2023/2024 deBoulle Collection Magazine

the way the late ‘80s. These robust instruments have also served sail - ors in all types of underwater roles, including UDTs, Seabees and Navy dive school instructors. The issued TUDOR Submariners have played a role in teaching the basics of scuba diving at the Underwater Swim- mers School, all the way to aiding in underwater submarine maintenance at submarine bases in the US and abroad. Issued TUDOR watches also played a role in pioneering innova - tive underwater technologies under the surface of oceans across the globe. Throughout the decades, TUDOR has supported the US Navy as a sup- plier of issued watches. In the 1965 “First Edition” of the Underwater Demolition Team Handbook, a TU- DOR Oyster Prince Submariner ref. 7928 is pictured next to the “Diving Watch” paragraph. The handbook was an essential piece of literature for new operators as they studied UDT operational procedures. Later, in 1973, the US Navy Diving man- ual lists the TUDOR Oyster Prince Submariner references 7016 and 7021 as “Navy-approved” diving watches. In 1974, the National Stock Number system was introduced to track the supply system of the US Department of Defense. From 1978, under code 6645-01-068-1088, a supply officer could purchase and issue a TUDOR Oyster Prince Submariner reference 9411, or later 76100, to an approved sailor or operator in need of a reliable Navy-approved dive watch. This spe- cific supply catalog entry was only retired in 2004. Watches issued to members of the military are typically engraved with specific inventory codes, but the US Navy-issued TUDOR watches didn’t follow this pattern. There was never a force-wide, consolidated marking system. Instead, the issued watches were either sterile, or marked at the unit level, with many different cod- ing typologies, most of which were used for inventory purposes. Since many of these watches issued by the US Navy remain unmarked, it makes it quite difficult for watch scholars of today to determine the military provenance of a given TUDOR, even though official records indicate that


PELAGOS FXD The new Pelagos FXD pays tribute to decades of TUDOR watches on the wrists of US Navy divers. Complete with fixed strap bars, a titanium case, a high-performance Manufacture Caliber and a unidirectional bezel.

As early as the mid ‘50s, TUDOR diving watches were being tested and evaluated by a number of outfits inside the US Navy, and by 1958 they were officially adopted by the Navy and purchased for the purpose of issuing them to divers operating in various units. This Pelagos FXD model is the spiritual successor of those watches. The nomenclature hints at the background of the watch, with FXD referring to the incredibly robust FiXeD strap bars of the case. The model represents a modern, high-performance and robust take on the famed “Milsub” (short for Military Submariner) of yesteryear.

Visually, it’s most in line with a late ‘60s-era TUDOR Oyster Prince Sub- mariner reference 7016; it incorpo- rates elements from the US military specifications for diving watches, such as fixed spring bars, as well as details inspired by other generations of issued TUDORs, like pointed crown-guards typically found on early TUDOR Submariners. TUDOR AND THE US NAVY The US Navy issued TUDOR diving watches for decades starting in the latter years of the ‘50s. The watches were famously used by SEAL teams from their commissioning in 1962 all


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