Birth of the Bloxworth Heritage Diver
Our mission was to create a classic, three hand diver inspired by the watches we so fondly regard from the 50’s and 60’s, one that would perfectly complement our existing Bloxworth Chronograoh collection; a little smaller, a little more colourful with a textured rubber deployant strap?”
When the first period of enforced working from home was upon us, the timing was fortuitous. Whilst we were working out the new order of things, we also found ourselves with a little more breathing space than our usual frenetic existence at EB HQ. It allowed time for new thinking, to reflect, to start over (and over) and be our best creative, obsessive selves.
Where to begin?
The Bloxworth case provided the perfect starting point with the chamfers on the shoulders visually reducing the volume of the case, meaning that the end result looks smaller still – an essential element.
We settled on 40mm for the case but increased the undercut – the small bevel around the lower edges of the case sides creating the impression of less volume – just enough to give the side profile the perfect proportions and like all our other models it wears smaller precisely because the devil’s in the detail.
Box crystal, in our eyes was always going to feature, it’s subtle but gives the top surface of the watch it’s traditional classic appearance.
The bezel needed to reduce the volumetric appearance to something much more slender but with perfect fit-for-purpose grip. The final grip design looks almost cog-like on screen but when machined down to form the slim ‘coin edge’, the resulting high grip splines sit just proud of the case for effortless performance. Perfect.
Ceramic bezel inserts have been on our radar for some years, let’s just say it’s not the accountant’s choice but it brings a level of precision far beyond any pressed metal insert and will of course remain mark free for years.
Alex has always wanted to build a watch with a sandwich (two layer) dial and this project gave him the perfect opportunity to explore how it might work and how it’s textured surface could also become part of a new anchor design element for the collection.
As the project developed from basic sketches into more detailed renders, we created our very own basket weave texture taking elements from the EB shield logo repeated and embossed in a grid.
The new collection needed a new rubber strap, a ‘tropic’ inspired strap, so we set about creating a completely new moulded shape with a gorgeous deployant buckle that opens with a squeeze. It starts off longer than our standard rubber pin buckle straps too.
With multiple strap bar holes, top surface textures, breather holes, cutting guide grooves and rope shaped breather texture, the 3D mould render is a work of art.
The twisted rope breather lines on the inner surface were inspired by the ropes and lines we see daily in our working boat yard HQ. This strap also works beautifully on just about every other watch we have ever created too, elevating the EB rubber strap to another level.
With design tech-packs ready to go, the project paused because of the global pandemic. The net effect was to allow a little more time for us to reflect than the usual overnight test we generally allow new designs.
When the time came, we found ourselves picking up the detailed tech packs with fresh eyes and that can be a dangerous thing! Then followed a spell of swift honing and tweaking, making minor modifications during what is possibly the most obsessive period we have ever spent on a single watch design, but when you’re us, nothing goes out the door until it’s just so.
Each model carries with it, a unique character. It’s these subtle character differences in conjunction with perfectly executed detailing, once just ambitious ideas in our heads, that created so much feeling when we handled the first prototypes and saw everything come to life in front of our eyes. We sat silently, picking them up one by one, exploring every angle, every detail handling them over and over. Delighted.
When we explore new watch design, we try and do it with few preconceptions, a totally open mind, and with the confidence that we'll crack it.. somehow.
Our first design renders were of a classic steel case with a grey or black dial. It’s a great starting point because these are probably the hardest models to perfect. Because the classic dive watch genre is naturally more colourful, we were able to settle on black, bright orange, chalky deep blue, vintage tan and stealthy gunmetal dial colours with matching rubber or leather straps.
We hope you enjoy the Bloxworth Heritage Diver collection as much as we did creating it.