Blancpain revealed the new Fifty Fathoms 70th Anniversary Act 2 Tech Gombessa, a state-of-the-art diver’s watch that makes it possible to measure up to three-hour-long tech dives or exits from a saturation system. Its release commemorates the 10th anniversary of Gombessa, an initiative that Blancpain helped create by becoming the founding partner of the project from its inception in 2013. The timepiece also marks the launch of a new line in Blancpain’s diver’s watch collection.
Launched seventy years ago, the Fifty Fathoms was the first modern diver’s watch. It was conceived by a passionate scuba diver, Jean-Jacques Fiechter, then CEO of Blancpain. This year, to celebrate the 70th anniversary of this iconic watch, Blancpain launched the Fifty Fathoms 70th Anniversary Act 2 Tech Gombessa diver’s watch.
The Tech Gombessa watch is designed to measure the duration of up to three-hour-long tech dives or exits from a saturation system. Conceived five years ago by the two divers, this watch has been extensively tested. Its bezel has a three-hour scale. It is linked to a special hand that completes one full turn in three hours and whose material and color – a white luminescent coating with green emission – match those of its markers.
The Fifty Fathoms Tech Gombessa features a bezel inlay in black ceramic. The dial’s legibility is optimized by a spherical crystal that stops any visual distortion. To ensure the best possible readability in the dark, the dial has a new finish: absolute black, whose structure is able to capture almost 97% of the light. The hour-markers are formed by luminescent block-shaped appliques, this time in orange with blue emission.
Grade 23 titanium was selected for the case. Also known as grade 5 ELI, it is the purest type of titanium available and is distinguished by exceptional strength and anti-allergenic properties, while being remarkably light. Water-resistant to 30 bar (approximately 300 meters), the case is fitted with a helium valve. During saturation diving in a hyperbaric chamber, helium manages to seep into the watch. During the decompression phase, unscrewing the valve helps the evacuation of the helium (a manipulation that has no effect on the watch’s water resistance). The notches of the helium valve are just like those of the winding and time-setting crown. The crown of the watch is screwed down and associated with a crown guard that now features a new trapeze-shaped design ensuring visual consistency with the lugs.
At the back of the watch, the lower part of the case middle is bevelled. The anthracite-colored oscillating weight, adorned with the Gombessa Expeditions logo, features an innovative shape dominated by three large openings through which to see the movement. The black rubber strap is screwed to the back of the lugs. It has an internal titanium reinforcement, providing ideal long-term shape. The buckle with its extremely wide and ergonomic pin has been designed to strengthen the hold of the watch to the wrist.
The Fifty Fathoms Tech Gombessa comes in a special PeliTM presentation box that is water-resistant and shock-resistant as well as reusable.
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