A new watch designed with the members of one of the biggest and best microbrand watch Facebook groups: What’s not to love about the Mitch Mason Maelstrom MBW Edition?

Mitch Mason Maelstrom MBW Edition Review

Mitch Mason, producers of the brilliant Chronicle, which we reviewed about a year ago, has collaborated with the Microbrand Watches Facebook group to produce this, the Mitch Mason Maelstrom MBW Edition. I highly recommend you read the group admin, Adam Sofineti’s, write up about the origins of the watch at Watchpaper.com. There are three potential dial colours, only one of which will be produced. The watch launches for sale on 15th October, so you’ve got a week left to vote for your favourite colour.

At a glance

Mitch Mason Maelstrom

Price
$499-$599 (£350-£450)
Case size
40mm
Thickness
12mm
Water Resistance
300m
Movement
Miyota 9015

Case and Movement

The Mitch Mason Maelstrom is powered by the Miyota 9015 movement. It’s a reliable and affordable high-quality movement that I see more and more in microbrand watches lately. It sits within an exquisite case, with a superb brushed finish all around. The 40mm x 12mm dimensions might seem svelte, but the internal bezel makes it wear bigger – but it never becomes overpowering.

Twin screw-down crowns control the aforementioned bezel as well as setting the time and date. Both work smoothly and have knurling that makes them easy to grip. The highlight for me is the case back. It is a stunning, deep engraving that oozes class and is up there with the best case backs at any price point. The sapphire crystal is flat and AR coated on the inside. I got the odd flash of reflected light, but nothing too concerning. Overall, a great watch to wear and to look at.

Dial and Hands

Although the dial colour is up for debate (a choice between burgundy, brown and blue – but only one will be produced for the group), the sunburst finish will undoubtedly be just as good on every choice. On this dial, it looks almost black but reflects light in a deep chocolate brown colour. The dial is a sandwich, with a lumed layer beneath and cutouts for 12 and 3, with a mu (“micro”) symbol at 9 and a date at 6. The position of the date nicely balances the dial. The internal bezel is also lumed and moves smoothly, although I did find it a tad tricky to line up due to the extended hour markers at 12, 3, 6 and 9.

I also loved the hands – the hour hand has a take on the cathedral design but transformed into a modern arrowhead. The minute hand is simple, legible, and just the right length. All the printing is crisp and easy to read. I really connected with the dial: at first, I thought there was a lot going on, but everything seems to have enough room to breathe, and it just feels classy.

Bracelet and Clasp

The bracelet is finished just as well as the case, with a superb brushed finish. The ladder design is unusual, as are the square-profile links, but I felt that both features helped to set the Mitch Mason Maelstrom aside from the competition.

The nearest thing to a weak link is the clasp. It has plenty of points for micro-adjustment, but the pointed foldover is a design I’ve seen on dozens of watches and after the uniqueness found elsewhere, I was a little disappointed to see a catalogue part on the watch. That’s not to say it is not perfectly functional, and I feel a bit mean even mentioning it when the overall quality is so high.

Mitch Mason Maelstrom – Video Review

What I Liked

What I Didn’t like

  • A lot of thought has gone into adding features that watch enthusiasts will value
  • The look and feel of the watch is spot on
  • The case back is exquisite
  • The long markers at 12, 3, 6 and 9 make it hard to set a precise bezel position.
  • The generic clasp design is perhaps the weakest link in the design
  • The limited-run means you might not be able to get one if you do not pre-order now!

Mitch Mason Maelstrom – The WRUK Verdict

As you’ve probably worked out by now, I really like the Mitch Mason Maelstrom. It is a superb watch at an excellent price. I always pick bad points as well as good when I review a watch, but I really had to think hard to find any in this case. If not for the fact I have an Isotope watch with an internal bezel that ticks the same boxes, one of these would be surely joining my collection. It’s not often I am disappointed when the time comes for a watch to go back to its creator: this is one of those times. Highly recommended: get one before it’s too late!

Buy a Mitch Mason Maelstrom

You can order your Mitch Mason Maelstrom from the landing page at: https://mitchmason.com/pages/maelstrom-mbw

Joint the Microbrand Watches Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/microbrandwatches/

Author: Mike Richmond

Mike spends what little spare time he has writing for WRUK; and what little money he makes building up his collection of timepieces.

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