Diver’s watches in shapes other than round are exceedingly rare because membrane seals cannot be kept as secure with corners. With the new WPHH 2018 Franck Muller Skafander, the Route de Malgany Watchland’s new prowess is on display with a tonneau shaped diving watch and no outer rotating bezel for dive timing.

The Franck Muller Skafander carries the brand’s signature tonneau shape and according the brand’s spokesperson, the 100 metre water resistance on the timepiece was no easy challenge. Technically speaking, water resistance is not just the ability of a watch to stay impermeable to liquids but also pressure.

Franck Muller Skafander

WPHH 2018 Franck Muller Skafander shows Watchland’s new Prowess

Skafander, Polish for space suit conveys imagery of ability to keep humans alive in the harsh environment of outer space, vacuum and temperature extremes is ironic considering that this new Franck Muller novelty is concerned with depths of the ocean rather than the heights of space; but we digress.

Water pressure on an object increases with depth. In as little as 1.5 meters depth, water pressure is high enough to force water through places that are not perfectly sealed. This creates a limitation on the types of shapes that water-resistant watches can take because water seal membranes are most secure when round. The weakest link in creating a water seal these watches inevitably is the sapphire glass box simply because the caseback can be brute force screwed down. To make the WPHH 2018 Franck Muller Skafander capable of 100 metre watery depths, the watchmakers at Watchland had to devise a new means of securing the sapphire glass box to its tonneau midcase.

Obviously speaking, a rotatable bezel for easy tracking of diving times wasn’t possible on Franck Muller’s iconic tonneau watch either, and thus, that necessitated that the manufacture find a new solution:  a rotatable bezel under the dial, easily accessed with push-buttons and then just as easily locked to prevent accidental (and dangerous) presses thus avoiding disruption of the unidirectional bezel. The orange dive timing triangle indicator is highly legible, ensuring that the wearer is always aware of his remaining time.

The technical features of the Franck Muller Skafander provide its owner the most precise tools to monitor the dive and the decompression stages.

Franck Muller Skafander Price and Specs

Case 57mm stainless steel tonneau case with 100m water resistance
Movement Automatic movement with 42 hours power reserve
Strap Rubber strap
Price TBA

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