Watch Review: Advisor Astrohelm

826FE8E4-4C95-4B97-A715-9ED63ED411FD

Where do you find inspiration from? For my art pieces that I have been doing this year for my reviews, I let the watch itself inspire a thought which usually ends up connecting to something that was important to me in my past. As much as I love original watch designs, watch companies use inspiration as well just as I have with my art pieces. What kind of bothers me though, is I see these companies getting slammed for the lack of originality, while those doing the slamming don’t have a clue to where and how that inspiration holds a certain amount of personal importance to the watch designer. Don’t get me wrong, there are certain watches that are made to look like another, and the only drive behind that inspiration is to make money. It only works well when a company designs a watch based on inspiration, but infuses the watch with their own unique DNA. A homage piece can possess that certain magic or it can also just be a soulless shell of a watch.

D274C94B-8994-468D-A108-19FD1FDC1A5B

Today we will be exploring a piece from Advisor Watches, their Astrohelm. When I received the watch I could immediately see where the inspiration was drawn from, but the real question in my mind was, how well was it executed and is their enough of Advisors DNA in the piece. I can’t say that I wasn’t disappointed by the choice of the case materials used here, which is stainless steel with IP plated rose gold. Brass or bronze would have been my preferred choice for the fact that I like watching the cool patina formation. 44mm x 14mm is where the Astrohelm comes in terms of size which actually wears smaller on the wrist than the dimensions imply because of the short curve lugs. As one expects from this style of watch the bezel is of course fixed and creates a nice border for the double domed sapphire crystal. While I am speaking about the crystal, I have to mention that this is my favorite part of the case as I am quite the sucker for domed crystal.

61E713B1-64BB-4B0F-8260-BA75319172CA

This case has a blinding high polished finish and it definitely catches the light from all angles. On the Astrohelm you will find a screw down style crown. The crown is pretty easy to grip and operate, there is a slight grit-grind feel to the crown as I unscrew it, not a fully smooth transition from screwed to unscrewed. Fortunately the crown operation for setting the time, date and manually winding functions just fine without fail of any kind.  The crown is unsigned, which in my opinion most crowns should be signed. I said many times before the crown is an extension of the watch’s personality. A unsigned crown gives an unfinished overall look to the case.

46906CAB-E663-4240-951F-109CB5DD2B04

The Astrohelm has an exhibition case back which allows you to see the NH35 movement. Advisor did spice it up with a touch of detail by printing their logo on the underside of the caseback crystal. One thing about the movement though that I have to mention because it is one of my personal pet peeves, the movement holder is made of plastic. For me personally this can be a deal breaker because plastic becomes brittle as it ages and begins to break apart over time causing problems within the movement.  I was pleasantly surprised to see that the Crazy Horse brown leather strap is held in place by screw bars and real drilled lugs. The strap itself is made of soft leather with white stitching and features a signed buckle with matches the case in both material used and finish. The strap feels really good when on the wrist.

7BDDAC4E-9FB4-45A7-AE55-957237712FAB

The dial on the Astrohelm is quite unique which where the brushed antique plating comes into play. At first I thought the dial was wood, I had to do a triple look to realize that it wasn’t made of wood. I really like the look of the dial as it is something different and you can see that Advisor DNA being used here. The dial received a “old radium” vintage lume treatment to the markers and hands. This was the obvious choice in my opinion given that the dial has that brushed antique plated dial.

52CA035A-EEF0-4D8E-B281-6499A88795EF

Keeping true to that antique feel Advisor went with that 1930’s California dial layout for the markers on the Astrohelm. The hour and minute hands are a good complement to the dial, the seconds hand is rather plane and lacks any lume. I do appreciate that the seconds hand extends to the railroad styled minute track which does assist with more accurate timing. The second hand could have had an added degree of detail like an addition of an arrowhead tip or a something along those lines just to give an overall finished look to this dial.

78926572-1BF3-4C73-927E-C49EDE0E60E9

The Astrohelm has been infused with Advisor’s DNA, but is it enough to make a second look to consider this piece? That’s a question only you can answer for yourself. The highlights worth mentioning here is you do get a unique antique styled dial with “old radium” lume, an awesome double domed sapphire crystal and drilled lugs with screw bars. The changes that I would make would be changing out the plastic movement holder, add a signed crown, an engraved solid caseback(as I am sure like me, how many NH35 movements do we need to see) and a more detailed seconds hand with lume. The Astrohelm comes is at $249 USD.

Thank you all for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

Thanks to Advisor Watches.

https://www.advisorwatches.com/product-page/astrohelm-v1-antique-automatic

Specifications:

Special Release Limited Edition (100 Pieces)

• Stainless Steel (IP Plated Rose Gold)
• Brushed Antique Plating Dial
• Diameter 44 mm
• Height 14 mm
• Lug Width 24 mm
• Double Domed Sapphire Crystal
• Japan NH35 Automatic
• Date Function
• Open Back Case Featuring Movement
• Water Resistance 10 ATM
• California Dial Vintage
• Luminous Vintage “Old Radium”
• Hour and Minute with Luminous Vintage “Old Radium”
• 24 mm Crazy Horse Brown Leather Strap
• One year limited international warranty

110CE2CE-8180-4A29-8AEF-841EBC8B881ECA1B7322-A8D3-4DC9-9E4F-5F69FB1C8E2D883F83A6-78A5-49EE-84BE-3B0999740A3F060D672B-6B84-493E-9AC2-C629C0AE2FADF03843A9-5345-4D93-B173-46C8DB2BBEEDFDFFDF75-52C8-4C33-AEE2-2DBF4570A68763AE3FFF-2296-4B98-BA58-4EC78A4CD518EFBA56B6-5AEC-4235-B008-81F97F84EBA038891A6B-9694-4744-A996-FE954906F6A7602DF19C-74DD-4A06-B0E4-FBB1006420C562A36E04-CF12-4BBC-9B5B-3FCFBDF24D99955286C5-A904-4D30-81E4-45E2D7DFB2FF

46906CAB-E663-4240-951F-109CB5DD2B04CC941C9D-7161-488B-8482-870C5820E82FBD3FCF16-818C-4BE0-9E8D-F35FAB305D546F2AFEF6-6E9C-4BCD-860C-5532AF47C3D18598D339-9324-45CC-9CCB-A5872C323BCC9530B7E8-98E0-406E-9D81-C4F112C857F88BF7B1DA-0724-48D7-9B57-D992F484DD7352CA035A-EEF0-4D8E-B281-6499A88795EFA6BBEC6D-00CA-4582-92E2-A95CFE32F265D3B536B3-E9A7-4CFD-9BF3-79936973EE73F2DFB65E-7D1D-4AAE-AD75-99A0492E9C53E2E0F50A-4D0C-4A58-A156-0F2DB2DB0D1C

FADA2F4B-05F2-49C7-8090-38B7B684EB5F2CB74357-EC83-4A8A-A2C0-D7744E4AB68A

248751EF-03FC-481E-B1A9-F5B05C576EA0.jpeg

Watch Review: Baldieri M-48

92681DAC-4B8F-432D-8786-E464DF6E7963

Trends make me laugh. Growing up my mom would always say that styles always make a comeback. Honestly some of the styles are cool, but others should never comeback. For me personally trends are just bullshit marketing ploys to get more money, which I understand to a certain degree from a financial and marketing standpoint. The way I usually base my purchases on is a very simple philosophy, if I like it, I buy it. Pretty simple. The more major of a purchase, I will definitely do my own research before making that purchase of course. Right now the current shift of trends in watches is making the transition from bigger cases to smaller cases. Again, my philosophy for this is, if I like the design/look of the watch then I buy it regardless of the case size. Case size has no bearing on my purchase decision in anyway. There is a place for all sized watches in my collection, no trend will dictate my purchase.

DCEAA7D1-DA10-46AA-ABAF-93D5651799BA

Today I will be exploring quite a treat in terms of case size, the Baldieri M-48. The 48 is a reference to the stainless steel case size which comes in at 48mm. Strictly basing this on weight and size with my initial handling of this piece, it is one badass tank of a watch. It seriously feels like it could bust through a brick wall with a scratch. I am definitely happy with the matte finish on this case, why? Well the matte finish gives the case a semi stealth appearance and keeps it in that tool-esque watch category, if the finish was high polish stainless steel then it would shift to a blinged out category in my opinion. I can easily see the unlikely hero wearing this watch, set in a futuristic post apocalyptic world, where the bad outweighs the good, where all hope is seemed lost, but the hero prevails against the odds. Baldieri did an ingenious design choice for the case back on the M-48. The case back itself curves with the lugs which allows this big watch conform to your wrist, which creates a better fit and a more comfortable fitting watch.

