Anonimo, Why Marine Bronze Watches?
The use of marine bronze in the watch industry is becoming increasingly popular.The military and ship building industries have been using bronze alloys for many years. An alloy is a strategic blend of metals that are forged to yield specific properties according to the desired use of the alloy. The bronze alloy of choice for the marine industries are “Aluminum Bronze” alloy. Aluminum bronze alloy is highly resistant to wear, impact and erosion. Additionally, the alloy is highly anti-corrosive.
US Navy icebreaker propellers

US Navy Icebreaker Propellers

The US Navy used marine bronze(aluminum bronze with nickel) propellers on it’s icebreakers. The icebreakers work consistently in the toughest environments on earth. After one full season the US Navy engineers were very pleased with the little evident wear on the propellers.
Anonimo in Florence, Italy was the first company to really embrace the idea of using bronze alloy to make watches. The artisans that form Anonimo have a long history (multi-generational) of doing special contract work for the Italian Navy.
Aluminum Bronze with Nickel Propeller

Aluminum Bronze with Nickel Propeller

The use of the bronze alloy came naturally to these artisans. Aluminum bronze was long used to form propellers for ships, mounting brackets for instruments and simple cleats. Engineers discovered that the use of Aluminum bronze for propellers worked very well. The surface of a propeller blade is high polished. The engineers found that the aluminum bronze with the addition of a small amount of nickel in the alloy (UNI 5275 bronze alloy)resisted the torturing effects of salt water very well. So, well that there was very little, to no pitting on the surface of the high polished blades. There is a huge advantage to keeping the polished blades “pit free”, it actually makes the drive of the ship much more efficient via the propeller(s).Increased efficiency leads to subsequent savings in gross fuel usage. In addition, aluminum bronze with nickel may be honed thinner with a very high tensile strength. The attributes that allow for substantially lighter propellers, allowing for smaller diameter driveshafts. The alloy also resisted the growth of barnacles, mussles and algae. A trait that is highly advantageous for propellers that are perpetually submerged in seawater.
Anonimo has been working with bronze long enough now that they’ve developed a serious range of high performance watches in UNI 5275 marine bronze. We can credit Anonimo mastermind, Federico Massacesi with the forethought to be ahead of his time with the design, use and release of watches in marine bronze alloy.The watches are identified by name in the range. The first is the Millimetri Polluce in a 42mm bronze case. The Millimetri Polluce, first known as the “Polluce Commemorative Edition” came about to mark the successful salvage of the ship “Polluce” in the Mediteranean Sea. The watch is a 1200 meter diver with an automatic helium escape valve. The second watch in the series is the Polluce Magnum. The Polluce Magnum was the first three handed watch to be offered by Anonimo in a new 44mm case size. The Polluce Magnum is also a 1200 meter watch with a style of bezel that uses Torx screws versus a direct tap like the standard Polluce. The Polluce Magnum also features a unique “peek-a-boo” dial format, unique to the Polluce Magnum. The latest marine bronze model is the “Marlin Bronze”. The Marlin bronze is a 1500 meter diver with a unique case the is a “Tub” design. The “Tub” design refers to the backless case. The back of the watch is solid and all of the mechanicals are assembled through the opening in the case top. Then, the bezel is affixed with Torx screws to the case. There is one star nut in the back of the case to hold the movement. The case diameter is 46mm. The Millimetri Polluce is offered with a dial in black, olive green or orange. The Polluce Magnum was offered with a black or slate blue dial and now just black. The Marlin Bronze is offered with beautiful layered dials of black, tobacco brown or olive green.
Anonimo produces another commemorative line, Dino Zei. Colonel Dino Zei, ran Officine Panerai from 1969 until it’s sale to Cartier in 1998. Col. Zei is largely responsible for assembling the collection of Tuscan artisans that fashioned the original OP watches for civilian distribution from 1991-1998 when OP was sold to Cartier. In his honor, Anonimo has designed and assembled a collection in his name. The collection has included bronze models of the Glauco, Argonauta, Nautillo and in late 2011 the release of the Aeronauta. We are now looking forward to the late 2012 release of the unique San Marco in bronze! Federico Massacesi was the visionary that was insightful to continue relationships with the original Tuscan artisans that make all of the Anoimo and Dino Zei product possible. Even as others jump the wagon to produce bronze watches, none will be produced in the same traditional and time tested methods as the hand crafted Anonimo bronze treasures.
So many choices in bronze from a lovely artisan manufacture of REAL Italian watches that are really manufactured in Florence, Italy. If you have an “Italian Watch”, shouldn’t it be made in Italy? I love the bronze. As it patinas, it looks warm and dark like an old tool. Fabulous and in so many flavors there is one for any collector!
…And, because I’ve been asked already….I will confirm that all of the watches seen in the photos

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