Omega now has a bronze vintage-inspired watch for people who hate bronze
For watch enthusiasts who don’t care for patina-ravaged bronze watch cases, Omega hears you.
Remember the bronze age of watchmaking? Of course you do. It was only a few years ago when this highly oxidative material seemed to be on every other dive watch, and demand for them hasn’t exactly petered out.
So for Omega to release its own bronze watch in its Seamaster line isn’t exactly head-turning news. The fact that Omega’s bronze behaves nothing like regular bronze is. Part of this year’s new Seamaster 300 collection – announced on Mar 23 – is a model cased in “Bronze Gold”, and the bronze doesn’t oxidise. At least, nowhere near as quickly.
There are collectors who are drawn to bronze watch cases for its utilitarian history – Gerald Genta reportedly created the Gefica Safari because bronze was less likely to reflect light and scare away potential game on hunts, while brands like Panerai experimented with the corrosion-resistant metal in the 1980s for prototypes it was making for the Royal Italian Navy.
For most people though, bronze’s appeal lies in its ability to age. That a watch’s case can gain a patina unique to its wearer is a story that sells itself, but Omega is banking on a different angle – convenience.
Bronze is typically composed of copper and tin, but Omega’s patent-pending alloy uses copper enriched with 9K gold, palladium and silver. The resulting metal is a soft pink (lying somewhere between the brand’s Moonshine gold and Sedna gold) that retains the corrosion resistance of bronze, as well as its hue.
Bronze Gold’s colour-fastness also means it can come in direct contact with skin, as regular bronze runs the risk of leaving stains. Thus, this Seamaster 300 is the answer to those who admire bronze’s unique colouring but don’t fancy constantly cleaning the patina off of it for that just-out-of-the-box sheen. A brown ceramic bezel and a dark brown bronze dial complete the look.
The 2021 Seamaster 300 collection includes a number of new details, which are also applied to its two steel models with a blue and black dial respectively. The traditional wave pattern and movement references on the watch face have been replaced with a clean and smooth sandwich dial, the inner frame is slightly slimmer to give the dial more room, and the steel versions see the return of the lollipop central seconds hand.
All references are also equipped with the Co-Axial Master Chronometer Calibre 8912, viewable from the sapphire crystal case back, and come with a full five-year warranty.