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In the vintage dive watch collecting community, there are certain words that cause collectors’ collective ears to prick up and induce an almost Pavlovian response.
We mean: Mil-Spec.
Starting in the 1950s, members of elite diving units sunk beneath the waves with a new kind of watch on their wrists. Rugged and unsinkable, the use of these watches by military divers—and the feedback the divers gave—defined what a dive watch is supposed to be. The French Marine Nationale had Tudor and Rolex Submariners, the Israeli Defense Force had the Eterna KonTiki, and the Navy SEALs had the Benrus Type II.
And the Royal Navy of the United Kingdom had the Omega Seamaster 300.
Though the MOD also used Rolex Submariners (from roughly 1957 to 1967), these Mil-Subs gave way to the Seamaster 300. Introduced in 1957, the Seamaster 300 was—alongside the Speedmaster and Railmaster—one of a trio of watches with the needs of certain professions in mind. In the Seamaster 300’s case, with a depth rating of 200 meters, it was destined to dive.
And over the next decade, the Seamaster 300 underwent a series of small changes that resulted in the creation of one of the finest military diving watches ever made.
The new reference of Seamaster 300, 165.024, featured a larger case—asymmetrical and with twisted lugs, similar to that found on the Speedmaster Professional—that was capped with a bezel with hash marks at every minute.
In addition to those features, Seamaster 300s meant for military service had fixed spring bars, a screw-down crown, and plongeur hands. The MOD ordered its first batch of these watches in 1967. With “0552” engraved on the case backs (to designate them as property of the Royal Navy), these watches were delivered until 1971.
With a serial dating production of this watch to 1970, this is perhaps one of the finest examples of Mil-Spec Seamaster 300s we’ve ever come across. Its strong case is remarkably well-preserved, while the stunning patina on the dial speaks to years of service. More than that, the accompanying extract noting delivery to the British military proves that it is a proper veteran in every way.
Stainless steel case is approximately 42mm (excluding crown). Reference 165.024. Calibre 552 Self-Winding Movement. Circa 1970.
Overall Condition: Case is in strong condition overall. Bakelite bezel in is in very good condition with crisp printing and even patina. MOD service dial is in very good condition with patina to the luminescent elements. Signed screw-down crown.
Includes one 20mm nylon strap in Admiralty grey.
Also includes Extract from the Archives denoting delivery to the British military.
Analog/Shift stands behind the authenticity of our products in perpetuity.
We back each Analog/Shift vintage timepiece with a one-year mechanical warranty from the date of purchase.
All of our watches include complementary insured shipping within the 50 states. We are happy to hand deliver your purchase in Manhattan or you may pick it up at our showroom.
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