Rolex 3525

Rolex 3525

Rolex 3525 Introduction
I’m not sure why so little community love for the Rolex 3525. Manufactured from 1939 to 1945, the 3525 was the first chronograph with the Rolex water-resistant ‘Oyster’ case (nicknamed the ‘Monoblocco’ as the case is made from one piece of material), and features a screw down caseback and crown. Also known as the “POW” watch for being offered to captured Allied officers in German prisoner camps during World War II, the 3525 is a classic rugged Rolex. The Rolex 3525 utilized the caliber 13 (based on the Valjoux 23 VZ) and was produced in stainless steel, pink and yellow gold, and two-tone versions (steel plus pink or yellow gold). Dials came in several colors, there were differences in text, and we see variation in hand color, design and luminosity. I’ll be focused here on the stainless steel version, the fiscally prudent purchase at a mere 350 Swiss Francs, a deal versus the gold version at 935 francs. I have seen estimates as low as 200 pieces for a steel Rolex 3525, though given the number I see in the Alpha Hands case number project, I believe the actual figure is higher.
Rolex 3525 Case Number Project

What follows is an aggregation all of the all-steel (including bezel and crown) Rolex 3525 I have found in steel. If you see any duplicates, errors, have serial numbers to include, or know of other steel Rolex 3525 to add, please let me know.

Serial number location on the 3525 varies by serial number.
– Serial numbers are found on the caseback in two of the three sets of serial numbers, for the period 1939-1942: the initial set, with earlier serials of 041xxx, and the latter with 123xxx – 186xxx.
-The last set of serials, where we see estimates of 1942 through anywhere from 1946 to 1956, uses 386xxx serials, which are found between the lugs of the watch.
Watches with serials on the caseback also included the case number there, and pieces with serial in between the lugs featured the case number engraved on the inside caseback.

The range above is limited due to few of these pieces available, and with many lacking caseback images, or text, and some without serial number provided.

The watches represented on each row in the table below are not intended to be unique, as I am including all transactions/owners to track any changes to the piece over time. I do my best to use visual cues to pair the same watch posted. When the case number can’t be established, I give the timepiece a unique ID (generally based on any part of the number that is known, plus a related date posted).

Unfortunately, some images may not appear in the table below as the table refers to an image on the corresponding source page. If the image is removed or if the table is not able to process the site, a broken (or no) image will appear. Please use the ‘Source’ button for a specific piece to be routed to the website that provides details and possibly image(s).

Description of pieces are generally based upon public images/video. For some detail, I do not have images and/or have to rely on text descriptions from the individual posting the timepiece. Some elements are often difficult to determine from pictures, including color of hands, for example if the register hands are black or blue. If I have a 50-50 guess, I leave the detail as “unknown.”

As with the rest of this Website, the following table, and data contained therein, is subject to Alpha Hands LLC Terms and Conditions

The above table, and data contained therein, is subject to Alpha Hands LLC Terms and Conditions

Rolex 3525 Double Signed Examples

Within the set of known steel Rolex 3525, we see a handful of double signed examples.

These examples are:
ASTRUA (Torino, Italy): 04132 (outlier serial number)
MAPPIN (UK): 150773 and one other example with unknown serial
DOBBIES LTD (Nairobi): 386301