Glycine Combat Sub: A Detailed Review

In a world of Rolex Submariner homages you might be asking yourself if we need another one. However, when it is made by a Swiss watch company with over 100 years experience, I think it is definitely worth a look.

And on top of that, this is far more affordable than a Rolex, usually selling for around the 400-600 dollar mark.. After all, most of us can’t afford a Rolex, so this kind of watch is the next best thing.

The Features

The specs on the Combat Sub are more than decent, not only in what materials are used but also it’s functionality as a dive watch:

  • Swiss made automatic movement with 38 hours reserve & hacking
  • Sapphire crystal 
  • 42 mm stainless steel case
  • 200m / 660ft water resistance
  • Date window at 3 o’clock
  • Uni-directional bezel
  • 24 hour markings on the dial
  • 22m stainless steel bracelet



The Dial

Even though I referred to this as a Submariner homage, I actually see a significant difference in this watch, especially when you compare it to a lot of other direct copies. Sure, it’s similar, but when you take a closer look, it has it’s own unique trademarks for sure.

For starters the hour markers on this watch are quire different, being a lot smaller and with very prominent minute markers in between.

 The presence of the arabic numbers, including those for the 24 hours, also change the look completely. For me, it is a little too busy, but in terms of function it is very handy indeed. Especially if you work in 24 hour time, or travel to places in Europe where it is standard.

 The hands are a little on the thin side for readability in my opinion, but still decent. And the second hard stands out with it’s rather strange rectangle on the end. At least it’s unique, I suppose!

There is no cyclops on the date window here, and it is black on black with the dial, which again ruins the readability I think. Many watch manufacturers are smart enough to make this white. But sometimes it’s a matter of style over function, because it does look cooler somehow.

The Glycine logo and writing at 6 o’clock are nothing to write home about.

Glycine Combat Sub Red Bezel

The Case & Strap

Glycine has gone with a fairly safe 3-link jubilee style bracelet on this watch with a safety clasp. It’s all stainless steel of course, and has the usual micro-adjustments on the clasp to help make it fit anyone well.

The case is of the same material and together they look great with their all steel feel.

The Movement

Like many Swiss watch makers these days, Glycine does not produce their own. This watch features a movement that is based on the reliable automatic ETA 2825 and altered for Glycine’s specific purpose. They call it the GL 224 and it has a date complication, 38 hours power reserve (which is decent but not the most I have seen) and has the advantage of hacking, which many watches in this price range don’t.

All in all, it’s a solid movement for a watch of this price.

Water Resistance

Another notable feature on this watch is the dive watch friendly 200m water resistance. This is the minimum you would want to go diving with, so it’s great to see on the type of watch that is often “dive” in name only.
I could not find out how close to the ISO specs for dive watches this one came, but the 200m plus the screw down crown and case are a good start to ensuring you can go in the water for a long time with it.


Color Choices

Glycine have gone all out with the Combat Sub range, and you can get this watch in a huge range of colors, straps and styles. Below are some examples I found on Amazon, but there are a whole lot more.

Summing It All Up

If you want a reasonably priced dive watch that is actually Swiss made, the Glycine Sub Combat range has a lot of great looking options with specs to match.

Aside from a Seiko, which most people have, this is one of the better dive watch options I have seen. 

Check them out on Amazon via the button below and see what you think…

2 thoughts on “Glycine Combat Sub: A Detailed Review”

  1. My glycine combat sub only says “swiss made” on the face, not stamped on the solid back of case or on the bracelet clasp? Is it all still swiss made in manufacture?

    1. Swiss Made can only be used if very specific conditions are met. The Swiss will not allow it otherwise. In general it is Swiss Made if the movement is made there, and 60% (cost-wise) of the manufacture is done. You can find out more about it if you look up “what is swiss made” on Google.

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