By John Galt
Tudor watch company Rolex’s younger sibling for so many years has finally come of age, Tudor has come through its trouble some teens when it tried to break away from its family and not use the famous case and bracelet, which didn’t work and nearly put the brand out off business! Are now coming of age and having a Phoenix moment and rising once again from the ashes.
Tudors history is long but subdued always looking up to its big brother in or with its in-house movements, started in 1926 as a watch Rolex agents could sell along side at a more modest price, to keep the price down of the Tudor range they used non Rolex movements mostly the Valjoux manually wound in their early pieces i.e. cronos and their version of the Submariners with their now world-famous Snowflake hands so to make them self different from there older brother.
Having been hidden for years behind big brother and only being available in Asia and Europe they finally escaped in 2012 and released the Black Bay to a huge applause, Tudor had arrived in style.
The Black Bay harkened back to the Tudor of old with parts of its history suttourly inserted in to this piece from the domed glass reminiscent of the Submariners from the 1950’s to the big crown a nod to the models presented in 1958 and now dubbed by collectors as the `big crown´ and last but not least the piece do resistance and a big hooray to Tudor collectors. The `Snowflake ` hands are back and looking so pretty as ever having not been present on Tudor’s since the 1980’s , with a 41mm case, warm red bezel coupled with white gold Snowflake hands set this piece apart.
With multiple ref to Tudor of old and their heritage, this was Tudor’s Phoenix moment either this would raise them up again back onto the top table with there older brother or sink back into 80’s obscurity, thankfully the first as I for one was becoming a fan of Tudor.
This year at Basel watch fair they released the follow-up to the Black Bay called the Heritage Black Bay.
The Red Bay exuded warmth with its red bezel, this new version with its blue bezel certainly has a cold demeanor with its deep black dial and silvery hands & hour markers with white luminescent continuing the cold crisp feel of it.
Case size is the same as it predecessor at 41mm, personally would like to have seen it grow slightly to say 43/44mm to give it real presence on the wrist. Movement is Tudor’s caliber 2824(ETA-2824) with a very respectable power reserve of 38 hours. Black Bay Heritage comes with a chose of straps either aged leather or oyster bracelet to go with the special weaved thick blue fabric strap.
Tudor has once again risen up to show the watch world what they can do ,my only worry is like the phoenix it doesn’t stay around at the top long like their past tells us, but I really hope I am wrong that they grow and move forwards because I for one have become a fan of the new Tudor and can’t wait to see future releases from the little brother of Rolex. For more info, please visit tudorwatch.com
John Galt – Contributing Editor
John Galt caught the horology bug 4 years ago on his first visit to a London watch show and has snowballed since; John has become an avid writer and blogger of timepieces of all kinds, from everyday timepieces to modern Luxury Haute Horology, his favorite brands being HYT and Greubel Forsey that push the bounders of modern watch-making. John keeps a keen interest in the UK watch scene with their many emerging brands and timepiece’s. John Galt currently contributes watch related articles for online publications in the UK and USA. You can follow John on Twitter @johng73 Read his articles here.