When is a dive watch not a “dive watch?” Well, when it pays homage to the submarine service, as the G. Gerlach ORP Orzel 85A watch does, now available from this Polish watch maker. The watch commemorates the ORP Orzel, a modern (by WWII standards) submarine from the Polish Navy that escaped from the Baltic Sea at the onset of WWII and found service in the British Royal Navy until her sinking in 1940 (her short history on Wikipedia is worth a read). The watch itself is an attractive three hander driven by a Seiko NH 35A automatic movement. The 43mm x 13mm tall case is available in either sandblasted stainless steel or black PVD. I like the coin edge bezel on the watch, as well as the Guilloche striping on the dial. The red cross hairs I assume are supposed to be representative of a periscope, and the counterweight of the second hand makes me think of a pressure gauge, good styling cues for a submarine inspired watch, but not too direct either. The crown, which looks to be a variation on an onion style, appears to be quite prominent, which I like, but I don’t know if I like the overall shape.
The dial is available in two versions, blue and black, both with a fade towards the center. I think it is a pretty way to get color on the watch without overwhelming it, especially with the very rich blue that they use. There are multiple strap and bracelet options, with three leather color and a bracelet or mesh option is either stainless or PVD. Depending on if you opt for PVD and/or a bracelet, the watch runs from about $360 USD to $420 USD, with the higher cost for PVD and a bracelet, but still very reasonable. It is not a dive watch (it looks more like a field watch to me), but it does have a 200m depth rating and the sapphire crystal is always a nice feature. gerlach.org.pl/
EDITOR’S NOTE: We conducted a hands-on review of the G. Gerlach ORP Orzel here
- Brand & Model: G. Gerlach ORP Orzel 85A
- Price: ~$360 to $420 (+ ~ $27 in shipping to the US)
- Who we think it might be for: You want something like a field watch, but distinct.
- Would I wear one myself based on what I’ve seen?: Certainly, the black PVD with blue dial would be my choice.
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: I am not sold on the crown.
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: Love the deep blue color.
Tech Specs from G. Gerlach:
- Movement: Seiko NH35A
- Functions: Two time zones, timer, alarm, fitness tracker, volleyball activity tracker, clap counter, backlight
- Case: Stainless steel (option PVD)
- Crystal: Sapphire with A/R coating
- Water resistance: 200 meters
- Lug width: Not specified
- Straps: Leather strap or stainless or mesh bracelet (optional PVD)
- Diameter: 43mm
- Thickness: 13mm