One of the latest examples of the watch industry’s current ‘Bronze Age’ trend is Eterna’s KonTiki Bronze Manufacture. Shown at this year’s Baselworld, the Bronze has been produced in a limited edition of 300 pieces to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the KonTiki collection’s namesake expedition. The expedition saw six men and a parrot sail 101 days and 4,300 miles across the Pacific Ocean in a self-built, balsa-wood raft — with all six sailors wearing Eterna timepieces.

The KonTiki Bronze is the first KonTiki to be produced in the eponymous alloy and features a 44mm case with a sapphire-crystal caseback; essential, as bronze can cause skin irritation. Despite the large case diameter, the watch wears well and sits comfortably on the wrist. The Bronze would feel a little too restrained and look a little too ungainly if it were any smaller, proving, that despite current inclinations in the watch world, bigger is still sometimes better.

As is expected with a conventional, modern dive watch a uni-directional bezel has been included. However, instead of the more normal graduated 60-minute scale, this bezel displays a decompression scale. Indicating the amount of time a diver would have to spend at particular depths in order to avoid decompression sickness (or the bends, as it is more commonly known). The KonTiki Bronze’s bezel was inspired by a watch in Eterna’s archives, a Super-KonTiki produced for the US Military in the 1960s with a similar ‘no decompression limits scale’ bezel.

Eterna KonTiki Bronze
Eterna KonTiki Bronze

The black, textured dial is also worthy of particular note. Described by Eterna as a ‘granite-pattern’, the play of light across the freckled surface makes an attractive addition in itself, one which also nicely compliments the case’s golden hue. The hour markers are presented in the KonTiki range’s signature triangular shape, with oversized 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock markers providing a greater surface area for application of Super-LumiNova increasing visibility in all light conditions. All other contemporary KonTiki divers also include a date wheel, a complication omitted from the Bronze in a welcome touch of restraint for this particular watch.

Powered using Eterna’s in-house, automatic 3902A calibre and priced at a remarkable CHF 2,590, the KonTiki Bronze Manufacture is one of the most compelling bronze watches on the market today. And at Revolution, we have no doubt that the 300 pieces produced will be snapped up in no time.

Eterna KonTiki Bronze