Now, we’ve reviewed plenty of Zodiac watches over the previous few years, however at present’s evaluation marks one thing totally different. In the previous, their releases have been somewhat restricted numbers, and as soon as they have been offered, they have been gone. To deal with the curiosity, there’s a brand new “Core” lineup that’s being launched, containing watches that must be extra broadly out there. The first watch we’ve seen from this new vary is the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin.
You would possibly assume that “Skin” appellation on the finish is a bit bizarre, nevertheless it is sensible for those who perceive a few of the historical past round dive watches. For extra on that, this text covers issues fairly shortly. In that article, you’ll see a beat-up dive watch that appears an terrible lot just like the watch we’re reviewing at present. That’s as a result of Zodiac is definitely a model with a reasonably lengthy historical past, having kicked off similtaneously heavyweights Rolex and Blancpain. To put it extra concretely, they hint their historical past again to 1882. If you actually wish to take a deep dive into the historical past of Zodiac watches, we’ve discovered that ClassicZodiacs.com is a really sturdy useful resource.
Suffice to say, Zodiac has a reasonably good again catalog to get into. No shock, then, that you simply’ll see plenty of classic Super Sea Wolf watches which have the indices that now we have right here on the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin. As I frolicked with these triangles on the compass factors, I got here to think about it as being a “toothy” dial. You know, like a shark that you simply’d by no means hope to come across when you’re off diving. Then once more, if it solely has 4 enamel, possibly you’re okay. The different hour indices are triangular, although extra elongated. Still, it goes an extended approach to giving this watch a classic really feel, standing out from different divers you would possibly encounter.
Another method these indices stand out is within the coloration of the lume used. Here, it’s a stunning orange tone that we simply don’t generally see. On a dive watch, that’s most likely for a very good motive, because the glow is just not as vibrant as, say, the standard inexperienced. As somebody who doesn’t get a lot deeper than an area pool, I’m happy with it. You could notice that the glow fades a bit extra shortly as nicely, however I really feel that’s extra as a result of hue than anything. Sure, a thicker utility would possibly assist there, however then you definitely’re entering into one thing that may really feel misplaced on the dial, to not point out actually recessing the numerals. In different phrases, you’ll lose the texture of this watch.
What is the texture of the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin? Well, as a pores and skin diver, it’s meant as one thing that’s a part of a “minimal tools” package for entering into the waters, together with some flippers, a masks, and possibly a snorkel. To that finish, the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin seems like a stripped down strategy to a diver. At simply 39mm diameter (and 12.7mm thick – together with the sapphire crystal), it’s far more compact than the unbiased dive watches you might have banging round in your watch field. For that, it does nonetheless hit a 200m WR ranking, which implies you’d don’t have any worries going within the water with it, supplied that crown is screwed down.
Should you wish to time your dive (and even your parking meter) you’ve received your commonplace dive timing bezel (with the requisite 15-minute markings) completed up courtesy of a ceramic insert within the bezel. This materials ought to maintain up worlds higher than the usual metal or aluminum insert, in addition to bringing extra lume to the social gathering. While it’s a slender bezel (preserving with that stripped-down theme), it’s nonetheless loads legible, and I’m somewhat eager on it for being completed up in a matte end, somewhat than the shiny look we’re extra accustomed to from a ceramic insert.
All of that is set on the metal case of the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin, however once you have a look at it straight on, you don’t truly see a lot of the case, apart from the lugs. The bezel is ever so barely bigger than the case diameter, so that you get this impact of it wanting nearly like an all-dial watch that has lugs springing out from it. Of course, considered in profile, you see the case and it’s brushed surfaces (nice for hiding fingerprints). And flipped over, you’ve received a multi-finish stable caseback. Here, the SSW script exhibits up down the center, however there’s nonetheless some room there for a talented engraver to mark an important day, must you be so inclined.
As I’ve mentioned, I’m not likely a diver – however I benefit from the robustness of a device watch like a diver, in addition to liking the type. So when it got here time to put on it, I did simply that. It was a piece day watch, it was a cooking watch, it was a weekend watch. I even had it on with a swimsuit at one level (for that, you would possibly wish to swap the rubber strap for a leather-based one, and even their common bracelet). In quick, I did all the pieces wanting yard work with it (as a result of that’s not how we deal with loaner watches right here at WWR), and it labored nice. The compact dimension simply felt proper on my wrist, and the massive indices and broad handset actually stored legibility on the fore.
We ought to discuss in regards to the motion contained in the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin. Here, it’s the STP 1-11, a motion that we’ve seen in plenty of Zodiac fashions. It’s labelled as being an in-house motion, and we agree with that evaluation. Why? Well, you see, Fossil Group owns each STP and Zodiac, so it’s all within the household. For these pondering again to your first buy of a Fossil on the mall, put that away for this motion. It’s a motion that they’ve been making since 2006, and it actually is a Swiss computerized. In different phrases, this isn’t your teen self’s Fossil. No, right here you’re getting into the world of Swiss watchmaking, and all that that entails.
How nicely does the STP 1-11 maintain up? Of course, our quick time with the loaner doesn’t actually paint the image, however there have been no noticeable points with accuracy in our time with it. And on condition that they’ve been making them for over 15 years means they need to have issues ironed out. Of course, ought to one thing occur, Zodiac would be capable to service your motion for you. At the second, we consider that’s solely completed in Switzerland, however we’re hopeful that we might even see extra regional help that permits you to get your watch again extra shortly.
To summarize, sure, I do somewhat just like the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf Skin. Sure, it’s brothers with the brightly coloured bezels and dials get quite a lot of consideration (rightly so), however I do discover myself drawn to the toothy indices of the dial, and the broad pointers of the handset (versus the keystone palms used on a few of their different fashions). It’s nice as a compact on a regular basis watch, and with the 20mm lugs, becoming different straps (or their bracelet at $295) must be a cinch, making for a flexible – and succesful – watch. It’s additionally a stable method for somebody to get into the waters of Swiss watches, whereas not breaking the financial institution. At $1,195 it’s firmly in entry-level luxurious territory. And given the restricted availability previous to the introduction of the Core lineup, it’s doubtless a watch none of your watch buddies will likely be bringing to the native get-together. Unique, classic seems, Swiss-made, and prepared for something – what’s to not like? You can verify them out, and even order one on-line, immediately at zodiacwatches.com.
Want to listen to much more about Zodiac? Check out this interview over on the Scottish Watches podcast
Tech Specs from Zodiac
- Sku: ZO9212
- Case Size: 39MM
- Strap Width: 20MM
- Movement: Automatic
- Case Color: Silver
- Case Material: 316 Stainless Steel
- Bezel: High-polish, scratch resistant ceramic insert with lume markers
- Movement: In-house STP 1-11
- Strap Color: Black
- Dial Color: Black
- Strap Material: Rubber
- Platform: SUPER SEA WOLF
- Water Resistance: 20 ATM
- Closure: Single Prong Strap Buckle
- Strap Inner Circumference: 200+/- 5MM
- Battery Type: No Battery
- Interchangeable Compatibility: 20MM