John Lee, the creator of the original Cobra de Calibre has returned from the drawing board with a new model, the Bronzo Twin Crown, available for pre-order on Kickstarter now.
As you may have surmised from the name, the watch has a 42mm CuSn8 bronze case with an internal rotating bezel and twin screw-down crowns. The movement is the popular Miyota 9015. The Bronzo also features domed and anti-reflective coated sapphire crystal, 200 meters water resistance, and a stainless steel case back.
Those two crowns are particularly interesting. John chose to place them on either side, nestled between mighty crown guards that run the full length of the case like a Jean Richard Aquascope, rather than compressor style at 2 and 4 o'clock. They are stout pieces, signed with the Cobra de Calibre logo, and plated in a rose gold finish. Most other bronze or brass watches use stainless steel crowns. Even though the gold finish won't develop a patina like the bronze case, it should provide a much more harmonious appearance.
The rose gold is also featured on the applied markers and hands. The trapezoidal markers are perhaps the most conservative aspect of the watch, but with wide channels cut deep into the surface to maximize lume. The hands are also lume filled, and clearly John had fun designing them. Their arrow shapes look like something an 18th century pirate might brandish. Like the first model, the dial has a vertical texture and fanciful script, but the anchor and snake have been relegated to the case back. Instead, it bears the Cobra de Calibre script with a red logo at the top of the dial, and "Automatic, 200M" in a more conventional serif font at the bottom. A gilded window at 6 o'clock shows the date.
The case measures 42mm across the bezel, not including the crowns, which from the looks of them will considerably increase the overall size. This is a watch that will have massive wrist presence, but with a 50mm lug-to-lug length, should still fit smaller wrists without overhang. Three different versions are available: black or green dials with a brushed bronze case, or black dal in a DLC black case with a polished bezel to let the bronze shine through. Two straps are offered, black and brown with copper stitching in thick, Italian crazy horse leather. A signed bronze buckle completes the package.
The Bronzo Twin Crown looks like a ton of fun, but there is nothing haphazard about the design. Based on John's first model, I believe we can expect it to be a solid product with meticulous attention to detail. It is available for pre-order on Kickstarter starting at $499 CAD (@ $455 USD) until September 31. Only one batch will be made.
Of course, as with any crowd funded venture, your mileage may vary, details may change, production may be delayed, or the project may simply fail to launch, but you can take comfort in the fact that this is not John's first rodeo. If you are looking for a bold statement piece that is clever, watch nerd approved, and quite affordable, I'd suggest you have a good look at this one.
Photos courtesy of Cobra de Calibre