Up for grabs is a Rolex Pre-Daytona Chronograph
Reference 4500 with Cal. 23 manual wind movement
616XXX serial number circa 1949 production
This watch is fresh to market and as found from the original owner’s grandson. I met him in person after he flew in from Brazil to deliver the watch to me. The story goes that his grandfather, Hans Degen was a Swiss citizen who moved to Brazil in the 1950’s to represent and sell Rolex to this market. He ended up staying in Brazil and having a family there. Hans passed away in the late 1960’s and left several watches to the family, one of which was this watch. The son and later the grandson, preferred to wear the gold DateJust and the gold Thunderbird reference 6609 instead of the manual wind chronograph, so the watch has gone for many decades pretty much unworn, though they would have it serviced by Rolex in Sao Paulo as also documented inside the caseback.
Excellent vintage condition case with even lugs, no corrosion or pitting, clear and legible numbers. Original rose gold winding crown.
The dial is original, well preserved, with rose gold accents and hands. Amazing condition for this model which is often either refinished or poorly aged. The lume dots on the dial are still intact and react on Geiger as should with radium levels.
Original pink gold bezel.
The caseback is original, stamped 4500 inside and also has a hand inscribed serial number matching to the case.
The bracelet is a very rare Rolex Oyster rivet made by Gay Freres with “57” ends as with ’58 date stamp on clasp. On the inside of the end-link, there is also hand inscribed serial number matching to the watch. Even though the date on the clasp is about 10 years younger than the watch, we (the grandson and I) do believe this bracelet was on the watch originally.
This is a very rare example in very rare condition.