The plan of the Submariner 114060, is undeniably Rolex, notwithstanding the size and utilization of present day materials like ceramics. Compare the advanced 114060 to the 1953 Rolex Submariner 6204 and you will promptly see that these watches share a similar DNA.

Owning and wearing a Rolex Submariner is a certain something, yet to jump into the historical backdrop of this watch is a significant errand. To make it to some degree simpler for you, we therefore show you the historical backdrop of the Submariner basically, incorporating a table with most significant references since 1953 till the current line-up of Submariner watches.

Diving Into Rolex Submariner

The Rolex Submariner is a watch with a fascinating story. Presented more than 60 years prior, the current Rolex Submariner model (updated in 2010) is a result of a long history and advancement. The similitudes are plainly obvious while the developments are too. An artistic bezel, manly case and strong wristband with a simple to-change collapsing catch meet all the prerequisites of a cutting edge watch while the plan returns to 1953.



1953: Submariner reference 6204. Photograph Antiquorum.

The First Rolex Submariner

The water-safe Oyster-case with a screw-down crown and oneself twisting development for wristwatches are elements of the Rolex Submariner that we own to Rolex originator and president Hans Wilsdorf. He was a virtuoso finance manager and maybe even a superior marketeer. He was additionally known for his receptive outlook with respect to groundbreaking thoughts and thought often about what his workers needed to say. René-Paul Jeanneret, an accomplished and important individual from the top managerial staff was an energetic jumper. It was this René-Paul Jeanneret that accompanied building up a watch that wasn’t just appropriate for use in the water, yet additionally as a rich watch for ordinary use.

Rolex Submariner 6536/1

The conversation about the utilization of such a watch in the current assortment was being held more than once, as the current Rolex models around then as of now were water-safe and rich. Notwithstanding, they were not the plunging watch that René-Paul Jeanneret had as a main priority. Useful games watches turned into a significant theme and came about since 1953 in watch assortments with strong names like Turn-O-Graph, Explorer, Submariner, Milgauss, and GMT-Master. It caused Rolex to develop more than ever and dominated in making watches that are reasonable for a climate or (sports) activity.

Anniversary model 2003: Submariner Ref. 16610LV. Photograph Antiquorum

Submariner Predecessors

Water safe watches were at that point in the Rolex assortment since the mid 1930s. In 1935, the Rolex list showed a 47mm pad molded Oyster-case watch with reference 2533. It had a pocket watch development inside, a Lépine hand-twisted development with a little seconds hand at 9 o’clock. It didn’t get any development as there was no interest in watches with an enormous case distance across like this. Nonetheless, this pad formed watch made ready for an association with Panerai. In those days, Panerai was an Italian Rolex vendor and spent significant time in jumping gear. The Panerai Radiomir models with pad molded Oyster-cases with a Cortébert type development provided by Rolex propelled the Geneva company and gave them valuable criticism on jumpers watches. Undoubtedly did it additionally gave helpful contribution for Jeanneret’s Rolex Submariner.

Jeanneret had a cozy relationship with the well known Jacques-Yves Cousteau, which lead to sufficient contribution to persuade the chiefs at Rolex around then to build up an expert diver’s watch. In those first long periods of the 1950s there was a ton of testing going on concerning their expert diver’s watch. The name ‘Submariner’ wasn’t being utilized at that time.

Diver’s Tests Paved The Way For The Submariner

In September 1953, Rolex let the World know – in a terrific way – that they had the option to deliver a diver’s watch. Auguste Piccard dove 3131,8 meters in the Ocean with his Bathyscaphe profound jumping submarine. Appended to the vessel’s body was Wilsdorf’s Rolex observe particularly made for this experience including a plainly noticeable Rolex logo and glowing dial. At the point when the Bathyscape rose out of the water, the Rolex watch was all the while working properly.

