Having completed a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of its flagship SUB dive watch, DOXA has been on a bit of a tear for the last year or so. Home to arguably one of the original truly purpose-built dive watches, the independent Swiss brand’s last two releases have sold out in very short order: the Sub 300 ‘Black Lung’ released in 2017, and the more recent collaboration with Swedish dive gear manufacturer Poseidon, introduced at Baselworld this year.
Like the Black Lung, the new Searambler (essentially DOXA’s silver-dialed watch) is still designed in full collaboration with dive gear manufacturer Aqua Lung, carrying the latter brand’s heritage yellow-on-black “US Divers” badge at 8:00. It’s also based off some very early manufacture prototypes from the DOXA archive, which never saw commercial production due to how the legibility of the seconds hand could be compromised whenever it traveled over the logo at 8:00. Unlike the Black Lung though, none of those prototypes produced ever snuck their way out into the world to be tested and dived with, making this new ‘Silver Lung’ the collecting world’s first shot at an unequivocally rare silver-dialed Aqua Lung logo variant.
Explaining DOXA’s arc in popularity could be done by comparing the Swiss indie to a pre-Richemont Panerai. They’re not for everyone, thanks to a singular, purpose-built aesthetic which can be polarizing at worst. However, they’ve traditionally remained fairly collectible, due to the myriad of changes in dial markings, colors, and case proportions (and other arguably pedantic subtleties), while maintaining relatively small production runs over the years, which have similarly created a passionate community and an highly active secondary market.
Par for the modern thin-cased SUB 300 course, the Searambler ‘Silver Lung’ is a vintage-inspired 42mm stainless steel cushion case with 300m of water resistance – dimensions replicated from the original SUB from 1967 at the end of 2016. Also once again replicated from the earliest vintage editions are the shape and proportions of the original bubble plexiglass crystal, which is now rendered in a deeply curved sapphire, and produces an extremely cool distorted ‘porthole’ effect when viewing the dial at any angle other than head-on.
Two other DOXA signatures complete the external package: the brand’s classic ‘beads-of-rice’ bracelet with individual polished beads, and the patented “No-Decompression” ratcheting bezel, which once (and still does, if you’re diving without an actual dive computer) enabled a diver to determine how long they could remain at a given depth without requiring a lengthy or complicated decompression procedure prior to returning to the surface. Inside the watch, ticks a COSC-certified ETA 2824 movement, which is a bit of a departure from most other DOXA editions, which tend to come fitted with Sellita or Soprod movements.
The SUB 300 Searambler ‘Silver Lung’ can be pre-ordered direct from DOXA for a price of $2,190 – a 15% discount from the standard $2,590 price, which will take effect if all 300 pieces aren’t spoken for prior to their August delivery. However, given DOXA’s recent track record, this seems pretty unlikely. doxawatches.com