BACKGROUND UK based, Spinnaker are a sports watch brand focusing on affordable nautical inspired wristwatches. They have recently produced two new series of vintage inspired divers watches that have been named after historical scuba-diving pioneers.
The HASS after Hans Hass and more recently the DUMAS after Frederic Dumas an underwater archeologist, who collaborated with Jacques Cousteau on several of his diving expeditions during the 40s, 50s and 60s.
The Dumas (particularly) seems to have caught the attention of the collector’s market and with good reason as it is a very handsome looking dive watch but what else does offer besides its good looks?
DIAL The Dumas comes in two dial variants – blue or black. The black version has red highlights around its markers while the blue version has yellow. The combination of yellow and blue is always a hit. For an “affordable” wristwatch, the level of detail on the dial is really excellent.
We have a glossy blue background with applied lumed markers and a handset that includes a prominent yellow sword minutes hand, a wide hour hand and a lollipop-style sweeping seconds hand. At 12 o’clock is a large Spinnaker sail logo and underneath that the Spinnaker name in yellow script.
Using the logo as the 12hr marker is a pretty cool idea – we’ve seen this done before – sometimes it works other times, not so much. Actually I really don’t mind it – maybe because it’s a nautical symbol, perhaps also because it’s been lumed. To others, though, it might be a bit of an eyesore.
CASE Constructed from 316L Stainless steel, the octagonal case of the Dumas measures 44mm in diameter with a thickness of 16mm. The design of the case is unmistakably vintage – perhaps not too dissimilar to the legendary Seamaster 120 AKA the Baby Ploprof or at least in the same vein as such a watch. The case has a fine vertically brushed finish with polished and beveled edges.
CROWN At 3 o’clock on the side of the case is a large polished screw-down crown with a prominent fluted grip. The crown has as a small white badge with the Spinnaker sail logo in silver which is a lovely little detail in my opinion and kind of sums the attention to detail that has been given to the watch as a whole.
The crown is nestled in the middle of the Dumas' angular crown-guard, protruding just enough so that operation of winding and time-setting is a hassle free. The top of the crown-guard also has a polished finish. The crown itself is nice and sturdy.
BEZEL The Dumas is fitted with a 120 click type unidirectional rotational divers bezel with a blue inlay. I have no idea what the inlay is made from but I can tell you that it is fully lumed with a bright glowing Swiss C3 SuperLumiNova dive-time scale. The bezel has a nice precise action – just wish it had a tad more height to it.
CASE-BACK The Dumas has a 316L Stainless steel case-back with an exhibition window affording a view of the watch’s engine complete with its custom blue Spinnaker signed rotor. The case-back is domed with a flat center. There’s the usual engraved text running around its perimeter.
CRYSTAL The Dumas is fitted with a tough K1 hardened mineral crystal. I know for some this will be an automatic deal breaker and to be honest a Sapphire crystal shouldn’t have a huge difference on a watch's overall price anyway so I can’t really explain its absence. On the plus side, mineral crystal is actually more shatter resistant than Sapphire crystal – can’t say I know anyone who’s shattered a Sapphire crystal so perhaps a moot point.
WATER-RESISTANCE The Dumas has a respectable 300 meters of water-resistance an indicator that Spinnaker designed it to have proper scuba-diving capabilities – well as much as any divers watch has since the advent of the dive computer – in short if it had to accompany you on a dive it is more than up to the job as serving as a good-looking backup.
LUME The dial markers, hands and bezel of the Dumas have been applied with Swiss C3 SuperLumiNova which emits a green light. I would rate the lume as very good – excellent – it isn’t the very best I’ve seen but at its price-point it’s right up there. The dial markers have a large surface area and as such are highly visible – torch-like when fully charged, also the seconds indicator has been lumed, something that is all too often overlooked.
MOVEMENT The Spinnaker Dumas is powered by a Japanese made Miyota automatic mechanical movement with 21 jewels. The caliber housed inside the Dumas has a custom Spinnaker signed rotor. The seconds hand unfortunately is non-hacking so this rules out the 9015. Its functions include a hours, mins, sweep seconds and a date at 3 o'clock.
BRACELET The Dumas is fitted with a fully adjustable Stainless steel Milanese mesh bracelet with a single steel keeper. Getting the clasp thread with the bracelet and positioned to the correct size for was a bit fiddly – I think I even scratched by head once or twice but once it was set up, it was perfect. The mesh is super comfortable on the wrist – I your hard notice the watch. It looks wonderful too.
BUILD I can’t fault the overall fit and finish of the Dumas – for a 400 dollar watch it boasts a whole host of fine details: beautiful polished beveled case edges, brightly glowing Swiss C3 SLN, and a stunning bracelet. Actually the clasp on the bracelet could be a little more solid but on the plus side – it keeps the watch reasonably light.
The K1 mineral glass is a bit of a let down but in the grand scheme of things – for the collector with a box full of watches this probably won’t get abused day in day out and so will likely remain mint K1 or no K1. Also the bezel inlay might also be a little less than scratch resistant but no more so than anodized aluminum.
PRICE The Spinnaker Dumas is priced at 400USD but with the generous 30% discount that is being offered to OceanicTime readers with the “OCEAN30” code this becomes a very enticing prospect at just 295USD – an absolute bargain in my opinion.
OVERALL I think the pictures of the Dumas speak for themselves – for starters check out this WRISTSHOT courtesy of OceanicTime resident photographer @timemonki. While it isn’t a high-end luxury diver, it does have the look of one.
The Dumas is an excellent example of a retro-diver, right down to the very last detail put together by a knowledgeable team that seem to care about what they do. Sure for 295 bucks, it does have the odd flaw or two but it more than makes up for them with its obvious charms.
Please use promo code ''OCEAN30'' when ordering to get 30% off for OceanicTime readers.