This 1969 Rolex Submariner 1680 is one of the most iconic watches on the planet. The word Submariner is printed in red lettering in the lower half of the dial. This feature only lasted for a few years when the model was first introduced. Even rarer than a Red Submariner, are ones that the depth rating is printed with the 200 metres rating printed in-front of the 660 feet. Those watches were produced for about 12 months spanning 1969 to 1970.
The dial on this watch is spectacular. Its all original lume has aged gently to a parchment patina on the both the dial and hands. The text on the dial is also in factory original condition. The black painted surface has a gentle brown toning under some light that collectors refer to as a Tropical dial. This effect is only seen on certain angles.
This appears to be a MK2 dial which can be explained in more detail here.
The bezel insert is the original fat font bezel with the long 5 extension.
The corrosion free case is particularly fat and appears to have been lightly polished early on at one of the Rolex services listed in the case-back. You can see how much profile the case has from the side and how deep the spring bar holes are.
The original Rolex crystal has a scratch in it at the 6 o’clock mark. The varied angles show the white mark floating above the dial and if the buyer wishes I can certainly arrange to have the crystal swapped prior to shipping.
The watch is fitted with a Rolex Oyster bracelet, reference 9315, with folded steel links. The original and correct Rolex 280 end-pieces are still attached. The buckle, with the correct misspelled “PATETED” divers extension is also attached. The date code on the buckle is listed as M8 which charts show as 1988. This was likely replaced at a service. At present there are 11 links in the bracelet.
The movement on the watch has been reviewed by my watchmaker and is running perfectly.
I purchased this watch in 2005. I asked a friend who lived down the street from the Rolex service centre if he could take it in to have them authenticate it, which he did. I never got the watch back however. He told me he wanted to buy it and I hadn’t seen it since. Well here it is now and the Rolex authentication papers will also be provided with the watch.