I am about to discuss modified Rolex watches more often. I have been fascinated by this concept for a while and it is about time I delved deeper into this world. There are really two major types of Rolex watch modifications. One is modifying new Rolex watches, while the other is modifying older or vintage Rolex watches (usually Submariners and Daytonas). This is the Pro-Hunter Military Single Red DeepSea. It is one of the former varieties of Rolex modders (there they secretly buy up new Rolex watches to do their mad scientist work on the watches). Pro-Hunter starts with a Rolex DeepSea Sea-Dweller, and ends up with this interesting result. What I like is that the watch is immediately noticeable as a Rolex, but has its share of little differences that give it that “pimp my Rolex” vibe.
One thing that is interesting is that Rolex apparently hates these watches. I’ve been told that if you have a modified Rolex watch, never send it to Rolex for servicing (they might not exactly send it back the same – and with a “restoration” bill). Chew on that. Not such a big deal though as Rolex movements are famously easy to work with. I sometimes ask watch makers their favorite movements to repair or work on, and “Rolex” is often the answer.
A big trend on modified Rolex watches is to make them black. Why? Not sure. Black is a hot color, and Rolex has no watches that it sells in black. A color such as blue or red is often applied as trim. The dial of the watches get some special treatment, and often the modified watches (at least the really good ones, get specially engraved casebacks as well. Some people want only subtle alterations to the designs they love (which would include the Pro-Hunter watches), and others want something a bit more wild (not a mild!).
The Pro-Hunter Military Single Red DeepSea is different than the version without the term “Military Single” in it that it comes with military style NATO straps. The other version has a matching black steel bracelet. There are also some minor differences on the dial. The black applied material is DLC (diamond like carbon). You all know me for going ga-ga over this coating compound for its look and scratch resistance. Here it is done in a nice shiny manner. Pro-Hunter made just 100 of these watches.
Pro-Hunter took a brand new Rolex DeepSea Sea-Dweller Ref. 116660 – which is a great watch to begin with. The watch has a massive 3,900 meters of water resistance is and sized well for a Rolex at 43mm wide. Like all Rolex DeepSea Sea-Dweller watches it has a helium escape valve, more or less perfect rotating diver’s bezel that is made in ceramic, and a date window minus the magnifier lens. Don’t forget that on these newer Rolex Sea-Dweller watches, the lume glows blue. Pro-Hunter gives it a special, individually numbered engraved caseback. This Pro-Hunter Military Single Red DeepSea collection was made around March of 2009, so they are still fresh. While there are many Rolex modders out there, Pro-Hunter is one of the good ones known for quality results. The price on James List for this hard to find number is about $16,000.