With Patek Philippe Extract from the Archives confirming production of the present watch with silvered dial, enamel hour markers and pulsometre scale in 1936 and its subsequent sale on 23 January 1937. Furthermore delivered with a detached 18K gold woven bracelet and clasp.
The watch offered here for sale is a very fine example within the family of reference 130 chronograph wristwatches. Not only one of the earliest examples of the celebrated model, it is in addition fitted with the ingenious single button movement designed by Victorin Piguet and features the highly attractive and exceedingly rare two-tone silvered dial with typical late 1930s sector design, very architectural applied baton hour markers. The fascinating combination of the brushed segment for the hours markers contrasting with the matte centre and outer ring featuring the scales render the watch a unique and extremely elegant look.
It is furthermore believed to be the only example of a single button reference 130 in yellow gold fitted with a sector dial combining hard enamel and applied gold baton numerals known to exist to date. As a matter of fact, gold chronographs with sector dials are much rarer, for obvious reasons, than their peers cased in stainless steel.
The present single button chronograph was only once before offered at public auction some 20 years ago. At the time, it was fresh to the market and its dial showed a level of oxidation one would expect on a wristwatch which, for over half a century, was exposed to the elements. Following its acquisition, its dial was professionally cleaned and brought back to its original beauty with a wonderful shine and properly raised hard enamel signature and scales. The South American retailer's signature, printed but not enamelled, is now no longer visible. The case has also benefitted from a sensible polish and presents itself in a very attractive state of conservation.
This single button chronograph offers one of the most beautiful 1930s designs and is blessed with one of the most acclaimed chronograph mechanisms. Thanks to its attractive condition and captivating appeal, it is not only a great collectors piece but would equally charm any connoisseurs wrist.
Reference 130 is Patek Philippe's first chronograph model which was given a reference number. Under this reference Patek Philippe produced a diversity of models such as the traditional chronograph but also the more exotic single button chronographs. Both types were available with different precious metal as well as stainless steel cases.
Single button chronographs were in production between 1924 and the late 1930s. The majority was cased in the classic "Calatrava-style" case like the present example. Earlier examples can also be found with cushion-shaped cases. Many of these watches are actually only known through literature and archival images.
The ébauche for this unusual watch was commissioned by Patek Philippe and made by Victorin Piguet of Le Sentier. During the 1920s the company made most of the ébauches for complicated movements, including single button and split seconds chronographs, mainly for prestigious firms like Patek Philippe.