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Rivelta Metrodive 02

A Robust & Legible Diver-Pilot

Once you’ve figured out what kind of watch enthusiast you are, the world conspires to bring you closer to your next acquisition. As if the Horological Gods would now act in your favor since you’ve finally “come to reason.” That’s what happened to me, at least. A couple of months ago, I realized that I am a die-hard, utilitarian tool watch kind of person and therefore it has become easier for me to get my hands on models that suit my personal tastes. Hence the model we’re going to take a look at today, the Rivelta Metrodive 02 (there are a total of four versions of the Metrodive numbered 01, 02, 03 and 04) which inscribes itself within the thinning register of—again, at the risk of sounding like a broken record—utilitarian tool watches. 

In my humble and not omnipotent opinion of an independent journalist, we see fewer and fewer straightforward tool watches come to market. More often than not, such watches are now adorned with a particular dial accouterment (i.e. meteorite, wave-like texture, or abysmal black) or boasts top-grade mechanical movements or a bespoke font for the hour markers. None of this usually interests me as I find all that to simply be sparkles and confetti. So we’re going to talk about Rivelta and the Metrodive, something of a hybrid between a pilot and diver (a diver-pilot?) with a Sinn-like bidirectional 60-click countdown bezel, a solid Miyota caliber, and—best of all—a model that is readily available to purchase on the brand’s website.

The latter has, unfortunately, become a rarity nowadays. 


For someone who is now obsessed with—and fully dedicated to—smaller timepieces, the Metrodive has what I would describe as being the maximum ideal dimensions for a robust tool watch. Indeed, the case measures 39mm in diameter, 46mm lug-to-lug, 13mm thick, and comes with a 20mm lug width. This is paired with a 200 meter depth rating, screw-down crown and case-back, as well as a slightly domed sapphire crystal complete with inner anti-reflective coating. Given the Metrodive’s functionality and the addition of the bi-directional bezel, I would say that these dimensions are spot on. A bit larger and the watch would have been uncomfortable to wear; a bit smaller and some specs would have had to go. The way it is, the Metrodive makes for a neat package. 

What’s more is that the Rivelta is equipped with Miyota 9015 caliber that beats at 28,800 BPH and has 42 hours of power reserve. I am a huge fan of Miyota movements as I find them to generally run better out-of-the-box—and unregulated—than most Seiko’s, Sellita’s and Soprod movements. This statement is of course solely based on my personal experience. But I’ve got to tell you: I’ve handled many of these movements and the Miyota’s always come on top of the pack for me. The unit I’ve taken for a test drive has been constantly running at +2 seconds/day which is hugely satisfying for a watch nerd like myself. (No need to pay the extra for a COSC certification.) And I would say that more often than not, Miyota’s run well within the -/+10 seconds per day range. 

The Sinn-like bi-directional 60-click bezel is equally a good feature of this watch as the bezel action is solid and consistent throughout all clicks. (The latter is not always a given even on more expensive watches.) The grip is good, the bezel is torqued just right, and the bezel aligns perfectly. Just like the case, the bezel is made of black DLC (Diamond Like Coating) which means it is highly scratch resistant and that it won’t tarnish when exposed to salty water and other mean weather elements. The Metrodive is, after all, a diver-pilot and you better take it far above and down below the ocean surface to truly make this model justice. The Metrodive also comes with a good application of BGW9 SuperLuminova on the hands, rectangular markers, and the 12 o’clock pip on the bezel. 


Being a utilitarian tool watch, the Rivelta Metrodive has a highly legible dial which I’ve instantly fallen for. An alpha-style hour hand is paired with a pencil-style minute hand and a needle seconds hand, and all three are juxtaposed to a full stack of Arabic numerals printed in a modern and easy-to-read typeface. Furthermore, the hands come with a black surround so that the lumed part appears to be floating across the dial, while the lower section of the seconds hand is blacked out to achieve the same effect. Note how neatly integrated the date window is at the three o’clock with its white date disc, Arabic numerals printed in black, and a painted white frame which blends in with the white Arabic hour markers. 

In order to separate daytime legibility from nighttime legibility, Rivelta decided to move the 1-hour lumed markers to the recessed minute track, and given that they are rectangular, they are easy to see in low-lit conditions. This made it possible to print the Arabic numerals instead of raising them so that the dial has dimension but not too much of it. The Metrodive is, after all, a tool watch and not a museum showpiece or even a futile exercise in creating something that looks spectacular but that is pointless in actual usage. (I know, I really don’t like pointless things on watches.) Lastly, I appreciate the fact that the minute track is fully graduated as I nerd out about setting the precise time on my watches. The latter explains why you rarely see me wear dress watches!

If you’ve read other reviews here before you will probably know that I love—no, I adore—fully-graduated bezels too. And this is the case here where each minute is indicated by an incised hash mark and where each five-minute increment is indicated by Arabic numerals. And the way it’s done here is highly satisfying to me as well since the five minute is indicated as “05” and not “5” which aids with the overall symmetry of the bezel design. The last point I would make about the design is regarding the full DLC treatment of the case. Something I’m generally not a fan of but which works oh so well here as it really helps in making the hands, hour markers, and bezel markings pop up-close and from a distance. 

In other words, the DLC treatment contributes to the overall legibility of the Metrodive. And I would add that the other three versions seem highly legible: the 01 with a dark grey dial, the 02 with a stainless steel case and black bezel, and the 04 with a stainless steel case and bezel. Whichever variant you might go for, you’ll be guaranteed an easy-to-read tool watch. 

The Heart of the Matter

At the heart of the matter is the fact that Rivelta created a legible, robust, and rather attainable tool watch the likes of which I would like to see more of on the market today. In terms of price, the Metrodive retails for roughly $465 USD which is darn good for what you get here. Again: a premium Miyota 9015 caliber, 200 meters of water resistance, a bi-directional 60-click bezel, good lume, and a domed sapphire crystal. I believe this is a solid value-to-specs ratio and that the Metrodive comes with enough visual originality and interest to justify adding it to an existing collection of tool watches, or for it to be your first utilitarian timekeeping device. 

As you’ve noticed, I have yet to mention the case design which I would normally have done earlier in the review. But I didn’t because it flies under the radar, and I mean this in a good way. And this is especially true with the full-black variant I’ve had in for review. The case has a classic profile with a short lug-to-lug, a fully brushed treatment, prominent crown guards which protect the grippy screw-down crown (the latter is also signed, something some of you cannot live without,) and short lugs which turn down towards the wrist. The case therefore has a simple design which is just fine as the Metrodive is—as I’ve mentioned before—a utilitarian tool watch. 

In other words, this is the kind of watch I would wear for its functionality and not to drool over mirror-like polished chamfers, satin-like brushing, or a new way of integrating crown-guards within the case. It’s a tool, damn it! 


At the end of the day, the Metrodive is a solid and legible diver-pilot (should I trademark this name?) that comes with a reasonable price tag and great specs. Specs are not everything for everyone—it certainly isn’t for me—but I do have a duty to mention them. For less than $500 USD I would be hard-pressed to put together a list of more than five tool watches with similar attributes which are also well-made. Because yes, I will comfortably say that the Rivelta Metrodive is well-made: tight tolerances all-around, good bezel action, a satisfying crown operation, as well as comfortable brushed surfaces on the case. 

Note, however, that the provided sailcloth strap was stiff out-of-the-box so I was quick to swap it for a grey NATO-style nylon strap. And I think it looks darn good this way! 

If you want to know more about Rivelta, I suggest checking out the brand’s website here, and if you want to know more about the Metrodive, check out this link.

Thanks for reading. 


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