Later on, in 1960, the submarine Trieste, with its 2-meter-wide pressing factor circle slipped for the 65th time into the profundities – this time with the objective of arriving at the Challenger Deep in the Mariana Trench, the most profound point in the sea. Inside the pressing factor circle were Piccard’s child, Jacques Piccard, and the Dan Walsh. Outside the circle was an extraordinary Rolex model, a watch, with Oyster case, intended to withstand the pressing factor of the 10,916-meter plunge, which applied a tension on the vessel of around 1,125 kg/cm. The thought, obviously, was to demonstrate that the Oyster case could endure the ordeal. Just likewise with the 1953 Bathyscaphe plunge, the Rolex looked and ran precisely as it had over the water.

The Trieste

Rolex Submariner – the diver’s friend

Achievements like that made a great deal of consideration and mindfulness. There was interest for watches that could take a touch of maltreatment during sports yet in addition during regular wear. Guests of the Basel reasonable (these days BaselWorld) in 1954 were joyfully amazed to see a major presentation window (one of five) with a wristwatch highlighting a matt dark dial, enormous glowing hands and lists and a turning bezel with markers around 5 minutes separated. The zero-position on the bezel was set apart with a bolt with a radiant pearl in the middle. A little sign said “Submariner – the diver’s friend”. At the end of the day, Rolex made an expert diver’s watch with a programmed development with a water obstruction of 100 meters on account of the screw-down crown framework called Twinlock.

A purported “Tropical Dial” reference 5513 from 1967. Photograph Antiquorum.

By the time it hit the market, the Submariner had finished thorough field assessments. The Institute for Deep Sea Research in Cannes gave a report on Oct. 26, 1953, on the five months of tests it had led with the watch, comprising of 132 makes a plunge profundities of 12 to 60 meters. The assertion from the research center read as follows:

“Despite the incredibly high salt content of the Mediterranean waters, and the tropical temperature and dampness to which the watch was uncovered between the individual jumps, it showed no erosion by any means. … Likewise, no dampness was identified inside the watch. Any remaining past tests with water-safe watches from top brands showed water entrance from the principal snapshot of the jump, demonstrated by the buildup that shaped on the internal surface of the gem. The watch was worn on different occasions during plunges with an all-inclusive crown (i.e., the crown was pulled out to the situation for setting the hands). To close these tests, the watch was connected to a slender string and dropped to a profundity of 120 meters – twice as profound as 60 meters, the most extreme profundity attainable with independent compressed air gear. No holes were distinguished even following a one-hour time frame at this depth.”

Rolex utilized the criticism and contribution of many experts while building up the Submariner. Jeanneret offered numerous thoughts for the external plan of the case, dial and pivoting bezel (which around then actually turned in the two ways) for submerged perusing of the excess season of the dive.

Rolex Offered Three Different Submariner Models

As soon as the Rolex Submariner opened up in 1954, shoppers could settle on a decision between 3 unique models. These are Submariner reference 6200 with a self-winding type A.296 development and a water opposition of 200 meters, the Submariner reference 6204 with a 100 meter water obstruction (later up to 180 meters) and the Submariner reference 6205 with self-winding development type A.260 and a water opposition of 100 meters. There is no ‘Submariner’ phrasing on early models as it wasn’t before the finish of 1954 when Rolex began to utilize ‘Submariner’ on the dials. There were additionally no crown monitors at the time yet.

The Rolex Submariner ref. 6538 (“James Bond”) from 1959. Large crown and no crown monitors. Photograph Antiquorum.

An Evolution of Decades

You can scarcely talk about upsets at Rolex. Development is a superior word. In addition, Rolex accomplished this consistent development over many years, likewise for the Submariner assortment. The table beneath gives an outline on the development of the Submariner:

