As an English Literature major, part of my degree involved studying the original folklore and stories surrounding Robin Hood, so when I first learned about Nottingham based watch brand Sherwood creating watches inspired by those same stories I was immediately intrigued. Their debut watch is the Sherwood Commander, a versatile timepiece designed to be a hybrid between traditional dress and dive watch styles.
The concept of a dress/dive watch is an interesting one most commonly associated with the idea of a desk diver, a dive watch more suited to the office than the sea due to the inclusion of gold etc. However, I wouldn’t classify the Sherwood Commander as a desk diver because with its robust 40mm stainless steel case featuring 200m water resistance, this is 100% a watch that you could go swimming with.
In fact, on balance I’d say that the Commander is far more diver than it is dress. The dial is super legible with oversize circle, rectangle and arrow shaped hour markers coated with lume and broad, easy to read hands. In a nod to the legend of Robin Hood, the seconds hand has been shaped like a fletched arrow. I think it adds a lot of character to the piece although I understand if others might find it a little on the nose.
Ultimately, the only thing that precludes it from being described as a pure-bred diver is that the rotating bezel doesn’t have the traditional Arabic numeral scale. Instead, it has a series of square pips with a 20-minute timing section centred above 12 o’clock that you can rotate to wherever you need it to be. In this manner, it is actually a fully usable dive timer, it just trades a little clarity underwater for a more reserved appearance on land.
Speaking of, it does have a reserved quality that makes it suitable for most occasions. The sunray brushed dial catches light pleasantly and is available in a trio of colours: blue, black and green. My personal preference is the green version because it fits in with the verdant landscape of Sherwood Forest, the home of Robin Hood.
Beneath the surface the Sherwood Commander houses the Miyota 9039 automatic movement. With a 42-hour power reserve and a frequency of 28,800vph it’s a more than solid choice for a debut watch that was crowdfunded on Kickstarter. The movement is protected by a screw-back caseback.
As for pricing, it’s £450, although throughout the pre-order period they’re offering a £50 discount making it £400. That’s some serious value for a dive watch with this much class. Especially as it’s relatively unique in a sea of endless retro-diver homages. It’s not technically a limited edition but as is the nature of microbrand releases, it’s limited by production meaning there are approximately 75 of each colourway available in the first drop.
Price & Specs:
- Model: Sherwood Commander
- Case/dial: 40mm diameter x 12mm thickness, stainless steel case, sunburst blue, green or black dial
- Water resistance: 200m (20 bar)
- Movement: Miyota calibre 9039, automatic
- Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
- Power reserve: 42h
- Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
- Strap: Stainles steel bracelet
- Price/availability: £450