The Tudor Submariner was originally meant as a lower-cost alternative to the Rolex Sub, one that would use the Crown’s case and hardware but would eschew an in-house Rolex movement in favor of a third-party Swiss model. However, due to the variety of dial designs that came out over the years and the fact that they retailed for less than their big brothers from Rolex, many of these Tudor Subs have become incredibly desirable, and are now worth as much (or sometimes more) than their counterparts from the same era. Here are three beautiful examples, each a different reference with a different dial:
Tudor Submariner Ref. 76100
What we like: Sometimes it’s the little things that make a dial truly stand out — in the case of the transitional reference 76100, it’s the second hand, which rather than a Mercedes tip features a closed circle, commonly referred to by collectors as a “lollipop” hand. This particular black-dialed version features a tritium “maxi”-style dial whose lume has turned a beautiful cream color, as well as the original boxes and a folded-link Oyster bracelet.
From the seller: The watch is overall in excellent condition. Dial and hands are perfect. Case is in excellent condition also; movement is running perfectly. Watch comes with its inner and outer boxes.
Tudor Submariner Snowflake 7016/0
What we like: Ah, the venerable Snowflake. The story here is that the French Marine Nationale needed a watch whose hands were highly visible to their divers underwater, and Tudor obliged by designing this reference. This particular black-dialed example features fantastic patina to the tritium-lumed indices, and though the hands have been re-lumed and the bezel assembly and insert updated, its incredible dial and case mean that it’s still a highly wearable example of an innovative reference.
From the seller: Excellent with factory bevels still intact that shows some wear from use. The watch comes with a newer bezel assembly and bezel insert from Rolex that was replaced at a service. Very matte black dial that shows extensive and even speckling patina. The markers have turned a pumpkin hue. The hands have been re-lumed and appear slightly lighter than the dial.
Tudor Submariner Ref. 7928 Gilt
What we like: With its gilt dial, chapter ring, and pointed crown guards, this early 1960s reference 7928 is pure, classic Submariner is all its glory, from an era where folks were actually using these watches for their intended purpose. With its older Tudor rose logo, faded bezel insert and included Oyster rivet bracelet, this Sub calls to mind the glory days of the tool watch, before dive watches became relegated to desk usage and the Sub became a status symbol.
From the seller: Case is in excellent condition overall, showing light signs of wear consistent with use and age, but no major glaring marks or damage. Dial and handset have an incredible patina. VERY light clouding on glossy finish in places. Gorgeous faded bezel insert with intact luminous pip. Signed crown and case back.