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First Diver’s Watch

The Rolex Submariner

The Submariner in the Rolex collection is one of the first diver’s watches ever made. A high-end tool watch which is still one of the most popular models from Rolex with an iconic design. With the different bezels available on the Submariner, there’s always one that suits your needs.

Since 1953

History of the Rolex Submariner

The Rolex Submariner is already amongst us for more than 60 years. The predecessor of the very first Rolex Submariner ever made is the reference 6200. This piece was already water-resistant to 10 bar (100 meters) thanks to the Twinlock-crown, which can be found on the Sea-Dweller, Explorer and GMT-Master (II) as well. The best thing about the Rolex Submariner is probably the design: when you take a look at a lovely vintage or pre-owned Submariner, the design is still the same as the current Submariner (No Date). Over the years, the case has grown, a crown guard was added and a version with a date (Cyclops lens) was added in 1966. The design from the Rolex Submariner is dated back in the 1950s, but it is still considered a modern piece.

Another thing that has been changed to the Rolex Submariner, is the fact that it was water-resistant to 100 meters at first, but now it has a water-resistance of 300 meters. The bezel can only be turned counterclockwise which is a modern requirement for all diving watches.

The index markers on the dial, but also the arched hands are made of gold. The hour and minute hands glow in the dark thangs to Chromalight, and the sapphire crystal barely sticks out of the bezel compared to the earlier models. Many collectors and enthusiasts wear or search a Rolex Submariner for everyday use.

James Bond to COMEX

Vintage Rolex Submariner

Thanks to the release back in the 1950s, there are many options when you’re in the market for a pre-owned or a vintage Rolex Submariner. Just like other Rolex watches, the four-digit reference numbers are popular amongst collectors. For example, you can search for a 5512 or 5513 that was being made back in the 50s and 60s. Because there aren’t many left, you need to pay around €18.000 to €30.000 for a well-maintained piece on Wristler. There is another spectacular reference 5513 available which is the James Bond Original. Worth? €350.000 or more. Another James Bond watch is the Sean Connery Submariner reference 6538 and it was worn in ‘Dr. No’ back in 1962. Nowadays if you can find one, you need around €100.000 to bring this watch home.

The ‘Red Sub’ is highly sought-after. Rolex only produced this reference 1680 between 1967 and 1980 and the word Submariner was written in red on the dial until 1974, earning the nickname Red Sub. A different popular watch within the Submariner series, is the COMEX (Compagnie Maritime d’Expertise). A French company renowned for their underwater exploration technology. These watches were produced from the 70s to the 90s and listings on Wristler come close to €100.000 for this COMEX Rolex Submariner reference 5514.

Steel, Gold, Steel & Gold

Materials on the Rolex Submariner

Rolex used different materials on the Submariner in the last 60 years. In the beginning, they’ve made the Rolex Submariner from stainless-steel, but added white gold and yellow gold to the Submariner as well. You can even opt for a two-tone (‘Rolesor’) Submariner with a yellow gold and stainless-steel version. 

If you want to get your hands on a famous ‘Kermit’ or ‘Hulk’ with a green bezel, you should bring close to €30.000 to bring it home. The white gold Rolex Submariner with a blue bezel will cost you around €45.000 for a well-maintained piece.

Rolex Submariner Pricing

The original Rolex Submariner was released without the date display on the dial, making it the most popular Submariner around. This reference 14060 has a black dial and bezel and will cost you around €13.000 on Wristler. If you want to get your hands on an early Rolex Submariner, like the reference 6538 or COMEX 5514, you need at least €100.000.

If you like a bit of color on your wrist, you can opt for the Rolex Submariner Kermit: it has a black dial, a date display and a green bezel making it really popular amongst collectors. The other green Rolex Submariner is the Hulk: this has a green bezel but also a green dial. These watches go around €25.000 to €32.000 on Wristler for a full set with some stickers on it. 

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