In watchmaking, who thinks innovative materials usually says high price. That’s somehow a rule. Look at recent watches with sapphire crystal cases. Most of them are over half a million CHF – even the cheapest one isn’t cheap… Same goes for complex ceramics, or watches associating different kind of solid, ultra-light or ultra-resistant materials. Carbon fibre isn’t always ultra-high-end, however few are the watches with such material priced under 10k. Well, Dietrich watches, with their usual value for money rule, will bring you forged carbon cases, some with colored incrustations and even luminous cases (yes, for real) together with a mechanical movement for a price you don’t expect. Here are the Dietrich O.Time now in colored forged carbon.
The concept of Dietrich watches: having a fun, highly designed watch, with mechanical movement, built with Swiss quality standards and for a reasonable price. As we’ve seen previously, Emmanuel Dietrich succeeded. The first collection of Dietrich 1969, featured some recognizable design clues, mainly because of the movement inside the case: a Myota 82-S-7 movement, which is the exact same movement as used in the SevenFriday watches. However, what makes the Dietrich O.Time watches different is the combination of the mechanical and horological elements (the visible balance wheel, the partially visible main-plate, the 4 layers of the dial, the star-shaped second wheel, the 24h second time zone indicator…) with a properly organic, almost vegetal design. Not surprising that the watches are named O.Time, for Organic Time.
The first watches were stainless steel – with or without black-PVD coating – and featured highly colored accents on the dial – in red or green. Later, in 2015, Dietrich enlarged the collection with new colors, new coatings (one with bronze PVD-coated case) and finally, they added some forged carbon bezels to the stainless steel container. Somehow, it was kind of a first for a small brand with watches at that price to include this innovative material, usually reserved to HYT or Richard Mille watches – and while the steel editions are priced between 1,215 CHF and 1,300 CHF, the ones with forged carbon bezel come for 1,850 CHF – so to say, an extremely reasonable price, considering the overall quality, the details and the materials.
There’s something new now in the catalogue. Not only Dietrich adds colors to the dials – red, orange, blue or green – on the hands and indexes, matching the stitching of the straps, but they also include these colors right in the forged carbon. Forged carbon is a mix of very short carbon fibers and a high performance binding material. This compound is put under high temperature and pressure – forged – into a metal mold for more than 20 minutes. The result is a very light but extremely resistant material whose particular structure is clearly visible and participate to the visuals. To obtain some color in the carbon, a tiny part of the binding material is colored and mixed with the neutral one. This colored mass will appear randomly on the finished bezel in unique patterns. According to the nature of the process, it is impossible to replicate the color patterns. Each timekeeper becomes a unique piece.
This color process is available on the red (Dietrich O.Time-2 Carbon Color), on the blue (Dietrich O.Time-4 Carbon Color) and on the orange (Dietrich O.Time-6 Carbon Color) editions. However, there’s more and even cooler. There’s also the Dietrich O.Time-1 Carbon, with green indexes. During day-time, it will shows some green incrustations into the structure of the forged carbon. However, this edition will have a second and more luminous side, at night-time, as we are talking of the O.Time-1 Carbon Luminescent. Instead of using colored binding material, Dietrich were able to mix it with Superluminova. At night, not only the hands and the indexes will glow, but some parts of the case too. It might not be very useful, but admit that it is just cool. And here’s the watch in question, shoot by our friend Amr Sindi / The Horophile:
The carbon editions without colored incstuations are priced at 1,850 CHF (Dietrich O.Time-1 Carbon, Dietrich O.Time-2 Carbon, Dietrich O.Time-4 Carbon, Dietrich O.Time-6 Carbon) while the colored versions (Dietrich O.Time-2 Carbon Color, Dietrich O.Time-4 Carbon Color, Dietrich O.Time-6 Carbon Color) and the luminescent version (Dietrich O.Time-1 Carbon Luminescent) come for 1,950 CHF. Watches are explained here and available for order here.