B4FDD121-662E-4B00-BA6B-B2138EA94B99

While we are discussing the case back here I will also mention a few other details that I think add to the overall experience with the M-48. The engraved gorilla is just phenomenal. You may ask what does a gorilla have to do with this watch. Well, as I was interviewing Mr. Baldieri he explained this detail to me. He stated “The Gorilla symbol represents strength and peace. A gorilla is a peaceful animal but can storm at you faster than  a bullet and because I do not promote violence or wars I didn’t want to give the Magnum that feel of bullets and guns but yet the opposite.” The case back is held in place by 6 screws, secured with a touch of detail.

3E528F02-86BE-428B-A6E9-A98CEF3A15B4

When I was exploring the M-48 I was quite excited by the drilled lugs with the screw bars, but under further exploration I was a bit disappointed to find that they are faux screw bars and drilled lugs. The strap is actually held in place by standard spring bars. The bezel on the other hand didn’t disappoint at all for a number of reasons. I will tackle the function first which is just how I prefer my bezel to function, smooth, no extra play and with a beautiful crisp clicking sound. The bezel is so easy to grip and operate with gloves on and without gloves and even in cold, wet environments. I am also a stickler for bezel alignment as in my opinion the top bezel marker must line up perfectly with the top position on the dial itself. It bothers me like you wouldn’t believe when the alignment is off. Aesthetically the bezel details didn’t disappoint me one bit with its split lume triangle at the bezel top position or the minimalistic modern numerals or the raised round markers, all those details make for a great looking bezel.

0349FF73-EECB-497D-B7CC-FF98C03DC2F0

What is really interesting to me is the crown/crown guards integration system. Essentially the crown is  protected by a tube which from the dial side only a small portion of the crown itself is visible, but turning the case side up the tube has a cut out portion that allows you to grip/operate the crown. This crown system is what initially drew me to take interest in this watch. As for how the crown functions, it functions exactly how you would expect it to, flawlessly. I was surprised on how easy it was to grip the crown, I had some doubts to be honest, but my doubts were put to rest once I got my hands on the M-48 to try it first hand.

9D82230F-2097-4E0E-BE4E-D19E6F2C739C

I like how Baldieri handled this dial with it’s design and layout. Of course the slightly domed sapphire crystal gives an excellent window to the matte black dial itself. The M-48’s dial is very clean, futuristic in design and quite minimalistic. The stenciled style markers remind me of the symbols on the Predators arm control panel. It has a military feel, but not our present time military, my opinion is that it looks quite badass. No doubts about the legibility of this dial with the marker/indices stenciled circles paired with the large black & white hands. I was skeptical at first on the sword shaped hands when I saw the watch in pictures, and even when I first received the watch. As I thought what hands would I recommend instead, no other hand style came to mind and to be honest I don’t think anything else would look better. There is a small date window located at the 4 o’clock position on the dial but Baldieri’s choice of a black date wheel with white numerals was the right way to go. It doesn’t become a focal point on the dial in my opinion, especially at quick glances, it blends nicely into the dial.

BD6218BA-0081-4FF4-A233-C8242880FF6B

What I appreciate about the M-48 is that it’s no-nonsense appearance and it’s doesn’t care that it’s surrounded by a bunch a rehashed design flooded market, which makes the M-48 a standout piece. The unique shaped case with all the architectural angles and Baldieri’s understanding of design a large but comfortable watch lends to the wrist pressence that this piece has. The case itself takes a year from start to the finished production piece. The movement inside the M-48 is the Baldieri IT3HD, which is modified Seagull caliber. One thing that is worth noting here is I have owned large watches, that cost 2-4 x what the M-48 and most of them had seconds hand lag where the seconds hand stutters, sometimes stopping for a few seconds before resuming normal movement. That is not the case with the M-48, smooth seconds hand rotation around the entire dial.

79DF99AA-820B-4C5C-8FD8-EC179068C4EA

The case has a WR rating of 300m/990 ft which I can appreciate. The M-48 came on a black leather strap with red stitching accents and a matte finish signed stainless steel buckle which lends to the comfortable wear of this watch. The only thing that I would change on the M-48 is making the lugs true drilled and have solid screw bars securing the strap. The M-48 costs $1200 USD which may be a reservation for some from purchasing this piece and especially if they are movement snobs. I am not saying that this justifies the price, but taking into consideration that the case itself takes a whole year from start to finish is something that shouldn’t be overlooked. “Because the case it is not 100% fully molded but partially CnC and then the sharp angles have to be done by hand etc etc. So by the time we finish to order the modified movement vents as well and all in all we take 10 to 12 months to complete” The M-48 has a plethora of nice details, kickass details that I personally appreciate. The M-48 is an affordable alternative to VDB, Ennebi, etc… and it gets my approval for recommending.

Thank you all for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

Thank you to Baldieri Watches.

Save 30% using promo code

STEPHEN_MAG48

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/TimetoBlog-Watches/473321089483105?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/stephen_mazinger/

Review Tests Passed:

*Easy grip and function of the crown with/without gloves on in wet and dry conditions
*Movement accuracy rate -11 seconds per day
*Dial legibility test in light and environments
*Lume duration test 7 hours
*Temperature test 24 hrs in below 30 degrees
*Comfortability test (leather strap) in work environment, outdoors.
*No scratches on case, bezel or crystal during all tests
*buckle comfort
*crown comfort(no digging into the back of the wrist/hand

AE2F9186-FB3D-429A-8A61-C11FD438C4488FE3FBA1-05D9-4553-A3E4-8044425E186FB706F3C4-36B6-407C-BACC-1B2137E0ABD6B43CB469-9E10-4956-B87C-8082E220350768548EA3-0838-48DD-B158-C44C294B3A1E682517DC-7932-4938-AD85-FD0D3648A8DE455CD1C8-7B9B-4E07-96E1-D12849B80C9C8D9E5DD4-259A-4233-9783-48CA13FAEEA8C28A92C4-E606-414D-8F15-F3580D80244A4FF92DD8-1DE9-49D8-85D7-C146F0A16FB0A96FA8DC-96E1-4245-9766-2E97BBC8464630E1FD74-753B-42D2-BF95-5FA97052CDE07B82496C-8CDC-41E1-A33B-7296809EECCF2F2B9C29-2F4C-4E6E-945B-3DD96FA19D80C47FECBC-1C5D-41B7-81E9-C25989A0EFB9866FF8F4-1E2C-497A-9C03-78B134CE7CB774707C11-783B-44BA-B3BC-9EBF665E31ADC4492B7A-1BC6-4250-A209-1C0486C25B82EFC37894-35BA-4B6D-81B4-8F4E3FAE95A478C01A18-3A2B-406B-97C3-544D5E6F36F37B379D4A-54E0-4587-9D04-E5276C619C6802FF8B54-E897-4BE7-8370-FEC52F135AD1A6B4AA8A-5C05-472B-B478-D73A3E7AB7ED3135B75D-40EF-401F-933E-559245EB7CEDA28CE9AD-4D85-4481-82D0-8671CD6944A9DCEAA7D1-DA10-46AA-ABAF-93D5651799BA28D3AC76-05B8-4784-8881-F7D55CFCD7F5

C8AD3299-B842-4EF2-B9BE-447E0C29F89798A41F36-4BBA-4FB6-B3AF-621915BE550FA7457668-098D-426A-B18A-8FCCE490FF4133E3F69F-E154-40CF-843B-E82567F9A02E4AB3DE44-3116-4761-A0C1-4DECF18A87EB68793EC7-43C5-4B02-8752-DEA834445C0FFCC450F1-53F6-4BEA-9D18-0AB0B72B86976098A202-02A4-4EB6-A614-58CFB9B1049F

39B6668A-50EB-483A-AB6A-2846B807F38C

41C32D51-F23C-4CDC-8901-6E8FCF0141DCD6A77DBF-6676-4A6F-9F26-2A1CE6A0B4C942E0D0E6-2BBB-427B-9415-347FF9129898

 

 

 

 

Watch Review: Gorilla Watches Fastback Phantom Black

61A1EFC4-6686-4C72-9633-504E55858617

I have to admit that I am not really into cars, and quite honestly I really hate driving. I do love to drive fast though. It’s not necessarily the driving part that I hate, it’s the other drivers that make me hate the experience. Muscle cars of the 1960’s and 1970’s will always have a special place in my heart. I used to own a 1969 Plymouth Roadrunner. That car I really liked, it was a work of metal art. I also am loving how a lot of the muscle cars are being redone with a modern take. The Challenger is my favorite of the updated modern cars and it is on my want list which I am currently saving for one for next year. So I do love certain cars and I do love driving, just on my terms. That’s what I respect about Gorilla Watches, they have merged the world of muscle cars with the world of watches but they did it on their terms. Not a rehashed design here, not a homage piece, something unique and refreshing in terms of design. Let’s check out what’s “under the hood” here shall we?

