Watches based on WWII mil-spec designs are, it seems, a dime a dozen these days, so what can be done to make such a watch stand out while still conforming to the decidedly unadorned genre? With their new 39-millimeter Cruxible, MK II answers that question with clever execution of stealthy details.
Take, for example, the way the Cruxible’s Super-LumiNova is pretty much invisible by day, while at night the 12, 3, 6 and 9 start to glow along with the hands. Or the black-on-black text on the dial that’s intentionally illegible at most angles, allowing the watch to appear sterile like a true military issued watch, while keeping the branding and water-resistance in place. Or the drilled “scroll lugs,” which MK II claims are based simultaneously on the Patek Phillipe Ref. 1463 and and the CWC G10 field watch. It’s an intriguing and appealing approach to making what would otherwise be a plain-jane watch into one that whispers, rather than yells, a very specific design language.
That language is derived from the legendary American issued A-11 wristwatches, which we covered in depth here at Worn & Wound earlier this year. American companies like Elgin and Bulova produced a majority of the A-11s for the US military during WWII, but MK II has—like most independent brands today—sourced their parts from outside the US.