Dive Watch Releases / Articles

2014-11-23

VintageVDB P 1070 deepsea 12000M [from Fraunhofer to the Phillipine Sea]

By TLex Do we really need a watch with 12,000 meters of water-resistance?! Hell, yeah! How else are we supposed to form a tangible link with ourselves and the deepest point on earth, and what else are we supposed to brag about down the pub!



As luck would have it, German watchmaker, VintageVDB seem to share my exact same sentiments and that's why they have just joined an elite club of dive watch engineers that have conquered the deep with a handmade dive watch, called the P 1070 deepsea that boasts a monumental . . . wait for it . . . 12,000 METERS of water-resistance!



So have VintageVDB set a new World Record? Well, not quite, while still an outstanding achievement, the P 1070 deepsea is now one of three of world's deepest mechanical wristwatches of which two are actually available for sale (I think).



One being the P 1070 deepsea, itself, and ONE coming from a relatively unknown Spanish watchmaker, Aeronaval Instruments Manufacturer Carlos. Although I have never seen any documentation to support AIMC's claimed 12000M WR, their watch certainty bares all the hallmarks of one that could happily reach such a depth.



Of the three 12000 meter watches, only Rolex and VintageVDB have documented evidence to support their claimed WR. The Rolex DEEPSEA Challenge watch was tested both in-house in a specially designed pressure-chamber and historically ocean-tested with an epic dive to the bottom of the Marianas Trench, tethered to a robotic arm on James' Cameron's deep sea submersible, the DEEPSEA Challenger.



VintageVDB's P 1070 was extensively tested by the Frauenhofer Institute in Ilmenau, Thuringia, Germany where it subsquently reached 12,000 meters, the equivalent of 1,200 bar of pressure! However, VDB say that they, too will conduct an actual ocean test on the watch that will be undertaken by a research team in the Marianas Trench! Watch this space!



For reference, Fraunhofer is Europe’s largest application-oriented research organization. With an annual research budget of €2 billion!



They are involved in the research of everything from Energy and Living to Information and Communication and Transportation and Mobility to the technologies employed for deep sea exploration and inspection with the use of AUVs (autonomous underwater vehicles) as in their TIETeK - Deep Sea Robotics work.



Features of the P 1070 deepsea include: a case in Stainless steel measuring 46mm in diameter x 55mm in length x 25mm thick and a vintage Universal Geneve Microtor self-winding movement.



Divers features of the include: a massive divers bezel with 5-min click and markers, a Plexiglas acrylic crystal, a screwdown crown and caseback (the caseback is features an engraved Marianas Trench map) and of course a water-resistance of 12,000M.



Finally VintageVDB P 1070 deepsea comes on VDB's new rubber divers strap and VDB screw buckle, a handmade leather strap and pressure-test certificate from the Fraunhofer Institute.



Liked this? See my world exclusive live pictures of two of Rolex's DEEPSEA Challenge watches HERE taken while on location not too far from the Marianas Trench in Guam.



Also read my articles on Rolex's two deepsea experimental wristwatches HERE, HERE and HERE



Also read my review of the 6000M HELBERG CH1 made in tribute to the original pioneer of the deep, the Deep Sea Special!



2014-11-21

SQUALE Professional 1521 BLASTED

By TLex Squale have released sporty new version of the Professional 50 atm, a watch that back in the 70s was rated as one of the most important diving watches of its era and was considered the perfect diver.



Created by Squale brand founder Charles Von Büren, it was meticulously designed to combine technology and precision with outstanding Swiss watchmaking while remaining a stylish and wearable item whether under the sea or on dry land.



Today, with its bead-blasted finish and black, blue and grey camouflage rubber it looks as current as anything else I've seen. However if you want a more old school look you can opt for simple black rubber of even hand-stitched leather.



The bead-blasting process used on the new 50 atm alters the finish of a metal surface by subjecting it to a high pressure stream of glass beads, or sand - resulting in a durable matte, non-reflective finish.



In addition to its bead-blasted case, the 50 atm features a Swiss made ETA 2824 self-winding mechanical movement and Squale's signature 'oneway' snap-on bezel in either blue or black and a dial also in black or matte blue.

Further divers features include: a flat Sapphire crystal, a screwdown crown and caseback and exceptionally clear hands and numbers. Its water-resistance is to 500 meters.

