In the field of dive watches, there are a couple of very well-known heavy hitters, mixed with countless variations on the ever-popular theme. Some have real-life historical relevance, while others merely embrace the utilitarian concept to create their take of a diver. Flying a little bit under the radar of the greater public perhaps, but not to be overlooked by anyone eyeballing a proper dive watch with true heritage, is Squale. The brand combines vintage designs with robust construction and reliable movements. It’s also not shy of embarking on special collaborations, the latest one with pre-owned watch specialist Montredo. This is the Squale x Montredo 1521 Limited Edition.
Squale dates back to 1948 when it was founded by Von Buren S.A. to supply various companies with cases, dials, hands and more. These would find their way into some of the most respected dive watches in history, including the case for the original Blancpain “Bund” Fifty Fathoms. The company’s logo appeared on a wide range of brands as secondary branding, attesting to Squale’s quality and know-how. By the late 1950s Squale would start producing watches under its own name, and since then has focused on dive watches only.
The Squale 1521 is the simpler dive watch in the collection and is considered by some as one of the most influential diving watches of the 1970s. It has always been a form-follows-function watch, and with this collaboration that hasn’t changed one bit. The fully polished steel case measures 42mm across and is topped by a uni-directional bezel and an offset crown at 4 o’clock. On the front, there is a flat sapphire crystal, with a solid caseback covering the movement. Water-resistance is rated at 500 meters, which is plenty enough.
What changed for the Squale x Montredo 1521 is the bezel insert, now showcasing minimalistic 5- and 15-minute markers. It also receives the lollipop central seconds hand from the Squalematic 60 Atmos, the bigger brother to the 1521. The matte-black, no-date Militaire dial has a very tactile appeal, with a unique set of markings and logos found on no other Squale 1521. Time is indicated by large, sword-shaped hands with the minute hand being done in bright orange. Of course, everything is coated with Super-LumiNova.
Squale relies on the tried-and-tested Sellita SW200-1 automatic movement for the 1521 collection, which is used in this one as well. It serves as perhaps the go-to replacement for the ETA 2824. It has 26 jewels in total, and ticks at a frequency of 28,800vph. The power reserve could do with an update though, as it tops out at 38 hours. In everyday use, however, it wouldn’t cause you any issues.
The Squale x Montredo 1521 is worn on a black rubber Tropic strap with a steel pin buckle and comes with a secondary brown leather strap. It’s also supplied with a black leather Squale branded travel pouch. Presented as a limited edition of 50 pieces, the price is set at EUR 1,099. It is exclusively available through Montredo from the 2nd of February 2022.