Historical Perspective – The Original “Bond” Rolex Submariner, The Reference 6538 “Big Crown”

Historical Perspective – The Original “Bond” Rolex Submariner, The Reference 6538 “Big Crown”

After viewing the “Pre-Submariner”, the Rolex Reference 6202 , just as at the mother, everything being equal, the early Reference 6204 , it is the ideal opportunity for our “columnist extraordinaire” Paul Altieri (Founder and CEO of Bob’s Watches ) to take a gander at a watch that aided structure the legend encompassing this model, for the most part since it was worn by a specific British covert operative, in a film called Dr. No. You absolutely got it: today we take a gander at the “Bond” Rolex Submariner, The Reference 6538.

No other watch produced by Rolex is as popular, powerful, or generally concentrated as their Submariner line of jump watches . Initially presented in 1953, Rolex’s Submariner has become a foundation figure in the watch business, and practically each and every jump watch in presence today was here and there impacted by Rolex’s Submariner.

Although it was not the absolute first cycle of the Submariner that Rolex at any point created, the reference 6538 is potentially perhaps the most renowned Rolex observes at any point made. The vast majority won’t know it by its 6538-reference number, but instead as the watch that was worn via Sean Connery in the absolute first James Bond film from 1962: Dr. No.

In the first James Bond books, writer, Ian Fleming makes no notice of the particular kind of Rolex watch that his hero wears, other than that it is produced using treated steel. Subsequently, every James Bond affiliation that relates to the Submariner – and plunge watches when all is said in done, can be followed back to the first reference 6538 that showed up in the absolute first James Bond film.

All James Bond associations aside, the reference 6538 checks all the containers for vintage Submariner gatherers. Its case is 38 mm in breadth and needs crown watches, which promptly distinguishes it as an early Submariner reference. Furthermore, its curiously large winding crown (explaining its other moniker: “Big Crown”) recognizes it from other pre-crown monitor Submariner watches, for example, the reference 5508 and the reference 6204.

The Rolex Submariner reference 6538 “Bond” or “Big Crown” can be found with a scope of minor distinctive dial varieties, which just further adds to the general variety and interest for gatherers. The little red triangle set at the zero marker on the bezel embed adds a sprinkle of shading to the watch and furthermore assists with recognizing it as one of the early Submariner references.

At the core of the reference 6538 lives Rolex’s type 1030 development that contains 25 gems and beats at a recurrence of 18,000vph. Like constantly, the reference 6538 shows just the hour of day, as the date complication didn’t show up on the Submariner line until the last part of the 1960s with the presentation of the reference 1680.

Rolex made the reference 6538 from 1955 until around 1959. Albeit this window of creation is bigger than those of other vintage Submariner references fabricated around a similar time, enduring models in unique condition have become very uncommon and important today. Most reference 6538 Submariners were completely worn by their clients, frequently through an assortment of requesting conditions, and many were lost or broken well before they could at any point get the opportunity to become collectable.

Due to its unmistakable job on the cinema and its assignment as the first “Bond” Submariner, the reference 6538 has become quite possibly the most well known Rolex observes at any point produced, and is oftentimes recorded as a top objective for genuine vintage authorities. Despite the fact that it was not the absolute first Submariner, the reference 6538 is unquestionably perhaps the most famous and exceptionally examined Rolex watches of all time.

In the coming and last scene of this Historical Perspective arrangement, we’ll see what is viewed as the remainder of the vintage Submariners, before Rolex moved to more current watches, with present day development and materials. We, obviously, are discussing the especially known references 5512/5513.


This article is essential for our Historical Perspective Series zeroed in on the Rolex Submariner. You can locate the 4 scenes here:

  • The Missing Link, The Rolex Reference 6202 or the “Pre-Submariner”
  • The Very First Rolex Submariner, The Reference 6204
  • The Original “Bond” Rolex Submariner, The Reference 6538 “Big Crown”
  • The Classic Vintage Submariner, The Reference 5512 and 5513