When the Phantom Black Fastback arrived the whole watch had my attention. Usually the dial or the case grab my attention first, but there was so much to take in at first I honestly didn’t know where to focus my attention. This is definitely not a bad thing either my friends. When my eyes and mind finally caught up with each other, I did go to the crown first. With a car, is the rear-end your favorite or is the front-end your favorite? Well just like a car and favorite parts, a watch shares a similar preference system especially when breaking down details, and the crown is my favorite part of a watch. A crown design and function can honestly make or break a watch purchase for me.

A40D2406-1A24-45FB-AC7A-3F96212C2592

The crown on the Fastback certainly passed my on the lot inspection in terms of design. An oversized crown, check! Gorilla Watches went with a unusual choice in terms of shape, the Phantom Black Titanium crown is triangular which is pretty damn cool. Gripping this beast is extremely easy, just take a look at the edges of this crown together with the size/shape, this crown grips and operates like a crown lovers dream. When I was out on the photoshoot portion of this review, it was in the mid 20’s temperature wise, so I was switching between gloves and no gloves. The crown was so easy to use both ways whenever I had to reset the time to 10:10 for my pictures. This crown has so much detail I really enjoyed looking at it from behind the lens. The crown guards are almost just as interesting as the crown itself in design and because that are integrated from the forged carbon layer of this multi layered case.

8A1FF47D-E0C2-4643-9F42-3546D7AAA4DF

The 44mm case is made up of different layers and each layer is made of a different material. The fixed bezel for example is made of bead blasted ceramic which gives the bezel a stealth appearance and has hydrophobic coating ensures protection against blemishes. The case itself is made of forged carbon which lends itself to the comfort of the Fastback in terms of overall weight vs. overall size. The same can be said for the Titanium caseback. The caseback features the badass Gorilla Watches Gorilla logo which inspired my art piece for this review. These layers come together making for a very satisfying wrist presence. The square shape of the case offers a nice alternative to the classic round shaped case that I have been accustomed to. This case has amazing wrist presence especially on the super soft camo rubber strap. Though this case wears big, it is super comfortable because of the ultra light materials (110g total weight) that Gorilla Watches used here.

CFC76A95-3CA5-4F78-BB89-813468746EDF

With a great unique case design one would only hope that the dial would follow suit. Hell that is only natural right? The Gorilla design team’s hard work to come up with a fitting dial for their Fastback series really shows when you take the time to see all the little details that come up big on the design delivery. Honestly what detail do I start with here, seriously there are a lot. The hour hand has to be one of the most unique hour hands that I have seen. It really reminds me of the spoilers from the muscle cars of the 1970’s. I didn’t realize that the white, semi circle was actually part of the hour hand, I thought that it was part of the dial itself. The white portion itself is open where the next layer of the dial can be seen through it offering some nice overall depth to this dial.

3C2D4142-9AAE-4E0E-A574-6177816F8D2F

There is a really cool correlation between the second hand and the minute hand that goes further that the typical hand relationship. Taking a closes look at the minute hand as the second hand crosses over it, the second is the exact shape of the skeletonized portion of the minute hand. A very cool and well planned out design detail. Gorilla nailed this design and which was also carried over to the length of both hands. The minute and seconds hand both extend quite far, almost touching the inner chapter ring. This is where I prefer my hands on a watch to reach from both a design standpoint and from a functionality standpoint. This of course looks better aesthetically, but it also helps me when it comes to making a more precise timing measurement. The dial has a fantastic old dashboard feel to it and the green tinted numeral style and layout is so reminiscent of the speedometer on my old Roadrunner. What I like about this dial is that it is extremely unique and it is busy but it is kept in the rhelm of legibility.

A7E52743-CFE4-4CA2-A2DD-F222F5B7BD9E

I am really drawn to unique designed watches personally especially in the overflowing sea of homages and rehashed designs. I might sound like a broken record here, but it is true. How many Sub-Mariner clones do we need? Do we really need another watch that has Gas/Helium Escape valve engraved or printed on the rehaut of the watch? It’s just like how there are so many movies that are just remakes of older movies. Is this how lazy our society has become in terms of creativity and in terms of handing money over in acceptance of this laziness? I completely appreciate what Gorilla was trying to achieve with the Fastback watch. Offering watch enthusiasts a break from the monotonous designs that seem to flood the market more and more. I personally believe that Gorilla achieved their goal with the Fastback.

9D3DECBA-5022-4A3B-B883-54540336DEC5

The Fastback Phantom Black watch is a very unique & well designed watch with an modern edgy wrist pressence. It’s design may not be for everyone, but fans of modern design and fans of classic cars will definitely appreciate this watch. I appreciate because it is a break from the monotonous. The dial and the case complement each other quite nicely with that same magic that the classic muscle cars had how the body of the car was complemented by the equally beautiful design interior. I have to admit that it took me sometime to get use to the lightness of this watch. I know that may sound strange, usually if there’s a weight complaint it’s because the watch is too heavy. I am used to wearing heavy watches so the curve for me is getting used to lighter weight watches. In my mind, a light weight watch feels “cheap”, but that is not true the this case of the  Fastbreak.

I want to personally thank you for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

I would also like to personally thank Gorilla watches.

$880 USD

https://www.gorillawatches.ch

MORE PICS POSTED BELOW

Review Tests Passed:

*Easy grip and function of the crown with/without gloves on in wet and dry conditions
*Miyota 8215 accuracy rate -18 seconds per day
*Dial legibility test in light and environments
*Lume duration test 8 hours
*Temperature test 24 hrs in below 30 degrees
*Comfortability test (camo strap) in work environment, outdoors.
*No scratches on case or crystal during all tests

Specifications:
* MOVEMENT
* Miyota 8215, Self-winding

FUNCTIONS
* Hour, minute, seconds hands

CASE DIMENSIONS
* 44 mm case diameter
* 48.5 mm with crown guard

CASE MATERIAL
* Forged carbon, anodised aluminium,
* titanium, ceramic, steel

CRYSTAL
* Scratch resistant sapphire,
* anti-reflective coating, both sides

CROWN
* Screw-down for improved water resistance

WATER RESISTANCE
* 100 meters / 330 feet / 10 ATM
BRACELET
* Rubber strap,
* titanium pin buckle

WEIGHT
* 110 grams with strap and buckle

7D4DDC09-4BBC-497B-AFBB-8D9776A6AAF4CEBAB41D-9C7F-4DDB-BC3E-8327A65189A5F13D15B0-CE86-4346-8A2A-E49B732E1977BDE3A3A7-8037-432C-BE78-18F8034C11DDFDA7E32E-36FE-4A70-BCC7-E382618CE090E8A63AEA-7F50-4F9C-B946-545E2098DC46F603A092-7874-4DE9-AA32-BC1F674B6B6A8649F660-C88B-4523-9E83-BC5DD389874E88C26069-4517-480F-9029-8EF94E429ED3E0957747-8CBD-4ECE-9E6D-99BD115E293815207B19-CDCA-4568-ABF4-3A73D67E2DFE964CD584-9EF2-4042-BEC4-86D5E638BC214E030DF9-9792-4AFF-A9A9-5C9CEA1B57C2

