New Releases Watches

Oceaneva Introduce Damascus Steel to the Deep Marine Explorer II

Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m

Damascus steel is, in my sometimes-humble opinion, one of the coolest materials you can make a watch out of. It’s cool, wavy grain is like nothing else out there and as a material it’s pretty darn strong. And yet it’s also a rarity – which makes the Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m genuinely interesting.

First, what exactly is damascus steel? Historically, it was a material used in sword making and legends speak of damascus swords slicing rifle barrels in half or perfectly dissecting a hair. They’re probably embellishing aplenty there, but the particular type of steel – produced as early as the 3rd century – was considered one of the finest metallurgical creations in the world.

Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m

These days, damascus steel is a bit of an experiment as many of the original techniques have been lost. ‘Modern damascus’ is actually slightly different from its ancient origins, but no less difficult to make. It consists of layering different types of steel, forge welding them together and then hammering and folding them into the correct shape, flattening those various layers of steel into that signature grain.

It’s a material that’s rarely seen use in watches, despite its beauty. Off the top of my head, GoS over in Scandinavia and Franck Muller are the most notable. Both are understandably pricey, well over the 10K mark. The Oceaneva take will set you back £317. I’m not missing a handful of 0s there, I mean it’s less than most quartz watches – and just wait until you see the specs.

Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m

The 42mm case is made entirely of damascus steel of course, but so too are the bezel, meaning that grain is across the entire watch. Said case is also water resistance to 1,250m, more than enough for even the most demanding divers and far greater than much, much pricier dive watches. And that water resistance has been tested in situ, not in the usual pressurised machine. That makes a big difference in how much you can trust the number, while the helium escape valve will help when decompressing.

Inside the Deep Marine Explorer II Damascus Steel is an automatic movement, the stalwart Sellita SW200-1, a workhorse stock movement that’s one of the heroes of third-party watchmaking. It’s 38-hour power reserve is feeling a little left-behind these days, but it’s an automatic movement in a £300 watch, it’s hard to complain about.

Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m

There are three different versions of the Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m. The obvious choice is the version that also comes with a damascus steel dial, but the white and black versions are perhaps a bit more restrained for everyday wear, The white is a particularly good match to the grey grain of the damascus. All three come on rubber chunky, dive-ready rubber straps, black for the damascus and black dials, white for the white.

Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m DM200DM
Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m DM200WH
Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m DM200BK

This isn’t the first time Oceaneva have blown the concept of value out the water. Either the brand isn’t taking a big enough cut of what they’re doing or there are plenty of others out there taking too much. Either way, £317 for any watch with these specs is impressive; one in a material as uniquely appealing as damascus steel is nuts. Just bear in mind that the watch is limited to 1,000 pieces which, for an impulse buy like this, really isn’t much.

Price and Specs:

Model: Oceaneva Deep Marine Explorer II Pro Diver Damascus Steel Limited Edition 1250m
Ref: DM200DM (damascus steel dial), DM200BK (black dial), DM200WH (white dial)
Case: 42mm diameter x 14.8mm thickness, layered forge welded damascus steel
Dial: Damascus steel, black or white
Water resistance: 1,250m (125 bar)
Movement: Sellita calibre SW200-1, automatic, 26 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 38h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds, date
Strap: Black (damascus or black dial) or white (white dial) FKM rubber
Price: £316

More details at Oceaneva.

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