As we all know, though, if it was just about the looks, this watch wouldn’t be worth much of anything. And Mr. Gifford certainly needed the watch to be functional, given his profession. This functionality all starts with the Valjoux 7750 automatic movement that’s at the heart of the watch. This movement has been in use for over 30 years, so definitely no concerns with reliability here.
As used in this watch, the movement has been decorated, and is pleasing to watch working away through the sapphire on the exhibition caseback. When viewing it there, you’ll also see the customized rotor. The Offshore Professional logo (a trident head) has been cut in; this is also where see the serial number engraved.
When we go back up front, we’ve got another piece of AR-coated sapphire crystal covering the dial. The dial itself has several different layers, and just as many colors in play. While this could sound quite busy, it’s tastefully executed here. Depending on lighting, the dial can seem either silvery, or a soft white.
In the midst of this, the three subdials are easy to pick out, and track the following:
- 12 o’clock: 30 minute counter
- 4 o’clock: date display
- 6 o’clock: 12 hour counter
- 9 o’clock: sub seconds
This then leaves the chrono seconds to be tracked by the large seconds hand on the main dial, which also carries the trident motif. The chrono functionality is controlled by the knurled pushers that flank the crown. The texture makes the pushers wonderfully tactile, and you get the nice, solid mechanical click when using them. Also, since the chronograph is mechanically driven, you get the added benefit of the snapback when resetting the chrono, minimizing downtime between timing sessions.
Now back to that crown. It carries the knurling that the pushers have, as well as being signed with the trident head. While you might expect it to be a screw-down crown, it’s actually a push in / pull out. I was curious about that, so I asked Mr. Gifford; here is what he had to say:
I haven’t used a screw down crown on the production models as screwing the crown to the case creates a rigid load path from case, through crown, down the crown stem and right into the heart of the movement. To increase the overall shock resistance of the watch, I found it much better to have a floating crown system where the crown and stem are supported by a crown tube but not rigidly connected to it.
Tomorrow, we’ll see how (and if) this impacts the water resistance, as well as wrap up our review.