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An Elusive ‘3 Red Dot’ Patek Philippe 3712


You likely know Gerald Genta’s design and the Nautilus story—sketched over dinner on a napkin whilst staring at a yacht. The iconic porthole case was born later that year and, despite pricing above the Royal Oak, to immediate success. Then Hublot bought some tracing paper. What happened to the Nautilus 3700 after its initial success, however, is often a little blurry to those outside the niche. This reference 3712 was the first ever Nautilus to introduce complications to the brand’s sport offering. They came in the form of a small seconds, power reserve, date, and moonphase. The arrangement seems somewhat haphazard within its porthole bezel, but the longer you stare at it the more harmonious it becomes.


Notably, on this 3712, you will see just three small red dots at the empty end of the power reserve. The three dots indicate that this piece was a part of the initial production series. The 3712 was in production from just 2005 to 2006 before Patek decided a larger case (+1mm) and an updated calibre were more appropriate. Halfway through that year, Patek settled on four dots. In total an estimated ~1500 reference 3712s were produced. It is also estimated that the initial production series is between 500 and 700 examples. This three dot 3712 is arguably more sought after as the first series of the first complicated Nautilus reference.


The example for sale here is quite lightly worn. There are appropriate light markings around the polished bezel section and bracelet. The shape is strong and original, I’d guess unpolished. That coveted dial is nearly perfect with no visible patina yet developed. The micro-rotor cal 240 is shining like new, as one would expect from Patek. It comes with a full set from a well known seller @watches2.8

Find this 3712 here from Timexchange for an undisclosed sum.

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