The Rolex 16600 holds a significant place in the brand's history, representing a chapter in the development of Rolex's iconic dive watches. Introduced in the late 1980s, specifically in 1988, the Rolex 16600 is part of the Sea-Dweller collection, which was originally created for professional divers and deep-sea explorers.
The Rolex Sea-Dweller line began in the 1960s in collaboration with the French company COMEX (Compagnie Maritime d'Expertises), a pioneer in underwater engineering and exploration. The Sea-Dweller models were designed to withstand extreme depths and pressures, making them essential tools for divers working in saturation diving environments.
The ref 16600, succeeded the popular reference 16660, known as the "Triple Six" or "Triple Six Sea-Dweller," which was produced from 1978 to 1988. While the 16660 was the first Sea-Dweller to feature a sapphire crystal and a unidirectional rotating bezel, the 16600 brought further enhancements to the table.
Released in 1988, the Rolex 16600 boasted several notable improvements. It introduced the scratch-resistant sapphire crystal ensuring enhanced durability and legibility. The watch also featured a larger Triplock crown, providing improved water resistance and further reinforcing its reliability underwater.
The Rolex 16600 retained the robust construction that made the Sea-Dweller line renowned, with a stainless steel case, a helium escape valve to release built-up pressure during saturation dives, and a solid stainless steel Oyster bracelet designed for comfort and strength.
As the 16600 reached its production peak in the 1990s, it became a favorite among professional divers and watch enthusiasts alike. Its reputation for exceptional water resistance, precision, and durability made it a reliable companion for diving adventures and everyday wear.
Over time, the Rolex 16600 has gained a dedicated following due to its classic design, remarkable patina that develops with age, and its status as a collectible vintage timepiece. Today, it stands as a testament to Rolex's commitment to excellence, innovation, and exploration in the realm of diving watches.
Ours: The 16600 you are looking at here is truly unique and has wonderful character. Its in excellent vintage condition and produced in 1990 (E Serial). The dial and hands have aged to a wonderful vivid dark cream patina while still retaining the full gloss of the dial surface. The case is thick and even with thick lugs and clear numbers. The bezel insert has aged to a grey blue hue and the bracelet is the original fully linked 93160 with full diver extension. The movement is running well and keeping excellent time. This one is sure to stand out