You will be familiar with the Royal Navy’s Rolex Milsub series. You will also likely be familiar with the classic snowflake-handed 9401/0 Marine Nationale which has recently seen new life. However, Tudor’s military history extends far beyond France. South Africa also issued its Navy divers a small run of reference 7016 subs. There are US Naval 7928s (be careful there). RCN 9401/0s. Perhaps even more interestingly though, some facet of the Argentinean military or police were also issued a small run of 7928 subs. I have only encountered a few of these in all my years watch hunting. The history is far from transparent, production is unknown, but we known this watch has lived a remarkably full experience in its six decades.
The ‘Ci’ engravings shown here are generally accepted as meaning Cuerpo de Infantería, a division of the Argentine military’s riot control police force (Cuerpo Guardia de Infantería in full). It is also possible that the markings indicate Commando de la Infantería, an Argentine Naval force. There is a long forum discussion with many strong opinions and Revolution article covering the topic. Others state the numbers are short for código de inventario, inventory code in English. Others still have suggested Canadian provenance though that has seemingly been proven wrong. All we know for certain is a small number of these have surfaced for sale within a tight serial range, all with 612XX-Ci on back. Mystery is part of the charm in hunting these, and in world of microscopic watch scholarship today, true mystery is quite an uncommon thing to enjoy.
This example sports an even, hard-worn, and beautiful patina. Its case is a PCG style (correct for these) with triplock crown from a service. The all important rear engravings a crisp and clear. Its dial is full gilt with lovely sun tanned plots. There is an extremely small hand drag noted that I wouldn’t have seen otherwise, from 7 to 9. The long 5 insert is fully ghosted. It comes from a well-regarded retailer.
Find this 7928Ci here from Saga Trading Co for 22000 USD.