An exceedingly rare unpolished "drawer find" Rolex Sea-Dweller reference 1665 “Double Red” from 1977. A true grail find, this Mark IV Rolex DRSD (Double Red Sea-Dweller) came to us in an exceedingly rare unpolished and all original condition. Sat unworn for the last two decades and purchased from the original and only owner, this watch is sure to be an incredible addition to any serious collection as well as a superb investment in the coming years.
Purchased by the original and only owner from Rolex in Saudi Arabia whilst working on an exploration contract, this Double Red Sea-Dweller comes complete with original service papers from the early 1980’s, a collection of photos from the owner and kind permission for the new owner to be introduced to the original owner to answer any questions. The owner was kind enough to provide a short description of his time, an extract of which is included below.
"I started work at 16 at Geevor Tin Mine in Cornwall and went underground working as an exploration diamond driller. I worked out under the sea in the old Levant Mine where you could hear the rocks moving above you! At 20 I was asked to join an ex colleague in Saudi Arabia as an exploration diamond driller on the edge of the empty quarter. There were two of us supported by a team of Yemeni workers – it was quite an adventure! We were also developing new drilling equipment for our supplier at the same time. I worked in Saudi for about five years before returning home, however I continued working as an exploration diamond driller all over the world as well as in the last of the Cornish tin mines before they closed but I never went back to Saudi to work."
In recent years demand for unpolished examples such as this coming from the original, single owner with recorded providence have far exceeded that for polished “full set” examples that have passed through multiple owners. It’s no surprise really, with the number of fake box and paper sets and even reputable dealers putting watches together from parts, today more than ever “box and papers” is little guarantee to the original state of a watch, especially with something as collectable as the DRSD!
As is often the way when we get pieces like this, we share images with some of our close customers and dealer partners, many of which have tried to get us to sell it to them before listing it! However as much as we love our partners, we’d prefer to sell it to a collector instead of selling it to the trade only to see it reappear for £5-15k more than what we sell it for! Be quick though, as we won’t sit on it for long!
As always if you require any additional photos, videos or information please do not hesitate to contact us.
- Case: Original. Excellent unpolished condition. Case back inscription still clearly visible.
- Dial: Original. Mint condition, almost flawless. Beautifully aged lume.
- Hands: Original. Excellent condition with minor spotting and a mark on the second hand lume plot.
- Glass: Original. Excellent condition. We gave it a light polish to remove the majority of scratches, some marks remain notably around the 10 o’clock position. These could be polished out should the new owner wish.
- Bracelet: Original ref. 91350 “flip-lock” bracelet in good, unpolished condition showing scratches and a small amount of stretch as expected for its age.
- Movement: Original caliber 1570, 26 jewels automatic movement. Just serviced and functioning perfectly. New mainspring and seal added during service. Original parts retained.
- Papers: Include original Rolex service papers. Unfortunately the owner’s mother-in-law threw out the original box (inside of which were the papers, receipt and hangtags!!) during a recent house move
- Provenance: Property of a trusted, known seller. Whilst we cannot reveal their details here they have kindly agreed to provide their contact details to the new owner should they wish to contact them about any aspects of the watch.