Borealis Sea Storm V2 review
The new Borealis Sea Storm V2 is more than a typical homage diver watch. It would be hard to count how many microbrands are out there nowadays, and most of them draw their inspiration from the well known Rolex Submariner when they are creating a diving timepiece. This is why it is refreshing to have a brand like the Borealis Watch Company. A watch brand from Portugal that is dedicated to producing professional, reliable and affordable timepieces, at least this is what is written on their webpage and the watch they have sent to us was trying to prove this. Let’s see how it fared.
It is not a secret that the Sea Storm V2 is a tribute or a homage if you like, to one of the first diver watches in the history. While it’s not easy to pinpoint if the Blancpain Fifty Fathoms or the Rolex Submariner was the very first, real diver one actually — I have done my homework, but hadn’t been able to find any evidence strong enough to decide it without doubt — but it is certain that both of these two great and historical watch brands were about to achieve a water resistant timepiece, that could serve as an instrument for professional divers, and they both reached their goal in 1953. And what is more important at this moment is the fact the Rolex became more popular so it is more often „homaged” as well. That is the reason why we welcome a diver piece from a microbrand that honours the other great-grandfather of these watches, the Blancpain FF.
As you may see on the pictures, the bezel of the Borealis Sea Storm V2 prototype has the strongest connection to the great ancestor. Unidirectional rotating with 120 clicks, covered with sapphire glass that is much more domed than the one over the dial, similar to the Blancpain way. The bezel is well adjusted and fastened. Not too easy and too difficult to operate. Well shaped, good to use. It is clicking well and accurate, no „back play”. We will get back to this later but it needs to be mentioned here that the indexes and the numerals under the sapphire are all lumed. The model we received has a white dial and white bezel. Because of the curved glass over covering it, the bezel may look a little bit greyer, than the dial. Maybe someone won’t like this, but in fact, the bezel having a little bit different shade gives a unique personality to this watch.
The case is 41.5 mm wide, 316L stainless steel, just like the bracelet as well. From lug to lug it is 48.5 mm and can be worn comfortable because the lugs are bent enough to hug your wrist well. We should point out the finish of the case because in this 400 USD price range these kind of nicely polished edges are definitely not usual. Well done Borealis! The case is 14.15 mm high, what is maybe a bit too thick but do not forget this is a water-resistant piece up to 300 meters. It has a 20 mm wide lug size that gives an elegant touch to the whole timepiece compared to the case diameters. The bracelet holder pins are connected to the lugs with through holes what is practical. The links are well done, nicely shaped, it won’t catch your wrist hair easily. The end links at the case can be unbuckled from the whole chain, so you can change to a leather or rubber strap without breaking the consistency of the watch face.
The crown is screwed in of course and nicely signed as the clips too. So bad the buckle is the weak point of the watch. The exact piece we got here now is a prototype, so we just hope the company will upgrade it a little bit because the clips give cheap feelings and not too good to operate and use. Yes, we can live with it, especially in this price range, but we are sure it can be done better if we compare it to the rest of the watch.
Under the hood, we got a well known Seiko NH35 automatic movement with date complication that does not need much description. An affordable workhorse mechanical calibre that can be serviced or repaired easily and cheaply and in the long-term it is more accurate than a Myota for example.
As was mentioned before, the Borealis Sea Storm V2 is still in prototype stage, but you can already pre-ordered it. The company promises delivery in January 2019 that can be delayed until May 2019. If you check their webshop page, you will find 18 (!) possible variations of this Sea Storm model and most of them are already sold out. In fact, the only available versions are the ones with black dial and bezel, with old radium lume, no date edition and the one you see on the pictures, in white and black version.
Here we are at the fun part of the watch, a really unique feature for those who prefer unusual styles and a strong lume effect that can blow your friend’s mind in a club. This part is all about joy and style because, to be honest, putting a huge biohazard sign on the middle of the dial that is as bright as a lighthouse in the dark is definitely not practical, not typical but cool and got its own style. In daylight that sign is barely visible. The big, black pointed baton hands and indexes are ruling the whole picture and make it really easy to read. But when the sun is starting to say goodbye to the day, the dangerous sign will be so bright, it can be used as landing lights for an alien mothership maybe. Just look at the pictures and you will see with your own eyes. For those who are crazy about the lume, this piece can be a perfect choice. The company used Swiss made BGW9 Super-LumiNova coating for the biohazard sign, the hands, the indexes and as we mentioned before the numerals on the bezel as well. We must admit that the biohazard sign is so strong in the beginning it makes a little bit difficult to read the time in the dark because it is simply “overlumeing” the dial. But of course, this edition of the Sea Storm is not for those who are looking for conservative styled diver watches but are rather looking for a cool and rare piece at an affordable price, time to pull that trigger.
More at www.borealiswatch.com