Well, I haven’t seen this before: Alcadus is releasing two watches, simultaneously, both through the same Kickstarter campaign. Not two versions of the same watch. Two entirely different models. The Alcadus Dromo and the Alcadus Opus 39 V2 are being made available through the same campaign. It’s an interesting strategy that in theory will use the interest in each model to generate a larger interest to drive the campaign home.
The Alcadus Dromo is the third model from the company, following the original Opus 39 and the Velos chronograph. I’ve been lucky enough to handle all three, and while the Velos was by far my favorite, the Dromo has a great overall look and really shows the brand’s design chops.
On the Wrist
The Alcadus Dromo is a bit of a diver and a bit of a pilot watch. Sure, it has a bezel, but it’s also got a handset that usually goes with pilot watches, plus that big, applied arrow at 12 o’clock. You can accuse it of being either or both. Despite the heavily domed crystal, I didn’t have much trouble reading the time, day or night. The blue dial is really stunning with the yellow accents and radiant finish. The Dromo will also be available in yellow, salmon, black, and white.
The watch sits ably on the wrist, given its accommodating dimensions. There’s a bit of disruption between the straight brushing of the endlinks and the circular brushing of the lug tops, but it’s not unbearable. Note that there will be drilled lugs for production models. You can see here, clearly, the distortion caused by the massive box sapphire crystal—this will be reduced for production, though I rather like the look. What’s unfortunate is the bezel, which has minimal grip despite looking pretty.
Just a beautiful dial. While the dial is flat as can be, the distortion of the crystal makes it seem convex, which is quite a pleasant effect. The overall design is a win in my book, with the striking radiance, mix of blues and yellow and white, and the markers.
The applied markers are exceptionally tall and matching the seconds hand to the 12 o’clock logo (and the crown logo) was a great touch. The brushing on the handset also echoes the vertical brushing of the case, tying more elements together.
I’m being honest: I really do like the big crystal. I like how it messes with the dial without ruining legibility. The tiny pops of yellow make this dial color one of the best options (along with the yellow dial, which has blue accents). The bezel numbering could use to be larger; as it is, it appears floating in a space too large.
The lume on the Dromo is top-grade Super-LumiNova, and it shows. The hands are slightly dimmer than the markers, but it’s all adequately bright, and the crystal’s warping of the markers makes for some fun.
Case, Bracelet, and Strap
Just like its Opus 39 sibling, the Alcadus Dromo features exceptional finishing. Not just for the price point, but in general. The vertical brushing is well-defined and the transitions are stunningly crisp. The biggest issue here—and with the entire watch—is the bezel. Even just looking at it, it’s easy to tell the bezel won’t provide anywhere near sufficient grip. It is a challenge to grip even when dry, and when wet is nonfunctional. The production models, fortunately, will have improved grip—though I don’t the details. A nice benefit that certainly doesn’t make up for the bezel: you won’t be able to scratch the case owing to its hardening coating that makes it 4x more durable than 316L steel on its own.
Now if you forget to screw the crown down, you really only have yourself to blame (which is not different than with any watch, but here you’ll feel extra stupid). The crown itself is easy to grip and functions well.
If you take this watch out on a boat, your boat must look like this. Sorry, rules are rules.
The bracelet of the Alcadus Dromo features flat links and a stamped clasp. It’s a great vintage look, but the links get locked at an angle sometimes when off the wrist and it’s a pain to get them flat again. Further, the stamped clasp feels as cheap as one might expect. There are production plans to do a milled clasp and add quick-release tabs. The leather straps as of now are a $40 add-on, but may be a stretch goal, and I’ll tell you they’re rather fantastic. Great feeling leather and nice hardware, plus quick-release pins.
The Alcadus Dromo is not a perfect dive watch. It’s got a lot more style than many of its rivals, but as presented here, is wanting for dive watch functionality. With a stunning dial and unparalleled case finishing at this price point, if the brand delivers on an improved bezel and an improved clasp, this will be an unbeatable value. As it is, it’s well-priced, attractive watch that looks damn good on leather.
Check out more dive watch reviews at The Watch Clicker
Check out the Alcadus website
Alcadus Dromo Specs
Bracelet & leather strap
*Height of the watch from the wrist to the top of the crystal