Italian watch brand U-Boat, designed by Italo Fontana and crafted in Tuscany, Italy, is all about distinctive Italian styling and high-tech functions. The brand’s newest watch, the Sommerso Bronze, deftly underscores this theme, and takes form and function to a new level by crafting the diver’s watch in beloved bronze — one of the hottest metals on the watch market today.
U-Boat’s Take on Time
U-Boat is all about oversized cases, left-side crowns and resistance to the most extreme conditions. Its highly distinguishable watches were conceived of by Italo Fontana in the year 2000. He had discovered drawings that his grandfather, Ilvo Fontana had created in 1942 in response to a request by the Italian Navy to design watches for its pilots –according to highly precision technical guidelines.
Italo was inspired by those drawings and, in 2000, created U-Boat watches, billing it as “A New Dimension in Time.” The bold look of the U-Boat watches, with strong profiles and decidedly masculine appeal, took many around the world by storm. In no time, celebrities and athletes like David Beckham and Arnold Schwarzenegger were wearing U-Boat watches. The brand quickly gathered a universal following of people who love a large, highly distinguished watch chocked with function and rugged durability.
Today, U-Boat continues to build watches with character that are powered by Swiss-made movements. It regularly pushes the creative envelop when it comes to new materials, working not only in titanium, steel and gold, but also in carbon, tungsten, ceramic and bronze.
The U-Boat Sommerso Bronze Diver Watch
The Sommerso dive watch is one of the most popular and sought-after collections from U-Boat thanks to its features and its looks. Now, Italo Fontana creates a bronze version using untreated bronze that will achieve a unique patina over time. The ancient alloy was the first metal that man learned how to manipulate because of its pliability. It was the metal of choice in ancient times for jewelry, chalices and even maritime uses. Bronze is highly water- and corrosion resistant and yet is harder than steel or iron, so it is often used for accents on ships. Each piece of bronze changes over time with exposure to the elements and turns a different shade of blue or green.
The Sommerso Bronze diver watch measures 46mm in diameter and so it offers a large canvas for the natural oxidation process. Of course, the watch – offered with black dial – is equipped with a rotating unidirectional bezel with calibrated markers for divers. The crown – placed on the left side of the case in typical U-Boat style – is built with a patented protective device so it can’t be pulled out while under water. The sapphire crystal features an antireflective coating and the hands are makers are coated with luminescent materials.
Inspired also by the earliest nautical divers and their bronze equipment, Italo Fontana pays tribute to them with the design of the caseback. It is crafted in bronze and features an antiqued anti-corrosion treatment.
The watch is powered by a Swiss automatic mechanical movement that is personalized according to U-Boat specifications. It delivers the hours, minutes, seconds, 24-hour indicator and date functions. The watch offers 44 hours of power reserve and is water resistant to 300 meters. It is delivered with a hand-made aged-looking leather strap and a bronze buckle.
This bold dive watch offers a great balance of Italian design, Swiss precision and a touch of uniqueness. Perahps the best thing about this watch is its affordable price: $2,950.
Technical Specs of the U-Boat Sommerso Bronze Dive watch
Movement:Swiss automatic mechanical, personalized to U-BOAT specifications. Frequency: 28,800 vibrations per hour. Power reserve: 44 hours. 26 jewels. Skeletonized rotor.
Functions: date, hours, minutes, seconds, 24h indicator, graduated unidirectional bezel, screw down crown
Case:bronze, naturally aged, distinguishing crown on the left side, with a patented protective device. Serial number plate fixed on the left side of the case. Diameter 46 mm. Caseback: screwed, in bronze with special antiqued anti-corrosion treatment.
Dial: Three superimposed dials, the upper one in black with visible ruby. Luminous beige hands, numbers and markers, treated with Super-LumiNova Red 24h indicator hand.
Crystal: sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating.
Water resistance: 300 mt, 30 ATM
Strap:hand made and hand finished calf leather, dark brown. Tongue buckle in bronze with special antiqued anti-corrosion treatment. Width: 22/20 mm.