It is believed that no more than five Patek Philippe Beta 21 watches were ever made with lugs. The most common version of Patek’s Beta 21 has a fixed bracelet. Beta 21s with removable bracelets are rare. The watches with case lugs are way, way beyond rare. This watch is a piece unique as it is the only one with lugs and original gold dial observed.
The Beta 21 movement was the fruit of a collaborative effort, named the Centre Electronique Horloger, which got underway in 1962 and was sponsored by over 20 leading Swiss watch brands. The prototype movement debuted in 1967. In 1968, a consortium of Swiss manufacturers pooled their resources and manufacturing capabilities to mass produce the calibers. The first watches containing the Beta 21 movement arrived on the market in 1970.
The Beta 21 is an electronic caliber. The movement features a quartz crystal and interestingly, while the natural oscillation rate of the quartz crystal is 8192 Hz, Patek reduced the oscillation rate to 256 Hz by means of a proprietary frequency reducer. The seconds hand sweeps (versus the usual ticking of quartz regulated movements), and the caliber has 13 jewels. A date is provided at the 3 o’clock position.
This reference 3587 Patek has a cushion shaped 18k gold case with the aforementioned extremely rare lugs, and measures 42mm long by 43mm wide by 11.8mm thick. Bezel is stepped. The crystal is sapphire and the case construction is two part. The screw down back on this case is practically a manhole cover!
Original untouched gold dial with applied hour markers, date window at 3 o’clock framed in gold, original gold baton hands with luminous and center sweep seconds hand. Dial is mint as are the hands.
Strap is new custom hand-made cognac lizard over Shell Cordovan by Attila Aszodi Designs with Patek tang buckle.
This piece unique also includes original Patek Philippe box and papers making it a very important vintage Patek.