Review: Breitling Seawolf Avenger Stainless Steel

 

 Company name: Breitling

Website: http://www.breitling.com

Model: Seawolf Avenger

 

Breitling SA was founded in Saint-Imier, Bernese Jura by Léon Breitling in 1884.

This is a serious diving watch that is all about flexing it’s muscle. It’s 45.4mm wide and 18.4mm thick with a depth rating of 3,000m/10,000ft. IMHO it’s the total package when it comes to tool watches. Some people would debate to be a true “tool watch” it should contain some sort of toolish feature. I think just the depth rating alone on this watch makes it qualify as a “tool watch”.

It’s not a watch for everyone considering its size and weight. I personally love the size and weight of this watch. It has quite the presence when on the wrist. When I pay this much for a watch, I want it to feel its price when it is being worn. It weighs in at 160g without the bracelet and 210g with the pro2 bracelet. It sits very comfortably on the wrist, which I contribute to the curved lugs. I even sleep with this watch on and it’s extremely comfortable.

image
The dial features beautiful white military stenciled numerals. A common misconception about this watch is that the numerals are lumed. For the record they are not. The dial also features the Breitling winged applied logo that sits nicely on the dial with a 3 dimensional look. The logo ties in nicely with the triangle at the 12 position and with the rectangles at the 6 and 9 position. The dial also features “chronometre officiellement certifie” and beneath is the word automatic which is referencing the watches movement. The dial is well balanced. At the 12 position is a lumed triangle with a chrome border. A date window is at the 3 position and at 6 & 9 there are lumed rectangles. The dial is very legible and clean of unnecessary markings. The volcano black dial contrasts beautifully with the white numbers.

image
The bezel is a unilateral rotating of 120 clicks which is addicting to turn. There is absolutely no play in the bezel at all, it sits level to the case with no gaps. The bezel features the numbers 5-55. On the sides of the bezel are little screws which hold the bezel in place on the case.  The screws are one of my favorite features on the bezel. Another detail I like about the bezel is the cursive Breiting ‘B’.  It’s a really nice touch.

image
The bracelet is the Prodiver 2 brushed stainless steel. It’s a heavy stainless steel bracelet with a deployment style clasp that closes pretty tight. I haven’t had it release while it has been on my wrist. I’ve heard several complaints about the clasp on the Prodiver 2. I think it’s a good clasp that is functionally sound. The clasp is not anything special, but it serves it purpose well. If I had to complain about anything with the clasp is that the last clasp with the Breitling logo on it, feels light, almost cheap. The bracelet doesn’t pull my arm hair like other bracelets I’ve owned in the past have and it is solidly constructed.

image
The crown is one of my favorite crowns I’ve ever seen on a watch that I have owned. The Chronoswiss Timemaster is my all time favorite crown, but this has that beat by a mile. This crown reminds me of a grenade with the detail around it. It’s got a great military feel to it and adds to the whole “tool/tactical” feel to the watch. On the crown there is the Breitling “B”. It’s a screw down style crown which is a must on a dive watch. Whatever you do, don’t unscrew it while you are submerged under water. The crown is very sturdy and it doesn’t feel like it could snap off. I have owned some micro brand divers and the crown feels like you can snap it right off like a dry twig. The crown guards curve up to the crown, hugging the crown safely.

imageimage

Movement: Breitling’s Cal 17, built off an ETA 2824-2. C.O.S.C. certified movement. I’ve had my watch for about a week now and it’s been running +\- 4 seconds a day. I’ve only taking the watch off for showers because I’ve been told that the steam can cause the case to swell and when it cools, it creates gaps in the seals which keep the movement dry. So it’s been running if every position my wrists goes through day and throughout the night.

