What can you do if you have revived an iconic model from your archives but want to give it a more contemporary twist? Renowned for its mastery of innovative materials, Rado has no qualms about revisiting its golden oldies in high-tech ceramic cases and skeletonising their dials to produce a refreshing take on the veterans. We’ve seen the Captain Cook, the brand’s 1962 diver, turn up in black ceramic with an openworked dial, and now it’s the DiaStar’s turn. The latest DiaStar flaunts a gleaming Ceramos bezel with its mirror-like reflections but now features an openworked dial revealing the R808 automatic movement.
The Rado DiaStar Original Skeleton was also launched in 1962 and marketed as the world’s first scratchproof watch made from an ultra-resilient hard-metal tungsten-carbide case with a futuristic oval case. In tune with the zeitgeist of the early 1960s, the DiaStar was styled like a flying saucer with a large porthole over the dial and designed to outlast and outshine all other models on the market.
In 2022, the DiaStar turned 60, and Rado DiaStar Original Skeleton produced four editions using shiny, high-tech Ceramos, a composite with the hardness of ceramic and the lustre and resistance of a metal alloy that is lighter than the original tungsten-carbine case and even more scratch-resistant. The DiaStar Original Skeleton is faithful to the helmet-shaped case of its ancestor and has a diameter of 38mm, a length of 45mm and a height of 11.9mm. Slightly darker than the 2022 quartet, the sleek polished Ceramos bezel has a grey tone to match the movement. The middle case, caseback, bracelet and crown are made of stainless steel, and the case is water-resistant to depths of 100 metres. A distinctive design feature of the DiaStar, the faceted sapphire crystal that rises over the dial forms a central square with sloping lateral flanks.
Using the same skeletonized movement powering the Captain Cook High-Tech model, the dial has an airy openworked design. However, the golden train bridge that appears on the Captain Cook is not golden in this model but grey and horizontally brushed to match the other bridges over the movement. The train bridge, which eliminates the need for a dial, offers Rado a wide range of design possibilities for the future. Many elements of the movement can be appreciated on the dial, and the caseback is also fitted with a sapphire crystal for more mechanical viewing pleasure. In contrast, the hour markers that are suspended over the movement and the three central hands are golden and treated with Super-LumiNova. You’ll notice the signature gold pivoting Rado anchor perched at 9 o’clock.
Rado relies on the calibre R808, an automatic movement that showcases Swatch Group’s technical expertise (in partnership with the Swiss Centre for Electronics and Microtechnology). Fitted with a Nivachron hairspring unaffected by magnetic fields and temperature fluctuations, the movement is regulated in five positions and delivers a robust power reserve of 80 hours. The new Rado DiaStar Original Skeleton comes on a polished and brushed stainless steel bracelet with H-links and a triple-folding clasp.