Of all the many and varied trends which exist in the wide world of watches, a slightly more patriotic one has come to the surface of late, and the introduction of this: the first automatic dive watch to offer a lifetime guarantee, from Australian watchmakers Bow & Stern, is proof that local watch producers are able to give the Swiss a run for their money.
Launching today on Kickstarter, Abyss is the latest model from Bow & Stern, an Australian watch company with a focus on exclusivity, value and sustainability. Following on from past models, the Abyss is a limited edition, with only 1,200 of each style available worldwide. Hand assembled, these watches are everything that’s great about buying a piece from a smaller producer, and the added element of locality is one extra bonus (not to mention you’ll be rocking something on your wrist that you’ll almost certainly not see on anybody else’s.)
Featuring a simple white dial, the three case options (Brushed Gold, Brushed Silver and Matte Black) are subtly complemented with a small date window at 3 o’clock, 2mm sapphire crystal glass, Super-LumiNova on the indexes and rotating bezel, and screw down crown with their anchor logo. The 24 jewel NH35A automatic movement is a workhorse and all up, the Abyss can go down to depths of 200 metres. Whether or not you spend your weekends diving or above sea level, that level of water-tightness makes this a hugely robust and practical timepiece.
AT 41.5mm, the Abyss sits a shade over 13mm on the wrist; not as thick as many others in its category, making it just as ideal a watch to wear with cuffed shirtsleeves as it is exploring the depths of the ocean.
Perhaps most impressive, however, is the coverage that Bow & Stern is offering to insure the the Abyss: a lifetime warranty. This makes it the first automatic divers’ watch on Kickstarter to receive such confident backing, and a great vote of confidence from the company that theirs is a product which will stand the test of time.
Served up on a black NATO strap, it’s clear that Bow & Stern are keen for wearers to use this watch in the water as it was intended, despite the proclivity of many to get a divers watch as nice as this and wear it exclusively on dry land. The addition of the NATO strap over a more common bracelet or leather also makes it extremely easy to customise the Abyss; a growing trend with many wristwatches nowadays.
For each watch sold, Bow & Stern will plant a Blue Gum Eucalyptus Tree in Victoria’s Annya State Forest, in a concerted effort to offset any carbon emission from each watch’s production & delivery.
With a retail price of AUD $698, the Abyss already comes in at a reasonable ticket, but given that it’s being launched on Kickstarter, is of course offered up with a tempting discount for first-adopters. The first 80 people to jump on board with a pledge of AUD $349+ will score an Abyss of their choice (that’s a 50% saving). The next 120 will enjoy a 40% discount from the RRP, while other Kickstarter sales will be discounted at 30%; a pretty tempting reason to get in early.