Silver Archetype One Review – Breaking Down A Tudor Submariner Homage

I’ve always wanted a Tudor Submariner reference 9401 from the mid-1970s. As its Rolex cousin gained luxury status, the Tudor Submariners found their way onto wrists of the Marine Nationale (French Navy) and United States Special Forces operators such as Moki Martin before the digital era. The vintage “snowflake” handed Tudor Submariners have gone from a bargain piece of history and horology to expensive auction items.

Owning a vintage Tudor Submariner is probably not in the cards for me. Still, I’ve always wondered what it would be like. Luckily, I was able to borrow the Archetype One from Silver Watch Company. It’s an unapologetic homage to the Tudor Submariners. Could it scratch the itch?


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The Case

The case shape should not be a surprise to anyone; it should be as familiar as the moon in the sky. Despite the nuances, the pre-ceramic Submariner remained similar for decades. The Silver Archetype One does not attempt to reinvent that wheel – it simply pays homage to it.

The 39.5mm diameter for the Archetype One is a great size for my 6.75” wrist. At 12.5mm tall the Archetype One is comfortable and non-bulky. I would have done a flat acrylic crystal myself. Silver Watch Company chose a domed sapphire crystal instead.

It should be noted that the case is actually 38mm. The edge of the toothed bezel hangs over the edge of the case ever so slightly to get the 39mm spec. This feature makes it easy to rotate with an index finger and thumb. The unidirectional bezel rotated with a satisfying sound. There was no back-play.

Still the bezel seemed to look a little too “new”. If this was my watch and not a review piece, I would be breaking out the bleach for a little faux ghosting (fading). I’ll double down on that statement since the lumed pip at zero/ twelve o’clock had the yellowish synthetic aging look as well.

The crown guards have the classic parrot’s beak appearance. The 6.8mm crown features the Silver Watch Company logo and seals securely for 300m of water resistance.

The Silver Watch Company logo and “Archetype One” can be found on the case back. It should be noted that this is the only place that the model name, Archetype One, can be found on the watch. The case back is a scratch magnet due to the bead blasting in the recessed area. While it contrasts the logo, I would have skipped it.

The Dial

The dial separates the Silver Archetype from other micro-brand diver homages. There is no mistaking that it draws heavily from the Tudor Submariners from the 1970s. The blocky hour indices are treated with a light custard fauxtina. The touch of yellowing looks great against the matte blue.

The handset is referred to as “snowflake” style characterized by rhombuses on the hour and seconds hands, looking like snowflakes if you have an active imagination. It’s also the most important part of the aesthetic that the Silver Watch Company was going for.

I would have loved to go non-date on the dial to really give the Archetype a more utilitarian military vibe. Still, the text is balanced and the Silver logo is non-obtrusive.

The Movement

The Silver Watch Co Archetype One is powered by the Miyota 9015 automatic mechanical movement. The “9015” won’t win any beauty contests but it is a budget friendly option. You won’t see many watches that use the 9105 with an exhibition (see through) case backs.

The 9105 has been around for ten years and it is a solid choice for an entry point watch. You don’t really need to worry about servicing them because it’s more economical to replace them. They are good for accuracy of -10 / +30 seconds per day without further regulation during the assembly process. The Miyota 9039 is the non-date version. Despite its Spartan nature, many smaller brands prefer using these to the Seiko NH35A.

The Bracelet

Oh how I love a good Oyster bracelet. 20mm at the lugs tapering down to 16mm is such a great formula for a reason. It works and is comfortable on most wrists. Changing the bracelet was a snap thanks to the drilled lugs. I’m not a big strap charger, but access to the springbars was no problem.


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The bracelet was easy to size due to the screw pins and plenty of micro adjust holes. The clasp is milled, another feature that I prefer. Silver Watch Co. could have saved a few bucks and had it stamped; it also would have been truer to the original. I’m glad that they didn’t do that with the Archetype One.

Final Thoughts:

Is it easy to tell time? Yes

Could I #watchfast is? Yes

What are the takeaways with this watch? It’s tricky.

There are other snowflake handed homages out there from companies like Steinhart and NTH that fell more modern than the vintage Tudor 9401s. Imagine this Silver Archetype One, paired with a panda Dan Henry 1964, and a red/ blue Steinhart Ocean 39 GMT. That’s one heck of an accessible homage line-up.

Towards the end of 2019 they introduced renders of a non-homage watch called the “HAQ” through Instagram. In April 2020 Silver Watch Company’s Instagram page has been dormant for months. They haven’t responded to my messages and their website went from operational to a 404 error.

Another microbrand casualty? Your guess is as good as mine, but as predicted on Episode 1 of the TBWS Writers Room, small companies that heavily rely on supply chain flow from Asia will be impacted during the COVID19 crisis. They won’t all survive or at the least will have to hibernate. The death of a microbrand isn’t something that we talk about a lot. Still, it’s something that happens all the time.

That doesn’t mean that you should like the Silver Archetype any less. With the Archetype One, you’re buying the aesthetic of the Tudor “snowflake” submariner, not the legacy of Silver Watch Company. Don’t stress over it. If you like it, grab it. The original DTC (direct to consumer) price was $449 USD. These still pop up for sale on watch enthusiast forums and/ or eBay.

Greg Bedrosian( Senior Contributor )

Greg is a long-time watch lover based in upstate New York. Greg is a supply chain professional by day and private watch consultant by night. Greg brings his own style to the TBWS website as a contributor by blending bits of humor into technical assessments. You can follow his cycling and snowboarding adventures on Instagram as he pursues the perfect 3-watch collection.


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