Behind The Collection
An introduction by TRASKA founder, Jon Mack
This page is long. In a way, you could say it took me five years to write it. (But, in another way, you could say it took me about four hours, seven cups of coffee, and about two listens through my current favorite Spotify playlist.). Here, you'll read pretty-much everything there is to know about our collection. You'll learn what inspired the design choices we made. The subtle details others may miss. Why each watch earned its spot. This is not a short read, but for the right person, it will be an interesting one…
Each watch in our collection paved the way for the next one, so it makes sense to start with the first watch, the one that put us on the map. Dive watches are great everyday utility watches, and let’s be honest, most of us don't even take them into the water all that much (desk diving, anyone)? But if you did, the Freediver would be more than up for the challenge with its formidable 200 meter depth rating.
The design was inspired by some of our favorite vintage dive watches. One of the models I definitely had in my mind when putting the first design sketches to paper all those years ago was the Rolex 6538 Sean Connery wore in Goldfinger. You see him wearing the watch as he destroys the secret lab before attending to some ‘unfinished business.’ I think we all want to see a bit of ourselves in that Bond, even if you’re just using the external rotating bezel to time an egg that you’re boiling for breakfast.
The “go anywhere, do anything” watch is a term that’s a bit overused in our world but it is appropriate here. All of our watches have this element in them. Because you never know when you’re going to time the blowing up of a secret lab, and the last thing you want holding you back in this very likely scenario is your watch.
A tool designed to guide you when you’re diving has to be extremely legible — the bold hour markers make timing your dive (or your egg) to the minute that much easier. Copious amounts of Swiss-Made lume means your dial glows like a torch for easy reading even in dim lighting.
The Freediver has been iterated every year since first introduced in 2018 and is now exactly where we have always wanted it to be. The external ceramic bezel, the 316L stainless steel that has undergone our signature hardening process, the crystal made of sapphire — every element is virtually impervious to scratches making this a truly formidable dive watch to add to your collection. We like to give you plenty of choice, so it’s available in both date and no-date versions and four colorways. Choose your desired combination to blend in, stand out, and enhance the moment above the surface and below.
After the Freediver earned us the seat at the table and kickstarted our career in watchmaking, we were challenged to make the next banger. We like to think we succeeded with the Summiteer. This is our take on the quintessential field watch, inspired by watches issued to the US and British militaries in the ‘60s and ‘70s. While the influence of the Rolex 1016 is hard to miss, you may also notice elements creeping in from ‘40s era sector dials. The recessed portion in the center of the dial is a twist on the concentric circles popularized by the likes of Longines, Omega, and Patek Philippe.
Like the Freediver, the Summiteer can go anywhere, and it can do anything. While you don’t have to be a soldier or a hiker to own a Summiteer, if you were going to, say, climb Mt Everest, this is the watch that’d you’d be wearing. Water resistant to 100 meters. Plenty of luminescence so you can read the time in low-light conditions. Made of nigh-bulletproof materials. More utilitarian looking with the Arabic numerals, at the same time it can blend into any environment. We had many customers who expressed an interest in seeing a slightly smaller version, (36 as opposed to the classic 38), so we obliged. Initially, the 36 was thought of as a one-off, but it sold out in barely 3 minutes and therefore earned its spot in our core collection.
From afar, The Summiteer looks almost the same now as when it was first released in 2019. Those that know will know that it has truly arrived, there have been a slew of updates that have really made this come into its own. The boxed sapphire crystal mimics the plexiglass crystal from the 60s and 70s that helped influence the design. Now, it simply reflects light in a way that gives it a certain indescribable warmth.
The perfect blend of opulence and restraint, the use of contrasting colors for the second hand (for 2 out of the 4 colorways) was intentional; it gives the design a bit more pop. It's an adoring tribute to some of the great iconic watches while at the same time breathing fresh air into them and creating something that is totally, uniquely TRASKA — something that feels familiar yet also fresh. We’re so happy with the current version (4.0) that we certainly don't expect to see a version 5 coming anytime soon, if ever.
