Comparative Review: JLC Tribute to Deep Sea and Vulcain Nautical Seventies Part 1 of 2
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Comparative Review: JLC Tribute to Deep Sea Alarm and Vulcain Nautical Seventies Part 2 of 2

by Peter Chong on March 28, 2014

In Part 1 of this article, we examined the JLC Tribute to Deep Sea Alarm. In this part, we take a closer look at the Vulcain Nautical Seventies.

The Vulcain Nautical Seventies on the advertisement for the original one, made in 1970.

The Vulcain Nautical Seventies on the advertisement for the original one, made in 1970.

Just like the JLC which is a faithful re-issue of the original from 1959, the Nautical Seventies is a re-issue to Vulcain’s diving alarm watch, but from 1970s. Vulcain is one of the watchmakers who truly specialize in alarm watches, and they too introduced an alarm diving watch in 1961: The Cricket Nautical, which had a water resistance of 30 atm. But in this article, we look at the 2013 re-issue of the 1970 Vulcain Nautical.

Vulcain Nautical Seventies.

Vulcain Nautical Seventies. The attention to detail is remarkable, including the domed hesalite crystal. This crystal is harder than the original’s acrylic crystal, so as to replicate the look, but is now made tougher. In comparison to sapphire crystal, hesalite is less hard, but can be shaped into the required shape.

The watch is faithful reproduction of the original made in 1970, and keeps the same 42mm diameter case, and limited to 300 examples.

The dial, showing the decompression chart, and the magnificently beautiful orange subdials.

The dial, showing the decompression chart, and the magnificently beautiful orange subdials.

The dial is quite remarkable, and faithfully reproduces the original dial, exact to the markings and amazing colour. The central dial has indicators showing decompression details in orange.

Vulcain Nautical Seventies caseback, showing the triple caseback construction. This is essential for water resistance to 300m as well as the loud sound audible in and out of water.

Vulcain Nautical Seventies caseback, showing the triple caseback construction. This is essential for water resistance to 300m as well as the loud sound audible in and out of water.

The movement is now the modern Vulcain Caliber Cricket V-10 with a very loud alarm, see the video. The alarm rings for a full 20s when fully wound, and this is the longest for any alarm watch. The movement has twin barrels, one to supply power to the timekeeping functions, and another to the alarm.

Even though the watch measures some 42mm in diameter, it is rather comfortable on the wrist.

Even though the watch measures some 42mm in diameter, it is rather comfortable on the wrist.

So how does the two watches compare? Both are faithful to their origins. Both are well made. Both representative of the early 1960 and 1970s for JLC and Vulcain respectively. Both wear very nicely on the wrist, and both work very well.

The Vulcain’s alarm is quite a bit louder and goes for longer than the JLC’s 10s. The design is less discrete as the orange dial is rather more loud than the black dial of the JLC. In terms of case and dial finishing, the JLC is slightly better finished to a finer level. And the movement of the JLC Caliber 956 is better finished than the Cricket V-10.

Overall, we would rate the JLC as a finer timepiece with a higher price tag to match. And the Vulcain is a very credible alternative to someone looking for an alarm watch to dive with. Each is valid in its own right.

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