Monochrome Watches
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The Delma Shell Star Titanium Sheds Size And Weight

Delma’s neo-vintage diver in a 499-piece lightweight titanium limited edition.

| By Xavier Markl | 3 min read |

Based in Lengnau and operating in the accessible watch segment, Delma is an independent family-owned watch brand with a solid tradition of crafting dive watches. Originally introduced in the mid-1970s, the Shell Star was the brand’s first professional dive watch. The brand has just released a titanium limited edition of the model, in a run of 499 pieces. Let’s see how it holds up on the wrist!

Delma is a family-owned company whose origins date back to 1924 when the Gilomen brothers founded their own company in Lengnau, near Biel. In the 1950s and 1960s, the growing popularity of scuba diving called for robust and trustworthy underwater instruments leading to the development of the first dive watches. In 1969, Delma introduced the Periscope, its first timepiece with increased water resistance. A few years later, in 1975, the band issued its premier professional diver, the Shell Star. A modern revival of the model (although quite different in terms of design), the Shell Star is one of Delma’s most important collections.

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Combining a vintage look with modern tweaks, the Delma Shell Star stands out with a quirky barrel-shaped case featuring a rounded glass opening highlighted by angular sides. It now comes in a versatile 41mm size that will suit most wrists. The use of brushed titanium adds to the robust feel of the watch while offering great wearing comfort (with a weight of 136g). The unidirectional rotating bezel features a black ceramic insert. It operates both precisely and smoothly while the fluted edge ensures good grip. The crown is protected by a pair of guards. The 50 ATM / 500m depth rating will cover all of your scuba diving needs.

This titanium limited edition is available in three different dial colours – black, navy blue and orange. The grained surface ensures there are no reflections. The broad, baton-style indexes offer great contrast. The flange around the dial is printed with orange tabs. The hour and minute sword-shaped hands are also luminescent with the spade seconds hand in orange to set it apart. The abundant use of luminous material allows for accurate timekeeping in all conditions – with bright blue glowing Super-LumiNova BGW9 to accentuate the bezel and neon green glowing Super-LumiNova C3 for the indexes and hands.

Turning the watch over, the case back is secured by four screws and allows one to discover the automatic movement – which is a rather unusual detail for a dive watch. The Delma Shell Star is powered by the tried-and-tested Sellita SW200, a clone of the ETA 2824. This ubiquitous workhorse ticks at 4hz and delivers 38 hours of power reserve. It displays the hours, minutes, seconds and the date. The stop-second mechanism allows for precise settings. As is to be expected at this price level, the decoration is quite simple but clean – from a personal point of view, I would have preferred a “sportier touch” for the golden rotor.

The Delma Shell Star titanium comes on a sturdy brushed three-link titanium bracelet. The deployment clasp is released by a pair of pushers. On the wrist, the watch feels robust and it looks quite cool with its neo-vintage vibes. And with the use of lightweight titanium, it wears comfy. The Delma Shell Star Titanium 41mm Automatic Dive Watch is limited to 499 pieces in total. Price is set at CHF 1,590, EUR 1,790 or USD 1,890.

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