Oris have released an 80th anniversary edition of their Big Crown Pointer Date watch that first appeared in 1938. Though intended for pilots, it has a classical dial, with the unusual pointer date feature. In the 2018 edition, the case is in bronze, with a fluted bezel that doesn’t rotate. The lovely green dial colour is a tribute to one of the major current trends in watches: green as a highlight colour, apparently reaching a popularity comparable with the blue shades that have been all the rage over the last few years. Numerals, hour markers and hands are coated in SuperLumiNova. The watch is 40 mm in diameter, and the case has a water resistance slightly higher than the standard, at 5 bar (50 metres). The crown is screw-in.
A design with a long history
The watch on which this re-edition is based was found on a street in Hölstein by the father of Dr Rolf Portmann, who is now Honorary Chairman of Oris. The new version has some notable differences in design, principally the elegant numerals and the central seconds. The date was easier to read on the vintage piece, which was much smaller than the new version.
The watch is powered by the Oris 754 movement, visible through a mineral glass window in the stainless steel caseback. It is based on the Sellita SW 200-1, personalized with a red oscillating weight. The movement is much smaller than the watch diameter and so the caseback has a porthole effect, though the surround provides lots of room for engraved text with details of the watch. I’m not convinced that a display caseback adds anything to a watch with a basic movement, but it’s well handled, with a fluted surround right at the edge that provides a design link to the fluted crown and bezel. Power reserve is 38 hours. The date function is instantaneous, and the watch provides quick date correction. The strap is in leather with a bronze buckle.
Price and reference
The Oris Big Crown Pointer Date 80th anniversary edition is reference 01 754 7741 3167-07 5 20 58BR. It costs €1,800, 1,900 Swiss francs. Considering the bronze case, the excellent finish, and the unusual date layout, this is a nice price, reflecting Oris’ historic approach to watchmaking, affordable timepieces with clear functions. Read more at https://www.oris.ch