Revvel M1 | VARIO Review
I got to know Nicolas Lehotzky from Waldhoff via some microbrand FB groups that we both hang out in. When we chatted and exchanged notes, I was struck by his knowledge and generosity; he was kind enough to share his insight on some solid Chinese movements with low defect rates. I was impressed by how open he is at sharing knowledge with fellow brand owners. A few weeks ago, Edgar from Constellar Timepieces mentioned he just shot some photos for Nicolas’s new watches so I was intrigued. I asked Nicolas if I could check out this watch and he told me Edgar is sending the watches back to him. I quickly texted Edgar who happened to be at the post office and I managed to hijack the watches for this review! What I’m reviewing is not a Waldhoff but Nicolas’s spin off brand Revvel. I’ve got 2 x M1 for review so let's rock!
We’ve all seen skull watches from affordable Invictas to luxury HYT. Revvel’s M1 watch goes the extra mile. Instead of printing a skull on a dial and using a standard 3-hand dial layout, they’ve made a 3D skull case for this watch, emphasizing the jewelry aspect of this unique timepiece. Holding the watch for the first time, its weight seems a bit heavier than a standard dive watch like a Seiko SKX. The watch has a solid presence with its solid steel case; you won’t get the feeling the watch uses a cheap thin alloy case that will dent on impact.
This distinctive skull sporting black sunglasses is one cool-looking watch. A watch with a face can appear to stare back at you when you look at it, but in this case, the skull’s sunglasses show you your reflection instead. Maybe it’s not as whimsical and emotive as The Joker from Konstantin Chaykin but it still has a rebellious look and it’s definitely a statement piece. It’s easy to personify this skull watch and I’m tempted to give this guy a name already. Now, regarding design, Nicolas was transparent and upfront with me. He told me the previous brand worked on this watch but abandoned it, so Nicolas and his factory partner improved on the product before launching it via Revvel.
The case is mainly brushed with enough details to show off its nose and teeth but it does not distract you from telling the time. To read the time, look at the Arabic numerals seen through the K1 mineral glass on the skull’s forehead. There are two rotating discs, the larger Arabic numeral at the top is for the hour while the lower one is for the minutes. The bottom-most red cog wheel indicates the motion of the automatic movement inside. There is small red triangle on top of the skull’s forehead which will act as your reference to read time. The time is roughly 2:35pm on the photo below.
Setting the time is done via the steel crown with a glossy black top, which mirrors the black sunglasses on the skull’s face. Manual winding is relatively easy even though one side of the crown is near the protruding jaw of the skull, but there’s also not much need to since they’re using a NH35 movement to power this watch. However, I do wish they used the NH38 to avoid the ghost position for the unused date function.
The hinged lugs, secured with black screws, allow the watch to wrap around one’s wrist. I usually wear small watches and this watch measures 51cm in length, 43cm in width and 24mm thick which gives it a lot of wrist presence! Now I don’t mind how it looks on my wrist, but there is one issue that troubles me: the watch tends to slide on my 6-inch wrist. If I wear the watch tight, the lugs will press on my wrist and if I wear it loose, the watch gives me the feeling that it’s going to tip over. My mum has the biggest wrist in my family at 7 inches and she didn’t have the issue I was experiencing, so it seems like a problem exclusive to small wrists. The black calf leather strap is 22mm wide at the lugs and 5mm thick, which works for this watch but perhaps it might take a few wears to break in around the wrist.
Flipping the watch over will reveal the screw-on caseback that reveals more information about the watch. Looking through the K1 mineral glass, you will see a decorated rotor on the NH35 and I thought the steel and black combination from the movement and caseback worked well visually.
Revvel’s M1 is a great take on skull watches with its unique case. It ignited the rebel in me and allows me to live a little more dangerously and tell time at the same time. If you’re interested in this watch, please visit their FB page for more information.
FB Page (for more info): https://www.facebook.com/RevvelWear
About Revvel Watches
Revvel is collaboration between Swiss watch designer Nicolas Lehotzky, and a watch manufacturer, CY Fung. The early designs were initially created for a third party customer in Europe, who after having faced difficulties, did not continue with the project. The duo then modified and refined the designs and launched under their label Revvel.
Their primary goal is to create bold designs of extraordinary mechanical timepieces, products designed to turn heads and leave an impression.
Written by Ivan Chua
Disclaimer: This watch was sent to me to review, but I was not incentivized in any way to make this review. This is in no way sponsored by Revvel Watches or any other entity. All opinions here are my own.
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