Adding important credibility to the often debated subject of Rolex Submariner appearances on the wrist of Sean Connery as James Bond in the early EON Productions films, WatchTime weighed in back in 2004 with publication of this analysis by Robert Sprague, Member of the American Society of Master Projectionists.

WatchTime reader Robert Sprague identifies early Rolex James Bond Submariner watchSeveral years ago I examined all of the James Bond movies by way of blowups directly from 35-mm film.

It appears that the exact same Rolex Submariner was worn by Sean Connery in no less than three James Bond films: Dr. No (1962), Goldfinger (1964) and Thunderball (1965).

The watch in question is from the heavy case series that used an 8-mm crown (without crown-protecting “shoulders”). It has a 38-mm flush-to-case rotating bezel, radium indices and a plastic Tropic 17 or Tropic 19 crystal. This particular series of Submariners was created between 1953 and 1958 and was actually available in five variants (Ref 6200, Ref 6538, Ref 6538A, Ref 6540, Ref 5510).

It’s impossible to tell which of the five it is.

Mr. Sprague then went on to comment from his analysis on a number of subsequent James Bond Rolex wristwatches worn by actors playing Agent 007 after Sean Connery.

George Lazenby wore a Reference 5513 Rolex Submariner in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). A Ref 5513 was also worn by Roger Moore in Live and Let Die (1973) and The Man with the Golden Gun (1974). The 5513 had a 7-mm crown (with protective “shoulders”) and a 39-mm Autolock bezel.

Then, consistent with James Bond Watches information presented elsewhere on this site, Robert Sprague concluded his letter as follows.

The later Bond films feature a variety of other watches. Oddly enough, the wristwatch worn by Sean Connery in the films not listed above are unidentifiable!

— Robert Sprague, Member of the American Society of Master Projectionists, Petoskey, MI (Michigan)

See “Readers’ Forum: Bond Minutia,” on page 28 of the October 2004 issue of WatchTime for original content.