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When an active member of the Norwegian army reached out to Henrik Rye in 2019, he had already contacted a number of other watch producers about producing a custom watch for his unit. Based on his experiences through several combat tours, the soldier had in mind a number of characteristics that his ideal watch needed to have, but these manufacturers were unable to realize his vision. Luckily, Rye had developed a number of contacts in Switzerland through his years of experience within the watch industry. When the soldier contacted him, Rye was better equipped to meet the soldier’s demands than the other watch producers. The pair collaborated with designer Anders Drage and, together, the three founded Micromilspec. Together, they have the extensive design, manufacturing, and real-life field experience needed to build tool watches that actually work as intended.
The brand prides itself in being able to support its customers and develop tool watches to demanding specifications. It offers support from the start of the watch development to the finished product, going from design to prototyping to mass production, and even custom packaging. It also offers logistical support including dedicated websites, distribution, and financing options. Micromilspec’s first project was for the 330 Squadron, the military search and rescue helicopter unit of the Royal Norwegian Air Force. Since then, the team has completed more than 25 successful projects, mostly for various military branches in Norway, Sweden, and the United States (some of which are classified).
One of Micomilspec’s recent projects is the Beredeskap. Designed for the Oslo Fire Brigade Smoke Unit, it has a number of features that display the brand’s manufacturing capabilities. Unlike timepieces from some other manufacturers, nothing about the Beredeskap (aside from its movement) is “off the shelf.” A ceramic bezel insert sits inside a polished 60-click unidirectional coin-edge bezel and features three-dimensional engraving. The first 30 minutes are also lume-filled — the same interval as the brigade’s manometers used to measure the remaining gas in their oxygen tanks. The hands and matching black date window (displaying three dates in a custom font) are also inspired by said instruments.
The brand’s signature octagon case is the base design for all projects. It is mostly brushed but features polished chamfers on its edges, showcasing the brand’s case-finishing capabilities. The back of the watch also features an intricately engraved caseback with the fire brigade’s logo, nomenclature, and watch specifications. The finish is circular brushed over a recessed sand-blasted surface. The most unique feature of the Beredeskap, however, is its dial. It features a custom charcoal pattern intended to evoke the image of burnt wood. The dial is hydraulically pressed, then etched with acid, and coated in satin black. There’s also a CNC-cut smoke diver fire helmet emblem, as well as raised text in two colors., lending depth and complexity.
Micromilspec equipped the Beredeskap with the option of custom leather or a textured rubber strap with molded text on the inside, or a custom-designed integrated H-link bracelet. All of the links are brushed with fully polished bevels on the edges, perfectly matching the sharp-edged case, and a hidden butterfly clasp with two safety pushers finishes things off. Angular crown guards protect its signed screw-down crown, and there’s even a unique chapter ring created. In this case, a slim one with subtle white text surrounds the dial. This exquisitely crafted watch comes with a five-year warranty.
Although the Beredeskap is not available for purchase by the general public, it is a great display of Micromilspec’s capabilities. The team looks forward to working with clients to realize their specific goals and understand their history and identities. Together, the brand and the client can brainstorm unique ideas to meet (or enhance) the original idea. Once the concept is realized, Micromilspec can set up a site to collect pre-orders to help fund the project. Prototypes are then created in Switzerland, and mass production starts once the test samples are approved by the customer. The process normally takes six to nine months but varies according to the project. The end result is a Swiss Made watch that perfectly renders the customer’s vision in the metal.
The brand says that its combination of a streamlined production process, completely custom options, high quality, and low cost is uncommon in a “one-stop-shop” like it offers. It has access to suppliers in Switzerland that normally supply established brands that can cost two or three times as much as a Micromilspec timepiece. In addition to stainless steel, cases made from titanium, carbon fiber, and precious metals are also possible. Sellita movements are typically used for a good balance of quality and cost, but the brand can also supply calibers from ETA, La Joux Perret, and Vaucher. Do you want to build a watch with a hand-finished flying tourbillon? Micromilspec would love to hear from you!
Micromilspec’s number one goal is to capture the individuality of each project, and the Beredeskap proves that this is possible. If you are interested in purchasing a watch or working with the brand on a project of your own, you can find out more at the Micromilspec website.
Water Resistance:100 meters
Case Material: Stainless steel
Movement: ETA 2824-2
Power Reserve: 38 hours
Strap/Bracelet: Rubber, leather, or stainless steel
Price & Availability: Not available for purchase
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