In late March, the vintage watch world was rapt with attention over one very particular eBay watch auction. The listing was for a Submariner – but not a Rolex Submariner, a Tudor Submariner. And to be clear, it wasn’t even for the desirable "Big Crown" Submariner. No, this was actually a far more special and to many – including myself – one of the most quietly interesting Rolex or Tudor dive watches of all time.
The Tudor Submariner reference 7923 is unique in this family because it is the only manually wound dive watch that either Rolex or Tudor ever made. And what’s more, this watch appeared to be truly untouched and in original condition. It sold on eBay for $99,999 but as we reported then, a seldom seen eBay seller protection plan, that requires bidders to telephone eBay’s fraud protection unit if they want to bid into six figures, prevented it from selling for more. So, while the 7923 became the most expensive vintage Tudor to sell publicly, the feeling was it could have actually sold for more. And now, it looks like it just might.
San Francisco based vintage watch retailer HQ Milton (who we’ve featured here) quietly posted pictures of what has to be the very same eBay 7923 late on Thursday evening. By Friday morning, the collector community had noticed it, become curious what the asking price was, and was reveling in the beautiful high resolution images provided by HQ Milton. One must remember that though the watch was surely in excellent condition based on the eBay photos, seeing it in all its glory is a very different thing and wow, is this watch incredible.
This 7923 is in legitimately remarkable condition. All the radium luminous material on the dial is present and perfect – the original small crown in place. What’s more, we have the almost-always replaced bezel without minute marks. And the quality of the case? My lord, this is is how a Submariner should look.
Ultimately, what we have here is one of the rarest watches ever made by Tudor or Rolex, in true preservation class winning quality. HQ Milton has changed the crystal on the watch to give a clearer view of the perfect dial, but the original crystal will be included to keep the watch just as it was discovered.
As you’ve likely gathered, this is an incredible, investment-grade quality Submariner. And when it sold for $99,999 last month, it became the most expensive vintage Tudor to ever be sold publicly – but now that it has reached the hands of one of the most well established, and well known, purveyors of vintage watches, that price has sky-rocketed. HQ Milton has listed the watch as "Price on Application" – but that asking price is $350,000. Is this an enormous price for any Tudor Sub? Absolutely. But as we’ve seen, it is often worth paying tomorrow’s price today, for the very best of the best. Will others agree and pay HQ Milton’s asking price? We will see very soon.
You may see the listing for this incredible Tudor reference 7923 right here.