Rolex Submariner Transitional
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Rolex Submariner Transitional

Why We Love It

Produced from 1962 until 1989, the Reference 5513 is one of the longest-running Rolex models ever. Following on the heels of the 5512, the 5513 was the second reference of Sub to feature crown guards, and saw numerous modifications and improvements over its life cycle. It is perhaps the icon of icons, and no collection should be without one!

This Reference 5513 represents the end of an era and dates to circa 1986. Unlike its matte dial forefathers, this watch features a glossy black dial with warmly aged tritium luminescent elements, raised and surrounded by white gold, and framed by a beautifully ghosty faded bezel. The case is thick and honest, saved from the dreaded fate of over-polishing. A hard working, no excuses Sub.

The Submariner Story

Rolex first debuted the Submariner at the 1954 Basel Spring Fair. It shared the stage with already-established offerings: the Explorer, the Turn-O-Graph, and a ladies' Oyster Perpetual with a chronometer certification. Compared to these other watches, the Submariner - with its oversized crown and chunky dive-timing bezel looked slightly out-of-place, and yet would become one of Rolex's most enduring models.

Rolex's quest to produce a waterproof wristwatch has its roots in the First World War, when a need arose for soldiers to have a watch that could withstand the wet, dusty conditions on the battlefield. Rolex's Oyster case of 1926 represented the culmination of a decade of development. It gained notoriety in 1927, when Mercedes Gleitze became the first British woman to swim across the English Channel. She took with her an early Rolex Oyster, in what may have been the very first example of sports marketing by a luxury brand. A series of advertisements followed this feat, featuring smiling flappers dunking their Rolex Oysters in fish tanks.

The Submariner hit the market at a time when oceanographer and explorer Jacques Cousteau exposed the world to the wonders of undersea exploration. With the advent of SCUBA (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) in the late 1950s, skin-diving as a sport became accessible to amateurs. Since a mechanical timepiece was an essential piece of equipmeny for divers in a pre-digital world, the race was on amongst Swiss manufactures to produce a professional grade timepiece. Rolex was fortunate in that René Jeanneret, one of the company's directors, was a skin-diving enthusiast, giving Rolex a unique insight into the development of their diving watch.

The resulting watch was an overnight success, and has been in continuous production ever since. The Oyster Perpetual Submariner, in all of its forms, is an icon amongst icons, a pinnacle of horological design, and a statement piece aspired to and worn by people the world over.

Details

SKU: AS03771

Stainless steel Oyster case is approximately 39mm (excluding the crown). Rolex automatic winding movement. Rolex Reference 5513. Circa 1986.

Overall Condition: The case is in fantastic condition overall showing normal wear consistent with age and use. Luminous glossy black dial is excellent condition with applied tritium luminous white gold indices and matching handset, even patina and minor edge wear. Signed crown.

Includes stainless steel Oyster bracelet with signed Fliplock clasp (93150/580 HD).

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We back each Analog/Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.

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