Year Reference Details
1955 6538 Successor of reference 6204 with caliber 1030 movement.
6536 Successor of reference 6205 with caliber 1030 movement;featuring a bigger winding crown.
6536/1 Chronometer variant of reference 6536 with caliber 1030.
6538 British Royal Navy picked the Submariner.
1956 A new plan for the hands. The radiant circle moves a piece towards the focal point of the dial. The bezel gets brief file for the first quarter.
1956 6538A The 6538 gets a similar case as reference 6200.
6536 A red (zero position) triangle on the bezel.
6538 The Royal Canadian Navy choses the Rolex Submariner. The military variant has a distinguishing proof number and administration number engraved for the situation back. Else it is a similar watch as a typical creation Rolex Submariner.
1958 5510 Based on reference 6200 with type 1530 (1957);
5508 6536/1 with type 1530; difference in textual style on the bezel. The 0 (zeroes) are a touch all the more square-ish.
1959 5512 Crown monitors, expanded case distance across to 40mm (was 36mm), “Superlative Chronometer, Officially Certified” phrasing in the dial;
6538 “Superlative Chronometer, Officially Certified” phrasing in the dial;
1962 5513 Updated plan of the crown monitors, type 1530;
1963 5513 Updated with the type 1520 development (presented in the equivalent year);
1966 1680 Date window, plexi gem with cyclops, red composition on the dial (till 1973); Caliber 1575;
1969 16618 Rolex Submariner becomes accessible in gold;
1979 16800 Rolex Submariner gets a sapphire precious stone; Water opposition expanded to 300 meters;
1981 16800


The Rolex Submariner gets a uni-directional bezel, the excess jumping time can just become more limited; type 3085 is being used;
1983 16613 The Rolex Submariner becomes accessible in “Rolesor”, a Rolex definition for gold/steel;
1988 16610 Rolex Submariner is fitted with type 3135;
2003 16610 LV A green bezel is fitted to an Anniversary model (50 years) of the Submariner. Typical creation, no restricted release or numbered edition.
2009 116613LB First Rolex Submariner to be fitted with an earthenware bezel, in rolesor (gold and hardened steel). Case hauls became fat and new wristband added.
2010 116619 White gold Submariner with blue dial and earthenware bezel. Case carries became fat and new wristband added.
2010 116610LN/LV First Rolex Submariner to be fitted with an artistic bezel. The LV variant was presented with a green dial and green fired bezel. Case carries became fat and new arm band added.
2012 114060 The Rolex Submariner (without date) moved up to the artistic bezel. Case drags became fat and new arm band added.
2020 124060 The Rolex Submariner (without date) upgraded. Case drags became slimmer, 21mm arm band added. The Submariner presently has type 3230, with 70 hours of force reserve.
2020 126610LN, 126610LV The Rolex Submariner Date overhauled, incorporating a model with green earthenware bezel. Case drags became slimmer, 21mm arm band added. The Submariner presently has type 3235, with 70 hours of force reserve.
2020 126613LN, 126613LB The Rolex Submariner Date Rolesor. Rolex bi-shading Submariner watches. Case carries became slimmer, 21mm arm band added. The Submariner currently has type 3235, with 70 hours of force reserve.
2020 126618LN, 126618LB The Rolex Submariner Date full gold. Same as the abovementioned, yet in full 18KT yellow and white gold. The new “Blueberry” is the new white gold Rolex Submariner with dark dial and blue bezel.

Rolex avoided any sort of trying different things with the Submariner plan. In the event that they would have, the Rolex Submariner likely wouldn’t what it is today: a classic!

Rolex Submariner 14060M

One question that comes to mind when taking a gander at the table above is: Why did it take Rolex until 1981 to come up with something as indispensable as a uni-heading bezel? The appropriate response is very straightforward: There was a patent on the uni-directional bezel since 1952 (by Blancpain for their Fifty Fathoms watch). Rolex wasn’t the solitary brand pestered by this patent!

Rolex ‘Red’ Submariner reference 1680 from ca. 1970. Photograph Antiquorum.

More data on the Submariner and the current models can be found on the .

*This article showed up on Fratello Watches on August 27 of 2014. A few subtleties have been changed and rectified. Additionally, the artistic line-up has been added to the table. The first article showed up first on the German variant of WatchTime, composed by Gisbert L. Brunner.