|Year of production (circa)||
Original box & papers
Rolex Submariner Ref. 5513 Gilt Dial Full Set
This is a grail Rolex if ever there was one…
We have recently described the Ref. 5513 as a watch that is pretty darn close to perfection. Read the whole story about GILT DIAL here. But then still, not all 5513s are created equal. The one we have here is an absolute stunner!
For starters, this one dates back to the mid-sixties and is fitted with a beautiful glossy gilt dial like you will only find during this period. It adds a mesmerizing shimmer and warmth to the watch, that just lifts it to greater heights. This example is fitted with matching gold-tone hands. for the ultimate vintage aesthetic. This is no blingy modern sub by any means. A riveted Oyster bracelet with stretch links completes the dream configuration. The only part that is not in the original factory condition is the bezel insert. This is authentic Rolex, but a younger replacement part.
As if the watch alone isn’t enough of a dream, this one comes complete with the original box and papers. This is quite rare for sports Rolex watches of this age.
We could dedicate thousands of words to this beauty. But the simple fact of the matter is: if you know, you know. Come and try it on. Prepare to fall in love.
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Oh, the mighty Submariner! Could this be the most desired watch ever made?
The Sub certainly has the heritage to go with its iconic status. It was one of those very early dive watches from the era when commercial and leisure diving exploded. The Ref. 6204 was introduced in 1954 (after having been completed in 1953), shortly after the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms. It followed the, now familiar, template for a modern dive watch with its rotatable bezel surrounding the dial and crystal.
The Submariner has been in continuous production ever since and saw many updates along the way. Still, the modern Submariner looks eerily similar to its 1953 predecessor, proving that this is one of the most timeless and iconic watch designs out there. One of the most copied as well.
The early Submariners have become extremely collectible. Good examples are exceedingly rare and fetch astronomical prices. A very popular variant is the Ref. 5513, which was made from 1962 until about 1988. It is a true vintage Sub with its acrylic crystal and aluminum bezel inlay. Although variants with applied indices can be found in its later years, the archetypal 5513 features Tritium painted markers. Rare dial variations such as gilt and explorer dials are particularly collectible.
When hunting for a Sub, you will have to make one crucial decision: date or no date? Some people prefer the clean, symmetrical look of a no-date Sub. Others like the date and cyclops on the crystal. While the aforementioned Ref. 5513 is a no-date version, cyclops-loving collectors should be looking at a Ref. 1680 (introduced in 1967) and its successors.
1988 Saw the introduction of the first “modern” Rolex Submariner. Among the updates was a sapphire crystal, which completely changes the feel of the watch, but also its everyday toughness. The Ref. 14060 (no-date) and 16610 (date) are among the most popular Subs today. They combine the ruggedness of a modern Rolex with the classical looks of a slim case and aluminum bezel insert, which were lost in later ceramic Subs.
The Rolex Submariner is arguably the perfect watch. A timeless design combined with great engineering. Versatile aesthetics and rugged build. And it was not exactly hurt by being James Bond’s watch of choice in Dr. No, 1962.
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