We have partnered with Catawiki to bring you a selection of interesting watches they’ve auctioned. Different from the other auctioneers in the market, Catawiki started originally in 2008 as a website where collectors could manage and keep track of their collections (comics for example). Then, because of growing popularity of the website, Catawiki started to host weekly auctions for collectible objects, including comics, art, antiques, classic cars, books and… watches.
Every other week, we will bring you our picks of Catawiki’s watch auctions. Give you some insights on the watch that has been sold and why we picked it. Because Catawiki has a very short lead time for their auctions, it is up to you to register on their website and go through the upcoming auctions hunting for treasures. It is a fun thing to do, and Catawiki’s own watch auctioneers are there to help you.
A selection of three watches this week, two vintage models and one modern watch. Buying a vintage watch can be quite a hassle, especially when you lack the knowledge on a specific model. Luckily, for a number of brands – mainly the big ones – there’s quite a but of information out there. In books and catalogs, but also on-line. It is always important to do you homework.
Let’s start with the big dog, the Patek Philippe Gondolo reference 5100R-001. This Gondolo reference 5100 collection was launched in the 2001, but grabbed back to their art deco watches from way earlier. The 1950’s Patek Philippe reference 2554 definitely influenced the Gondolo reference 5100, nick named ‘Manta Ray’. The reference 5100 was introduced in 2001 to commemorate the new millennium and came in three different versions. 3000 pieces were produced in total, of which were 1500 in yellow gold, 750 in rose gold, 450 in white gold and 300 in platinum. We are looking at one of the 750 pieces in rose gold. The Gondolo collection was already introduced in the 1990’s and received its interesting name from a Patek Philippe retailer in Brazil, ‘Gondolo & Labouriau’ in the early 1900s. The current Gondolo collection, has the reference 5200 watch that was introduced in 2013 and can be seen as the successor of the limited edition 5100. The new reference 5200 has a power reserve of 8-days.
Not only the design is interesting about this reference 5100, it is also the 10 days movement that was quite something in 2000. In the sub dial at 12 o’clock, there’s the power reserve indicator with a 10 days scale. The hand-wound caliber 28-20/220 movement is visible through the sapphire case back. A beautiful sight.
Catawiki auctioned this reference 5100R-001 that was complete with box and papers and in mint condition. The opening bid started at 9000 Euro but the final result is 35.000 Euro. For the rose gold version, that’s quite a sharp result. Yellow gold versions tend to be a bit cheaper than the rose gold versions, the platinum models are far more expensive in the market.
It is no secret we have a weak spot for Omega here. That has a good reason, as we feel it is an interesting brand with great vintage watches (of which a good part is still very affordable) and modern watches packed with innovation. The Omega Seamaster that we selected for this week’s overview of Catawiki auctions is one with a bumper movement. Basically, it is an automatic movement with a rotor that doesn’t turn 360 degrees but operates in a smaller ‘compartment’ using springs to ‘bump’ the weight. When you move these bumper watches, you’ll feel the weight going back and forth. Omega used this movement for various watches, including their – then – flagship Constellation and their dust-proof Seamaster watches. You’ll also find them with a calendar (some have the date aperture at 6 o’clock), and like this reference 2767SC, also without. The movement inside, caliber 354 was based on their caliber 28,10 RA (also known as caliber 340 from 1949 onwards) that was used as a basis caliber for the movements that were used in the first Seamaster in 1948 and later on in the first Constellation in 1952. The caliber 354 variant, had a central seconds hand, 19.800 vph and a swanneck regulator.
You’ll find these Seamaster watches with bumper movement in stainless steel, gold-capped (steel base with a solid gold ‘cap’, we explained it here) and solid gold. This particular watch is in 14 carat solid gold and dates back to ca.1954 according to its serial number. It is a 34mm watch that you can get away with if you have large wrists, due to those typical beefy lugs for this Seamaster (Calendar) type of watch. The dial, case and crown are very nice, and the dial is to believed in original condition. The gold buckle is original, but from a later era (1960s).
Looking for a nice gold dress watch? Keep an eye out for these beautiful Seamaster (bumper) models from the 1950s. You’ll find them for a bit less than its flagship brother, the Constellation. This particular Omega Seamaster was hammered at 1500 Euro.
One of the most iconic watches in the world, the Rolex Datejust. It doesn’t need much introduction, but this was the first automatic watch with date introduced in 1945. The mother of all modern wrist watches as they say. The very first Rolex Datejust is smaller and looks a bit more classic than today’s 41mm Datejust but they are without a doubt related. This reference 1601 is more close to today’s Datejust, and measures 36mm in diameter. A size that Rolex used for a long time for their Datejust and Day-Date models (and it is still available in that size as well). The 1600-series came in a couple of variations, like the 1600 (steel case, steel smooth bezel), 1601 (steel case, white gold fluted bezel) and 1603 (steel case and engine-turned steel bezel) for example. This 1601 model, in steel and with a 14 carat white gold bezel was the one to have if you didn’t want to go full gold. The jubilee bracelet is one of the most comfortable bracelets we’ve ever tried.
The caliber 1570 movement of the Rolex Datejust 1601 was also used for their Submariner model for example. A work-horse movement with the recognizable red wheels.
It is a classic that you – at least – need to try at some point, be it a vintage 1974 reference 1601 that we have here or one of the slightly later models (16000-series). The later series appear to be a bit larger due to the flat dial, but also measure 36mm. The Datejust 1600 series have this pie-pan dial, like the Day-Date 1803 watches. The jubilee bracelet on this particular 1601 dates back to 1976 (the watch itself to 1974).
These reference 1601 Datejusts have seen some increase in value over the last 10-15 years, but are still very affordable. For a long time, you would be able to find one around or even under 1500 Euro, but today it will be very tough to find one under 2000 Euro, even in ‘medium’ condition. This particular Rolex Datejust 1601 was hammered at 2450 Euro, being in good and fully working condition.
These were our picks of the sold lots of last few weeks. The Omega being the cheapest, but a lot of fun (especially since it is in full gold and has the beefy lugs), the Rolex Datejust perhaps the ultimate classic and the Patek Philippe 5100R-001 for being rare and special, especially for the time of introduction in 2001. We picked them because they might be our Catawiki choices if we would have a budget that matches the hammered prices.
Set-up a free account with Catawiki today and start browsing and searching yourself. You will easily loose track of time while doing so, don’t tell us we didn’t warn you.
*These bi-weekly series are a partnership with Catawiki. The writing and selection is done by Fratello Watches.
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