Rolex Submariner 5513 Comex Edition Turns Up In BBC Antiques Roadshow
by Nick Gould
The BBC Antiques Roadshow has aired since 1979 and has been so successful that it has spawned spinoffs around the world.
The premise of the show is for regular people to bring personal or inherited items for evaluation from the resident experts of the show, who provide an appraisal.
A few interesting watches have popped up on the show such as a World War II-issued Panerai, a Breguet montre à tact pendant watch, and an Omega chronograph once owned by T.E. Lawrence (better known as Lawrence of Arabia).
In late 2017, a woman brought along a Rolex Submariner that was missing its distinctive black bezel, which was appraised by Alastair Chandler for about £20,000. He said, however, with bezel it would be more like £60,000.
Apart from the missing bezel, the watch look untouched, even though the Plexiglas crystal showed signs of regular wear. She told Chandler that her previous boyfriend had given her the watch and that he was a deep-sea diver. The Rolex just sat in a drawer.
What made the watch special was the extra printing on the dial just above the word Submariner, as well as the depth rating and helium escape valve on the side of the watch.
Compagnie Maritime d’Expertises (aka Comex) is a company specializing in engineering and deep-diving operations, founded in November 1961 by Henri Germain Delauze. The organization used Rolex watches in its operations and had the company logo printed above the model name and depth rating on the dials.
As it turned out, the woman’s former boyfriend had worked for Comex and had given her his Reference 5513 Submariner.
You never know when a cool timepiece is going to pop up on this show!
Watch the entire three-minute episode yourself for the woman’s fun reactions at www.bbc.co.uk.
You might also enjoy Wrist Watching: Mark Wahlberg Wears A Rolex GMT-Master II ‘Root Beer.’