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  • BLACK & BAD - Hour Glass Tempus U1 black

    Hour Glass had scored a coup when they got SINN to specially manufacture 250pcs of the very successful U1 in black hard coat steel. This was to commemorate Tempus 2007 – The Temple of Time, Singapore’s very own watch show

    Why a coup? well, for starters, the very successful U1 had never been made in black hard coat steel before, but more importantly, SINN did this ahead of introducing something that would have got a lot of attention at Basel just for a specific market and for a retailer

    The first thing that struck me on the U1 black was it legibility. Now I’m not suggesting that this is lacking on the non black coat regular U1’s, its just that on the U1 black, the mainly white and orange markers in a sea of black stood out effortlessly.

    The dial design, which is identical to the regular non black U1, was clearly inspired by the Brauhaus school of design, where less is more, is not fussy and easy on the eyes. The U1 Hour Glass Tempus edition came with a subtle difference, the parts of the dial & hands set that were painted in red on the regular non black U1 is in orange instead. The logo on the dial traditionally applied in white was also done in orange. This difference, though subtle, gave the black hard coat U1 that ‘invigorated’ look, almost like a face lift of sorts. Same classic dial but younger and hippier looking!

    As I tried the 60 click uni-directional bezel, there was hardly any back play (clockwise) that would have cause the diver to dangerously prolong his dive, I was however a little disappointed that forward play on the bezel that existed in the regular U1 when it was first launched remained. While this is not the worse case of bezel play I have encountered, I wished that SINN made an attempt to correct it.

    The black coated hardened submarine steel was not merely a mouthful of marketing hype. Using the very same steel used to build the latest German attack submarines, black coated and hardened to 1500HV (316L is 225HV), the case has been independently tested to 1250m for 15mins and certified to operate –30 to +70 degrees C. Oozing with stealth and machismo, this black stallion isn’t just a looker, its also posses exceptional anti-magnetic and sea water corrosion resistance properties. Running my finger over the black coat, it felt cold, hard & almost eerie to the touch, like how a submariner would feel while being hunted in the murky depths in the North Sea on a dangerous night.

    The black U1 comes with a silicon rubber strap and black (unhardened) butterfly clasp which seem to do injustice to the 1000m professional diving instrument where a simple tongue buckle would have suffice.

    When I received my non black U1 a year or so ago, I took it through its paces, jogging 4km in the hot and humid Singapore evening. The U1 stay everywhere except where it was suppose to be. The sheer weight of the hardened submarine steel U1 moved constantly around my wrist, lubricated by the intense perspiration.

    Exactly why am I taking a 1000m high performance diving tool watch through its paces on dry land I will never know, but the Hour Glass Tempus black hard coat SINN U1 is black and stunningly sexy intepretation of SINN’s hign performance iconic U1, and that, I know!
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  • #2
    Re: BLACK & BAD - Hour Glass Tempus U1 black

    Very interesting review. Thanks!
    I love the black U1 too, though I wish that there would be more difference than the regular U1. Maybe more orange parts on the dial.



    • #3
      Re: BLACK & BAD - Hour Glass Tempus U1 black

      Thanks for the interesting review.

      I saw a watch which looks like one of these, it was a "phantom" model. Tried it on my wrist, and must say it wears very comfortably...

      This brand is certainly growing in collectibility....