Differentiating yourself in the microbrand dive watch segment is a challenge today. New divers are coming out on an almost-daily basis. Releases that can find a way to bring something fresh to the market are sure to thrive. Consumers are becoming smarter and can spot “parts bin” watches from a mile away.
The Aevig Huldra aims to be a dive watch that is different and can bring something exciting to those who are fans of dive watches or those looking to buy in on their first microbrand. Aevig is not entirely new to the market and has had a few successful releases. On paper, the Huldra checks a lot of boxes but is it a watch that can stand out in a lineup? Let’s find out.
The Huldra is now in its Series 2 iteration and has a few upgrades over the original Huldra. The bezel now is flat and a bit thicker vs, the first generation’s sloped bezel. The sapphire crystal is double-domed vs, single domed. The bracelet has been updated to a jubilee with a 22-18mm taper and expansion clasp. There is also an option for an enamel-filled bezel insert on the orange dial variant.
I should start by noting that the Huldras I had for this review were pre-production prototypes but in terms of specs and looks they are the same as the production models.
At first glance at the Huldra, you may notice something different about it, but you may not be able to pick it out right away. The Huldra’s dial contains a small surprise that is one of my favorite features of the watch: the markers. From the distance the hexagon-shaped markers may appear to be circles but are, in fact, hexagons. The hexagon-shaped applied markers which mirror Aevig’s logo design adorn the dial at all positions except 3, 6, 9, and 12 o’clock. The Aevig logo is applied at 12 o’clock, with triangle markers at 3 and 9 and either the date or a triangle at 6 o’clock. Each marker is filled with lume, including the logo at 12, which is a nice touch.
Depending on the colorway you choose for your Huldra, the handset colors will vary slightly. From the gilt hands on the green model to the black-outlined hands on the orange model seen here, each colorway has its own identity. The handsets are wide and deeply filled with lume.
The orange dial colorway with the black hands gave me some Doxa vibes without creeping into homage territory. The gilt accents on the green dial variant pair well with the color scheme of the watch and shine brightly when hit by light. Both green- and orange-dial divers are becoming more common and Aevig has executed both colorways perfectly on the Huldra.
Each handset’s color is selected carefully so they are easily readable against the dial color.
Dial text is kept to a minimum on the Huldra. Aevig and Huldra are printed at the 12 o’clock position. Automatic and 20 bar are printed at the 6 o’clock position.
The bezel on the Huldra also varies depending on the colorway chosen. Each dial color will come with color-coordinating enamel-filled bezel inserts, with the exception being the orange dial (only colorway available with a stainless steel bezel). The enamel-filled bezel inserts contain lumed markers that appear to be backlit due to the enamel fill. The uni-directional bezel has 120 clicks and felt solid with no backplay.
Case & Wearability
Looking straight on at the Huldra, the vintage vibes start to creep out due to the case shape. A cushion-shaped case 42mm in diameter gives the Huldra plenty of wrist presence while remaining modest with a lug-to-lug distance of 46mm. The case protrudes past the bezel but does not detract from gripping the bezel.
The case is finished well with a mixture of brushing and polishing. The top of the case is finished with radial brushing, playing well with the case shape. The undercut of the case is polished with a welcome addition of drilled lug holes. The shape of the case and finishing reminds me of the Nodus Avalon and does fit similarly to that watch. The Avalon feels slightly more comfortable on wrist due to the steeper undercut and curvature of the lugs. With that said, if you like the way the Avalon fits, you will also like the way the Huldra fits.
The Huldra comes in at 12.5mm thick. Combine this with the other dimensions of the watch and the wearer is greeted with a well-proportioned watch that should fit a variety of wrist sizes. I found that the orange/stainless steel bezel variant appeared smaller on my wrist than the green/enamel-filled bezel variant.
Aiding in the comfort of the Huldra is the excellent bracelet. Owners of Seiko or Rolex dive watches will be familiar with the jubilee bracelet and how comfortable it can be. Aevig has opted for a jubilee as well on the Huldra, albeit completely brushed as opposed to polished center links on other jubilees. The bracelet conforms well to the wrist and with its 22mm to 18mm taper, it doesn’t feel bulky whatsoever.
The Huldra features a quick-adjust diver’s extension clasp. This style of clasp is starting to become more common on new dive watch releases and it is executed well on the Huldra. It doesn’t add any noticeable bulk to the clasp and is easy to operate. The quick-adjust mechanism can be used while on-wrist and does not require the wearer to remove the watch to loosen or tighten it.
I was asked not to remove the bracelet on these prototypes so I cannot speak to how aftermarket straps will work, but given the classic design and color choices, the Huldra should have no problem pairing well with a variety of straps.
A Miyota 9015 automatic movement powers the Huldra. Some Miyota-powered watches can exhibit a loud rotor but the Huldra seems to buffer the sound well as I didn’t notice the whirling sound of the rotor while wearing it.
The Miyota 9015 beats at a rate of 28,800 vph, giving a smooth sweep of the seconds hand. The Miyota 90s5 is used the no-date variations. This eliminates the date function so no phantom clicks or positions will be present.
This movement winds smoothly and is not quite as high-pitched when winding like some ETA or Sellita movements. The screw-down crown, which is located at 3 o’clock, is large enough to grip easily without digging into your wrist while being worn. The crowns on the versions I had were a little rough to screw and unscrew, but that is something that should be addressed in the final production models.
A screw-in caseback adorned with the Aevig logo houses the internals of the Huldra.
Finding a way to stand out in the crowd of microbrand dive watches is going to be a challenge brands are going to have to face for years to come. Dive watches seem to show no signs of slowing down in popularity. Aevig brings something fresh to the table with the Huldra. Small details like the hexagon-shaped markers and color-coordinated variations between models show an attention to detail that helps the watch have its own identity.
Aevig seems to be doing the right things to create watches the community wants at a price that isn’t offensive. With the multitude of watches you can spend your money on in today’s watch market, you have to be careful about where you decide to spend that money. The Huldra deserves serious consideration in your next dive watch purchase.
A watch that looks like different isn’t quite enough. Thankfully the Huldra combines well-proportioned dimensions with one of the most comfortable bracelets available to create a watch that not only looks good but feels good on the wrist.
|Lug-to-lug Height||46mm||Lug Width||22mm|
|Crystal||Double Domed Sapphire||Strap||Jubilee Bracelet|
|Water Resistance||200 meters||Lume||Super-LumiNova® BG W9|
More Images of the Aevig Huldra
Check out the Aevig website