At Baselworld 2017, Rolex announced the new Sea-Dweller (Ref. 126600) to celebrate the models 50th anniversary. It’s also known as the Rolex Sea Dweller 2017 or SD43. Since then, it has become one of the most elusive Rolex references with long wait lists at Authorized Retailers and secondary market dealers around the world. The asking prices are currently thousands of dollars over retail.
The new Sea-Dweller is significantly different. One of the most notable is its increase in size to a wider 43mm from the previous generations 40mm. This serves as a great way for Rolex to differentiate this timepiece from the Submariner. The new Sea-Dweller has a round and streamlined shape thanks to its tapered lugs. In contrast with the more square shape of the current ceramic Submariner, the Sea-Dweller shares a more similar case shape to that of the older 5 digit Rolex references.
Rolex has done a phenomenal job at making this watch wearable thanks to its nearly perfect proportions. The SD43 has a wide bracelet that measures 22mm at the lugs and 19mm at the clasp. This helps offset the the height and weight from the larger case and relieves the “top heavy” feeling you would have normally felt from wearing the larger Deepsea Sea-Dweller (DSSD). The bracelet also features both Glidelock and Fliplock extensions which gives the wearer the ability to fine tune minor adjustments all the way to fitting over a dive suit.
For the first time in about 40 years, Rolex has added some vintage flair by releasing a Sea-Dweller with red text on it. The combination of a matte black dial and red text is absolutely sublime. In the right light, the matte black dial gives you a vintage feel while the red adds that extra pop to make a great dial even more special. Probably the most notable change is the addition of a cyclops - never before seen on a Sea-Dweller.
The unsung hero of the new SD43 is undoubtedly its movement. The SD43 comes fitted with the caliber 3235. This is Rolex’s newest movement that features 14 new patents, more anti-magnetic components, a 70 hour power reserve, and a timekeeping set to “Superlative Chronometer” standards of -2/+2 per day.
The SeaDweller 43mm is thick due to its depth rating (4000ft) but at 15.2mm. It’s not uncomfortable, but its height was something that would rarely go unnoticed. It may be too tall and robust to consider it a daily wearer but it works well within a rotation.
And, we've got some exciting news for you! Everest is currently designing a rubber watch band for this model. The SD43mm watch strap will be released later this year! Stay up to date on our new releases by signing up for our email newsletters or follow us on Instagram @everestbands
Written by Patrick Bernardez
Pictures provided by @RolexDiver