0CB67162-28B7-4099-83BD-6DA5BDE85608BB2F98B5-2073-43F7-B8CB-63BFDF513BEFAFEA9549-55A3-46A7-B144-6FD9057BB739B2A8F668-9748-493D-BEA2-63DDA50AAA0810AC99F9-4861-490D-B0CA-B38F8F5E7BF2C3FF5A84-A524-470F-A3FE-9C92F911FAD08974160C-FD7D-47D1-BAF9-C2B6531FB346897AC710-BFC4-44E6-A3FC-77C32232E6DB5422B2E2-9E9C-46BF-A1A1-B2D5150B733F1261C63B-522E-4CE5-8E1A-89FEDF491A1EEF24E431-950E-44C1-BE5A-E2165660D965BCE9B810-B499-4928-95FE-7DCEEF73A6784FAB442C-814C-4930-909E-733DE29C654E00283D55-443E-43B3-9718-AA63AD35893B70B564C9-A6C3-4B74-95DE-1C8FFEEC4FEF2382CEE8-4536-49F2-B96D-38F4134AC51F15C38F31-5382-439F-A912-301E81552928E311B2CD-325B-41D2-ABFB-B605F1B4262A7365107E-B203-4C34-B4E6-71E92E2BDC44E7377E11-9C5D-42B5-B171-ACA5BC656E9FC6095CF0-4C95-4271-9BCF-DC0A6EF58C22636F32D1-94FE-4386-A616-02469C80B1FAD63403DA-1733-4C7B-AA06-1D4288EBC4662120B7D0-CAF7-4BDB-B39B-542929BB144A8BA3B955-BA60-4E55-9AA3-11593521263F27CAA94D-8192-41A6-89BC-4B7F37698295

Watch Review: Gruppo Gamma Peacemaker P-02

40518F4D-9ADB-42C9-A29D-CD7FECA5A02A.jpeg

Crazy how the past can haunt us, even by things that happened centuries ago. How we react to those haunting memories is what can really define us. My past has recently began to haunt me, events that were far beyond my control. It has affected me for years, though it was on a subconscious level, until they manifested themselves recently. I am working harder than I ever have to better myself, to make peace with my past, to put these demons to rest. When the Gruppo Gamma Peacemaker arrived for review, it really came at a very ironic time, an almost other world intervention kind of way. This is a very pivotal time for me and each day I work hard at the betterment of myself, I can actually feel that peaceful change.

CC7003AC-12E8-47D2-B903-3C2B3C885A83

I was very excited to hear of Gruppo Gamma’s plan to finally bring out this shelved design into reality. I know how passionate Naoki is about his watches & designs and how important this watch was to him to see it through design into production. This was also a first for me with Gruppo Gamma, in terms of a hand wound movement. I have to admit that when I first opened the new style travel style packaging, I immediately turned the watch over to look at the movement. Traditionally I am not particularly moved by exhibition crystal case backs, but this is different, this is special. Special because it is a first for me with GG, special because it is a hand-wound movement and the classic watch enthusiast inside of me still enjoys seeing the mechanical magic in motion. In the case of the Peacemaker, the mechanical magic that is set in motion is through the heart of the Miyota 8N33. A mechanical heart that is nicely bordered by a brass, which is ion plated to prevent patina forming.

7274CD34-9A04-4E48-B4CB-15730A5B850A

When I was first exploring the case on the Peacemaker, I was thinking about the case finish. I was wondering why Gruppo Gamma went with a polished case and not a brushed finish. A brush finish would have initially been my design choice. But then I gave it some more thought and the polished case holds true to a Gruppo Gamma tradition in design choice, but it goes deeper than that in my opinion. This is the Peacemaker that we are talking about, and it’s parallel to life itself. Just as we make the conscious choice in life to make peace with things, we are still left with reminders of our journey to peace. May it be a mental, emotional or physical reminder, the reminders are there. Once we find peace, though reminders don’t have that same negative power over us, but they are there. Just like a polished case, it also has reminders of it’s journey, that first case scratch is always painful right? But as we journey with our watch, we begin to accept those scratches, dents in the polished stainless steel, we find peace with them, and sometimes they even trigger the memory of where we acquired the scratches, an awesome vacation adventure, an outdoor adventure with good friends, etc… that’s the way I see it anyway.

62DE489A-03FC-4E61-ACBC-CD15832C299F

The Peacemaker 44mm case has a nice size and shape to it which with the polished finish, gives the Peacemaker a noticeable wrist presence. Those who are size weary, the Peacemaker has wrist presence but not an overwhelming wrist presence. The Peacemaker wears comfortable and I believe it will wear comfortable on all wrist sizes, even the extreme wrist size conscious wrists. Going with a shorter, rounded lug also allows for a wrist conforming fit with a less likely chance of wrist overhang on those with a wrist under 7”. A detail that I am very excited for is the design choice to go with drilled lugs, and more importantly going with actual screw bars instead of traditional spring style bars. It takes points away in my opinion when the screw heads are faux screws with just a spring bars.

907A1553-F5CF-44E0-A365-AFB3C6CE9C21

There is absolutely nothing that I would change about the Peacemaker’s crown, Gruppo Gamma got the crown absolutely right here. Oversized, easy to grip and operate, signed, gear style appearance, a perfect example of how a crown should be done in my opinion. What is even better here is that there are no crown guards to obstruct the view or operation of this crown. I spent a lot of time just admiring this crown from all angles and there is something so satisfying using it to wind the movement. There’s that mechanical magic again playing a role as other watch enthusiasts know how magical it is to actually wind a hand-wound movement.

F5B2D7EF-3811-4FB2-8CF7-7124E5B8DF0E

The fixed bezel has that same effect as having no crown guards, it allows you to really admire the vintage style box-shaped sapphire crystal. Under crystal AR treatment, offering you the ideal window to that lovely Gruppo Gamma traditional sandwich dial. I opted to go with the P-02 because it is the dial that really caught my attention first and personally I am a sucker for stenciled military style numerals. As simple as this dial is, it makes such a loud, bold statement that Gruppo Gamma has truly mastered. The matte black gave GG the perfect canvas to go off of. I was a little hesitant about the markers being filled with vintage color SuperLuminova because that faux patina/aged look can often look gimmicky to me, but that is not the case here. It is so fitting for this watch and the way it the dark brown leather strap plays off the dial is quite beautiful.

72994871-CBD9-4411-AC5D-00D3A547B02D

The traditionally classic Gruppo Gamma shaped hour and minute hands are gold color which adds to the harmonious flow of this dial and are a nod to Gruppo Gamma’s inspiration.  The hands are have the matching vintage lume which not only matches the markers but it also matches the text on the dial. Another classic Gruppo Gamma design that I have to give Gruppo Gamma credit for making me appreciate is the elimination of a seconds hand. Though they aren’t the first to do this, they are the first to make me appreciate this. I am a traditional 3 hand dial kind of guy, but how GG pulls of the two hand dial really amazes me, and it is amazing to me that I actually like it. Naoki from Gruppo Best described this “the lack of a sec hand moving all over the dial, in my opinion, conveys a sense of serenity/ peace that takes us way from our daily troubles.”

3FBCC6EA-5FE0-45F3-BF6E-CADC92E97697

One thing that I respect about Gruppo Gamma is the fact that they have never denied where their original inspiration game from. They kept in touch with their roots throughout the years, but each watch that is released is truly infused with Gruppo Gamma DNA. I like that you can see the inspiration for example the hands, which were inspired by the vintage Rolex and Panerai. Then you see the steampunk movement inside the Peacemaker or the oversized crown, realizing that the watch has more Gruppo Gamma DNA flowing through it’s mechanical heart than where the original inspiration came from.

6884BE99-A132-4BDF-8A48-A0BED374DA69

Gruppo Gamma and I both ventured out around the same time and as I watch my growth, I have also watched Gruppo Gamma’s growth. GG always has an open ear and an open mind when it comes to their customers, despite the growth, despite the rising popularity, Gruppo Gamma has remained grounded. In my opinion each release is an improvement from the last, and the prices stay in that affordable range of $599. There is a second round of preorders opening up this week – you can get the Peacemaker for $499.  The Peacemaker can make that transition from the office to play time. Traditionally people associate polished case to a dress watch, but tradions are made to be broken. The Peacemaker is definitely worth taking a look at, it’s a well made watch with vintage charm and nice details.

