Zodiac’s return to its roots in both design and mechanics has been a welcome development for both existing fans of the brand as well as the general watch public. Unafraid to incorporate kitsch colors like sea foam green and cornflower blue to a tool watch base has shown that while Zodiac can and does propose sober types for traditionalists, the brand is clearly unafraid to apply a bolder approach to an often stolid industrial norm.
This willingness to experiment has seen a new outlet as an unusual combination of personalities has come together to create three new limited editions based on Zodiac’s existing components.
Enter the musician, the business man, and the member of the brand.
First, the musician.
Eric Singer has been beating the tempo for Kiss since he took over as drummer in 1991 and has been an avid and enthusiastic watch collector for years. The three designs you see here are based on his input and enthusiasm as channeled through his friend Rob Caplan, co-owner of Topper Fine Jewelers in Burlingame, California.
In a recent conversation with Singer organized by Caplan, Singer explained how this all came together. During this conversation he highlighted his love of watches with a refreshingly canny but humble attitude in a conversation that lasted for more than forty-five minutes. Clearly his enthusiasm is as legit as it comes.
Our businessman, Rob Caplan, is an active member of the family ownership at Topper Fine Jewelry, a store that has a history that goes back to 1940. With his friend Eric Singer, he approached Ryan White, the creative director for men’s watches and jewelry at the Fossil group (owners of Zodiac) with an idea to create limited editions based on the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf 53 Collection.
Finally, the brand. It’s hard to believe that a multi-billion dollar company would even consider limited editions as small as eighty-three units, but that’s what Ryan was able to pull together with the help of both Rob and Eric.
In the original editions of the Zodiac Super Sea Wolf, collectors would refer to the blue and yellow checkerboard bezels as the “roulette wheel” with either the “wasp” or “Smurf” identifying the color. In the new limited editions I’ve heard whispers of terms like “taxi” for the black and yellow variant and “dark Smurf” for the slightly darker blue tone. Sadly, the ice clean all-white variation you see here dubbed the “white wolf” but has already been sold out.
Technically these three 40mm stainless steel variations are identical to their more typical counterparts and are powered by the mechanical and Swiss-made STP 3-13 automatic movement and are water resistant to 20 meters.