The case is stainless steel and it makes the watch head feel like a tank. The case is polished on the sides and is also polished on the side of the lugs. The top of the lugs are brushed and the brushing is so uniformly well done. I love that about this watch that it contains both the brushed and the polished finishing. Which in turn makes the case extremely balanced. No scratches yet on the case or bracelet. But a watch with this caliber of ruggedness, scratches just add character. comparable to my collection of scars that I have acquired over the years. The helium release valve is at the 9 position on the side of the case. The Helium Escapement Valve is built flush into the case with no protusion at all. The HEV allows self regulation of the pressure within the watch, the helium releases the built up gas during decompression so that it does not break the crystal or the other parts of the watch.

image
The AR coated crystal is a true beauty. It is double coated and it applied on the outside of the crystal and the inside of the crystal. I’ve tested the AR in the water and it looks almost transparent, like the crystal isn’t even there. The crystal is also domed, which is a must for me on dive watches.

The lume is a debate for most when it comes to Breitling watches. Breitling isn’t known for its great lume. The lume on this watch works for me just fine. I’m not into the “glowing flashlight” lume that lights up the whole room at night. The lume in this watch meets my needs, therefore I am quite satisfied.

image
I was searching for a rugged watch that could handle a weekend outdoors adventure and my search has ended with this watch. It’s a massive watch that is solidly constructed and tested rigorously by Breitling.(check out the video to see)

                                                                  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dR0eTPn-_AI

I absolutely love everything about this watch. Is there anything that i would change about it? If I had to pick something, it would be awesome if it had a GMT function.

 

If you are looking for a watch that can survive the outdoors and what the elements can dish out, well look no further. The Breitling Avenger Seawolf is the watch for you! Thanks for reading!

Pros: solid quality construction, trusted, established company, legible dial, deep depth rating, keeps excellent time.

Cons: big, heavy case might not be for all wrist sizes, lume, latching clasp feels cheap.

 

Technical information from Breitling.


Model: Avenger Seawolf Steel
Production Years: 2008-Discontinued (the seawolf version 2 is out now)
Gender: Mens
Case Materials Available: Steel
Movement: Breitling 17
Power Reserve: 42 Hours
Water Resistance: 3000m
Bezel: Unidirectional
Crown: Screwdown
Crystal: Sapphire
Diameter: 45.4mm
Thickness: 18.4mm
Weight: 160g
Bracelet: Professional II
Lug Width: 22mm
Reference Numbers: a17330

video credit sticustom

imageimageimage

 

Berkbinder & Brown T46 TI version 2 ‘Tool Watch’

For my first review, I am reviewing the Berkbinder & Brown T46 titanium v2 ‘Tool Watch’. For those not familiar with Berkbinder and Brown here is a little background information from their website.

The ethos of Berkbinder & Brown is to make products of rugged, functional beauty- a cool brand with a rich American Legacy. My grandfather owned a hardware and implement store in South Dakota that has provided the namesake and inspiration for the brand Berkbinder & Brown. The Tool Watch evolved out of a desire to have a watch for my active pursuits, a watch built for work, a “tool not a jewel.” The watches I own that are serviceable are ugly and my nice watches are too “nice” to withstand everyday abuse. I set out in 2008 to make a watch. This was more involved than I ever imagined. In that time, I have machined and hand-built prototypes, and received enough encouragement from friends to pursue a larger vision. Working with a talented team the Tool Watch has become a reality. The Tool Watch is not a mass production item, it is a finely crafted “timepiece for life.”

Ted Brown

Ted Brown, the founder of Berkbinder & Brown says his “mind is a shop that is always open.” He has spent the last 26 years professionally designing. First Brown enjoyed a successful 22-year history as founder of Traditional Concepts, Inc., an architecture, and construction firm. Brown has devoted the last four years pursuing his next creative effort, Berkbinder & Brown.

Company info:

Berkbinder and Brown

523 East Scanton Avenue

Lake Bluff, Il 60044

http://berkbinderandbrown.com

847-436-1737

email: ted@berkbinderandbrown.com

       http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzQYXnMIu5k


watch specifications:

Movement: Swiss ETA 2824-2

Case size: 46.3 mm diameter, 13mm height

Case material: T2 Titanium

Crystal: 3mm thick flat sapphire crystal

Case Back: Sapphire Crystal Exhibition 

Dial Color: Black

Water Resistance: 10 ATM

image

The watch comes in an awesome leather travel case. I prefer this style of case over the traditional multiple boxes that a lot of companies use. I find those bulky and a waste of storage space. The B&B leather case is the perfect size that can easily fit in a desk drawer. The case features the Berkbinder and Brown logo.

image

My first impression of the watch itself is that it’s a no nonsense kind of watch. The case and bezel are what I noticed first. It just screams rugged to me.

