iW Fall 2020 - Page 83

THERE IS A CRUCIAL MOMENT THAT EVERY WATCH COLLECTOR FACES IN THOSE FAST SECONDS BEFORE A MULTI-DAY EXCURSION : picking the watches to wear . My personal go-to for changing time zones includes a GMT for tracking home time and a rugged dive watch for everyday wear . Fate , in the form of a press release from Rado , showed up two days before I was scheduled to leave for Tamarindo , Costa Rica , with an offer to review the new Captain Cook dive watch .

I told their very responsive rep if he could get me the watch before I left , it would become my travelling companion on the trip for a hard-core review . Literally hours before departure I was unboxing their bronze beauty and tossing it in the carry-on bag . Welcome to the manifest , Captain .
The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms and its counterpart the Rolex Submariner have collectively set the standards by which all other dive watches should be measured . Like the Eames chair , they sport all the elements , on functional and aesthetic levels , that serve to define the breed . Virtually every other dive watch developed in the past seventy years has drawn from the feature sets of these two watches .
Rado ’ s reissue of its original 1960s Captain Cook diver teases elements of these classics , with updates that tastefully reflect popular contemporary treatments and materials .
LET ’ S GET INTO IT … The Rado delivers a rich wrist statement , utilizing the green and gold of the old Marshall Field ’ s logo ( not John Deere , thank you ), and is a striking take on the traditional dive treatment . The Captain ’ s green dial is surrounded by a matching ceramic bezel and lives in a bronze case with a titanium back . While I would have preferred a matching color scheme on the bezel indices , the silver is subtle enough to work with the theme .
Its dial is called “ green sunray ” in the press materials and is slightly domed , giving the high gloss face a three-dimensional glean reminiscent of a highly polished fender on a British racing green Jaguar XK-120 . Par for the vintage theme , the hands and markers are a cream-colored SuperLuminova . The dial also sports a swiveling gold anchor at 12 o ’ clock , a neat , very , very subtle touch that gives users and excuse to twirl the watch around and wonder “ why is my anchor spinning ? What does it mean ?” Tres 60 ’ s !
The Captain is water resistant to 1,000 feet and powered by an automatic ETA C07 , 25-jewel , three-hand movement with a date at 3 o ’ clock and up to eighty hours power reserve . This is the ‘ Powermatic 80 ’ movement with silicon balance spring , found in many models of Tissot , Certina and Mido watches .
The movement is a no-nonsense performer , offering an impressive power reserve and anti-magnetic properties through the use of a silicon escapement . For those interested in a deep dive into this movement , check out an article on the Monochrome website and complete technical specifications , including use in other watches , on Watchbase .
The payoff for owners of the Good Captain is found in the bronze case , with a material that has been showing up in increased usage over the years . Unlike stainless steel or gold , that simply scratch and get dirty , bronze develops a unique patina as it ’ s worn .
The result of the oxidation of the copper component of the bronze can appear as brown , black , red , blue or green . Costa Rica provided the perfect environment to see if the Captain could live up to its name as a seagoing adventurer and emerge as a newly colored denizen of the not-so-deep seas .
WEARING EXPERIENCE The Captain looks and feels solid . The bezel has a nice loud ratchet sound that indicates things are properly aligned . It ’ s a medium-weight timepiece with a nicely unobtrusive 12.5mm x 42mm case . While I prefer a horned