Vacheron Constantin
4217 | white gold

Regular price £22,000 GBP USD EUR Enquire

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Vacheron Constantin
4217 | white gold

Regular price £22,000 GBP USD EUR Enquire

This white gold, Vacheron Constantin reference 4217, from the 1950s, is the embodiment of a classical dress watch. Its refined style and aesthetic are typical of the period from Vacheron Constantin, with the overall appeal of the watch being enhanced through its exceptional condition and completeness, which offer a unique insight into how these would have appeared originally. 

Looking back

Vacheron Constantin boasts a lengthy and uninterrupted history, dating back to 1755. The firm’s founder, Jean-Marc Vacheron, was one of many cabinotier watchmakers who specialised in the production of complex components. Upon partnering with François Constantin, Vacheron Constantin became widely known for upholding the finest horological traditions - enamelling, piercing, engraving and engine-turning. 

Looking at this reference 4217, it's easy to see why Vacheron Constantin have a special appeal to collectors. Considered to be one of the members of the "Holy Trinity" of watchmaking, the brand's archives reveal a rich and varied history of both classical design and high quality manufacture, few can match.

The latter can also be said for its choice of suppliers, with evidence suggesting the dial of this reference 4217 was made by Stern Frères, a specialist dial maker who also provided dials for Patek Philippe during the period, amongst others. On the inside caseback, the Poinçon de Maître No.5 (known as the "Key of Geneva"), with a number "4" located within, also indicates that the case was made by none other than Antoine Gerlach - a prominent Geneva-based case-maker, perhaps better known for producing a number of recognisable cases for Patek Philippe, including the futuristic design of the ref. 3448.

The Design

The overall design of the ref. 4217 is balanced and refined. The dial is clean and understated, featuring "Vacheron Constantin" and "Genève" at 12 o’clock, which sits beneath an applied Maltese cross. In keeping with this classic styling, the stick hands correspond harmoniously with the dial, and complement the matching applied hour markers.

The 33.5mm case has a thin, rounded bezel and arched concave lugs, which offer a distinctive charisma to an otherwise classical design, and also enhance the overall presence of the watch on the wrist. With a lug width of 
20mm, the watch wears larger than its dimensions would otherwise suggest, whilst retaining an understated profile. 

The watch also has its original crown and snap-on caseback, which is correctly hallmarked and signed inside. The case appears unpolished, retaining sharp edges and vertical brushing on the case sides and caseback. A crisp hallmark is visible on the left hand side of the case. 

The Movement

Powered by a manually-wound P454/5B calibre (signed “Vacheron & Constantin“), the movement is rhodium plated with Côtes de Genève embellishment and 18-jewels. This highly-finished movement with straight-line lever escapement further features a monometallic Glucydor balance with timing screws adjusted for temperature and a self-compensating Breguet balance spring. The movement is also stamped with two Geneva Seals, attesting to both the quality of the construction and finishing. 

The Set

This Vacheron Constantin ref. 4217 is accompanied by its original leather box and Certificate of Origin, confirming the case and movement numbers. It comes on a grained Tokyo leather strap and corresponding white gold Vacheron tang buckle. 

Brand: Vacheron Constantin
Model: ref. 4217
Movement: manually-wound calibre P454/5B
Functions: hours, minutes, centre seconds
Features: white dial, arched concave lugs, unpolished case
Case: 33.5mm white gold
Crystal: plexiglass
Strap: Tokyo strap, white gold Vacheron Constantin tang buckle
Lug: 20mm
Year: c. 1950s
Box & papers: Original Vacheron Constantin box, Certificate of Origin
This Vacheron Constantin ref. 4217 is accompanied by its original Vacheron Constantin box and Certificate of Origin, confirming the case and movement numbers. The white gold case is remarkably preserved, with sharp lugs and a clearly-defined brushing on the case sides and caseback. The inner-caseback correctly displays the watch’s unique serial number (382XXX), along with it's hallmarks and reference number, below the manufacture’s signature.

The case shows virtually no signs of wear throughout and appears unpolished. The dial is similarly well-preserved, with no signs of intervention or previous exposure to the elements. The inside caseback is also free of any markings beyond those which were stamped originally. Whilst the P454/5B calibre movement of this vintage Vacheron Constantin remains untouched, it's running very well and shows no signs of wear.

All of our pre-owned watches have undergone thorough mechanical inspections, including being ultrasonically cleaned, serviced and resealed if appropriate and tested for at least four days, to ensure they meet our highest timekeeping standards. Our pre-owned and vintage watches, unless stated otherwise, are covered by a full or a limited twenty-four month warranty. For example, due to their age, some vintage watches should not be subjected to the same conditions as when they were new. Please see our Terms & Conditions for further information. 

All of our new watches are covered by the warranty from the original manufacturer. Please contact us for further information.

We offer complimentary worldwide delivery on our watches. If ordering from overseas, delivery will depend on the value of the timepiece and the destination. All import taxes and duties are the responsibility of the buyer.

If ordering from the UK before 1 PM, your watch will be sent the same working day. The courier will depend on the value of the watch, with all watches delivered the next working day.

Please note that pre-owned goods (in the United Kingdom) are subject to a marginal rate of VAT, which can not be reclaimed. For further information, please see here

You can cancel your order without giving any reason, within 14 days from the day the watch has been delivered to you.

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