The Holton Professional was developed in response to a request from a specialist branch of the military who demanded a fit-for-purpose professional watch capable of a life in the field.
It’s the first military issued watch from a British company in over ten years and prior to being approved, was the subject of intense testing, surviving some of the most hostile conditions imaginable.
The Brief: capable of prolonged exposure to water and dust, durable, shock-resistant, clear visibility day or night, unidirectional timing bezel operable with a gloved hand, easy strap changes and comfortable strapping options that don't break.
The specification of the bezel gives a perfect insight into the level of detail required for the project to be successful.
A precise 120 click high grip bezel houses a stainless steel insert precisely embossed with hours and minutes indentations then flooded with high-grade C3 SuperLuminova. The hobnail outer knurling is slightly higher than the insert to form a high grip surface for trustworthy operation even when using the palm of a wet gloved hand. Both components are matt bead blasted, hardened to 1200HV (Vickers hardness scale) then a 0.8 micron PVD coating is applied whose hardness matches that of the stainless steel components.
Straps are easily changed and secured via solid steel screw-in bars operated with a five lobe tool and matching socket in the strap bar ends.
The recessed crown sits neatly out of harm's way at 4H whilst retaining the immense water protection afforded by our proprietary triple seals. An additional screw-down mechanism locks the crown into the case.
As a piece of equipment issued by the stores, the Holton has been assigned the NATO stock number 6645-99-303-0677: Time-measuring instruments; United Kingdom, and features the 'Crow's foot/Pusser's Arrow/Broad Arrow' on the dial-in subdued grey.
Bezel: high grip, unidirectional divers bezel case hardened to 1200HV Vickers hardness with matt PVD coating whose hardness matches that of the hardened bezel. Highly resistant to marking and provides an outer layer of protection for the watch. The high grip texture enables the bezel to be turned by gripping the sides or pressing downwards and the fine hobnail pattern ensures the bezel can't be caught on anything, turning it accidentally
Case: 316L stainless, anti-reflective gunmetal PVD, treated with an anti-fingerprint coating that naturally repels mud and grime. PVD thickness 0.8 microns so it wears beautifully for years - the maximum possible thickness without loss of definition on case detailing (approx twice the industry standard thickness)
Crown: easy to use yet highly protected. Deeply recessed, screws down into watch case, triple-sealed, hobnail knurling for secure grip, 4H position keeps it out of harms way
Dial: easy to read at a glance day or night with a military bearing that’s relevant and familiar. The hour markers are bold C3-coated parallelograms reminiscent of 1970s military dive watches, brought up to date with our trademark 12-3-6-9 cardinal graphics, with a white triangle at 12H to help orientate the watch when it’s dark
Hands: clear differentiation between hours, minutes and seconds hands with minimal chance of confusion. Short stubby ‘sword’ hour hand, long slender parallel minutes hand with pointed tip that reaches precisely to the minute markers. The seconds hand has a fine amber painted tip and C3 filled arrow head counterbalanced by a dark gunmetal ‘lollipop’
Crystal: bevelled 2mm sapphire with anti-reflective coating applied to the inner surface to minimise glare for perfect visibility in all light conditions. It’s mounted fractionally below the hardened bezel to minimise the chance of the edge becoming chipped, with a matching black sealing ring. To pass QC, every crystal must be capable of withstanding an impact applied 3 times by a 17mm steel ball dropped from 0.5m
Movement: Swiss Ronda calibre 715 with low-battery/end of life indicator that prevents the watch being issued with a low battery. It is housed inside a proprietary shock protection system consisting of a steel housing suspended by elastomer shock absorbers. Projected battery life is approximately 3 years
Strap: extra long fitted black NATO strap is woven for us from closely knitted polypropylene with laser-cut holes and gunmetal grey hardware. It is extra-long (fits up to 265mm wrist) enabling it to be worn over the cuff of a drysuit or wetsuit. A standard length rubber strapped version is also available. All 22mm Elliot Brown straps also fit
Strap fixing: solid steel strap bars that screw directly into the case shoulders, driven by a 5-lobe head so that the driver (included with the watch) can't slip or climb out, ensuring simple and fast strap changes whilst also providing maximum security - no spring-bars to break
Caseback: bolted down using hex bolts creating a perfect compression seal and correct tension for the shock absorption system. Multiple surfaces minimise skin contact for comfort and bolting the case down ensures the case back logo and detailing are always aligned perfectly