Thank you all for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

Thank you Naoki and Gruppo Gamma.

👇🏽👇🏽👇🏽A ton of pics are below👇🏽👇🏽👇🏽

https://www.gruppogammawatches.com

Review Tests Passed:

*Timing of the movement against a atomic clock +23 seconds per day
*Gripping and operating the crown with/without gloves on, in cold/warm/wet conditions
*24 hours in cold weather below 30 degrees F
*Comfort and wearability of the case and leather straps(at work, outdoors)
*Durability test case, strap, crystal-hiking, climbing, running in snow, rain, mud. No noted scratches, dings or dents.

 

SPECIFICATIONS:

Overview
Mk I Peacemaker
Hours, minutes
Weight 140 g with strap
Water resistance 200 m

Case
Stainless steel, polished
Diameter 44 mm excluding crown and lugs
Length 52 mm lug-to-lug
Height 11.5 mm excluding 3 mm crystal
Lug width 24 mm
Vintage style box-shaped sapphire crystal with underside anti-reflective coating
Screw-in crown
Exhibition caseback, stainless steel and sapphire

Movement
Miyota 8N33
21600 bph
Hand-wound
Accuracy between -20 to +40 s/ day
Power reserve 42 hrs

Dial & Hands
Matte black dial, sandwich style, markers filled with vintage color SuperLuminova
Gold color hour and minute hands with vintage color SuperLuminova

Strap & Accessories
Leather strap, brown, length 125/75mm, width 24/24mm with buckle
Leather strap, dark brown, length 125/75mm, width 24/22mm with buckle
Screwdriver for strap changes
Travel pouch

65B9C38E-0F5A-44F1-80F0-BE3484E291A6959438A4-C455-445C-AA4C-CB2F6138866848D988CC-4C33-412E-9F0A-EA742F7148E7B0FD7CE9-014A-43F8-9543-B7E29A780DAB1BA64DCC-1ECA-43DA-9919-93593147EB6212F4171F-EB1E-4FD3-8DFA-A4B282EC1ED53C839F2E-CE43-470F-B05D-674BD98560E3194A058D-5055-47E5-8DEB-45D2E1F54776E64EF2B0-F556-4435-9F9E-2556B6FCB63144F0D0A4-2E15-4948-865B-7827BFE49195E3B38CEE-6C43-4DEC-B2A8-7C18625416D59FEB40E4-CCAD-4712-ACBC-B42BCFDDC29F3D9349EC-D11F-4F6B-8EE7-0A55ED5255679A24C7C8-4B93-4C53-BCBA-E3C710E950474F0DE546-1D8C-4971-863F-9051FA9F9193DAFA8D3F-7C59-4BDB-A4D2-BFB3CB3CF9E4F5524CE0-C02F-447C-896A-A7565B6F7E20C7AF952D-0A45-4BBA-A4D1-572845A596061933BD87-264E-4AB5-A3D3-341E525185DB7F77A733-7304-46AE-AF1B-CB0D5E3570D3F208414B-76EF-4A9C-9F64-30A140F2BE3E4676476A-8002-479C-A9EE-11A7D63AA9945AE24F18-46EE-4B13-908F-CFFC0484B5ABFDC556D7-750B-4B80-B076-9F90C4BCEBCD40008FFE-72A1-42FE-8B48-D4ECC3F972AF6F67B634-28CE-41FF-B4D3-5D75BAAF822B5641B03A-FBA9-417A-A5FC-F5E8C3B458BAD1F22B81-411F-4BFD-B579-6F4007A20EF3772B6612-B120-45F7-9F65-5777E17C7059FD4E28AE-9A2C-4BB8-BEDF-C0176B6064C04591EBA7-C2BD-42E9-AD94-279E7B1A8B0760A407F9-66E2-4D62-8D06-EEA647A9CA31ECB46347-85F8-4DEF-882B-752F867674A86E8A8C72-61D9-43BB-85CF-1DABBD5E41DD

2FD28249-44AB-4929-9A66-A2CF64A2A2794F422685-4722-4BA6-AF41-D649422698385D450FF1-FFC6-4874-A6E7-7E9F73CCC6DE1DDBE564-58C9-4142-8516-48613EC501A6AA4F1B3C-612C-4D5A-A7C5-3E33DE038F9E

5833B143-901E-4C3D-9BD1-0A0E08C192EE029E0B8A-628D-452F-A938-B9E897F669556CFD5BFC-7DA1-4308-AB78-C9B91D363304B0023E3A-10ED-4D4A-B9B7-D846DA8DBDB04BE1443D-3E27-429A-91A0-4D34245184D34D55E73F-4DB3-46D0-BDC6-58BDFAA12516174DE8A0-0BFF-48B7-AAFA-274DA6B56794C2EA3013-A62A-46ED-AB24-3FEFF06C63EEE79ADC8C-9BD9-40FB-BD2F-153D70E83DB4

Watch Review: Trintec Copilot GMT

F9C4E4B5-CC7E-4045-9192-68E0D47E3416

I am sure some of you have a similar story on when you first discovered watches. Mine was with my grandfather’s pocket watch when I was like 4 years old, but we have to fast forward many years to when I bought my first real watch. It was a pilot style watch that paid tribute to the watches from World War II. A fantastic piece. Then I discovered dive watches, well you know what happened then and even now with where the watch market is currently. It is always a treat when a pilot watch comes through here for a review. Today we are exploring the Trintec Copilot GMT.

D87AF127-37C0-4BF4-A86D-05A2296DF2A5

Completely safe to say that when I opened up the little black box that the dial immediately stole the attention grabbing show. How could it not right? Matte black backdrop with bold white printed markers that seem to pop right off the dial. Reminiscent of that first serious watch, the Copilot has that traditional number layout, bold numerals 12, 3, 6 and 9, with a nice bold white complementing open minute track. Thus creating a badass legible dial that can be easily read, even from across the room. I have seen white printed numerals before that surprised the hell out of me that they passed quality control. Luckily Trintec has quality control that can actually see because the white print is precise on the dial and even on the filling on the bezel numerals.

E574C786-F1CF-44E4-9675-1911632121C3

I remember when I was a nursing assistant working my way through college, I had a saying. “Depending on what nurse I was on a team with that night, could either make or break my night”. This philosophy I also share on the hands on a watch, they can either make or break the dial. The hands on this dial actually add to the appeal of this dial. Holding true to the bold, legible dial theme that is going on here. The skeletonized matte, painted white hour and minute hand are ideally sized for this dial. Rest assure that this dial is even legible at night thanks to the Japanese Luminova that is on all the hands and markers. If you are worried about telling the difference between what hand does what, Trintec took care of that worry for you by shape and color coding each hand.

75CDE647-2D17-4FB4-8CC0-BD5568377C70

I have to commend Trintec on what they did with the date window placement on the Copilot. By putting it at the 4 o’clock position on this dial, they kept the harmonious flow of the numerals. I also like the white printed border around the date window. Here is what I don’t like about the date window, it’s on a white wheel with black numerals, a black wheel with white numerals would look much better and add to the dial flow. The other thing that could be improved is the alignment of the date window, on the double digit days of the month easily the teens, the one is hard to see because it’s not exactly centered in the dial cut out. Either of these areas of improvement aren’t a deal breaker in my opinion but it would make this dial that much better with the suggestions. Eliminating the date window all together would also be a fix.

C58DDB60-3265-4155-94B5-FB9ECACEDF62

The 43mm x 15mm sandblasted stainless steel case adds to the draw this watch has in my opinion. This finish choice adds to the tool watch style that the Copilot has going on. I was really surprised by the drilled lugs on to be honest, but my surprise didn’t end at that. I was honestly expecting faux screw bars, but hot damn these are the real deal, solid screw bars on a $379.00 piece. The pleasant surprises kept coming on this case much to my watch loving delight. As I mentioned earlier the white numerals on the bezel are precise and crisp, throw in the 120 ratcheting bezel that not only sounds precise but has no extra play whatsoever and lines up with the dial. I am not blowing smoke up your ass here either, at this price point this is impressive. Maybe we have become lax in what we expect at certain price points, or maybe these details are impressive at this price. It’s subjective, but in my opinion I am surprised. I also have to mention that the bezel is easy to grip and operate in all weather conditions.

