.

    To date, only two references 6542 with this particular dial design are known to exist, this watch, no. 112’927, and no. 112’873. This exceedingly small number leads to the assumption that Rolex tested the indication of a depth rating in addition to the model name before settling on the gilt (then white) “GMT-Master” designation only. A conceivable decision since the GMT-Master was never meant to be a diver’s watch, hence also its depth rating of 50m-165ft, half of the rating of the Submariner models from the period.

    Another noteworthy fact of the present reference 6542 are the different tones of the “double red” printing, the depth rating in scarlet red whereas the GMT-Master designation shows a rather rose tone.

    One of the rarest and most exclusive Rolex vintage sports watches to come to the market in many years, the appeal of this watch is further enhanced by its superbly original condition, the original bakelite bezel, the correct hands and crown and the Oyster bracelet from the same period.


    Special Notice

    On lots marked with an + in the catalogue, VAT will be charged at 8% on both the premium as well as the hammer price.


    Pre-Lot Text

    The GMT-Master... "The finest timepiece for flight navigation" (Major F. Libby, USAFR)