Introducing the De Rijke & Co. Amalfi Series 1S, a Watch for the Open Road

You decide to ride a 1962 Vespa on a trip of a lifetime down the Old Silk Road—yeah, that one—and to keep track of time, you buy an old Russian Vostok wristwatch.

But the real fruits of the trip—besides the adventure? The Vespa and the watch have inspired you to make your own watch. Specifically, a driver’s watch.

That’s the short version of the story behind fledgling Dutch brand owner Laurens de Rijke’s Amalfi Limited Edition Series 1S (99 pieces). Says de Rijke, “I tried to find the balance between the watch being a jewel at the one hand and being a (functional) tool at the other hand.”

De Rijke is a design engineer, as am I, so I have an acute appreciation for a few of his design points.

Pictured here is Laurens de Rijke doing maintenance on his Vespa GS160 on the Pamir Highway in Tajikistan. Photo courtesy of brand.

First, the 38-millimeter case is sheer Bauhaus—a very thin bezel coupled with a huge dial tucked beneath a nicely domed sapphire crystal with antireflective coating.

This one is nearly all dial.

Second, the lugs are solid rather than being equipped with spring bars. This invites a unique strap attachment method. The strap enters the lug from beneath, folds back upon itself through a keeper, and fastens with the sort of button common to other leather goods. This makes the strap quickly exchangeable with continuous straps such as mil-straps. Frankly, I’d stick with the artisan-made factory strap due to its unusual—and very attractive—appearance. Plus, de Rijke promises additional straps of varying lengths.

Third, and perhaps unique to this timepiece, is the construction of the case itself. Measuring 38 millimeters in diameter and 9.5 millimeters tall, the case of the Series 1S is actually a case within a case. The movement, dial, etc. are contained within the inner element, which rotates up to 90 degrees. The crown acts as the stop at either end of rotational travel. You can have 12 o’clock directly “north” between the upper lugs, positioned at the “three o”clock” position within the case, or anywhere in between.

Now, with the Series 1S being a driver’s watch, a favored position may be 12:00 located at 45 degrees to the lug orientation. This position makes the watch more readable at a glance on your wrist as you navigate your way down the road.

The recess on one side of the crown is engraved with the model name and the Limited Edition number of piece. At this writing, you may still be able to request the number you’d like to have. The recess on the opposite side is available for personal engraving. Inquire with De Rijke & Co. when you place your order.

The black lacquered dial is not as spare as the case might imply. First, it’s huge, double case construction notwithstanding (I’m a sucker for huge dials with thin bezels). The hands are tapered and skeletonized (for future lume inclusion, according to the press release). The applied hour markers are silver plated and hand filled with paint. Both hands and markers are of a single design philosophy. This gives the Series 1S an attractive, unified look.

The motor purring beneath is the Soprod M100 (formerly known as the A10-2), Soprod’s version of the 2892-A2, which can be inspected through the sapphire case back.

All in all, the De Rijke & Co. Amalfi Series 1S is a uniquely stylish newcomer to a genre perhaps under-appreciated—the driver’s watch. Time to pull on the driving gloves, fire up the Triumph TR-4A, and see what she’s got!

The Series 1S is currently being assembled on an order by order basis as de Rijke works out the details for final production. Lead time is roughly two months, and the price for the De Rijke & Co. Amalfi Series 1S is €2495, including VAT.  De Rijke & Co.

Related Posts