9FDC2ABF-741C-4CD5-ACE7-D3F52EE57026

Now the crown scores 3 out of 4 in my score book. The points that Trintec has earned here are easy to grip thanks to the nice styled edges. I was able to grip this crown with wet hands, dry hands, with and without gloves. Another component of this crown that earns points is the screw down operation/function both with unscrewing/screwing and with setting the date/time. The place where Trintec missed out getting a perfect score on the bezel is that it is not signed. Some people might not find this detail important, but I think that it adds a finished look to the watch.

D5D2C4E4-F970-41E5-9124-AF17E48E7543

AR coated sapphire crystal adds to the durability and legibility on the Copilot as does the screw down caseback and adds to the WR which is an impressive 20 ATM or 660 ft. The Trintec Copilot was an overall positive review experience both personally and professionally. Personally I am prefer a realible mechanical movement with that said, Trintec did a fantastic job of adding a lot of nice details that made the personal watch purist inside of me overlook that it has a quartz movement. When I first began doing reviews I kept my personal feelings separate from my professional feelings, which I believe made for a stagnant review. There has been a vast amount of personal growth so it only makes sense that there has been professional growth, and it made perfect sense to merge the two in my review process.

FFDC7259-C069-4B95-A0FB-85DD0921887D

At $379 Trintec really packed in some details that I rarely find at this price and unfortunately don’t find on pieces that sell for more. The quality is here on this watch. What Trintec has going for them as well is great quality control and great customer service. This watch made me take an awesome trip down to my watch loving roots. With the details and price I find it rather easy to recommend this piece, if Trintec makes some improvements then this is a definite must for a collection missing a pilot watch.

Thanks for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below. Tons of pics are posted below as well.

Thanks to Trintec.

CoPilot GMT / Stainless / Quartz (NEW)

Review function tests passed:

*Durability and accuracy test for the Swiss made Ronda 515-24 Quartz movement
*Bezel, crown grip and operation test in wet, dry, warm, cold conditions.
*Legibility in light, dark and different positions
*24 hr comfort test for case, strap indoors and outdoors
*Durability test for the case, crystal, bezel hiking, in water, on land, against rock, mud, dirt, ice. (Hairline scratches on the blasted finish)

Improvement Recommendations:

*signed crown
*black date wheel with white numerals
*date window alignment
*no date option

SPECIFICATIONS:

CASE & DIAL
Solid 316L stainless steel case and bezel with sandblasted finish
Solid wrist pins with real screws
Screw down case back
Screw down crown
Precision 120 click unidirectional ratchet style bezel
Japan LumiNova on dial and hands
Date display
Water resistant to 20 ATM / 660 ft / 200 m
Watch dimensions: 42 mm x 42 mm (1.65 in)
Bezel diameter: 43 mm (1.7 in)
Distance between lugs: 22 mm (0.9 in)
Watch case length (lug to lug): 54 mm (2.1 in)
Thickness: 15 mm (0.6 in)
Weight: 120 g
MOVEMENT
Swiss made Ronda 515-24 Quartz movement

326B1364-B0D5-40F9-B6CF-09931F3C0985EEC36C35-67BD-43A6-8844-EDE370133956DA1929C5-3BA3-4B6D-9A9A-F67BF317E6D2700948EA-AEF1-498F-8420-2A2B10E38E8B081EDF31-403F-46FF-812A-FE66D1EBF9660C88AECC-D8C1-4C46-A797-EC5281BBFB0416677E5D-BC18-4283-B081-37CA328F78FD90E332C5-5ECB-43AC-A665-D9C8F0C7ED91A49D4E05-E321-4755-9C2A-870FBEB281B09C19703D-A590-4662-81EB-575F74B7E818746241F0-AD86-4CD5-8F16-DD67A6326F9CA737448E-16E9-41D2-9E50-A543591B2C04E246F8DF-B551-43E6-9419-8CF6D269E84D4770376C-FF6C-4259-AFD7-38416F981C0C2F6F5974-C1FF-41EC-AAB7-BF814A55E6F514D3541A-91A5-41EA-8100-1A2087F02628F0C4D4A9-FC98-4FDF-9D90-DB0FD07A4CA75DE9E133-4AB5-4E00-82F3-9B56802BF9E39B7DACE8-F117-4577-A9E7-28EBEC196BAB

CA298024-405A-44C2-A9C2-DD206F0178D0A2C27375-97E5-4242-88DA-5F4E4BC4C89FD59C26AC-2E0D-4C65-AD41-7081D1B01A6CC24E5CB6-6740-41F3-B776-5C3334F88B178D4A3D6A-DE56-46E2-91F6-879EFB1612A57C292C76-8EAB-4E71-B0D5-EFCF6F2736DBB7DE8D8F-DC92-4CA6-BD9F-E25EBEA99F3E20F5EAFE-7347-4A47-836D-5C9098C21CAAE7FD883F-9982-4AEC-821B-C82C726ABA47FE742CC2-E8D0-4593-A52E-123DF8E4AEA2A03AB234-AE52-474D-A489-3136755B5F4DBB137996-0629-4AC1-84B3-2885FCD98A488F7A3034-FF15-43A5-B252-8C9DEB08FFD447D5612A-64A3-403E-BC7F-069D4C22A2D0BB0F518D-3708-43F0-A77C-AF55BBAE92751D164039-76A8-4F7F-8B47-5B25984F7F963593C426-6ADC-419C-82FC-365ABAA1EB21

Watch Review: Nauticfish Thûsunt gruoni vintage

15F8DA3F-ED58-413D-8F9F-FD4F38F933C9
We all have that want list when it comes to watches. I personally have want lists that can be broken down into two categories. One want list can be defined as an unobtainable want list. That list contains all the watches that I really would love to own, but I am well aware that I will never be able to obtain them for obvious financial reasons. My other list, is my obtainable want list which is also known as my favorite list. These are the watches that I know that I will eventually obtain through some hard work. These watches bring me great satisfaction and joy. There a so many obtainable watch companies that I want to experience their watches from. Nauticfish has been on this list for some time now, and I am very excited that we get to have the opportunity to explore my first Nauticfish together.

E590C085-86E5-4035-B218-8798097CAEEB

Naturally I was very excited when this watch arrived and when I opened up the shipping box my excitement immediately grew when I saw the cool yellow waterproof box that contained the watch. My excited fingers where tripping over each other to get this box opened. There was definitely a lot to take in visually when I finally stumbled to get this box opened, there it was in the “green flesh” Thûsunt gruoni vintage dive watch. “The Old High German word thûsunt (thousand) stands for the outstanding reliability and water resistance of over 1000 meters of the new NauticFish generation.” The first thing that grabbed the attention of my visual sense was the gruoni aka green color, all the fantastic shades of green throughout the watch. I honestly didn’t think that green could be so stunning on a watch.

5C1FB99E-9059-431C-92A0-20003C415DD8

There was a battle of who wanted my attention more, the bezel and the strap. It was a tie, so I will start with the outermost part, the Italian handmade green leather strap. I love the distressed look of this strap and quite honestly I couldn’t wait to see it in person after seeing the pics of it on http://www.nauticfish.com/gruoni.html. When you see this strap attached to this watch, it’s that perfect combo of strap complementing the watch. A straight up green strap would not do either, and Nauticfish knew this, so the went with a vintage leather handmade in Italy, with beautiful aged/distressed finish. The strap really allows for the matte green found on the bezel and dial to really pop.

4B3F5315-1D2A-423E-A180-CFA20F82A677

I have a current daily beater that is 43mm, which is what this Nauticfish comes in at and I have to say that I really appreciate this size. I have also come to the realization that when it comes to watches for me personally, size doesn’t matter. A good friend of mine recently posted on his FB watch group that got me really thinking. I realize that if I like the overall design of a watch, then I am going to like it on my wrist. I was briefly brainwashed into believing that I only like certain size watches. This was complete marketing bullshit. I was missing out on great pieces because of the trickery that watch size matters. It doesn’t to me anymore with my anti-bullshit glasses on. Take a lesson from me my friends, too much thought goes into watch size, don’t miss out like I did because of judging a watch by it’s size.

