ROLEX. A RARE AND ATTRACTIVE STAINLESS STEEL CHRONOGRAPH WRISTWATCH WITH BROWN SUBSIDIARY DIALS
SIGNED ROLEX, COSMOGRAPH, DAYTONA, REF. 6239, CASE NO. 1’475’697, MANUFACTURED IN 1966
Cal. 722 mechanical movement, 17 jewels, silvered brushed dial, applied baton numerals with luminous accents, luminous hands, outer fifths of a second divisions, three engine-turned subsidiary dials that have turned brown for constant seconds, 30 minutes and 12 hours registers, tonneau-shaped water-resistant-type case, blank bezel calibrated to 300 units, screw back, screw down crown, two round chronograph buttons in the band, case, dial and movement signed.
1966: Not all objects are able to leave a mark. Of the few that do, only a small number evolve in a way that remains faithful to the original concept whilst organically reinterpreting it through the eras. Daytona chronographs are among these few, so it is no surprise that they maintain their success half a century after their conception.
The 6239 reference featured in this picture is one of the earliest examples of this ‘accomplished syntax’. There is no more experimenting here, no more overlapping and mutually neutralizing ideas. Clearly, there is now an established style. The details are structured and ordered in their ensemble just like instruments in a visual orchestra that plays a clear tune. The argente soleil dial, the norm for Daytonas, gives the watch a modernity and light never seen before among its competitors. Another evolution is the location of the SWISS designation that is now only visible at six o’clock in the “T SWISS T” design.
This is an ideal watch for the enthusiast who would like to approach the world of “special” Daytonas for the first time.
Here, the Daytona writing has more important proportions compared to earlier iterations, but the subsidiary dials are undeniably eyecatching. The original black colour has toned down into a warmer chocolate hue. This chromatic shift may stem from a lack of isolation between the dial’s metal base and the top coated enamel, possibly in combination with exposure to humidity and heat. When the shift is perfectly even and balanced, as in this instance, the visual impact of the watch, and its collectability, are greatly increased.
Courtesy of Christie's