The Rolex 16660, also known as the "Triple Six" represents an important evolutionary phase in the history of Rolex's iconic Sea-Dweller collection. Let's explore the key advancements and changes that occurred during the evolution of this remarkable timepiece.
The Rolex 16660 was introduced in 1978 as an update to its predecessor, the Rolex 1665 Sea-Dweller. It earned its "Triple Six" nickname due to its water resistance rating of 6,000 feet or 1,830 meters, a significant improvement over the 2,000 feet (610 meters) of the 1665.
One of the most notable features of the Rolex 16660 was its inclusion of a scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, replacing the acrylic crystal found on previous models. This upgrade provided better durability and improved legibility. Additionally, the 16660 introduced a larger helium escape valve, enhancing its capability for saturation diving.
Another significant change was the addition of a unidirectional rotating bezel with a black aluminum insert, allowing divers to accurately measure elapsed time underwater. The bezel also featured larger numerals and indices for better visibility.
The dial of the Rolex 16660 underwent several revisions as well. Initially, it featured white gold hour markers with tritium luminous material. Later, the luminous material was changed to SuperLuminova, a brighter and longer-lasting alternative.
The Rolex 16660 was powered by the Caliber 3035 self-winding mechanical movement. This movement featured a quickset date function, allowing for easy adjustment of the date display.
Throughout its production span, the Rolex 16660 underwent some subtle changes. Early models featured "ROLEX" in red text on the dial, which was later replaced with white text. Additionally, the presence of a "T" or "T Swiss T" designation on the dial indicated the use of tritium luminous material.
The Rolex 16660 enjoyed a production run until 1988 when it was succeeded by the Rolex 16600, which brought further improvements and refinements to the Sea-Dweller line.
Today, the Rolex 16660 holds a special place in the hearts of collectors due to its transitional nature, blending vintage charm with advanced features. It represents a significant chapter in the evolution of Rolex's dive watches, showcasing the brand's commitment to pushing boundaries and meeting the demands of professional divers
ours: The 16660 you are looking at here has a unique tropical dial where it appears that the glossy surface has began to turn matt. As a collector you should take notice of this. In future these will surely rise in value. The case is thick and unpolished with cleat numbers between the lugs. The insert has naturally aged to a ghost appearance with a nice tritium cream pearl. The bracelet is the original 93160 with full links and in nice tight condition. The moment is running strong and keeping excellent time.