Jaeger-LeCoultre, Polaris, ref. E859, a gentleman's stainless steel wrist watch
Jaeger-LeCoultre, Polaris, ref. E859, a gentleman's stainless steel wrist watch, no. 987712, circa 1965, automatic alarm movement, cal. K825, black dial with trapezium luminous hour markers and Roman numeral quarters, pointed hour and minute hands, rotating central alarm indicator, rotating outer elapsed time bezel, three crowns to the right of the case, base metal snap case back, on a non-original black rubber strap with stainless steel pin buckle, case, dial, and movement signed, accompanied by an extract from the Jaeger-LeCoultre archives, box, outer carton and undated warranty booklet, diameter 42mm Dive watches with their robust construction and utilitarian styling have proved to be amongst the most collectable of all vintage watches. While most are simple three-handers, the Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris adds the highly desirable alarm complication. The concept first came to light with the 1959 Deep Sea Alarm, but the Polaris as we know it today was launched in 1963 with 50 prototypes, 500 units were produced in 1965 and 1714 were produced in total. The first watches were made with a double case back, the outer skin being nickel-plated brass for better alarm resonance. The outer skin was susceptible to corrosion from both sweat and seawater and contact with the wrist muffled the alarm so a triple case back was created with a perforated steel outer layer to let the sound out. The case was 'compressor' style meaning that the deeper the watch went the greater the water resistance. The original crowns are distinguished by their cross-hatch decoration, without a circular border. Early examples of a Jaeger-LeCoultre Polaris are rarely found in such good condition especially with the appropriate box and guarantee papers.
Movement is currently functioning. Movement appears to be in a generally good condition with little sign of previous intervention when viewed under a 4x loupe. Dial appears to be in a generally good condition with no marks visible when viewed under a 4x loupe. Aging and discolouration to the luminous material of the hour markers and the alarm indicatorHands show marks and tarnishing when viewed under a x4 loupe. Discolouration to the luminous insertsGlass has some scratches and marks when viewed under a 4x loupe. Deeper mark to the edge at 7.30 positionCase shows scratches, marks and dints. Rotating bezel rotates. Case back shows heavy pitting and corrosion which has perforated the outer skin in places.Crown has scratches and marks. Strap appears to be in good condition with minor marks and creasing. Buckle appears to be in good condition with minor marks and scratches when viewed under a 4x loupe.This lot comes with a box undated papers.Dreweatts 1759 do not guarantee the working order or accuracy of any lots sold. Due to opening of the case back we recommend this watch is re-sealed by a qualified technician to ensure any stated water resistance is achieved.