B49AA791-DACE-4D69-836D-F8469CC695BF

I really like the case shape on this watch, as I would describe as more of an oval shape than a round shape. Nauticfish went with an all brushed finished stainless steel case and for this I am very excited to see. This isn’t your “baby me” kind of watch. This is balls to the wall rugged and tough Made in Germany master craftsmanship. On the non side of the case there is an automatic valve for automatic pressure compensation, which is PVD coated. I like the contrast that this creates against the brushed finished stainless steel which looks great together. What I also like is that I can clearly see that there is a valve on the case, I don’t need any tacky engraved or printed text on the dial or anywhere near the dial telling me that there is a release valve.

D7386AC7-E0B1-41C2-8308-A8EFBD7F3E5F

Nauticfish knows that they design a watch to be worn while in conditions outside of the office. This knowledge helped them design a bezel and a crown that can be easily gripped in wet, cold, with bare hands/with gloves on, etc….. In my opinion on a watch of this design requires two things when it comes to the crown design, it needs to be oversized and it needs to have edges that are machined to be gripped. I don’t need anything foo-foo or fancy, I need it to be functional and that’s exactly what Nauticfish gave me, a functional crown. Adding a touch of detail, Nauticfish engraved the crown with their shark logo, which can also be found on the solid, screw down stainless steel case back. Just like the crown, Nauticfish designed the bezel to be easily gripped and operated in all weather conditions. I can attest to that as I have worn this watch in the rain, snow, freezing rain and in a river. With and without gloves, wet and dry hands, the bezel and crown grip/operate without flaw.

352A47D2-967E-4BDA-A277-F2A581C611CF

As I have determined the bezel to be a functional one right down to the fine detent, this bezel doesn’t disappoint in the looks department either. Matte finish, 5 exposed screw heads, a super-luminova point, it really doesn’t get much better on a tool/dive watch that this. Nauticfish got the matte finish on this bezel is incredible and I really like how Nauticfish matched the dark shade green of the bezel, with the darkest shade that is on green color gradient dial. Speaking of lighting, this bezel even appears almost black at certain angles and with certain lighting. Like the bezel, the color gradient dial also plays quite nice with lighting changes.

1E58FC95-A5FD-44D1-AE95-14651A80AAA9

If you take a look at the dial, starting at the inside edge of the applied hour markers and working to the outer edges of the dial, this is where the green is the darkest. Like the deep depths of the sea, but as you swim towards the surface, or in this case towards the center of the dial, the green gradually becomes a lighter shade. Nauticfish did a nice job with the green dial and it absolutely sets the tone for the rest of this dial. As I mentioned earlier in this review, Nauticfish stayed consistent with the finish on this watch, opting for staying strictly with a brushed finish. Well consistent they remained with the dial as well. Take special attention to the edges of the hour markers, both the round and rectangular. What do you see? Brushed. Matte. Beautiful. Please don’t stop there, take a look at the hour and minute hands. Not only the same finish but the killer shape. These hands manage to pull off being lovely both in daylight and at night when the lume comes out to play, and comes out it does.

ED962923-0A24-4A6A-8B07-4840F1341867

Minimal text is an added bonus of detail on this dial. A small touch of red on the tip of the second hand pulled in with the red printed ‘F’ in Nauticfish. It’s little details like this that shows a company’s dedication to design and a complete overall look. I can say the same about the date window. Some dial purists prefer that no date look, but to please both sides of that argument, I like Nauticfish’s design decision. The date window was placed in the darkest point of the green, so Nauticfish used a black date wheel with white printed numerals. What’s my point? Well, this allows the date window to nicely blend into the dial without sticking out like a sore thumb. Nauticfish really made it apparent to me that they were 110% dedicated to staying true to their design and executed it in the design phase throughout until the final production piece.

2CC0E423-C56F-4E0D-94DF-3F66B32A6662

German watches are definitely making a name for themselves in the watch world. Of course this isn’t something new, but with watches like this it is hard not to take notice of this. This watch in extremely well made, extremely rugged and extremely accurate.(ETA-2824/2) I really put this watch through some series of tests and it passed them all as you can see below. This watch walked away with a few hairline scratches, no biggie for a watch like this.(pictures all taken after review tests)This was designed to handle the challenges I put it through. Whether if you are a desk diver or an outdoors adventurer, there is enough for both sides to appreciate here. Two suggestions were all that I can find to nit pick about here, the exclusion of lume on the seconds hand is one and the other I would have really liked to see drilled lugs with screw bars. When I review a watch like this, it excites me both as a watch reviewer and as a watch enthusiast, which just adds crazy fuel to the fire inside. “Damn I love watches” is the bumper sticker on that car that gets that fuel.

Thank you all for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

Thank you to Nauticfish.

Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/TimetoBlog-Watches/473321089483105?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Instagram:

http://www.instagram.com/stephen_mazinger/

Review tests passed for the case, movement and strap:
*24 hours in below 20F degrees temperatures
*24 hours in below 0 degrees temperatures
*comfort and durability test on the wrist while in snow, rain and mud.
*comfort and durability test during hiking, climbing, biking.
*comfort and durability test during 11 hour active work days
*timing at various positions +7 seconds average per day
*bezel and crown operating in cold, wet weather conditions with and without gloves on

Specifications
* Case: brushed steel, brushed, bezel with fine detent and super-luminova point
* Case diameter: 43 x 43 mm, height: 15 mm
* Automatic valve for automatic pressure compensation, PVD coated
* Water resistance: 1000 m / 3280 feet
* Crown: screwed, diameter: 0,8 mm
* Glaas: Domed lupe sapphire crystal with AR coating (inside, back steel
* Dial: Vintage style with color gradient
* Index & hands: super-luminova
* Movement: automatic, ETA-2824/2, Swiss Made
* Strap: 22mm, stitched and very flexible silicone strap
* Box: Big size outdoor box, water proof, pressure equalizing valve
* Option: vintage style leahter strap (Made in Italy), steel bracelet (Made in Germany)

D0B4A452-D5EC-47BE-831C-D1B508E3512E3658C2FF-948A-4DDB-9D6E-86D7B100B6C91258D420-318F-4314-B919-CFAD67697A8AB9D6BAC2-862A-4ABF-9846-2E9B730FC1894DFC9607-A742-48CD-89EF-9A893153DF054DC525EB-4308-4683-98C6-B26C0C9255AFC5913D4A-364A-4F18-8F36-9A6C78E77C91E43E95EE-BED6-4D89-892A-252B6D66056D5E83FB09-247C-43A4-B31C-89F8C4227FE5D93C2E7D-97E8-4A32-99F1-B0477BFFA73EB5C9FFCC-2886-4D68-86A9-923A94CC67D91C2CAFD8-06FA-4B3E-8A25-543BD67F9AC77C26EA72-6967-4188-AC49-D5AC5898408CCBF1D284-0DA6-41DB-8F1A-DC1BB16A53E435583CF0-30F7-49D9-92A6-091CCD76BE9D52EF97D0-40DD-41C5-B615-1BA249E0096191D14AFD-F7D0-4F14-BA1C-376419309356CF5B57EB-7EC4-4010-A6AB-6D05795696CC3E3DFBE0-A819-41B2-B0CC-AC63E2F26850A216A761-4C7C-40CD-8E8E-E8912543C1FD3228C614-7F07-4C00-B910-70AA9AA76E69B5CDB86D-8C56-4569-98B7-79289A76C8AF273C76BD-4920-4EB6-A292-8175D2D7F62F0D62C0B4-2E8C-40D1-BE2F-C3C68AAA07A89DD074C7-85AA-4BF4-B181-E6061030CA2D1E4BECB1-36E2-4F76-B846-AC3FFB8C964BAB1F1628-BBEF-4FC1-83E7-A3864553A484C88242BF-FE48-4359-955A-72E88D622E55D6269218-1396-4E95-9763-CBAAC8A3AA671EEB5A9F-AC80-4ECE-A8E9-2FF17146064C8EDD1802-66DC-4869-99DD-DBC297CFD44C8E4D55F7-2F82-4DAD-8E0A-4EDEA9B458984AEC3BD1-9FC5-4E13-8BBA-6D5CE44F497F7AB44840-E45D-4B76-B2EB-80361EA69E0FC2808A12-D7D6-4797-98F2-51808F10D011684051D3-5858-42E5-B19B-9E25E5328B72F8E0B296-24E7-450A-BB6A-1B7E18A37041

