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Ocean Crawler Bolt Watch Review

Hands on Watch Reviews Ocean Crawler Watches

Ocean Crawler Bolt

The Ocean Crawler Bolt is a new dive watch from the now North Carolina-based boutique or microbrand and this latest piece is thin, at only 12.3mm, and has an integrated bracelet, something we have seen a lot of over the past 2-3 years. This 42mm dive watch is rated to 600m water resistant, which is pretty impressive given how thin this watch is. Regarding design inspiration, OC went a different route than most and pulled from a vintage Yema design, a Wristmaster Traveler. That watch was not a dive watch but you can see the inspiration, Ocean Crawler didn’t just copy a design, they took that look and modernized it, made it a dive watch, and gave it all the goodies you would want-Sapphire bezels and crystals, an automatic movement, tons of lume, and both an integrated bracelet and leather strap, as well as a lot of different color combos.

Specifications:

  • Case Diameter 42mm
  • Thickness 12.3mm
  • Length 55mm (including the first link of the bracelet)
  • Bracelet 28mm at lugs tapering to 18mm
  • Weight 190 grams
  • 600m Water Resistant
  • Sapphire Crystal
  • Sapphire Bezel
  • Screw Down Crown 
  • C3 Lume
  • Sellita SW200-1 Movement
  • Bracelet and Leather Strap

Price $1299

https://www.oceancrawler.com

Ocean Crawler Bolt

At 42mm the Ocean Crawler Bolt is on the larger side compared to a lot of integrated bracelet watches released these days. Most follow a Gerald Genta design, and many are 40mm or below. At 42mm and a length of 55mm (more on that in a bit), it is not for the small-wristed folks, unless they just want a watch to hang off their wrists and I think that is ok. While small watches have been the trend for the past few years, it doesn’t mean every guy wants a small sub 40mm watch. Some still want a larger watch and some still want a massive watch like a 48mm that was popular 15 years ago. What does that mean? Well, look around, there is a watch for everyone and if it’s a size that is too small or too large for your tastes, look around the corner as there is sure to be a watch that will suit your needs.

Ocean Crawler Bolt

The design of the Ocean Crawler Bolt is quite different than anything else the brand has produced, and technically this is the second watch to include a full link bracelet, but I consider it the first, as only one other model from the brand got a bracelet, but it seemed like more of an afterthought. This new design for the brand does take a lot of inspiration from the Yema when it comes to the case lines and lug curvature, and the bracelet is pretty reminiscent of the Yema as well, but as I said, that was not a dive watch, and this one is.
And with that comes a unique bezel, one that sits low on the blocky angeled case, and while you can grip it and turn it, I still think if it sat a little higher off the case it would be easier to grip. Turning it is not hard, and I was able to get a good purchase it has a nice solid feel, but it could be improved.

The bezel insert is sapphire, and a mix of blue, orange, and superluminova, and I love the colors of the bezel. Not all of the Ocean Crawler Bolt watches get the colored bezel, matter of fact I think this is the only one, and it’s one of the reasons I like this black dial version so much. That said if you would prefer something different, check out their website for all the colors, including new DLC cases as well.
The crown is not protected by crown guards, though it does sit nicely into the case, and this is quite an interesting case. I am not sure what to call the shape, but it’s a little square, a little blocky, and then has extremely curved ends that flow into a lug area and the integrated bracelet. The edges have just the thinnest line of high polish that runs down the case and into the bracelet, and it’s just enough to break up an all-brushed case, but almost imperceptible.

Ocean Crawler claims this is the thinnest 600m dive watch and while I did not do an exhaustive search to see if that is true, I didn’t readily find a watch that is rated this high, that is this thin. As I talked about in the video, I do not dive, and most of us are desk divers as well, so why do we need 600m of water resistance? I don’t know, but it is nice to have a dive watch that is pretty thin such as one. Even though this is a deep diver, one thing that is missing, thankfully, is the helium release valve, and I commend OC for not putting that useless feature on this dive watch.

The dial of the Ocean Crawler Bolt is pretty typical for a dive watch, sword hands, a contrasting chapter ring, large indices, and of course that signature cursive text of the model name. The Bolt prototypes had a much funkier dial with Pacman ghost-looking indices that can be found on a few versions of the Core Diver, but those did not make it to production. I for one, appreciate that. Those indices just did not fit with this style of watch in my opinion, and look to be different for the same of being different. Here, everything is functional, including a date at the 6 o’clock position.

Ocean Crawler Bolt

With the Ocean Crawler brand, many expect excellent lume, and for the most part, the Bolt delivers, but the bezel lume doesn’t make sense to me. Only 8 hash marks are lumed between the triangle and the 10-minute marker, and one at the 35 marker. I am not sure what the significance of this is, as I have never seen this on any other watch. That said, if you are like me and just need to see the time in the dark, this will do quite well, as it is extremely bright and long-lasting.

Ocean Crawler Bolt

Integrated watches can be tricky, especially if the watch is a larger size, as it can make the length of the watch massive. And at 55mm, for a 42mm diameter, that is a pretty long length. Fortunately, unlike the Ollech & Wajs 8001, the case curves down, and while it is not going to fit on a large array of wrists or be the most wrist-hugging watch you have, I think it fits well on my 7 1/2 inch (19.05cm) wrist. The integrated bracelet does drop down and I feel this can be an everyday wear piece, as long as your wrist is long and flat enough to pull it off.

Ocean Crawler Bolt

The U-link-shaped bracelet is pretty wide at 28mm, but it tapers down to 18mm at the clasp and uses screws to hold all the links together. Like many other brands these days, this has a tool-less micro-adjust clap, where an extra piece of link can slide in and out of the clasp with the push of a button. This is not a dive watch extension, but a great way to adjust the fit on your wrist, especially for times when your wrist swells due to heat or shrinks due to cold. It also has that high polish small chamfer running down the edge of the clasp, just as the bracelet and case do. And if you are not a fan of bracelets, it does come standard with an integrated fitted leather strap, but I was not able to get my hands on that for this review.

I have long discussed how much I like Ocean Crawler watches and without looking back through their whole catalog I can’t say definitely if this is my favorite so far, but I do think this is probably at the top, at least until I try out the Core Diver. The Ocean Crawler Bolt has a unique design, a lot of attractive colors, two case finish options, and all that water resistance for us guys who take our watches off when washing dishes.
In all seriousness, I am sure some will take this watch into its intended habitat, the ocean, and it should hold up fine. I see this piece having a lot of future versions, as I can’t see OC retiring this model anytime soon. At $1299, it is one of their more expensive watches, but it also has quite the design and presence and shows that Ocean Crawler is not afraid to explore new designs and styles.

Ocean CrawlerOcean Crawler Bolt

I've been an avid watch lover since the age of 7. Watches are not only my hobby but a passion. My favorite style used to be dive watches, but field or non bezel watches have been growing on me. When I'm not reviewing watches I am either cooking or with family and friends.

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