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A Brief History of the Tudor "Snowflake" Submariner

The Tudor “Snowflake” is the nickname given to the Tudor Submariners with reference numbers 7016/0, 7021/0, 9104/0, and 9411/0 which was in production from 1969 to 1975. Dial variants are commonly found in black and or blue and the watch can feature at date complication.

The nickname snowflake comes as a result of the unique features of the reference range such as the square hour markers and a unique snowflake hands that were introduced by Rolex/Tudor to increase visibility in low light conditions. However, there is more to the Tudor’s Snowflake Submariner line than its unique and different visual features. The second-generation Tudor Submariners also marked the watchmaker’s shift from caliber 390 movements produced by Parmigiani Fleurier SA (Fleurier) to movements created by Swiss watchmaker ETA which made the Tudor Snowflake Submariners the first Tudor timepieces to use these modified ETA movements.

The Tudor Snowflake Submariners, much like the other Submariners produced by Rolex and Tudor, have a long standing history and were supplied to military forces including the U.S. Navy and the Marine Nationale (French Navy). By request of the Marine Nationale Tudor had to come up with a variation of the Tudor Submariner that would be easier to see underwater. Tudor modified the design and it defined the look of their Submariner models for the next few years.

Tudor Sub at home

Not only the hands were changed, the indexes became square and the dial was now also available in blue as well as the standard black. The case and bezel stayed the same. Shortly after the introduction of the reference 7016, Tudor launched the Tudor Submariner reference 7021, which was alike to the earlier model but had a date complication located at 3 o’clock similar to the big brother the Rolex ref 1680.

The Tudor Snowflake references are a unique and distinctive dive watch that not only possess a unique look but also hold horological and military history. The Tudor Snowflake references are becoming highly sought after among watch enthusiasts and collectors alike and are becoming increasing harder to find as a result!

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