D2817EEA-5DAF-47CC-9124-32DA42E9DADAAAE05AF1-DFD6-49E4-911F-7D5268F1E983327AE5D9-39D2-4DFD-941D-06035BB49848FC739D55-EC90-466E-AFFD-1CD77EC85B47671B418C-C07B-493C-A4C4-CA5E91060A393EC710B4-D17F-4002-94FC-45EC308F19434A09F9BC-C59A-48D7-8181-0B2830AF1C11D63A6150-8512-4FFC-9E27-E824646CE47FF3DAF059-FB5C-4B72-AADE-A3C40FF28DC9A095D462-4429-49FA-AD96-360DD1273D4C2561F846-0BBF-44CD-B4B4-23DDF8554E4B4600B07B-3976-4037-B41F-7F9258C39669E9C494C5-D4F9-4CE5-8030-0EF2D19EFD693F1CF513-C007-406A-8823-A681F73783F7FB9490C6-AD82-4E01-8125-B1FD2F9829902E8666F9-7CA6-4E64-AA0D-5422B9E043585AA72CA0-5F8B-4A03-8DE5-36B0A0B72911CBB0BC00-7393-4960-8E79-929932E48BEFFFF909D3-A44D-4454-B07F-F0E8DD089903950DCE66-FAD6-44E4-94C6-19EE46589ADFC18BA273-D1EA-453A-8F84-569F0836A77C176BA1C3-D6DD-475B-90A7-031469210F97

 

 

Watch Review: Aevum Apex GT

004AC472-2992-4F94-AF5E-64CB9BD1D5D1

I was recently watching the movie “League of Extraordinary Gentlemen” and it’s one of those movies that I just like. Not that it contains the best acting or best story, but it’s just a fun movie to watch. As you know I am obsessed with the ocean, and of course I gravitate towards Captain Nemo. I think this movie gives a very interesting take on Captain Nemo and he is obviously my favorite of the line up of characters. He is unique, has great eccentricity and he has an amazing arsenal of vehicles. His best vehicle in my opinion is his car. A car that merges two world together, the world of the sea and the world of the road, automobile meets nautical. Then my mind went right to the watch that we will be exploring together today, the Aevum GT, a watch that merges these two worlds together.

973DB4D6-AC9C-4790-AB6E-B67D9A96710E

The precisely brushed stainless steel case has that vintage charm of the dive watches of the 1970’s, but with modern touches and dimensions 42×47 mm by 11 mm thick. As I was looking over the watch, at the details that I was seeing on this case, it led to one consistent thought that this watch is going to wear like a comfortable dream. What led me to this early conclusion was a few details. First we have the short, slightly curved lugs that are interrogated from the single block of machined stainless steel which cuts back on any wrist overhang. The next detail was the 11mm thin profile teaming that with my initial handling of this watch discovering the overall light weight of this piece, I knew at that point it was going to be a very comfortable ride.

D10F3ABA-3CAD-46EE-A0B0-898F8795D9D0

As I have grown to expect and 100% appreciate on watches the details involving the crown. I think that a crown should be a detail that is a harmonious merging of both form and function. As I looked at this crown before exploring the function, I took notice that Aevum got the form part right. The crown features nice machined edges and also features Aevum’s shield logo. The small crown guards that extend from the block of stainless steel have nice rounded and smooth edges. Now some of these details of form also lend a hand to the function of this crown. The smooth, small crown guards and the machined edged of the crown, allow for absolute ease of crown operation. The screw down style crown is easy to grip and operate, and it functions without flaw.

C8E1460D-7CD3-4D96-8825-E02C87D0D6CD

Another detail that should always follow that form and function theory is the bezel. The bezel on a watch is not only a focal point, but it can also prove to be quite a useful tool. The bezel on the GT watch here is has a few note worthy details that I really like in terms of the form. The bezel inlay is made of sapphire which looks fantastic and is an extremely scratch resistant. The form and function comes together nicely again with the markers on the bezel. The numerals are crisp and legible in daylight and are treated with C1 lume so it remains legiable even at night. The bezel are a useful tool can be used as a second time zone for travel, or as a timing instrument. As I moved on to the function portion of the bezel I was definitely pleased with how easy the bezel was to grip and how tight/solid it felt as I rotated it. I completely appreciated the awesome sound of the bezel and the no extra play was appreciated even more.

E8B8FF74-B00E-4496-AD62-59DC80DEF660

A dial on a watch can definitely be a dealbreaker as we all know. The case and dial are the real focal points on a watch. Something that I have grown to really like a lot are orange dials on a watch. Orange has definitely become my second favorite color for a dial, matte black is my first favorite. The sundown orange on the Aevum GT is quite beautiful. It’s not an in your face blinding orange either, it’s subtle, a slightly darker shade of orange. The orange truly allows for the other details on the dial to pop, especially the black hands and the black printed text.

E985187F-175C-42DA-A9D8-04A5D43E4F2E

What’s a good way to make the dial pop even more along with the bold color? Border the dial with an ivory white rehaut and applied markers within the nice cut outs in the rehaut itself. That is how a bit of detail in one place can completely complement a detail even if it is located somewhere else on the watch. Aevum has given a great example of this with their Apex GT watch. The lume treatment on the Apex GT is quite lovely and made me realize how much in fact I appreciate lume on the bezel markers. The bezel, applied hour markers and hands themselves all have matching lume that glows with the same green intensity. I only wish that the seconds hand received some lume treatment.

CEDC8257-F28C-4907-BF67-72CF0F45EE01

Ticking away inside the Apex GT is “Seiko’s powerhouse NH35A automatic movement. It’s hacking, has a 40 hour power reserve and is hand windable as well as self-winding with a bi-directional rotor.”  The movement held up flawlessly during my review process and during all my outdoors activity with it, it still timed in at -10 seconds per day. To my pleasant surprise, the Apex GT stayed on my wrist without bother and with extreme comfort all day and night. I was very impressed with the handmade leather strap that it came on, so impressed in fact that it earned a spot on my favorite leather strap list.

2C91835C-C31A-4511-8ACD-AD58E9C49129

My overall feeling about this watch is definitely a positive one. The 1970’s vintage dive watch feel is definitely a plus with this watch. I recently tried a well know company known for their dive watches since the 1960’s and I would pick the Apex GT over that watch every time. There is something that is extremely appealing about this watch. The two worlds that this watch pulls inspiration from, merge together seamlessly. The only thing that I found that I would change on the Apex GT is the seconds hand by adding lume to it and an arrow head tip.

This watch certainly has some noteworthy details and comes with some nice extras. At approximately $233 USD entry kit and free shipping, it is a hard deal to pass up in my opinion. Aevum has a nice little watch here and their excellent customer service just adds to a positive experience. I would easily recommend this watch to anyone looking for an affordable dive watch with an automatic movement and a design that isn’t the same old design that we have seen done a million times before. The handmade leather strap is one of my favorite parts of this package, which is included in the enthusiast kit for $272 USD, which is still a great value in my opinion.

I would like to personally thank you for reading and as always your comments and questions are welcome below.

A special thank you to Aevum Watches.

https://www.aevumtime.ca/Inside-NA.html

 

D36967F7-586B-4D5F-B478-14AE8BC0ADE0112697E7-B25A-4A97-A6E6-EBB97A1B532EA699281D-9915-43E0-B9C5-03E0953AB7D70E1E698B-7147-4B2C-B292-B29DDC67A0D69D76F259-5802-4661-8D88-F712E4620231334C6044-95AF-44BC-888D-85060F3D079884831631-374E-45B7-98E0-4FF959731B307A530E09-B398-4A17-B730-D46E9EBC28BB638E32A2-47B5-4E1F-8C55-562CBD4D4F3D1DE70210-8C35-462F-BCF5-0A2ACDE150D41185492B-5564-4B10-B21C-32AB9F49499C9DE9FFDE-3E0C-4F81-9A85-6D1541D8A3A26D6CE052-16DC-4ACE-843B-C36BE1DE49F94D84683C-CA83-4295-90A1-FD85F8077A01