MICRO MONDAYS: The Retter 22 channels the style of Vacheron’s iconic 222Fergus Nash
It’s quite common for microbrand watches to become a competing list of specifications trying to undercut each other on price, with buzzwords thrown around that promise great water resistance, sapphire crystals and Swiss movements. It’s hard to blame them either, because watch enthusiasts can be easily swayed by these claims of unbeatable value for money, but you have to wonder exactly where those costs have been cut. The Retter 22 was created with the specific goal of delivering on all of those promises without compromising quality, design, or affordability.
Constructed in surgical grade 316L stainless steel, the Retter 22 takes notable inspiration from steel sports watches of the 1970s, especially with the fairly wide head of the watch that slopes into a relatively slim bracelet, adding a bit of quirky charm. The Genta influence can be seen on the bezel, with its harshly faceted edges in high polish and the vertically brushed flat surface, although the 14-sided tetradecahedron design appears a bit smoother from a distance.
Wearability is a hot topic these days, and the Retter 22 plays it safe with a perfectly average set of dimensions that should fit a majority of wearers well. The diameter is 40mm, and the lug-to-lug length is a relatively compact 46mm. The top links of the bracelet do extend the effective lug distance out to approximately 49mm, however the steep angle helps the watch drape over your wrists rather than any outward jutting. At only 12mm thick, it’s also able to slide under cuffs quite well. Plus, the use of the screw-down hexagonal crown helps to secure 200m of water resistance.
The Retter 22 sticks by a “less is more” attitude for its dial, allowing the complexity of the case and bracelet to take up most of the character. That said, the angular nature of the details does fit well with the overall theme. The general layout of the dial is the same as a Royal Oak, but all of the rounded elements have been sharpened and turned into sword-tip profiles. This slight tweak makes a world of difference in adding a bit of aggression and energy to the dial, rather than just a pure homage. The Retter logo is printed below the 12 o’clock double index, and an applied logo forms an hourglass there as well.
There are two colour options for the dials, one being a crisp “frost white” and the other is a rich “lapis blue”. Both options are super versatile for all manner of occasions, but the white dial definitely carries most of the sporty edge while the blue dial imparts that luxury sheen with its sunburst finish. In terms of functionality it’s quite a legible watch, with a large window for the date display and hands which reach up to their respective hour and minute markers well.
The name “Retter 22” is in part dedicated to the Vacheron Constantin 222, which is also referenced by the design of the integrated steel bracelet. The elongated hexagon motif running through the centre links compliments the generally angular theme of the Retter 22’s design, and the all-brushed finish helps to keep most of the attention on the head of the watch. The bracelet uses solid steel links and ends in a high-quality milled butterfly clasp that’s also engraved with the Retter name and logo. There’s also a colour-matched rubber strap option which is exchangeable via screws, and heightens the sporty and playful attitude.
As you may have guessed from the “Swiss Made” label which graces the dial of the Retter 22, they use a Sellita SW400 movement. The SW400 isn’t seen very often, but it’s essentially just a larger version of the SW200 that allows for a bigger date display. Most brands would have settled for the SW200 as a readily available and affordable calibre, but Retter going the extra step for their design choice is a welcome sight. It has an approximate power reserve of 40 hours and a 28,800vph beat rate, but what’s more is Retter’s regulation service. The movements are all regulated in-house to four positions before they’re shipped out, ensuring that your watch will be performing well within the accuracy specifications.
The Retter 22 pricing and availability:
The Retter 22 is now available for preorder from their website here, and the first 250 preorders will be shipped including a free rubber strap worth $79 USD. Price: $895 USD for preorder, RRP to be determined.
|Case Material||Stainless Steel|
|Case Dimensions||40mm x 46mm x 12mm|
|Dial||Frost White / Lapis Blue|
|Straps||Steel bracelet or rubber strap|
|Power Reserve||40 hours|
|Complications||Hours, minutes, seconds, date|