With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with silvered dial and yellow gold indexes in 1986 and its subsequent sale on 14 January, 1987. Furthermore delivered with fitted presentation box.
Fresh to the market, this reference 3970 is a highly collectable specimen within the model's overall production, which lasted for nearly 20 years. The present example is part of the very first series, which is characterized by the snap on case back, versus later series which featured a screw back. The two subsidiary dials are also clearly a different shade than the surrounding main plate, which also differs from later generations. Bearing movement number 875'006, this was one of the first of the series to be manufactured.
Reference 3970 was launched in 1986, and produced with a snap on case back until 1988, which it was modified to be water-resistant, with a screw back. In 2004, the reference 5970 replaced the reference 3970. The model is illustrated in Patek Philippe Wristwatches by Martin Huber & Alan Banbery, second edition, p. 305.