Massena LAB, timepiece creation studio created by industry veteran William Massena, is slowly making a name for itself with an ever-growing collection of special watches, created with renowned or accessible watchmakers. Think about the bronze Habring² or the Jurassic-like MB&F clock. For its latest creation, Massena LAB unites again with UNIMATIC, thus following the brown Modello Uno here. This time, the inspiration comes from William’s country of origin, with a UNIMATIC x Massena LAB Marine U1-MLM inspired by the dive watches used by the French Navy in the 1960s – think Tudor Marine Nationale.
Just like its predecessor, the U1-ML6, this new take on UNIMATIC’s Modello Uno is an ode to the past. However, it fast forwards a decade and takes its style cues from the 1960s, specifically the professional dive watches used by French military frogmen – Navy blue diving instrument with a typical olive green strap. All of these elements have been adapted in the well-established Modello Uno, a dive watch known for its cool, understated styling and its solid specifications.
The 41.5mm case is made of brushed stainless steel, with a classic tool, no fuzz style. Robust but not exuberant, the case is protected by robust shoulders and a squarish crown guard module. The crown screws down and the watch is protected by a thick, 2.5mm sapphire crystal. Water-resistance is rated at 300m. It features a notched unidirectional bezel, slightly larger than the case for better ease of use, and fitted with a marine-inspired blue aluminium bezel insert, with clean off-white 60 minute markings.
The dial pays tribute to the vintage Marine Nationale watches too, both in style and with an ageing process. The faded colouration of the dial is achieved through a depigmentation process, which in the final product, produces a range of colours from a navy to turquoise. This will give each watch its own sense of individuality. The dial features oversized painted markers and bold hands, all filled with Super-LumiNova. As always with UNIMATIC, the dial looks ultra-clean and the brand’s logo and “made in Italy” mentions are unusually placed at 6 o’clock.
Under a closed caseback decorated with a detailed engraving of a marine anchor is a reliable automatic movement, provided by Seiko, the calibre NH35A. Beating at 3Hz and boasting 41h of power reserve, it will ensure accuracy and durability. Each caseback is individually numbered.
The UNIMATIC x Massena LAB Marine U1-MLM is delivered in a tough case with two straps, a classic blue heavy-duty NATO strap and, to finalize the Marine Nationale look, a French Navy style olive and yellow line strap.
Availability & Price
This new UNIMATIC x Massena LAB Marine will be limited to 200 pieces and is available as of today at www.massenalab.com, for USD 895.