In The Shop – Vintage Watches: A 1974 Rolex Day-Date Ref. 1803, A 1994 Audemars Piguet Perpetual Calendar, And A 1960s Wittnauer Professional Chronograph

In The Shop – Vintage Watches: A 1974 Rolex Day-Date Ref. 1803, A 1994 Audemars Piguet Perpetual Calendar, And A 1960s Wittnauer Professional Chronograph

It’s Wednesday, which means one thing in the HODINKEE Shop: The arrival of a fresh selection of vintage watches for you to consider. Today, we have mostly gold watches (with one gold-plated!) and a couple of stainless-steel options that cover all the bases, from sporty to dressy and everywhere in between.

Sit back and relax, it’s time for vintage.  

1960s Wittnauer Professional Chronograph Ref. 242T

The Wittnauer Professional Chronograph ref. 242T is a cool and interesting chronograph from the 1960s. It’s something you don’t see every day in terms of design, with its combination of a space-age dial aesthetic and decimal scale. Inside you’ll find the Valjoux 72, the same movement found in early Rolex Daytonas. The detail that makes this example special – besides its great condition – is that it’s genuinely fresh-to-market from its original owner. The story goes that he received it as a gift from his parents for his high school graduation in 1969, because he was learning how to fly and his parents wanted him to have a reliable chronograph. The owner went on to be a commercial pilot for Delta, and he wore this exact watch for over 30 years on the job.

1974 Rolex Day-Date Ref. 1803 In 18k White Gold With Arabic Calendar

There is something so satisfying about a solid white-gold watch on a matching bracelet. It’s a subtle and low-key expression of luxury that has its own distinct personality. This white-gold Day-Date is special for a few reasons. One – as we said – it’s in all white gold, which stands out compared to the more popular yellow-gold variants; two, it features a Day and Date wheel in Arabic, indicating it was originally for the Middle Eastern market; and three, the dial is of the non-lume variety. All three factors combine for an uncommon variant of one of the most recognizable watches out there. Trust us, you won’t come across another one of these very often. 

1994 Audemars Piguet Perpetual Calendar Ref. 25657BA

We haven’t had a perpetual calendar in the HODINKEE Shop for a while, so when we laid eyes on this 1990s QP from Audemars Piguet, we were quite excited to share it with you. You won’t find many other watches out there in gold, with this complication, from such a prestigious brand, for this kind of money. Besides representing an excellent value for a complicated calendar in gold, this example is in excellent condition and wears extremely well on the wrist. With a 36mm diameter, it has a solid wrist presence while remaining flat enough to wear under a cuff. One nice detail about this watch is its stepped bezel, which adds some detail to the case and provides it extra dimension. 

The Full Set

In addition to the three highlights above, we have a beautiful 1950s Zenith chronograph in a 37mm pink-gold case, a gold-plated 1973 Omega Seamaster Chronograph with caliber 861, and a fun Omega “Admiralty” ref. 135.015 with orange accents from 1968. Head on over to the HODINKEE Shop for all the details!   


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