16520 Dials

The 16520 Dials

Source: DoubleRedSeaDweller.com [http://doubleredseadweller.com/16520.htm]

There are five basic dials for the 16520:

Mark I

This is common in the early watches with serial starting  with R (1988) and L(1989).

This is one of the more desirerable configurations with the word “Cosmograph” located lower in the dial or “Floating Cosmograph”.   As a matter of fact, the whole text “ROLEX, Oyster Perpetual, Superlative Chronometer” is situated lower than the later dials.

The subdials use a rounded and smaller font.

The subdial  at the six o’clock position (hour totalizer), the number six is inverted and appears as a “9” and not as the intended “6”.  This “defect” appeared in dials as late as 1994-5.

The subdial at the three o’clock position (minute totalizer), had four “dash” markings between five minute markers as opposed to later dials which only had three “dash” marks.

This is a tritium dial and is labeled  as “T SWISS T” at the six o’clock position.

This dial configuration was made for about one year.

Here is another 16520 Serial R with the black dial. As you can see, the same details are present in the black dial.

Photos below by B. Lembkey

Mark II

This dial was produced early for the 16520s. The major difference on this watch was the the word “Officially Certified” was left out of the dial even though the watch was rated as a chronometer. The word “Cosmograph” was now together with the rest of the writing on the top of the dial.

The subdials contained the same characteristics as the Mark I dial.

This dial configuration was also made for about one year.

Next 5 photos by Silverello

Mark III

This dial is very similar to the current production dials but the subdial fonts still has the inverted “6”s in the sixoclock subdial. The words “OFFICIALLY CERTIFIED” reappeared on the dials again.

Photo by Rasmus

Mark IV

This dial was the most commonly used dial used on the 16520 and therefore the one usually associated with the watch.

This dial the writing was all together and was situated slightly higher than the original dials.

The fonts in all the subdials changed to a more square and bold font was was easier to read. As mentioned above, less “hash” marks were noted in the minute totalizers.

Photo by Raywu

Photo by Karl

Mark V

This is the same dial as the Mark IV dial but in 1999 (A) till the end of production in 2000 (P), luminova was used in the markers. Therefore, the dials did not have the “T SWISS T” and instead it was labeled as “SWISS” at the six o’clock position. The hands are also luminova.

There are some examples of (U) serial watches from late 1998 with luminova dials and SEL bracelets. These watches are correct.

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