PATEK PHILIPPE STAINLESS STEEL REF. 3417A, RETAILED BY TIFFANY & CO.
Launched in 1958, the Amagnetic, or anti-magnetic, ref. 3417 was in production for almost 10 years. Available exclusively in stainless steel, these ‘tool’ watches are now recognized as the ultimate expression of Patek Philippe understatement. The cases of these watches were made by Jean Vallon, the La-Chaux-de-Fonds master case maker that specialized in anti-magnetic and water-resistant cases. Dials were made by Stern Frères. It is interesting to note that the crown for the ref. 3417A was made in white gold. The screw-back case back features the name of the prominent former owner which was engraved by Tiffany & Co. before being presented in 1968. The soft-iron dust cap found within this watch is original and also continues to protect the watch from magnetism fifty years on.
This example is from the reference’s final year of production (1968) and features an extremely well-preserved case and an exceptional dial. The fact that the dial is signed ‘Tiffany & Co’ makes this watch the trophy of trophies for Patek Philippe tool watch collectors. This is the only ref. 3417A known to exist with a Tiffany & Co. signature. This example surfaced on the market at auction two years ago, consigned by the original family, and sold for 106,000 USD.