When selecting the perfect dive watch for your collection, it is easy to fall into the trap of two extremes: the iconic, uber expensive legacy options on one hand, and the classic, everybody-has-it budget friendly options (Seiko, G-Shock) on the other. We made it our mission to explore the lesser known dive watches coming from brands you wouldn’t necessarily think of. It is our belief that self-expression and creativity is found off the beaten bath, and we enjoy it every step of the way.
In this article, we bring to you the Spinnaker Bradner. Let’s take a closer look!
Spinnaker: The Brand
Spinnaker arose from a man’s passion for adventure, the blue seas, diving, and pursuing the horizon over the limitless oceans. The term “Spinnaker” refers to a specific style of sail used on racing boats.
The brand’s goal is to keep the classic dive and sports watch design elements we all love, while complementing it with differentiating details unique and authentic to the brand, ensuring a creative flair.
Spinnaker Bradner Review: Overview
The Spinnaker Bradner is an affordable solution for people who are just starting to dip their toes in the realm of watches, because this timepiece offers several sought-after features: it is inexpensive, robust, looks really cool, and has a nostalgic feel due to its vintage-inspired design. Additionally, while it has a sporty look, this watch can easily be dressed up to accompany you all the way to a business casual setting. To sum up, it is designed to be equally functional during a leisurely but elegant vacation in a European city, as well as during an exciting water-related expedition with increased water resistance to 600 ft (180 M). A high performer that is also good looking!
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The textured dial gives more depth and contrast against the light hour marks. The date window is located at the classic 3 o’clock position. The unique shape of the hands – especially the hour hand perfectly balances the negative space in the middle of the dial: the textured dial towards the center doesn’t feel empty because of the thicker hour and minute hands. An exciting twist is brought to this balanced classic set up with the lollipop seconds hand, where the bright orange secondary color plays perfectly with the two shades of yellow we see on the hands and the rim for the minute markers.
Continuing the theme of unexpected design choices, the bi-directional bezel is found underneath the sapphire crystal. To turn the inner bezel, you’ll have to use the crown at 2 o’clock position. It’s a very smooth experience to adjust this bezel protected by the sapphire crystal.
The design itself is a classic design we usually see on dive watches, the count-up bezel. It has a 60-minute scale that traditionally helped divers read off their time underwater. The way to do this is to align the minute hand with the bezel’s zero marker – and with a bi-directional bezel, that can be done quickly and efficiently.
Overall, the inner bezel solution gives us the vintage-feel, as we get a lot more “dial” visually, and less stainless steel case around the face of the watch.
The case itself is made from brushed stainless steel, and a screw down crown guarantees protection from water. The Bradner is water resistant up to 180 meters (600 feet), has a case width of 42 mm, the lug-to-lug distance is 50 mm, and the lug width is 20 mm.
The most interesting part is the thickness of the case: it’s 15 mm! While the 42 mm case width is relatively average and would look good on most wrist sizes, the 15 mm case thickness makes it feel massive in the best way. It adds to its sporty appearance, and makes it that much more of an eye catcher. Our personal opinion is that even though it’s on the thicker side, it won’t look awkwardly big on anyone—just to set expectations, however, we wanted to call out that this watch likely won’t fit under your shirt’s cuff seamlessly.
But with the 15 mm thickness comes a very impressive depth when you look at the dial of the watch. The angled inner bezel and textured dial plays really well with this depth.
The material of the crystal is sapphire, therefore the watch will have a solid scratch resistance. Additionally, anti reflection coating will ensure great visibility.
The NH35 is a three-hand movement that comes with a date function and it has a 41-hour power reserve. The movement is provided by Seiko, and the Japanese automatic movement is a budget-friendly and very reliable solution.
The NH35 caliber has 24 jewels. What’s interesting about this movement is that it’s the unbranded version of the Seiko caliber 4R35. So if you see Seiko’s watches with their own in-house 4R35 caliber, the NH35 caliber is the same exact movement, minus the branding.
The accuracy range is within -20~+40 seconds per day under normal conditions.
The see-through caseback provides a mesmerizing view of the movement.
Stainless Steel Bracelet
The brushed stainless steel bracelet is a beads of rice bracelet. The bracelet emanates a subtle elegance that dramatically modifies the appearance and feel of your watch. While it looks wonderful with almost any vintage watch, the beads of rice bracelet also looks great with modern formal (or athletic) timepieces. A fold over buckle, with safety lock and a push button is added, ensuring this baby stays on your wrist!
Pros and Cons
Let’s take a look at the summary of pros and cons, in our humble opinion:
- Unique design with the textured dial
- Inner bezel is a refreshing solution
- Reliable NH35 automatic movement
- Good quality stainless steel bracelet and clasp
- 15 mm case thickness could be an issue for some
- Slight visibility distortion at the edges of the sapphire crystal due to the angled finish
Summary: Takeaway and Final Thoughts About The Spinnaker Bradner
The Spinnaker Bradner is a great quality and surprisingly stunning dive watch for everyday use as well as for action packed adventures. It perfectly balances vintage design elements and modern appearance to make it a suitable pick as an everyday go-to watch. The very reliable tried and tested NH35 automatic movement with the 41-hour power reserve, the scratch resistant sapphire crystal, along with the brushed stainless steel case and bracelet make this watch a great everyday beater. Due to the subtle elegant additions (like the beads of rice bracelet design) it can easily be worn to dressier occasions as well. Overall, a definite winner in our book!
- Movement: Automatic
- Caliber : NH35
- Power reserve : 41 hours
- Collection : Bradner
- Case size : 42 mm
- Case Thickness: 15 mm
- Lug to Lug: 50 mm
- Crown Type: Screw Down
- Bezel: Bidirectional Inner Rotating Bezel
- Water Resistance: 180 m / 600 ft
- Warranty: 2-Year International
Spinnaker Bradner Pacific Blue
As we’ve mentioned, there are different color variations of the Spinnaker Bradner. Here are some different options.
Spinnaker Bradner Emerald Green
Spinnaker Bradner Petrol Black
Spinnaker Bradner Tidal Blue
Spinnaker Bradner Atlantic Blue
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