Hands-On With The Tudor Black Bay 58 925 In Silver

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Predicting Tudor releases in recent years has been a rather futile exercise. Anyone who was around when the P01 was initially teased likely has more than a moment’s hesitation when they see a new teaser from the shield. Such was the case this year (and earlier this week) leading into the first digital Watches & Wonders event, with Tudor showing a billow of red and black smoke combining to create the shield logo. Was this a reference to a ‘coke’ bezel GMT? A new Fastrider? In reality, none of that came to pass, the red and black are simply the brand’s colors, and the watches we got were relatively straightforward, if unexpected. 

Perhaps the most unexpected were a pair of precious metal Black Bay 58 references, one solid gold, and the other, silver. While a gold Tudor sport watch is unusual, gold watches in general aren’t unheard of. Silver, on the other hand, raised a few eyebrows. A Black Bay 58 in a case made of silver was borderline inexplicable, but it was also quite beautiful. The case was brushed, and bright, while the dial and bezel were a lovely shade of taupe. But this is a dive watch, a tool watch at heart, and isn’t silver a bit …soft? If you weren’t sure what to make of this one right off the bat, you’re not alone.

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$4300

Hands-On With The Tudor Black Bay 58 925 In Silver

Case
Sterling Silver
Movement
Tudor MT5400
Dial
Taupe
Lume
Super Luminova
Lens
Sapphire
Strap
Fabric or Leather
Water Resistance
200M
Dimensions
39x47mm
Thickness
12.7mm
Lug Width
20mm
Crown
Screw Down
Warranty
5 Year
Price
$4300

Silver & Watches 

Watches made of silver are few and very far between, but they do exist. The last I remember catching my eye was this beautiful annual calendar from Ochs & Junior. There’s a couple good reasons you don’t see many watches made of the stuff: it’s soft, and it tarnishes. On the mohs scale of mineral hardness (from 1 to 10, with 10 being the hardest), steel clocks in around 6, while sterling silver lands in the 2.5 range. This places it in the same realm as yellow gold and a bit softer than white gold. Of course, we see plenty of sport watches in gold these days, so the 925 isn’t a jarring departure from other PM watches in that regard. 

On the bright side, silver is far less expensive than other precious metals, like gold or platinum. While a gold Yacht-Master 40 on Oysterflex will run you a cool $27k, this Tudor 925 is just $4,300. Now, if Tudor had fitted something like an Oysterflex to this watch, I’d be singing its praises from the rooftops, but more on the strap later. 

So, is the silver case all that weird? Maybe a bit, but it’s not out of line with what we see in the ‘luxury’ space of the watch world, which begs the question, who is this watch for? Materials aside, the Black Bay 58 is a good looking watch that calls on some of the most recognizable archetypes of the genre, and this particular configuration of the 58 is itself pretty good looking. As such, I expect the appeal of this watch to be quite broad. Hardcore tool watch enthusiasts will likely furrow their brow at such a watch, afterall who needs an exhibition caseback or precious metals? The motivations of enthusiasts are as diverse as the people acting on them, and I see this watch hitting the right notes within the collector scene as well as the general population watch buyer.

The Black Bay 58 925

We’ve talked quite a bit about the Black Bay 58 around here. It’s a consistent favorite around the office, and we often speculate on which type of variant we’d like to see Tudor release next. At 39mm in diameter and under 12mm thick, it’s a modern dive watch that wears like a classic, from a brand that had a hand in defining the genre. Thus far we’ve only seen 2 steel variations of the 58, one throwback, the other contemporary, and while the 925 is indeed a Black Bay 58, there are some very important distinctions to be made. 

Let’s circle back to that transparent caseback for a moment. First, it’s not viewable if you opt for the woven fabric strap, which feels like a single pass but actually incorporates the springbar into its design, meaning no quick changes (to be fair, it can still be done quickly, but not as easily as sliding one off, and a new one on). I digress, the exhibition caseback has thrown the perfect balance between diameter and thickness out of whack, as its inclusion thickens the watch from 11.9mm to 12.7mm. That may not sound like much, but on a watch this size, it is indeed noticeable in daily wear. It’s not a big deal to be sure, but in considering the near perfect dimensions of the steel 58 models, it’s a bummer. 

