The Best Windup NYC Debuts: Part II

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At this year’s Windup NYC, there were so many interesting (an unexpected) unveilings of new watches seen by the public for the first time that we had to split our round-up of said watches into multiple posts. So, without further delay, here’s another set of watches we loved that made their public debut at Windup this year. And if you haven’t already, be sure to check out our first installment, right here

Zelos Hammerhead 2

Elshan Tang, proprietor of Zelos Watches, was back this year with a followup to the Hammerhead, the appropriately named Hammerhead 2. The original Hammerhead, Tang’s take on a 70s inspired cushion cased diver with ultra modern specs and an angular aesthetic, has long been sold out, so fans were naturally excited when they spotted the new version at the Zelos table at Windup this year. 

Available in stainless steel and bronze cases, and in a variety of colorways, the Hammerhead 2 largely maintains the original’s imposing appearance, and adds a helium escape valve for a touch of additional functionality, if you happen to be a saturation diver (or, if you just happen to enjoy extremely over engineered things, which the Hammerhead 2 most certainly is). This watch is all about heft and wrist presence. While some brands race to create lighter and ever more discreet timepieces, Zelos is going for the opposite here, and if you like the idea of your watch being a giant yet extremely attractive and well made hunk of metal, there’s a ton of appeal here. The Hammerhead 2 is expected to be available on the Zelos website by late November, at a $399 price point. Zelos

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YEMA Superman Black Bronze 

YEMA debuted a new bronze dive watch at Windup this year, a follow up of sorts to the sold out Superman Heritage Bronze Limited Edition. That edition, you’ll recall, came in a brilliant dark blue dial and was a faithful rendering of the original Superman, using high end 3-D modeling technology to get all the little details just right, including YEMA’s trademark locking bezel mechanism. With the Superman Black Bronze, much the same formula has been used, but in a slightly different series of colorways, adding some versatility into the YEMA lineup. 

Obviously, the Black Bronze features a matte black dial where its predecessor was an iridescent blue, giving the watch a very different appearance right out of the gate. YEMA has also given their customers the option of a bezel in black or burgundy for this edition (both in a modern sapphire). The combination of burgundy with the warmth of the bronze is really great in person, and the watch itself is surprisingly sleek and sporty thanks to its 39mm sizing and thin lug profile. The YEMA Superman Black Bronze will be offered in a numbered edition of 100 for each of the two variants beginning in late November, with non-numbered watches being made available in January 2020. YEMA

Autodromo Intereuropa

Autodromo creates automotive inspired watches that aren’t really anything like what you typically see in the crowded genre of car and racing timekeepers. Their newest creation, the Intereuropa, is perhaps their strongest statement yet that a watch derived from motorsports doesn’t have to be a sports watch at all. The Intereuropa is all about capturing a mood and evoking a unique moment in time.

To do this, designer Bradley Price focuses less on the cars that inspire him and more on how those cars make him feel. The 1950s sport coupes that are the basis for the Intereuropa’s design are beautiful, elegant machines, and Price has crafted a beautiful, elegant machine to match it. It’s not so much that the Intereuropa makes you think of a classic Maserati or Alfa Romeo (though the dial is modeled on gauges from cars of this period), but it acts as a suitable complement to the vehicle if you’re lucky enough to find yourself behind the wheel of a classic berlinetta. Featuring a hand wound Swiss movement, sumptuous leather straps, and a dial with surprising and rewarding depth, the Intereuropa is another in a series of entirely unique motorsport inspired watches from Autodromo. Autodromo

Oak & Oscar Olmstead 

We first told you about the Olmstead a few days before Windup kicked off, but the fair was the first time the public had a chance to go hands on with the new field watch from the Chicago based brand, so in our mind it certainly counts as a Windup debut. 

Field watches are having a bit of a moment right now. There’s something about the simplicity and utility of a highly legible time only or time and date watch that will always be appealing to enthusiasts. Oak & Oscar has delved into a bunch of interesting watch sub-genres in their short history, creating a series of complicated watches all within their unique design language. I was curious, then, to see how they’d fare with a much simpler timepiece. There’s greater room for error in terms of design, after all, when you’re working in a style as spare as the field watch. 

After having a chance to experience the Olmstead in person, I don’t think there’s any doubt that Oak & Oscar nailed their attempt at a field watch. It’s just the right size, highly legible, and regardless of the colorway chosen, it’s still unmistakably Oak & Oscar, complete with a sandwich dial and pops of color in just the right places. Oak & Oscar

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Farer World Timer Automatic 

Farer debuted an entirely new collection at Windup, representing their take on a traditional and challenging complication, the world timer. Three new references in Farer’s trademark vibrant colors made an appearance at the fair, and judging by the deep lines at their table all three days, the new World Timer collection was a hit. 

Distinct from the much more common GMT, a world timer gets its name from being able to see the time across the globe in any timezone, at a glance. This presents not only watchmaking challenges (the mechanism for a world timer is inherently more complex than a GMT) but design problems as well. Many world timers become so packed with information they become hard to read the home time, let alone the time anywhere else on the planet. This is where Farer’s unique take on color really comes in handy, as they’re able to create dial layouts that are immediately intuitive and easy to read. They haven’t reinvented anything here – their version of the world timer still uses a revolving cities disc and inner 24 hour ring, just like classics of the genre – but their design sense and ability to perfectly match and complement bold color choices gives a very traditional complication a much needed modern update. Farer

Collins Sonar 

Collins Watch Company had early versions of their Sonar series of dive watches available at Windup, and the small collection represents something of a shift for the brand in terms of aesthetics. While previous Collins watches could be easily identified by their aviation inspired meets Explorer-style dials, the Sonar is actually a fairly traditional dive watch at a great price point, in a size that will make lots of enthusiasts happy. 

I think the key to appreciating the Sonar is the breadth of options that brand founder Jimmy Collins is giving you with this watch. This, quite simply, is not what I would have expected from the brand, as previous releases had just a few well selected color variants to pick from. The freedom of choice here is great, and allows Collins to explore color in a way he hasn’t in his earlier Bronson and Hyperion releases. The Sonar will be available in black and white dial variants with a black rotating bezel, as well as orange, blue, green, and yellow versions with a great tool-ish steel bezel. At just a hair under 40mm and a retail price of $750, these watches are a fun value proposition. Collins Watch Company

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Zach is a native of New Hampshire, and he has been interested in watches since the age of 13, when he walked into Macy’s and bought a gaudy, quartz, two-tone Citizen chronograph with his hard earned Bar Mitzvah money. It was lost in a move years ago, but he continues to hunt for a similar piece on eBay. Zach loves a wide variety of watches, but leans toward classic designs and proportions that have stood the test of time. He is currently obsessed with Grand Seiko.
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