Welcome to This Week in Watches for May 2, 2020. Today, we’re all about fun and I think we’ve got the right watches to turn that frown upside down.

Nivada Grenchen Returns — That’s Fun!

Speaking of fun, Nivada Grenchen is back due to the work of a couple French entrepreneurs. They’ll be kicking things off with modern reissues of the Antarctica and the Chronomaster. The Chronomaster is one of the most popular semi-affordable vintage chronographs under the sun and it came in loads of variants. In fact, it came in so many variants that it inspired its own reference book called Chronomaster Only. Orders will begin in June and deliveries are expected for December. Figure on €1,600 on a Tropic and €1,800 on beads of rice. Manual and automatics will be available on the 38.3mm chronos. We’ll review all the variants when more info comes to light.

The Antarctica is a fun piece in the Explorer vein. What most don’t know is that Nivada actually worked with the US Navy in the 1950s during its Antarctic exploration missions. The new pieces look faithful and at 38mm are thoughtfully brought up to modern size. Expect date and no date versions as well as a host of dial colors. Pricing will be in the €650 range and for automatic models. Visit Nivada Grenchen for more information.

Giuliano Mazzuoli Manometro Italia

During the Panerai heyday, a raft of interesting Italian watches came our way. One such watch came from Giuliano Mazzuoli in the form of the Manometro. Of all things, this watch was inspired by a pressure gauge. That’s kind of ridiculous, but it somewhere worked (aside: I bet Gerard had one of these or thought aboout it)! Talk about fun! Today’s Manometro celebrates the 75th anniversary of a free Italy. The 45mm steel lugless watch has an epoxy top case in the colors of the Italian flag. An ETA 2824-2 powers pieces available with either a black or white dial. Pricing isn’t mentioned, but normal stainless models sell for €2,500 so use that as a ballpark. The watches aren’t up on the official site quite yet.

Chronoswiss Open Gear ReSec in Blue and Gold

Ok, I told you to shed those blues and have some fun, but here I am with a blue watch! Here’s a wild one… The Chronoswiss Open Gear ReSec arrives with an electric blue CVD-coated stainless 44mm case. The brand’s well-known C.301 regulator movement beats away and is visible via the front and back. Also, the dial is guilloched by hand and has gold plated elements. Included is an equally bright hornback crocodile strap. €10,000 is the price of entry for one of 50 pieces. More info is available on the Chronoswiss site.

Ollech & Wajs Ocean Graph

I’m more than happy to give Ollech & Wajs some space in TWIW. After all, they’re making masks to help in the fight against COVID-19. They’ve sent us word of a fun new release in the Ocean Graph. Actually, the watch harkens back to a 1968 model by the same name. It featured a funky decompression bezel not unlike the one I showed long ago on a Philip Watch diver. The O&W Ocean Graph has a beautiful chalky blue dial with white and aged lume elements. It comes in at just shy of 40mm and is 15.8mm inclusive of a domed sapphire crystal. An ETA 2824-2 powers the watch. The watches will cost 1,556 CHF on a Perlon style strap of 1,656 on beads of rice. Head to the Ollech & Wajs site for all the details.

Roger Dubuis Excalibur Twofold

Our final entry on TWIW is seriously fun because it makes me think of Tron. Just look at the images in the dark and you’ll catch my drift. The 8 piece limited edition has a 45mm case and bezel made from 99.5% silica Mineral Composite Fiber (MCF). It’s a new material for watches and Dubuis uses a sheet molding compound process to do the forming.

Dubuis also tells us that they’ve applied lume to every edge of MCF and that the lume is a new compound that lasts some 60% longer than normal. What’s more is that the white FKM strap also has lume in its edges. The lume is made of — wait for it — “LumiSuperBiwiNova”, so it glows as well. And lest we forget, a double flying tourbillon is on time keeping duty. Pricing is $276,000 and if you’re interested, head here for more information.

Folks, enjoy your weekend and we’ll be back with more next week.