By TLex When is a dive watch not a dive watch? When it's a fixed bezel saturation dive watch of the type made by Drass Galeazzi's watch division -
Drass Watch [not to be confused with Anonimo's DRASS 'Double Refinished Anonimo Steel Surface'] for their Special Series models created for personnel working in the offshore and deep sea diving industries.
Dating back as far as 1927, Drass Galeazzi is the oldest continuously active commercial diving company today. They are unrivaled leaders in saturation diving systems, which include; SAT diving bells, hypobaric chambers and rescue systems.
Since 1937, when Drass held the Galeazzi world record for immersion with an Atmospheric Diving Suit, they have been at the forefront of commercial diving systems.
It is no accident that the look and feel of Drass' timepieces reflects that of (former) Anonimo, who had once supplied Drass with a special version of their Millemetri watch before Drass Watch embarked upon their own manufacturing (also in Italy); creating the Tecnologie Sottomarine and 300 MSW collections using Drass original case designs.
Models from the Drass Watch 'Special Series' use cases from the SAT DIVE, SAT DIVE Tungum and TUNGUM collections. The SAT DIVE and SAT DIVE Tungum share the same cases, with the latter sporting a Tungum fixed bezel. The TUNGUM model uses a solid Tungum case.
Of the features peculiar to the Tecnologie Sottomarine line of which the 'Special Series' is a part of are: over-sized crowns, metal dial plates baring the Drass name and the watches' 120atm rating) and manual Helium Escape Valves - placed at 2 o'clock (SAT DIVE and SAT DIVE Tungum) and 10 o'clock (TUNGUM). Some of the cases are also engraved.
The watch cases are constructed from either 316L Marine grade Stainless steel with bead-blasted, brushed, polished or vintage black PVD finishes or solid Tungum construction. All models are depth rated to 120atm and are powered by reliable Swiss made mechanical movements.
So what is Tungum? Tungum alloy a relatively unknown alpha-brass discovered in the 1930s by a well-known metallurgist from whose name the alloy is derived. As well as being anti-magnetic and non-sparking, Tungum is well suited to marine environments and atmospheres -
such as the highly corrosive ‘splash zone’ where Tungum pipe is used for the outfitting of saturation control panels and diving bells, which are constantly exposed to saltwater. Apart form this, its close likeness to 22 carat gold lends an obvious aesthetic appeal.
Considering the direction that Anonimo (under their new management) have taken, Drass Watch would seem to be an obvious choice for anyone looking for a traditional Italian styled, Italian made diver.
However, they aren't that readily available to those working outside the commercial diving and offshore industries.
Drass Watch assign priority based on a Diver’s logbook copy or a Curriculum Vitae outlining their experience in the commercial diving or offshore industries. So owning one of their watches makes it all the more special.
So, not only an exclusive and beautifully styled and executed SAT Divers watch, but also a kind of badge of honor if you will for those individuals who have dedicated their diving careers to working in the offshore world.
See LIVE images of my SAT DIVE Tungum PVD and stay tuned for the low-down on the new Drass Watch 300 MSW collection . . .