The case:

The case is bead blasted titanium. The case is made from a solid stock bar of T2 titanium and is milled on a CNC lathe machine. It’s a tough as nails material which is complicated to mill, but it’s also tough enough to handle your every day abuse. The “tuna can” shape reminds me of an old diving helmet or a ship portal window. The glass bead blasted case is finished perfectly. It adds to the watch’s rugged, I can handle anything look. The bezel features 12 screws which align with each number on the dial. The screws hold the two part case together with an axial ‘O’ ring gasket inbetween. It’s a very unique bezel and I really like it. It’s not like any bezel I’ve seen on a watch that I have owned. The case is lugless. While the case is 46.3mm in diameter, it wear smaller due to having no lugs. The case is about 13 mm in height. It’s not too tall that you will be hitting it on door frames. Those used to tall dive watches know what I’m talking about. The case back is the exhibition style case back, that is also held down by screws. It’s water resistant to 10 ATM.

image

imageimage

The Dial:

The dial is matte black featuring large Arabic numerals. The dial is very easy to read from all angles. There is the Berkbinder and Brown logo which is featured in red just under the ’12’ position. The red logo is a nice touch because it is tied in with a red triangle above the ’12’. There is a date window at the ‘4’ position. The hour and monte hands are black with white lume paint. They have a very military feel to them. I really like the hands on this watch. The second hand is a hacking hand which I do prefer in watches I own. There’s something very special about a second hand that hacks. The numbers are also coated with lume.

The Crystal:

The crystal is sapphire with AR coating on it. It’s 3mm thick and flat. The crystal sits slightly above the case, but the screws sit higher which offers protection to the crystal.

image

The Crown:

The crown is a screw down crown which features the B&B logo. It adds a nice detail to it. The crown is as knurled around the edges which gives a rugged feel and look to the watch. When setting the date and time it really has a smooth movement. Having the crown at the ‘4’ position makes it more comfortable. I’ve owned watches with the crown at the ‘3’ position and it has dug into my wrist.

image

The Movement:

A powerhouse, workaholic 2824-2 ETA automatic movement. The movement features shock resistance which is a must for a ‘tool watch’ This movement is used by a lot of higher end watches. It’s nice to see it in this watch. A daily tolerance of  +/- 12 seconds.

image

The Strap:

The strap is a Horween Chromexcell leather. It’s super soft and very comfortable. It has nice white stitching. I can wear this watch to sleep in that’s how comfortable it is. I bought both the black and the brown strap. The brown has to be my favorite of the two. The brown tones are so rich.

imageimage

The buckle:

The buckle is a very nice signed deployment style butterfly buckle. It’s made of stainless steel. It’s very easy to operate and has a sturdy, well built look. It would be really nice if it was made of titanium to match the case.

Wrist Shot:

For reference my wrists are 7 3/4″

imageimageimageimage


Price: $2595 available via the Berkbinder and Brown website.

Sumary:

I love this watch. I have been looking for a everyday watch that can handle what I can dish out and what the elements can dish out as well. It’s that perfect weekend adventure watch. I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for that watch companion that you don’t have to worry about if it can handle the job or not. Ted Brown is a great guy and his watches are top notch American watches. Built right here in the US. The customer service is easily available for help as well. The price is a good value for what you get. It might scare some people away because it is a new brand, but it’s a well built watch that is US made, which I believe justifies the price. Ted’s passion translates right into his watch. The more time I spend with this watch that passion becomes more and more apparent. This is one of those watches that continues to grow on you the more you wear it. When it’s on my wrist I can’t stop glancing at it. I really enjoyed reviewing this watch and I can’t wait to put it through some adventures.

pros:

rugged titanium case

comfortable

US made

Trusted movement

cons:

price for a new brand might scare potential buyers

stainless steel buckle doesn’t match titanium case

no lume on second hand

thanks for reading.