It arrived in the post 2 hours ago.
Roamer, Stingray S. The first Diver from Roamer, rated to 200 meters or 660 feet using a slightly special version of their patented case (crystal is about 3 times thicker than normal). These were made from around 1967/68 to around 1972 with the 28 Jewel MST 471 automatic movement w/date. The large crown at 3 rotates the outer dial, the crown at 4 sets the time.
In the last 18 months I have seen 2 of these for sale - and missed out on both. Since winning this one a couple of weeks ago, 2 more have appeared on ebay (sheesh, just like busses, you wait for ever and then 2 arrived at the same time) - but I'm still going to claim they don't come up very often. One of the 2 recent/current ones on ebay; one is very unoriginal, missing its proper hands and crowns, and the other one is rusty, so best not to count them anyway .
Ok, back to this one. It needs a little work. Its not running (I knew that and don't care) but most importantly it hasn't been messed with and is a very early model.
A couple of the vendor's pics:
Pretty rough old thing, but thats the way I seem to like them. As it arrived this morning:
Dial is good, aged lume on the markers is wonderful, lume in the hands will have to be sorted out:
Turns out I didn't want to wait until it was sorted out before posting it here, so I gave it about 10 minutes of quality time. I spent 5 minutes re brushing the case (which was completely worn off), and gave a light polish to the (signed and original) crystal - but didn't spend too long on it as a replacement crystal is on its way.
This is the early production model most probably 1968, but maybe just maybe 1967 - the dial cross hairs and the numerals on the ring are in white rather than orange/red of the later ones. Likewise, the early date window with rounded corners, later models have sharp corners on the date window. The last models had different markers and no crosshairs on the dial.
A 1966 advert (thanks Marrick)
I don't think the Stringray was ever sold like this, with the baton hands and a triangle rather than a dot - I'd love to be proved wrong. In any case, the winder is in the wrong position - so the drawing isn't 100% accurate.
A 1970 advert (Fathom Magazine - Australia)
A TV advert
If you go to Roamer - Home, click on 'About Roamer' and then 'Vintage TV-spots' you can watch a period advert, pretty cool
So, what next.
I have movement spares, so repair should be feasible, in the worst case I have a spare(ish) movement I can swap in. Everything on the case works as it should, a crystal is flying over from the UK as I type this. I had hoped the strap was a Roamer strap - which it sadly isn't, and I will have to look out for the proper signed on made by NSA.
I'm going to sleep well tonight.