Featuring a gilt, meters first, underline, “SWISS” only dial (not double Swiss), this circa 1963 Submariner Ref. 5513 is a highly coveted and collectible example of Rolex’s most popular sports watch model.
With the production of the 5513 beginning in 1962 and ending in 1989, it had a very long run. However, the absolute rarity of this particular dial combination is what makes this 5513 so desirable.
There is one detail that makes this 5513 arguably more attractive than the 5512: it has 2-lines of text instead of 4-lines due to the lack of “Superlative Officially Certified Chronometer,” which is found on the majority of 5512 Submariners from 1963. The result is a cleaner look due to no chronometer markings.
Encircled by a nicely faded fat font bezel insert which has according to Bob’s Watches, “faded evenly to a light gray/blue hue with light wear,” even this bezel provides a talking point and further differentiation from other 5513s. The “fat font” refers to the numerals being so large they touch the outer perimeter of the bezel, unlike the standard font on most Submariner bezels.
The dial, condition, and authenticity are the key selling points of the most collectible vintage Rolexes. Depsit that, this one has an interesting nuance related to the automatic movement. Early Submariner reference 5513 started with 17-jewel caliber 1530 movements, which is not chronometer certified, but they did include Microstella screws on the balance wheel as opposed to an index regulation system found on the later caliber 1520 which powered later 5513s.
Rolex actually went backward with caliber 1520, the predecessor of the caliber 1530, which share the same main plate and basic structure. And 1963/1964 was the year that Rolex phased out caliber 1530 within the 5513s. This 1963 5513 does, in fact, have the Microstella screws, making it much more desirable from a service and technical perspective (an image of the movement can be seen here).
Additionally, the caliber 1530s have a Breguet overcoil versus a traditional flat hairspring. And even though the movement was released in the late 1950s with 17-jewels, it was subsequently upgraded to 25 and 26-jewel configurations.
The 1520 movement powered 5513 Rolexes until they were retired in 1989 and replaced by Ref. 14060 which also represented the beginning of the caliber 3000 series of movements still in production today.
In full disclosure, Bob’s Watches states in the official listing that the case, which has thick pointed crown guards, has been polished and has light wear from use. They also state that the minute hand has been colored to match the dial, and the “all lume glows brightly under UV light exposure and falls off quickly.”
Reference 5513 II.63 is stamped on the inner caseback. This vintage Submariner comes with an Oyster riveted bracelet with 12 links and 80 end links with “4.65” stamped on the bracelet clasp. Delivered with Bob’s presentation box, a Certificate of Authenticity, and a warranty card which comes with a 3-day satisfaction guarantee and one year warranty. All watches at Bob’s have their authenticity verified independently by a third party (Watch CSA).
View all the vintage Rolex Submariners available at Bob’s Watches.