I am largely indifferent when it comes to exhibition casebacks, but when they come at the expense of a more wearable case, I’ve got beef. That sense of thickness is only exaggerated by the thin fabric strap, which leaves an unimpeded view of the unfinished casewall between the lugs. In light of that I’d opt for the leather strap, or a third party unit altogether. Unlike the steel models, a bracelet is not available here, presumably as it, too, would need to be silver. That leaves less than stellar OEM options available, but thankfully this watch should do pretty well on a wide range of straps as the taupe falls on the neutral side. 

As mentioned above, I feel this would really sing on something like a fitted Oysterflex strap, with or without a set of silver end links. It fits with the precious metal sport watch theme we see Oysterflex largely reserved for, and it would do wonders for the fit of the watch with the added thickness. Plus, Oysterflex is just really, really comfortable and I think Tudor deserves its own version.

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Case & Dial

Gripes aside, this case is visually arresting in the metal. It’s bright, and the brushed finish brings out a pop that is difficult to capture in photography (or words, for that matter). According to Tudor, this silver will not be as susceptible to tarnish in a way you’re accustomed to, but not entirely immune. So I’ll be keeping a keen eye on these watches in time to see just what kind of patina they do end up developing, if any. Likewise, the case being on the softer side, we could see some real characters emerge in no time. If you got one, wear it. 

The brightness of the case does well in providing a rich foundation for the taupe dial and bezel which, in most light, reads as light grey. In other light, a warmness is detectable. Whatever the name, it’s quite lovely and more dynamic than you’d think. I suppose taupe is the best name for it from a hue perspective, but if you have negative connotations to the color, don’t be scared of it here. It really does work well with the cool case, and pure white lume filling the hour markers and hands. 

At a glance, this colorway might be easy to dismiss, but it’s anything but boring in reality. Paired with the right strap, you could really create a unique experience around this configuration. I’m tempted to call the watch under-the-radar, but this case is eye-catching, all while being pretty much fully brushed, and without the use of diamonds or gems. In light of the material, it’s rather fitting, and might even spawn its own sub-category of entry-level precious metal sport watches.

Inside, the 925 receives Tudor’s own MT5400, which is built to chronometer spec (though not master chronometer, as they’re now capable of) and enjoys 70 hours of reserve. The movement does a fine job of filling the display window round back, and while it appears rather industrial in finish, it also looks confidently stout in the process. 

Conclusions

In total, this might be the most distinguished a Black Bay has ever looked. It’s a bit strange, and it’s not without fault, certainly, but there’s an unexpected charm here that’s buoyed by subverting expectations. And this watch is nothing if not against the grain when it comes to expectations. That includes the price, which is $4,300. That’s about $1,000 more than the cheapest Black Bay 58 in steel ($3,375), and exactly $600 north of a 58 on bracelet. If you like the idea of the 58 but want something a little more ‘special’ the price premium here feels more than fair. However, If you like the colorway but aren’t moved by the use of silver, well, things get a little blurrier. 

This is an unexpected watch, even more so an unexpected Tudor (which feels par for the course these days). I’m pleased to see them get creative with their expansion of the 58 range, rather quickly release new dial and bezel colors (as awesome as they’d look). It might not be what I was asking for, but I’ll be damned if it isn’t compelling. The Black Bay 58 925 is available at authorized retailers now. Tudor.

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Blake is a Wisconsin native who’s spent the past decade covering the people, products, and brands that make the watch world a little more interesting. Blake enjoys the practical elements that watches bring to everyday life, from modern Seikos to vintage Rolex. He is an avid writer and photographer with a penchant for classic cars, non-fiction literature, and home-built mechanical keyboards.
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