2014-11-19

H2O Watches Kalmar V.2 PROTOTYPE

By TLex I’m very pleased to be able to share with everyone, some fantastic first pictures of the Kalmar V2 prototype watch.



The watch is looking really cool – especially that super clean dial with its prominent orange minute hand. There’s no mistaking its intent!



Basic spec includes: a 316L Stainless steel case measuring 42.5mm, with a bezel diameter of 44mm, a thickness of 13.4mm, a lug width of 24mm and a lug to lug measurement of just 53.4mm.
ber.



Divers features inc. a unidirectional rotational divers bezel, of which 3 types are offered with 4 different inlays, a Sapphire crystal, an 8mm screwdown crown and a solid steel caseback and a WR or 3000 meters.



17 dials and 9 handsets are offered for the Kal V2. These can be mocked-up on H2O's newly developed visual product configurator.



Powering the Kal V2 is a reliable Swiss made ETA 2824-2, automatic mechanical caliber, beating at 28.800 bph and with a power-reserve of 42hrs and a hacking seconds hand.



Follow the link HERE for pre-orders details of the Kal V2, which will close in the next few days. The first batch have nearly all sold out with an expected delivery at the end December

2014-11-18

PROMETHEUS Poseidon 3500M

By TLex Introducing the Prometheus Poseidon, a first for the Portuguese watch company that is among the best that there currently are in the boutique dive watch sector.



Not only is it the first bronze diver that they have produced - boasting a CuSn8 bronze constructed case, but at 3500 meters, it is also their deepest model to date!



At first glance, it is hard to ignore the similarities between the Prometheus Poseidon and the previous generation of IWC Aquatimers; it is very much reminiscent of them.



However its design is also owed to other divers models particularly those of the 60s and 70s. Design heritage aside, the Poseidon is one the most affordable bronze constructed deep divers that there are on the market, today



- and one that is in the style of a very good looking high-end dive watch that is no longer in production.



And with an impressive catalog of features, too! A Sapphire crystal bezel inlay, a luminous dive-time scale, an automatic HEV and a Japanese made Miyota 9015 automatic movement.



Needless to say that the Poseidon will shouldn't have too much difficulty finding its way into our watch collections!



There are a total of 10 different versions of the Poseidon available - 5 in CuSn8 bronze and 5 in 316L steel. Dial colors include: black and blue with bezel colors in black with either - blue, orange, green or white.



Prometheus have officially started pre-order of the Poseidon 3500M. They have a number of different purchasing options available including a fantastic deal for those that pay up front -



plus a special pre-order incentive of a free Hirsch rubber divers strap and a free calf leather strap with a custom made CuSn8 bronze buckle.



The pre-order period will run from November 2014 until January 31st 2015 with expected delivery dates of mid June 2015 (delays permitting).



Pre-order details plus full specifications of the Prometheus Poseidon can be found HERE. Specifications are subject to change until the prototype has been approved.

2014-11-17

RALF TECH WRX Edition Manufacture TORPEDO

By TLex Introducing the new WRX Edition Manufacture Torpedo from RALF TECH, an imaginative and audacious-looking dive watch, equipped with a manufacture movement and an extraordinary handmade dial. Its exploratory design fuses modern and vintage elements with tradition and technology - the result an avant-garde piece of horological art!

Based in Le Locle in Neuchatel, Novowatch, the new atelier dedicated to the creation of RALF TECH ‘s Editions Manufacture timepieces employ not only traditional artisan watchmaking techniques but also ultra-modern tooling for the finishing their creations - controlling all stages of production of their movements, from conception to the development of their parts and decoration.



The components of the RALF TECH Edition Manufacture movements, including bridges, springs, wheels, barrels and covers to the barrel, screws and pins – are all machined individually with the utmost care. They are decorated using traditional techniques such as banding, sun-bursting, snailing and perlage.

Constructed, decorated and assembled entirely by the hands of a single watchmaker, the new WRX Edition Manufacture Torpedo boasts not only outstanding finishing quality, but absolute exclusivity with each Editions Manufacture series composed of just a few truly special pieces. Depending on the collection, only 1 to 22 pieces are produced, some of these are customizable upon request.



In February 2003, Frank Huyghe and his team mate, A.Sidali found the proof of the existence of a Spanish C3 submarine that sank in 1936. Believed to have disappeared forever, it lay for 67 years on the seabed - 75 meters deep. Inside were its torpedo tubes (still full). The WRX Editions Manufacture Torpedo’s dial decorations are inspired by the control panel at the back of a torpedo tube of the same type used by the C3.



