By TLex Introducing the new Sport Divers collection from Wempe Zeitmeister Glashütte i/SA. Four years in the making, the collection joins other models of the Zeitmeister line, produced since 2006 by the family-owned Wempe business - itself established 135yrs ago in Germany's famous watchmaking town of Glashütte.
The divers collection comprises of three models using the classic Zeitmeister case design. These include a chronograph model and two automatics. Whilst the look of the watches could be described as being 'typical' divers style, they do offer some nice features and will likely be of an excellent build quality.
The watches come in 45mm (chrono) 42mm (auto) Stainless steel cases that are fitted with: double AR-coated Sapphire crystals and unidirectional rotational divers bezels with either black or blue ceramic inlays. Their dials are with steel SuperLumiNova applied handsets and markers. The Chrono comes in black, the Auto in a choice of black or blue. They are both water-resistant to 300 meters / pressure-resistant to 30 bar.
Wempe have dispensed with helium-release valves as they correctly state that they are only essential for professional and offshore divers. I guess they wouldn't want to take their Wempe Divers into the SAT chamber with them?! And how about those of us that enjoy such a superfluous detail as an HEV? :(
However the watches do correspond to strict DIN 8306 and ISO 6425 standards for divers watches and have undergone not only water-resistance and temperature tests, but have survived undamaged to:
• 2 hours spent at pressure at a depth of 100m, then 3 hours at a depth of three meters.
• Have withstood a pressure increase of 25% above their specified max. WR of 30 bar.
• Have shown no traces of corrosion after being submerged in warm saltwater for 24 hours.
• Have survived alternating immersions in water at 40° and 5° C and afterwards passing a condensation test.
The watches possess screw-down casebacks that have been engraved with a depiction of the Glashütte Observatory, where all Zeitmeister models undergo strict tests. They come on 22mm five-part, high-quality, integrated, Stainless steel bracelets with a quick-extension so that it can be worn over a wetsuit. The folding clasp is additionally protected by a divers safety catch.
The watches are powered by a Swiss made Sellita SW500 (chrono) / SW300 (auto) with 25 jewels, 28,800 vph and a power reserve of 48 hours (chrono) 42hrs (auto). These have been modified in Glashütte with Wempe's own fine-adjustment mechanism and are officially certified German chronometers according to DIN standard 8319.
Whilst developing the new divers models, Wempe engineers and designers discovered two early divers from the 60s at the Wempe Museum: the Zeitmeister SkinDiver and Swimproof. It's a pity that they weren't quite brave enough to have borrowed some of the vintage watch's design cues - particularly the handset of the Swimproof, which is superb!
MSRP: 4825USD (chrono) 3540USD (auto)