5 Cool Finds – Our Picks from the 94th Auction at Crott Auctioneers (Including hyper-exclusive Lange and vintage chronographs from Rolex, Omega & Heuer)
Today, we’re back with our traditional “5 Cool Finds”, however in a slightly different formula. No worries, the deal is still the same: 5 watches that we pick for you and that deserve your interest. What is different today is that we look at an auction, the 94th watch auction from Crott Auctioneers, a German auction house with great reputation. The sale, which will occur on November 12th, 2016, features no less than 673 lots but, then again, no worries, we’re here to help you and we found 5 watches that are properly cool: 2 rare and superb modern A. Lange & Söhne and 3 vintage chronographs that couldn’t be more iconic.
Lot 73 – A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Referenzurh
This is a watch that you’re probably not familiar with, as extremely rare however not that old (produced in 2010). The Richard Lange Referenzurh is entirely dedicated to precision and pays tribute to antique German chronometers. It indeed features a function so dear to the Saxonian manufacture: the Zero-Reset. And if it can now be found in other watches of the brand, on this Referenzurh, it is the star of the show. The Richard Lange “Referenzuhr” is reminiscent of a historic precursor made in 1811 – a pocket chronometer known to have been used for synchronization purposes by the timekeeping service. By using the pusher at two, you can instantly resets the seconds hand to zero, where it remains so long as the push piece is depressed, while the movement keeps running. Thus, the watch can be perfectly synchronized with a reference time.
This watch has been produced in only 50 pieces and the present one is number 24. It is white gold with a sleek white dial, featuring the traditional Roman numerals of the Richard Lange collection. The display is here again entirely devoted to precision, with hours and minutes in the center and a power reserve indication. The central point remains the resettable small second at 8. Turning back the watch and you’ll be able to observe all the mechanics used to reset the second hand: a series of levers and a vertical clutch (just like a chronograph). Splendid and highly technical.
A nice detail, as all Richard Lange watches, is the 4 numeral on the dial written “IIII” and not “IV”, as the norm would suggest. This A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Referenzurh is listed here (lot 73), comes with original box, Lange booklet, original certificate and operating instructions and has an estimate of 36,000-50,000 Euros / 40,400-56,100 USD.
Lot 75 – A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar Tourbillon Handwerkskunst
What we have here is probably the ultimate Lange… It is über-complex, über-rare, über-luxurious and certainly extremely beautiful. On its own, the A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar Tourbillon (see details here) is already an extreme watch. It is a perpetual calendar, it is a Lange 1, with its so specific display and it features an automatic tourbillon movement (with the regulator placed secretly one the movement side). That alone makes it quite a watch, to say the least. Finding one is not easy, simply because of the hefty price and the low production numbers.
However, what we have today is not just a A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar Tourbillon. It is the extremely rare Handwerkskunst edition, limited to 15 watches in platinum (the present one is number 9). What makes it so unique is the solid white gold dial decorated with elaborate tremblage and relief techniques. The movement is also specific, with again different decorum and hand-engravings. The best of the manufacture is in this watch: the complex movement, the iconic design, the hand decoration of all the parts…
Because of that, if you ever want to bid, be prepared, as the estimate is 230,000-320,000 Euros / 257,700-358,500 USD. Not for all pockets. The watch, made in 2014, is listed here and comes with original box and integrated watch winder, operating instructions, guarantee, signed certificate of the master engraver, Lange booklet, setting pin, loupe and cleaning cloth.
208 – Heuer Autavia 2446M “Jochen Rindt”
Now we move to iconic vintage chronographs, and knowing how Heuer is now growing in auctions, you’ll be pleased to see that we have here an early Autavia 2446M, also named Jochen Rindt, because this F1 pilot was actually wearing this exact same watch. The Autavia 2446M is the second execution case and features a splendid and perfectly balanced reversed panda dial (black with white markers). The bezel used here is a 60-minute version (even if some with 12-hour bezel are also known).
For the anecdote, the 2446M was already a highly collectible watch but it became even more popular this year, as it has been chosen by collectors to be the inspirational piece behind the revival of the Autavia introduced earlier this year. This should give you an indication of the love given by collectors to this edition. Certainly a very good investment piece, alongside being a proper beauty.
Overall condition and movement are great – just note that the sub-dial hands might not be original (too fat). This Heuer Autavia 2446M “Jochen Rindt” is listed here and is estimated at 25,000-30,000 Euros / 28,100-33,600 USD.
261 – Omega Speedmaster CK2915-3 “Broad Arrow” hands
What we have here is the last execution of the first series of Speedmasters… Ok, this might sound a bit complex. The first generation of Speedmaster (from 1957 to 1959) was named CK2915. It is mainly known for its steel bezel engraved with tachymeter scale and its broad arrow hands. Well, this is true for the early versions of the CK2915. Indeed, the CK2915 has been produced in 3 version: CK2915-1, CK2915-2 (both with steel bezel and broad arrows hands) and CK2915-3. The -3 is a sort of transitional watch, a mix in-between the first generation and the future CK2998.
Thus, don’t be surprised to see this black bezel with aluminum insert. It is entirely legit. What is complex however are the hands, as some features the iconic “Broad Arrow” hands and some the “Alpha” hands, found on the later CK2998. However, after a closer inspection (thanks to the book Moonwatch Only), the present CK2915-3 should be perfectly legit (to the exception of the crown, which seems to be a 1960s version). The rest – straight case, bracelet, hands, dial, logos, pushers, caseback and 321 movement – is perfectly in line with the reference number.
This Speedmaster CK2915-3 might not have the same aura as the first edition CK2915-1 (which explains the lower estimate), it remains an exceptional version that features the great and iconic arrow hands. it is listed here, and comes with Omega extract from the archives. Estimated at 16,000-30,000 Euros / 18,000-33,600 USD.
420 – Rolex Daytona 6263 Full (really full) Set
Why showing you here a simple Rolex Daytona and not one of the “Paul Newman” versions that are listed in this auction? For multiple reasons that are actually quite simple. You see, I personally don’t really like these exotic Daytona watches. I prefer the sleek and pure design of the standard Daytona. Then, I think Paul Newman versions are overrated watches, with prices that I can’t always explain. In fact, Paul Newman Daytonas are not that rare. Then, it is known that many of them are not legit and who want to spend 6 figures in a doubtful watch. When it comes to vintage, I always prefer authenticity to potential rarity… And in the case of the present 6263, authenticity will be quite difficult to beat.
What we have here is a normal Cosmograph Daytona 6263 “Big Red”, with black dial, screwed pushers and Calibre 727. The overall condition is great and the look is, of course, timeless and iconic – and for a fraction of the price of an exotic version. What makes it special is the fact that it comes full set: original box, packaging, Cosmograph booklet, original Wempe sales invoice from 1980 and original certificate. Try to do better than this…
This great watch is listed here, with an estimate of 27,000-35,000 Euros / 30,300-39,300 USD. And that’s 3 times less than a Paul Newman… Food for thoughts.
The 94th Crott Auctionners sale will occur on November 12th, 2016. You can find details here and the complete online catalogue here.
Great as usual!
However for the first ALS watch, the article mentions that the 4 numeral is written as IIII rather than IV as the norm would suggest. I thought ALL watches using Roman numerals actually use IIII and not IV to balance the dial. The exception in watches would be to use IV.