Simplicity and Balance – Alkin - Model 2 SS case
Being restrictive is one of the issues that we have seen in the watch industry, it can be the case size, or it can be the lettering in the dial, perhaps the oversized details or even trying to hard on the vintage vibe, but whatever it is restriction is not easy to achieve. Then sometimes you try the alternative formula and make something very simple, clean cut and well made and then, the fans would consider it boring, dull, people were so happy when they saw a smaller case size for the Black Bay line from Tudor but we can easily say that it was one of the watches that got ‘flipped’ the most over the last years and not only because of profits but because people got a bit bored of them, they were too perfect (I still got mine by the way), the line is thin, very very thin. So, let’s try to do a watch that can cater the enthusiast and the mass market at the same time: A diver is one of the most popular segments so we can go with that, then no date, 41mm and of course mechanical, sounds familiar? Well ISO certification doesn’t let much to the imagination so what I love about the new Model 2 from Alkin is that apart from these characteristics, they’ve also went for the inner rotating bezel and supercompressor style case, white legible handset and markers and a profile that looks vintage without being nostalgic. The first time I had a look at those supercompressor cases from the 70’s was in a Red Bar meeting here in London, it was an original Longines Legend Diver no date of course, lovely case and condition but as you might know I am not a fan of vintage, I am not careful enough with my watches and I like to use them, and although I appreciate the look they are not for me.
The itch of experiencing one of these cases always stayed with me and still there is an empty slot in my box for this unique approach to waterproofness, maybe the Model 2 is the one. Let’s see what it packs.
The Model 2 comes in a 41mm case and a lug to lug of 48mm, remember when I said good proportions? Well, the watch fits nicely in my 6.25mm inch wrist and it has presence but is not overwhelming. The black dial is a beauty to behold under that double domed sapphire crystal, looks really good and because there is no date then the balance is not interrupted, the dial has sandwich construction which means it has a powerful glow when is needed. Talking about legibility, the Model 2 white handset and markets contrast nicely making it very legible, it reminds me a lot of the Omega Speedmaster and that is a good thing. The case of the Model 2 is all brushed and avoiding any glare when you go outside with it and inside that body, we have a mechanical Miyota 9039 which is water resistant to 300 meters, this means is not a desk diver but a true tool watch.
Of course, we must mention that double crown, the look is very attractive, and the inner rotating bezel is a treat to operate, unscrew the top crown and you’ll be able to time minutes and hours at ease, unscrew the crown at the bottom and you will find manual winding and hour set, looks good and feels great.
On the wrist:
The watch wears nicely and all is due to the curvature and lug to lug spam, it is easy to pull and never looks out of place, the watch comes with drill lugs also and because of the very flat case back the watch feels great at home with Nato and leather straps. I’ve added several straps like an orange and grey from Vario and a vintage leather strap to give that old world look, looks great and really changes the personality of the watch, I think the grey rubber one is a winner. The model 2 comes also with a 20mm steel bracelet, solid end links and clasp, it really oozes quality. I manage to take the watch out for a full day on this original bracelet and it was as comfortable as anything, looks very compact for a 41mm watch and I think the black color dial really makes it stand out with other divers alike.
The Model 2 is one of the watches that I have been anticipated for a bit, not only for the looks but also for the quality construction, the competition is hard in the under 500 GBP price range but I have to say that Alkin made something special here that really comes out on top, the quality of the sandwich dial, the brushed from the case and the dial symmetry really give value on a watch that looks and feels like no other. Not sure how they manage to price it the Alkin at 415 GBP, but I will take this beauty before many watches that cost 2x the price, I wanted to review the black model, but I think with what I have in my collection the white one will be the one for me. I am curious to see what comes next for this brand, if they can continue the quality/price plus design language than I am a firm believer that they will keep us on the edges of our seats, not bored but entertained.
Case: 316L stainless steel
Finish: Brushed stainless steel
Movement: Miyota 9039
Lume: Super-LumiNova BGW9
Lens: Sapphire with AR coating
Strap: 316L stainless steel bracelet with solid endlinks
Crown: 3.5mm x 6.5mm screw-down
Bezel: Internal bi-directional
Dimensions: 41mm x 48mm
Lug width: 20mm
Water resistance: 300m
More information at www.alkingwatches.com
Visit us at www.robbieandwatches.co.uk
For the straps visit www.vario.sg