Undive Watches, a Hong Kong-based micro brand has unveiled its first crowdfunded project on Kickstarter to manufacture a vintage-inspired professional diver’s watch. The model, named Dark Sea, is depth-rated to 500 meters and met its funding goal within two days of launch.

A little bit of Seiko, a dash of the Panerai Submersible

The folks behind this project is Undive Watches Innovation, a group formed by diver’s designers based in Hong Kong. Founded in 2015, the collective hopes to make affordable, professional diver’s watches and this is their debut offering.

The Dark Sea model takes its style cues from vintage diver’s watches like the Seiko Ref. 6105 (the one Martin Sheen’s Captain Willard wore in Apocalypse Now), but there is the obvious likeness to the Panerai Submersible models. 

The helium release valve on this tool watch

Encased in 316L stainless steel, the watch is biggish (45 mm wide and 15.4 mm thick) for a vintage-inspired diver but given this is a professional tool watch, the presence of a large dial was probably driven more by utilitarian value than aesthetics. The case shape with the winding crown - with a Trident logo in relief -  at 4 0' clock is clearly a hat tip to the Seiko 6105.

This is a serious diver’s watch and is depth-rated to 500 meters. The case is fitted with a domed sapphire crystal and a helium release valve. The caseband is brushed but the lugs are polished providing for a good contrast. Like most professional diver’s watches, this has a stainless steel caseback.

SuperLuminova on the hands and bezel

The watch is available in two variants – Cold Steel (with a brushed steel bezel) and Black Storm (a black DLC coating on brushed bezel). The uni-directional bezel has 120 stops as it make a full rotation around the dial and is topped by a big luminous market at 12 o’ clock.

The matte black dial has polished hour markers that are filled with blue Superluminova. The broad hands are filled with lume as well. The central seconds hand has two luminous dots filled with blue Super Luminova and red Super Luminova that actually glows pink in the dark.

The watch uses the Seiko NH35 automatic movement

This watch is powered by Seiko’s Caliber NH35, a self-winding movement with a power reserve of 42 hours and hacking seconds function. A 3 Hz movement, the NH35 is basically the Caliber 4R36 – found in many Seiko diver’s watch – by another name. The watch is paired with an accordion style vulcanized rubber strap and is also presented with a leather strap and a shark mesh bracelet.

The watch is priced at $436 (AED1,600) currently on Kickstarter and the first watches are scheduled to be shipped in November this year. For more information, click here.