Company: Borealis Watch Company
Watch: Sea Hawk
Borealis Sea Hawk 1500m Automatic Diver Watch with Seiko NH36 / 4R36 Specifications:
Case Size: 42mm x 50mm
Screwed down crown
Double Domed Sapphire Crystal with A/R coating inside
120 clicks unidirectional ceramic bezel with BGW9 lume applied to indexes
Seiko NH36 / 4R36 Automatic Movement
316L Stainless Steel Case
Lug Width: 22.00 mm
Water Resistance: 1500 meters
Case height: 15.9 mm
316L Stainless steel bracelet with precision adjustable buckle
Swiss Made BGW9 Superluminova applied to dial, watch hands and ceramic bezel
Screwed Case Back with engraved mermaid
12 months warranty
The newest offering from Borealis is the Sea Hawk 1500m dive watch and this is their best watch so far. We will ‘dive’ into why it is in this review. Borealis definitely listens to feedback because many things that were talked about on the Seafarer, were addressed on the Sea Hawk. Borealis customer service is also top notch and the communication is excellent. I have been very amped to review this watch since the preliminary drawings were first released.
The packaging is very simple and nothing out of the ordinary which is fine because it keeps the price of the watch at the affordable price point. It has a white labeled outer sleeve that covers the blue cardboard watch box which is also labeled with the Borealis name. Inside is the watch that is attached to a watch pillow. Underneath the watch and pillow is the instruction manual and warranty card. Nothing fancy, simple yet gets the job done.
The case is made from 316L stainless steel that is polished nice and shiny on the sides of the lugs and brushed on the top of the lugs. The case and it’s angles catch the light quite nicely which makes this watch pretty noticeable on the wrist. The dimensions are 42mm x 50mm which is much smaller than their previous watch the Seafarer. It’s had a nice presence on the wrist and wears comfortable. My personal sweet spot for watches is at 44mm, but the Sea Hawk’s dimensions work well for me despite only being 42mm.
The case back is engraved with the Borealis mermaid and features the Borealis name, automatic movement and 1500m depth rating. The case back is secured down by 6 screws which also add a nice degree of detail giving it a tool/serious dive watch feel. The lugs are much shorter than the Seafarer which was a minor complaint that kept some people away from purchasing it. I really like the fact that Borealis listens to it’s customers and fans, I think that’s very important for companies to do. The top of the lugs are brushed steel and the sides of the case are polished. I was surprised to see that there was not a helium release valve on the side of the cae.
The other feature that Borealis listened to was giving us a signed crown this time around. It’s has an engraved ‘B’ on the top of the crown which adds a nice detail to the crown and overall look of the watch. The crown is a screw down style with very easy to grip and screw in/out usability. It feels pretty solid and the screwing action is extremely smooth.
The bezel is matte black 120 clicks unidirectional ceramic bezel with BGW9 lume applied to indexes. The bezel at first movement is pretty hard to turn, it’s nice and tight with no play whatsoever. At the 12 o’clock position is a triangle which is a must if using this for diving so you can mark your oxygen supply time to know when you need to surface. I think that’s pretty darn important, don’t you? There’s less play in this bezel than I experienced with the Tudor Pelagos. Anyone who has experienced the Pelagos bezel knows that is a hard one to beat in terms of there being little to no play. I like that it’s 120 clicks which means greater accuracy when using the bezel for timing purposes. The matte black is a beautiful choice for this watch. Why? Because the finishing on the case is so highly polished, a high polished ceramic bezel would have too bling bling for my liking. The matte black gives the watch a nice tool feel to it. I also like that the indexes on the bezel have lume applied to them because it really comes in handy when in low light or darkness, plus it just looks so pretty at night. The white is applied evenly on the indexes except in on spot which quality control must have missed. You can see this in the pictures, it’s the index after the 10 position.
The Sea Hawk’s crystal is a double domed sapphire crystal with an inside AR coating. The crystal is actually raised a few millimeters above the bezel itself which I’m not sure how I feel about this choice. The crystal is flat on top as opposed to the traditional rounded top. I won’t have experience with this watch in the water for a few weeks, so I will surely update this once I have that experience. From a purely style aspect, I think it fits the overall design of the Sea Hawk and it looks really nice.
Ticking away inside the Sea Hawk is the Seiko NH36/4R36 automatic movement. This movement first appeared in 2011. It has hacking seconds which is a must for me personally, there’s nothing more beautiful than watching a sweeping second hand make it’s way around the dial. I seriously can watch this for hours, and I often do just watch the hacking second hand throughout the day, oblivious to what time is actually on the watch. Those familiar with dive watches know that Seiko has been around for a few years and know how to make a good, reliable dive watch. I think Borealis made a good choice with the Seiko movement. As for the tolerance of the movement, I need to spend some good quality wrist time to give that a qualified answer. I will update this section after I do get that time in with the Sea Hawk.
Absolutely love matte black dials, especially when you view them in natural light. The hour markers are applied rather than just painted onto the dial. This is a really nice detail which adds some great depth to the dial itself. At the 12 o’clock position is a triangle, and each other of the hour markers are square. The dial also has the Borealis name printed on it along with 1500 Meters and automatic. Nice, simple and clean, nothing too busy or cluttered here. The hands are traditional snowflake style white hands that are lumed. This style of hands are becoming my favorite hands for a dive/tool watch. The hands are evenly coated and the edges are crisp, clean with no spotty edges. The black and white combination of the dial nicely complements the white and black bezel which is also matte black with white. The minute hands, square on seconds hand and the indexes on the dial are coated with lume as well. The lume is applied very evenly and it’s really nice when it glows. It’s applied better than some watches I have owned that cost 4-5x as much as the Sea Hawk.
The Bracelet is 22/20mm solid stainless steel bracelet that has solid end links which are brushed on the top and bottom, the sides however are polished making a smooth transition from the side of the case which are also polished. The bracelet closes/opens with a nicely down ratcheting style clasp which feature micro adjustments for fine tuning a good fit for your wrist. The links are attached using single sided screws which a lot of people prefer but I’m not a huge fan. I recommend using lock tight on the screws because from past experiences with this style of braclet the screws will come loose with wear.
For reference my wrist 7 3/4″
This is Borealis’s best offering to date, it’s an extreme value for what you are getting for $355. Your getting a nice sapphire crystal, reliable auto movement, solid constructed bracelet and case, a water resistance of 1500M. It’s a nice watch that pays homage to the style dive watches of the past. I didn’t really mention this in my review because I wanted to give a review that you looked at as the Borealis Sea Hawk and not compare it to other watches as you were reading the review. It’s a great watch from a great company that has excellent customer service. There isn’t anything I would change or that I don’t like about this watch, because it’s hard to beat considering the price. Keeping that in mind, how could you change anything and keep it within that price point. Borealis has a real winner here with the Sea Hawk. Thanks for reading!