April 22, 2024

The Timeless + Bremont U2/T is our first collaboration with Bremont and was inspired by the pilot’s watches of World War 2. To make a vintage version of the Bremont U-2, we took a watch farther from its source material than we’ve ever done before. In addition to adding blued hands and a new color of lume, we removed the day and date complications, took most of the text off the dial, simplified the rotating chapter ring and more.

While I have no means of quantifying this, I have no doubt that the U2/T was, by far, our most time intensive limited edition yet. We went through hundreds of separate renders with tiny tweaks and ultimately had to figure out how to handle new challenges like the best way to remove the day and date complications. Consequently, it’s one of our most mature designs, in terms of what we’re capable of and how far we’re willing to revise the watch. The U2/T limited edition shares quite little with its source material, the U-2, aside from its case.

Our design goal was clear from the get go: to create a modern Bremont U-2 that borrowed liberally from WW2-era pilot watch design. Bremont wasn’t around in the 1940s, so it was a strictly creative enterprise with no constraints that would otherwise be imposed had we been making an homage to a past watch. The U2/T doesn’t attempt to actually be a watch made in the 1940s, it’s just taking design cues from them. This most obviously occurs with the numerals and lume. We’ve used Bremont’s unique coloration from their ALT1-ZT/51 and brightened it up slightly.

More significantly, the numerals are smaller and more frequent with indexes for just 3/6/9, while the U2 had larger, but fewer, numerals. The 12:00 numeral was replaced with the luminescent triangle which lines up very nicely with the Roto-Click bezel. We knew early on that we wanted to create an extremely practical design that maximized legibility. To do so we cleared away the Anti-Shock and Automatic writing near 6:00, which was no serious obstacle. There’s very little to get in the way of the matte black dial, aside from the Bremont logo, of course. Unsatisfied with the look, however, we set about removing the day and date complications.

This introduced a design challenge, because the lazy way to make this happen would be just not to cut windows into the dial but use the same movement underneath. That would be fine, except the wearer would feel a second unnecessary stop when they pulled the crown out to set the time, so mechanical modifications had to be made. Thankfully, we were able to work with Bremont on that, and it operates the way a watch without a day/date complication ought to, with a single stop for setting the time.

One of my favorite things about this watch is its Roto-Click bezel. We completely overhauled the U-2’s chapter ring, making it much cleaner looking and more legible. The original U2’s internal bezel also went up in 5 minute increments, while we’re using one hour increments. We find this to be a lot more useful in real life, and it can be utilized to track a second time zone rather easily. I also use it, namely the luminescent triangle, as something of a countdown timer, a little mental reminder than when the hands reach the spot I’ve moved it to, it’s time. I especially like the very clear and solid click you get at each increment, which is not something unique to our U2/T, but to all Bremonts with this system.

Naturally, the watch is luminescent and we used as much as we possibly could. The blue lume means that the hands will be blue day or night. The triangle on the rotating chapter ring is luminescent as well, so this can still be used to orient the watch for second time zone use at night.

Our preference for blued hands is pretty straightforward: we just really like how they look. These are of the heat blued variety, meaning that they can go from a relatively deep, dark blue, like you see here, to a vibrant, almost glowing blue like you see in my other photos, depending on the angle and intensity of the lighting. Fortunately, whether the hands look dark or bright at any given moment matters not in terms of legibility since the high-contrast luminescent accents are very easy to see.

The 43mm case still uses the same hardened steel as most other Bremonts, making it highly resistant to scratches, but we chose to use a very cool looking bronze-colored barrel. The watch is 14.4mm thick by my own measurements.

We did a lot more customization on this side. The top crown sets the time and looks like any other U2’s crown, but as I mentioned earlier, there is only one stop whereas the normal U2 has a second stop for setting the date. The lower crown is an absolute joy to use, thanks to the Roto-Click internal rotating bezel, but it’s also customized with a star logo, inspired by the USAF star, although that was technically founded after the conclusion of World War 2.

The solid back contributes to the tool watch look but that’s merely aesthetics. Inside is an anti-magnetic core as well as an anti-shock movement mount, which is a much more meaningful homage to tool watch design. Naturally, each back of the U2/T is unique and has the limited edition number on it. Here we’re looking at #18.

We’re also including this great Hambledon strap for free and this can be used to great effect in bringing out the vintage look of the watch. You can check out a short video of the U2/T on this strap here.

The U2/T was our first limited edition collaboration with Bremont, and they were absolutely wonderful to work with. This was a pretty complex piece and required a lot of customization to make correctly, so having good partners makes a world of difference. We also want to thank our friends both locally and on the watch forums for the support on this limited edition and the ones we’ve made before. There are only 100 of these so if you’d like to reserve yours please click here.