Hands-on: Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Ocean Commitment III Watch

By Dhananjay Pathak

The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms is to Blancpain what the Omega Speedmaster is to Omega, a watch that has stood the test of time and gone ahead to become a legend in the world of dive watches. The first Blanpain fifty fathoms came into existence in the year 1953 and has since then evolved both technically and stylistically to become the watch it is today, while still being quite reminiscent as a Fifty fathoms. Having a deep rooted association with the ocean Blancpain launched its first limited edition Ocean commitment timepieces around four years back and are now launching the third iteration of the limited edition series called the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Ocean Commitment III.

The Balncpain Ocean commitment program was launched to conserve and protect certain areas of the ocean and the BOC timepieces is one of the means to support the brands endeavor. So, in case you plan to buy one of the 250 Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Ocean Commitment III watches, Eur1000 from your purchase would go towards the brands ocean conservation project. Now, let’s get back to the watch itself. The dial on the BOCIII watch has a deep shade of blue which immediately highlights the ocean related inspiration behind this watch. The hour markers on this watch stay quite true to the original Fifty Fathoms from 1953 and have been printed with luminous paint application instead of being applied. The hour and minute hand have this kind of sword shape and have been lume filled along with the arrow tipped seconds hand. There is a date window at 4:30 for date lovers and while it does not spoil the symmetry of the dial I feel the dial would have looked much cleaner without one. And finally to showcase the limited nature of this watch you have a printed world map with the “Ocean Commitment” text at the top and the “Limited” text at the bottom.

The case on the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Ocean Commitment III watch measures 40.3mm in diameter and is 13.2mm in height, suggesting that the watch fit comfortably on a variety of wrist sizes. The entire case has a brushed finish to it which is apt for a dive watch and water resistance is marked at a healthy 300 meters. Also present on top of the case is a unidirectional 60 click sapphire bezel which is nicely color matched to the dial of the watch and harkens back to the bakelite bezel on the 1953 fifty fathoms. The movement powering this watch is Blancpain’s in-house caliber 1151, an automatic watch with a substantial 4 day power reserve. It is packed with some interesting tech including a silicon hair spring making the watch highly resistant to the dangers of magnetism. The movement can viewed in all its glory through the sapphire exhibition case-back and has been nicely decorated with Geneva stripes, polished bevels, as well as a gold winding rotor engraved with “Ocean Commitment” inscription.

The Blancpain Fifty Fathoms Ocean Commitment III is a handsome looking dive watch that holds true to the Fifty Fathoms DNA and offers some nice vintage flavor in a modern package. The watch is limited to a production run of 250 pieces and each of them would be individually numbered. Each watch would be accompanied with 2 straps: a blue sail-canvas strap and an additional blue nato strap. As a bonus every buyer of the watch would receive a hand-numbered copy of the Edition Fifty Fathoms book, comprising of black and white underwater printed on pages bound with removable screws, enabling the buyer to extract the page he likes and place it in the frame supplied with the book. The watch would retail at a price of CHF 16,000. For more info, visit Blancpain online.

Photos: Harlan Chapman-Green