Combining several materials, two levels with overlapping decorations fixed by screws (beveled and polished by hand), a matte black PVD pressure manometer and matte anthracite grey PVD Manufacture hands with red tips - it is completely handmade and requires more than 60 labor-intensive hours by a watchmaker to carry out each of the different technical steps to create it, from the machining of its parts to its assembly.



The WRX Edition Manufacture Torpedo is powered by a RALF TECH automatic mechanical Caliber Type 63 - the result of two years of research. It has been entirely developed, manufactured and assembled in-house by Novowatch’s master-watchmaker in the new atelier dedicated to the Editions Manufacture of RALF TECH in Le Locle, Switzerland. See bottom of post for full specifications and features of the Type 63.



The Torpedo's case has been constructed from 316L surgical Stainless steel case that has been treated with a matte black DLC coating. It has a diameter 47.5 mm (without crown). Lest we forget with all the complexity of its dial and movement, the Torpedo is actually based on a very capable diver –

the features of which include: a 2.4mm-thick anti-reflective treated Sapphire crystal, a reinforced and protected screw-down crown, a Sapphire crystal exhibition caseback affording a view of the Torpedo's manufacture movement with its hand-decorated rotor, a Stainless steel unidirectional divers bezel with a hand-polished Ruthenium dive-time scale and a water-resistance to 300 meters! For reference, Ruthenium is a rare hard white metal and is a member of the platinum group.



Presented on a 26mm black Louisiana alligator strap and in a luxury black wooden box , the WRX Manufacture "Torpedo" is issued in a Limited Edition of 10 pieces, priced €9800.

The WRX Edition Manufacture Torpedo is the first model in RALF TECH’s new Editions Manufacture series, showcasing what the French dive watch brand are able to achieve as an artisan Manufacture!



The Torpedo is accompanied by the WRX Edition Manufacture Pirates - also equipped with a manufacture movement, the mechanical manual caliber Type 77. Both models will be officially unveiled at the Parisian Salon ‘Belles Montres’ on November 21st. The following models in the series will be presented at Baselworld 2015.



Mechanical Automatic Calibre type « 63 »
+ Manufactured Mechanical Movement
+ Automatic unidirectional rotor
+ Diameter 30.00 mm - 13 ¼ lignes
+ Number of jewels: 24
+ Frequency: 4Hz, 28,800 alternations / hour
+ Balance Angle 49 °
+ Spiral spring type: Spiral of Archimedes
+ Inertial Balance wheel: diamond-hardened and gold-plated
+ Escapement type: Top®
+ Bridge, barrel bridge, balance bridge, automatic bridge with brass Rhodium plating
+ Anchor and escape wheel in polished steel
+ Brass coated anchor point treated with hardening nickel chemical bath
+ Côtes de Genève decoration and colimaçonné bevel (snailed), all coated in Rhodium
+ Jewels treated with 2N gilding
+ Barrel reinforced with Nivaflex® spring
+ Incabloc ® anti-shock System
+ Power reserve 50 hours

www.ralftech-manufacture.com

2014-11-13

Vostok Europe AN-225 MRIYA

By TLex ANCHAR aside, why is it that Vostok Europe's most rugged dive watches are made in tribute to aircraft, moon-landers and rockets. I'm not what the answer to that is, but what I can tell you is that the Lithuanian based watchmaker makes a great looking Russian heritage diver!



Case in point - the Ekranoplan, the LUNOKHOD-2 and the N1 Rocket. And here is their latest offering, inspired by the world’s largest airplane, the AN-225 Mriya - celebrating VE's 10th anniversary.



The name Mriya comes from Ukrainian and means 'a dream'. Not only will the watch be VE's largest model to date, but it will be their first to be powered by an automatic chronograph movement, the Japanese made SII (base) NE88 with its new column-wheel.



The watch's case is water-resistant up to 20 atm and is available in either polished Stainless steel, Rose Gold or black PVD finishing.



It will come in a watch set that includes two straps (one leather and one silicon) that are interchangeable by VE's own screw driver and presented in a leather box.



VE also offer a high-quality model of the AN-225 plane (with a 20cm wingspan) as an additional accessory. The AN-225 Mriya will be available in a limited quantity of just 500 pieces from next week.