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SINN U1-D for The Hour Glass: Hands on Review

by Chester Lau on November 8, 2014

Have you ever dreamed of jumping out of planes, parachuting into enemy territory and fighting insurgents in the gulf deserts? If you have, then you should also think of what watch to bring along with you on your missions.

From waging desk wars to fighting meeting missions, the U1-D is one of the toughest and well-engineered watch you can find. After all, it’s built by the Germans.

After 4 long years, sports watch fans and avid Sinn followers are finally in for a treat. Sinn collaborates with The Hour Glass to present the fourth edition of its highly sought after U1 limited edition series- the U1-D. To celebrate The Hour Glass 35th anniversary, the U1-D is made as a limited edition of 350 pieces, and is available exclusively through The Hour Glass boutiques.

The U1-D – Mission Dune draws inspiration from desert warfare and tactical camouflaging. The matte grey dial is marked with charcoal indices and contrasts with a sand-beige detailing on the hands and bezel font. Differentiating itself from its all-black predecessors, the U1-D’s choice of colours is highly refreshing. Its grey, black and beige complement the camouflage uniforms of desert troops.

The U1-D is powered by an ‘Automatik’ SW200-1 which houses 26 bearing jewels and beats at 28,800 semi-oscillations per hour.

The U1-D is powered by an ‘Automatik’ SW200-1 which houses 26 bearing jewels and beats at 28,800 semi-oscillations per hour. It is water-resistant to 1000 m, salt-water resistant, shock resistant and anti-magnetic. A real tank of a watch.

But it is not just about the combination of colours, but it is also about how the design of the entire watch lends coherence to the U1-D. The choice of font, clarity of dial, style and shape of hands, shape of markers, bezel grooves and the list goes on, all sing a common tune. “Hooyah!” This is one heck of a tool watch; built to last a 100 years of crawling in deserts and rolling in muddy forests.

The U1-D features a captive diver’s bezel – a special design that prevents the rotating bezel from becoming detached or accidentally knocked.

The U1-D features a captive diver’s bezel – a special design that prevents the rotating bezel from becoming detached or accidentally knocked.

Like adding medals to a veteran, the U1-D Mission Dune continues to impress with its use of the sturdy German submarine steel case. “Indestructible” was used to describe the U1 dive watch series, especially because of the submarine steel casing which boasts superior resistance to corrosion from seawater and at the same time it is shock resistant and anti-magnetic. To add to the list, the case works well with Sinn’s temperature resistant technology, which allows the watch to function reliably from temperatures of – 45 °C up to + 80 °C. The special steel was first discovered by Sinn engineers at the German submarine manufacturer ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems. And today, the Sinn U- series watch cases use the very steel of the external hulls of the German Navy’s new submarine class 212; hence the name “U” – after the U-boat.

The U1-D case and bezel are fortified with Black Hard Coating using TEGIMENT®  Technology, making it especially scratch-resistant. Do note the use of the U-boat steel in the case, as engraved on the caseback.

The U1-D case and bezel are fortified with Black Hard Coating using TEGIMENT® Technology, making it especially scratch-resistant. Do note the use of the U-boat steel for the case, as engraved on the caseback.

Not only is the watch built to be as tough as the U-boat, it is also built to function like one. It is built to dive. Sinn’s U-series dive watches are tested and certified based on European diving equipment standards. This ensures great functionality of the time instruments, even for professional dives. Pressure proofed to a depth of 1000m, the U1-D is also carefully designed to be highly legible underwater given low light conditions. Cased at 44mm, there is sufficient space on the minimalist designed dial to fit in thickset hands and markers armed with lume to glow in the dark.

Highly legible hands and markers with thick lume, a useful feature for divers.

Highly legible hands and markers with thick lume, a useful feature for divers.

The U1-D is also Available in a distressed tan brown calf leather strap with white stitching, the watch also comes in Camo Zulu strap.

The U1-D is available in a distressed tan brown calf leather strap with white stitching and in a Camo Zulu strap.

“Sinn is one of the most reliable and enduring watch brands, especially in the category of instrument watches for professional use. The U1-D exemplifies the proud spirit and dedication of German engineering and creativity – a testament to Sinn’s credence for being a trusted watch brand by the young and watch collectors alike”, says Mr Lothar Schmidt, CEO of Sinn. Indeed, the U1-D Mission Dune is indeed a fun yet reliable watch to have. Built to handle the knocks and the bumps and the ups and downs, the U1-D tops the charts in the beater category. It is truly a companion that never fails, be it in good times or bad times.

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