Under Pressure - Sinn's Amazing Dive Watches
Sometimes an idea is so logical and simple you wonder why it has never been thought of before. Perhaps the idea itself is simpler than the actual execution. At Page and Cooper we like to work with manufacturers who are able, indeed look forward to, rising to any challenge.
Sinn watches, based in Frankfurt Germany, are known for their scientific approach to watchmaking. We often say that Sinn is like a horological research laboratory that also happens to sell watches.
Sinn have some of the most extensive testing facilities in Germany and when Lothar Schmidt, owner of the company, was looking to develop a new generation of dive watches in 2005, it seemed logical to him to begin by looking at the integrity of the actual case material itself. During this research he uncovered a steel that was expressly developed by German metallurgists for use in the new 212 series of non-nuclear submarines. This innovative new steel is highly resistant to corrosion by saltwater, extremely strong and uniquely, elastic.
All of these features are essential in the challenging environments in which a submarine operates. Another benefit is that this particular alloy cannot be magnetized. An essential feature when your environment may be peppered with magnetic mines and one that is highly beneficial to protect watch movements from interference.
Of course salt water is corrosive. Resistance to this corrosion or pitting can actually be measured. It is known as the PRE Value. Standard stainless steel has a PRE value of 26. Sinn U boat steel is rated at 38.
Another very important benefit of this steel is that it can be hardened under Sinn’s own tegimented process. All of Sinn’s diving watches feature tegimented bezels. Obviously the bezel covers a great part of the diameter of the watch and thus the addition of this new process gives even greater protection. Fully tegimented watches are available as standard or as an optional extra depending on which model you choose.
The bezel is unique to Sinn, featuring their own captive bezel system which means that further security is added to the watch by tiny retaining screws which hold the bezel securely in place, instead of the snap fit that is usual in most other dive watches.
With Sinn’s famous attention to detail, the gaskets are not the normal Nitril gaskets. Instead Sinn choose Viton gaskets which are more expensive than Nitril, but offer far greater resistance to chemicals and UV radiation. In addition Viton gaskets are 75% more resistant to moisture and vapour. Needless to say Viton is far more expensive than its Nitril counterpart. Viton gaskets are used for the bezel crown and back, another expensive but worthwhile attention to detail that is standard on all U Series watches.
Particular attention should also be paid to the crystal. Instead of looking to traditional watch crystal suppliers, Sinn works with an optical lens manufacturer and they developed an AR coating which has a hardness of 1,800 Vickers. Almost as hard as the sapphire itself, which is rated at 2000 Vickers. After wearing a Sinn U1 myself I can testify to the resilience of this material, after 7 years the crystal remains pristine and undamaged.
To conclude, Sinn choose to have their watches tested and certified by the technical maritime safety authority Germanischer Lloyd. Each and every Sinn dive watch is certified to European dive equipment standards. The U1 to 1000 metres, U2 to 2000 metres and the extraordinary oil filled UX which is certified to 5000 metres!
If you are looking for a watch capable of withstanding the most challenging of environments anywhere in the world then we will be happy to run through the extensive range of Sinn U series watches with you. Tegimented, Chronograph, Quartz or Automatic, probably the most advanced diving watches in any ocean.