There’s a certain ethos with our watches — while they all look different, they share a refined simplicity. There’s nothing more to take away, everything is there for a reason. We find beauty in that simplicity. In no watch is that more true than the Commuter.
The Commuter may sound pedestrian in name but it is anything but in nature. And guess what? It’s the go anywhere, do anything, watch because that is the essence of TRASKA. We had the dive watch and the field watch and for our third watch we needed an everyday watch that could truly be for every day regardless of what the day brings. It's both sporty and elegant but it's not too sporty and not too elegant. If you were to wear one of our watches with a tux, this would be the natural choice — but at the same time, it feels just as at home chilling on a beach in Hawaii.
Typically, a dress watch is never made with the idea of going in the water. Most have no water resistance at all, or if you’re lucky, you may get 30 meters (just enough to protect yourself from rain or washing your hands). But when we said the Commuter could go anywhere, we meant into the water, too. The screw down crown and the 100 meters of water resistance make this surprisingly formidable for its style, yet the case still cuts a nice profile and feels slender on the wrist. I’ve gone diving in the Azores with a Commuter on and and later wore that same watch to dinner that night at a snooty restaurant with a set menu — it truly can blend in anywhere, maybe we should have called it the chameleon…
The Seafarer was modeled after the supercompressor watches that gained popularity in the 60s and 70s. These watches got their name from a unique case mechanism that actually made them more water resistant the deeper they went in the ocean. Water resistance technology has come a long way since, so homaging that particular feature seemed a bit gimmicky, but we loved the twin-crown aesthetic, so we borrowed the internal rotating bezel operated by a second crown at the two hour marker.
Since we’re only homaging about half the features of a supercompressor, it didn’t seem right to follow tradition completely by embossing the classic grid emblem on both crowns. Half the homage deserves half the crown — so we put the iconic grid emblem on just one, and let our logo take the space on the other.
The Seafarer is not quite as rugged as our Freediver as its “only” water resistant to 150 meters. We intended it to be a little bit more of what used to be called a skin-diver, more for snorkeling or freediving and not for commercial diving depths that the Freediver (capital F) is optimized for. Like all our watches, the Seafarer can thrive in pretty much any environment and the bezel can be used for timing toast or your breath hold while spearfishing for lionfish.
The frequent traveler’s best friend. Able to tell multiple time zones with a quick glance, it features not just any GMT movement, but one with an independently adjustable hour hand. This means that when your flight from London touches down in Paris, you can adjust that hour of time difference without even stopping the second hand. This may truly be the most traveler-friendly watch in existence.
Thanks to a toolless on-the-fly micro-adjustable buckle, you can adjust the size of the bracelet in five different 1.5 mm increments to get the absolute perfect fit. If your next flight carries you from humid Hanoi to chilly Chicago and your swollen wrists contract, just push the buckle and bracelet together and it will fit snugly again.
The Venturer is our only watch (aside from the Freediver in Carbon Black) to feature an enamel dial. The glossy black is not merely glossy, it is a deep gloss. The colors have a distinct sheen that can only be achieved through fire and flame. Many dials crack when they are removed from the super-heated oven and hand-polished. Those are cast aside, only the survivors make it through to final inspection. As with all our watches, we look at each individual dial under a high definition overhead microscope to inspect for perfect alignment, sheen, and finishing.
Most GMT watches sport beefy cases and external bezels. We wanted the Venturer GMT to be more svelte, so we opted for an internal bezel operable via a crown at the 10 hour mark. If you’re on calls with colleagues on the West Coast and in Europe and you need to remember multiple time zones at once, you can effortlessly adjust your reference time with a quick twist of the crown. Packed with luminova, the 24 markers light up at night so you can easily keep track of the time no matter the hour, anywhere.
Okay, as I warned you, that was long. But really, I could talk about this all day. I spoke about the vintage watches we turn to for inspiration, but our biggest source of guidance has always been this community. Thank you for guiding our every iteration, and giving us the confidence to push forward. It’s a little too soon to share details, but there will be a sixth watch joining our collection soon. The moment it’s ready, I’ll be sure to update this page with the details.