Unpolished 1977 Patek Philippe Nautilus "Jumbo" (Ref. 3700/1) W/ Cork Box & Extracts From Archive
Along with the creation of Apple Computers and the Concorde Transatlantic Airplane, 1976 brought us one of the most iconic watch designs recognized to date, and by none other than the legendary Gerald Genta. This icon of design was the Patek Philippe Nautilus ref. 3700, often referred to as the “Jumbo” due to its large size for the era, 42mm. It was only 4 years earlier when Gerald Genta created the also very iconic Audemars Piguet Royal Oak ref. 5402 which was our first introduction to the porthole design that went on to inspire many other noteworthy watches. Like the Royal Oak’s slow beginnings, the Nautilus also took time to gain traction due to its unconventional stainless steel case for a luxury watch and expensive price point which led to very low initial production numbers. The porthole design not only inspired the watch's appearance, but the name Nautilus was in reference to Captain Nemo’s submarine in the novel “Twenty Thousand Leagues Under The Sea”. Genta designed the Nautilus in 1974 on a napkin while observing a group of Patek executives out for dinner during the Basel Trade Fair, he has been noted saying the sketch only took him 5 minutes to complete. The quick sketch must have been impressive because from that day forth the Patek Philippe Nautilus icon was born.
The Patek Philippe Nautilus "Jumbo" is rare not only because it is the original offering of the Nautilus but based on total production numbers. The 3700 was in production from 1976 to 1990 and the estimated production numbers by material are:
3700-01A (steel with large bracelet): about 3500
3700-11A (steel with narrow bracelet): about 1300
3700-1AJ (steel and gold with large bracelet): about 600
3700-11AJ (steel and gold with narrow bracelet): about 300
3700-1J and 3700-11J (yellow gold): about 1500 (diamond versions included)
3700-1G and 3700-11G (white gold): about 65
3700-1P (platinum): 1
The ref. 3700 Nautilus shares a few design cues from its older brother the Royal Oak, albeit the Nautilus is the more refined of the two, but namely the integrated bracelet and geometric bezel designs. The two watches also share the same movement based on the Jaegar-LeCoultre cal. 920 (cal. 28-255C in the Nautilus). This movement was the perfect operating base for the Nautilus and Royal Oak as it allowed the watches to be extremely thin while maintaining a self-winding mechanism.
|Bracelet||Patek Stainless Steel Integrated Bracelet W/ Deployant Clasp|
The stunning case remains in an original and unpolished condition which accurately displays all of the watch's signature angles and finishes with only minimal honest signs of use. The octangular bezel also remains completely unpolished. The watch retains its original unsigned crown. The first series integrated stainless steel bracelet retains all of its original links, exhibiting no stretch with very light signs of previous use.
The original and early "dot" dial is an incredible feat of design. The dial itself shows the charming signs of age that are synonymous with the early Nautilus ref. 3700 dial variants. The white gold markers are all in excellent condition, the tritium within the markers has achieved a gorgeous golden coloration and exhibits no degradation when inspected under U.V. light. The original white gold hands are in excellent condition and have been professionally restored with matching tritium to the dial, this is very common to see as it was normal for the tritium to fall out of the hands during service intervals.
This watch comes complete with its original and rare Patek Philippe Nautilus cork box, a Patek Philippe leather case, and two extracts from the Patek Philippe Archive. One extract is from 2006, the other is from 2015 that accompanied the watch upon its return from a Patek Philippe service interval.