New Release: Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold Watch

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Just ahead of WindUp Watch Fair San Francisco 2024, Formex has announced a new meteorite dial version of the fan-favorite 39mm Essence. Expanding upon the concept of the sold-out Essence 39mm Space Rock that was originally launched in 2022 as a limited edition of just 88 pieces, the new Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold turns things up a notch with an innovative dial that is crafted entirely from a solid slice of meteorite and plated in luxurious 18k rose gold.

From a core design and functionality standpoint, the new Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold is the same watch as the standard 39mm Essence model, which means that it features a multi-component case crafted from brushed and polished 316L stainless steel, which is built around an internal section made from grade 2 titanium contains the movement. Just like the standard versions of the model, the case of the Essence 39mm Space Gold measures 39mm in diameter by 10mm thick, and it has compact lugs that are set 20mm apart and extend to create an overall lug-to-lug profile of 45mm.

A flat sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment protects the dial of the Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold, while a secondary sapphire crystal is fitted to its screw-on display caseback, and at the 3 o’clock location is a signed push/pull- style crown with a system of gaskets that helps create 100 meters of water resistance. Just like all of Formex’s various Essence models, the new Essence 39mm Space Gold features the brand’s patented case suspension system, where the center section is attached to the exterior by a system of springs that increase its shock resistance while simultaneously creating an incredibly comfortable on- wrist experience.

With that in mind, the real standout feature of the new Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold is its gold-plated meteorite dial. Formex creates all of its dials in-house, and while colored meteorite dials are hardly a new development, the one fitted to the new Essence 39mm Space Gold differs in two key areas. Nearly all colored meteorite dials are achieved using a standard PVD process; However, due to the high iron content of meteorites, Formex started experimenting with electroplating the actual meteorite material itself, and the brand found that it could successfully fuse 18k rose gold directly to the meteorite’s surface. Rather than just being a colored version of meteorite, the dial fitted to the Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold offers a highly lustrous appearance, while still retaining the unique Widmanstätten patterns that are unique to each dial and an inherent part of the otherworldly material.

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The second way that the dial of the Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold differs from standard meteorite dials relates to the actual construction of the component. Most meteorite dials (including the one fitted to the limited-edition Essence 39mm Space Rock) are created by attaching a thin slice of meteorite to a metal base layer that serves as its foundation. However, for the Essence 39mm Space Gold dial, Formex took a thick slice of the Muonionalusta meteorite and soldered the dial feet directly onto the reverse side, therefore eliminating the need for a metal base layer. This approach allows Formex to carve into the meteorite to create its signature beveled date window, and the hands and applied hour markers are all given a gunmetal finish with Super-LumiNova BGW9 accents to provide them with strong contrast and increased legibility in dark settings.

The rest of the Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold follows in the footsteps of its siblings, and powering the watch is a Chronometer-Grade version of the Sellita SW200-1, which runs at a frequency of 28,800vph with a power reserve of 41 hours. As the top-of-the-line execution of this popular design, the Cal. SW200-1 inside the Essence 39mm Space Gold includes a few premium components that are not found inside the standard grade (such as a Glucydur balance wheel), and It also features a higher level of decoration, which includes blued screws, perlage on the bridges, and Formex’s custom skeletonized rotor. Additionally, as a COSC-certified Chronometer, the Essence 39mm Space Gold is guaranteed to keep time within the standards of -4/+6 seconds per day, and it proudly displays its movement through the sapphire window in its caseback.

The Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold is available with the same assortment of straps and bracelets as its standard-production siblings, which means that buyers have the option of choosing either a three-link stainless steel bracelet or a two-piece strap with fitted ends that It is crafted from either Italian leather or black rubber. Formex’s bracelets are very well-conceived and the bracelet for the Essence 39mm features completely solid components, single-sided screws for the removable links, quick-release springbars at the lugs, and an elegant folding clasp that includes an integrated 4mm micro-extension. Meanwhile, regardless of material or color, all the various strap options are paired with the brand’s carbon fiber composite deployant clasp, which includes a patented 7mm fine-adjustment extension system built into its structure.

Formex consistently delivers strong value for the money, and even its models with exotic dials are accompanied by very reasonable price premiums. Consequently, the new Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold costs $1,890 USD when paired with a strap or $1,990 USD, should buyers opt for the stainless steel bracelet, and this represents a fairly modest price bump of a few hundred dollars when compared to the standard-production versions of the model. Additionally, while the first 100 examples will be individually numbered, Formex has not explicitly stated that the Essence 39mm Space Gold will be a limited edition, which means that we may see this striking 18k gold-plated meteorite dial make a return at some point in the future. For more information on the Formex Essence 39mm Space Gold, please visit the brand’s website.

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