May 2, 2010
by Ariel Adams
The green, white, and red colors of the power reserve indicator disc are a subtle reminder that this new limited edition watch from Oris has something to do with Italy. The dive watch is actually made as a limited edition piece with the Col Moschin in mind. Col Moschin is the Italian special forces. The only one that they have I believe. They seem pretty bad-ass (duh), and are known for having a very arduous training regiment. Col Moschin is also known as the Italian 9th Parachute Assault Regiment (you can read more about them here). While most of the elements from the Oris Col Moschin limited edition watch are taken from other Oris dive models, there are a few unique elements that makes the watch worth looking at.
In mostly titanium, the watch is 49mm wide. It doesn’t wear that big due to the thick bezel. Oris has a special ring grip around the bezel that it calls the “Rotation Safety System.” Part of the outer bezel is in tungsten. The point of the system is to prevent the bezel from rotating unintentionally. You need to pull (or maybe it is push) the outer ring up to rotate the bezel. It functions a bit like the concept of safety top on a prescription pill bottle. This isn’t the first appearance of this special safety rotating bezel, but it works here perfectly. The case also has gunmetal toned PVD elements such as the screwed-on crown guard. The point of the watch is to be very durable and easy to use. It has a very modern military look to it – as much as an analog instrument can have in a digital world. There is still style though, such as the wave pattern on the dial of the watch like other Oris ProDiver watches.
The thick case is lighter than you might think given its titanium construction. It is 1000 meters water resistant (with automatic helium escape valve on the side of the case), as well as antimagnetic. The Col Moschin special forces needed a watch that would survive a high parachute fall straight into the watch without a hiccup, and the watch performed as intended. The sapphire crystal is AR coated on the inside making it easy to see the dial. Oris hit a sweet spot a few years ago with this dial design. Meaning it is attractive and very easy to read. The hands and hour markers have SuperLumiNova lume applied, and everything looks big enough without being too big. In addition to the date, the dial has that power reserve indicator that I mentioned along with another complication, a torque indicator for the movement. This is labeled as “Force,” and functions to tell you how optimal the movement accuracy is. When a mainspring is either too tightly wound, or not wound enough, the power coming from it is different than in the mid range of being wound. This can affect the accuracy. Basically you want the watch wound enough, but not wound all the way for optimal timing accuracy. A torque indicator is a big gimmicky, more of a gadget-style information indicator. Though it is interesting to see the relative performance of your watch. You basically have all the information you need with the power reserve indicator. The “Force” indicator still is cool looking and doesn’t take up much room. So all in all I think it is a nice addition.
Powering the watch is a Swiss ETA 2897 automatic movement that has been modified a bit by Oris. The back of the watch is engraved with the Col Moschin seal, and looks pretty nice. As a limited edition of 1000 pieces, this is certain one of the nicer limited Oris watches for activities purposes this year (aside from the “cultural” limited edition models they have). The rubber strap is a really nice element as well. It is thick at the lugs and tapers in sizes a bit for comfort. The nicely engineers titanium deployment strap hides excess strap on the inside. This is the new way rubber straps are being made by the best brands. Basically you get the clean look of a rubber strap that is cut to size, but here you don’t have to cut it, as the strap is still totally adjustable. I say “so long” straps that have to be cut, and “long live” the
hidden excess” style rubber straps. If you don’t like the rubber strap or want a metal bracelet, the watch looks like it can accommodate the standard bracelet for other Oris ProDiver watches (that you’d have to get separately of course). Price for the Oris Col Moschin is between 3,000 – 5,000 Swiss Francs. Available soon.