Rolex, Oyster Perpetual, Submariner, 660 ft = 200 m, case 8 million, Ref. 5513. Circa 1980's. Fine, center seconds, self-winding, water-resistant, stainless steel diver's wristwatch with a stainless steel Rolex Oyster bracelet.
Case: Three-body, polished and brushed, screw-down case back and crown, graduated bi-directional revolving black bezel for the decompression times, loss of pearl, Triplock winding- crown protected by the crown guard.
Dial: Black with luminous round, triangular and baton indexes, outer minute division. Luminous steel skeleton hands. Beautiful evenly patinated hands and markers.
Movement: Cal. 1520, rhodium-plated, 26 jewels, straight-line lever escapement, monometallic balance, shock absorber, self-compensating flat balance spring, hack mechanism.
Serial: 8 Million End, Link: 580, Bracelet: 93150
Diameter: 40mm Thickness: 13mm
The first Rolex Submariner model underwent a number of rigorous field tests, finally becoming available to the public in 1954. All featured a self-winding movement, and were depth rated to either 100m or 200m. In 1959, Rolex introduced the reference 5512, with crown guards and increased case size to 40mm.
In 1962, Rolex introduced the Submariner reference 5513 to the market, which would remain in production through the mid-1980’s. Although it lacked any complications, it was and still is sought after for its symmetrical dial design. It is instantly recognizable for this balanced dial layout and two-lines of text.
Over the course of its twenty-plus-year production run, the dial changed slightly, first starting with a black glossy dial and gilt text, and later in 1966 to a matte dial with white printing. The depth rating indicated meters first, “200m=660ft” but later changed to have the feet indicated first. The present example features is the last version of the reference 5513 with a plastic crystal, indicated by details such as indices circled with white gold and a glossy black dial . Today, for many the appeal of a vintage Rolex is in the aesthetics – on the present watch, details like the contrast of the evenly aged beige luminous numerals and hands with the glossy black dial and white text are attractive and what make this example stand out.