Watch Review: OWC Military Submersible

The MS-6538 case is 40.5mm case and is equipped with a 4.5mm thick sapphire while retaining a slim 12.9mm thickness. The crystal is treated with an AR coating for assisting with glare resistance.

The bezel and the 8mm crown both feature knurled edges. The Mil-Sub’s lugs are drilled and have a spacing of 20mm. The insert of the bezel is made of ceramic. Securing the bezel in place are four 1.0 mm screws.

This version of the Mil-Sub has a blue gradient dial with SuperLumiNova C3 coated applied indices and hands. Along with the new dial variant, this 6538 also features the OWC’s new version of the “snowflake” style hands. This version of the 6538 also has the new orange second hand.

The MS-6538 is the latest diving watch from the OWC (Orange Watch Company) in its ISO (In the Spirit Of) Series of watches. It takes its inspiration from the Rolex 6538 made famous in the early James Bond films with Sean Connery wearing this watch while saving the world from SPECTRE. This is OWC’s 8th iteration of the classic diver. OWC watches are incorporate some interesting technology which separates them from other “microbrands. Dan the man behind OWC, he remains quite busy always trying to refine his dive watches. He is like a mechanic, and ironically Dan has been quoted many times explaing his watches as “they are like a Porsche 911 – the same but different”

The DNA of the MS-6538 is obvious, as is the inspiration,  but the “devil” of this watch is in the details. Dan has gone through many changes in life and like life Dan has made many changes to his watches. Although these changes are hard to see, rest assure the detail is more than “skin deep”. The are quite a few 6538 models/clones out there, so why do we need another? What separates this one from the others? The MS-6538 is an inspirational piece with so many departures from just the inspirational. If you want a 6538 clone, this is not the watch for you.

The MS-6538 case is 40.5mm case and has no crown guard. The 4.5mm thick sapphire which is quite impressive given that the watch is only 12.9mm. This is where OWC uses pure engineering. The case can be defined as a “Fluid-Tight” case or a Super Compressor case. The MS-65-38 is among very few watches that use this revolutionary technique. To explain this in simple terms, the crystal and the case back are free to move. As pressure increases the crystal and back are forced together and the watch becomes more water resistant. This is not a new, with the idea patented by E. Piquerez S.A (ESPA) back in the 1950’s.

*Please note that many companies try to deceive with the “supposed compressor style case” that the watch actually has the compressor technology inside. Don’t be fooled by this blatant bullshit.*

The larger 8.0mm crown is an ideal size for function and appearance. The size and the knurled edges assist the wearer with the function aspect. The screw down crown operates with smooth threading without that “grit and grab” feel that is often found on other watches in this price range and above. The pendant (crown tube) is screwed (not pressed) into the case. There are added internal splines inside adding to the technical side of the 6538. The watch is tested to 30ATM (300m) of water resistance. The crown gaskets are specially sized and produced specifically for the MS-6538.

OWC has been using ceramic inserts for some time. Ceramic inserts are very scratch resistant, and they also tend to maintain their clean appearance for much longer than aluminum inserts. The bezel have no extra play during function of rotation. The 4 tiny screws on the side of the bezel aides in the cleaning process by allowing easy access of removing the bezel. Dan recommends having it done professionally because the l.0mm screws can be easily lost due to the delicate size.

Dan has taken the best that exists and had made it better which is demonstrated by the massive 4.5mm sapphire crystal with anti-reflective (AR) coating. The crystal sits on an O-ring and is secured with a crystal retaining ring (a la Omega Ploprof from the 1970’s). Improving upon just basic AR coatings, the 6538 AR coating are done in a multilayer process and include an extra hardening step, which not only increases the durability but also increases the clarity for superb visibility.

The craftsmanship continues inside the case of the 6538 as evidenced by the fact there is no movement ring inside the watch. Movement rings can move or distort over time. The inside of the 6538 is milled to the exact dimensions of the movement. The movement is then installed from the top and secured from the bottom. Normal servicing can be done by simply taking off the 6 case-back Torx screws. No other milsub does this!

The dial is now available in this blue no date version. The compulsory “snowflake” hour hand is present partnered with a and a very long stylish minute hand, which reaches out to the rehaut. I actually prefer the orange color of the second hand vs the red second hand found on other versions of the 6538. As many of you know from personal experience, superLumiNova C3 provides flashlight level luminescence. Like most of OWC watches, the text on the dial is minimalistic. The minute track has been moved from the dial itself to the rehaut (sight ring) which aides in making the dial super clean/legible.

The MS-6538’s bracelet is 20mm. The sure heft of the 4.0mm thick links adds a rugged feel. The links are 33% thicker than most bracelets on the market. The bracelet does not taper and has a butterfly deployant clasp. Dan explains this choice “some may find this strange, but being a pragmatist, most diving watches rarely see the bottom of a sink, this is more than adequate and makes it a perfect partner with cuffs and a suit.”  I have personally taken almost every type of clasp out their diving and I have never have an issue with any type, including butterfly style. Each link can be removed (torx screws again) and there are also 2 ½ links that makes sizing the bracelet for even the most elegant wrists a breeze. The bracelet is attached to the watch with solid screw bars, not spring bars. These are strong and while some MilSubs have fixed bars, the Screw Bar offers the strength of the fixed with easy attachment and removal. This is a detail that I rarely see and I completely appreciate. Something else that I initially didn’t appreciate at first, but as the years go on I completely appreciate, are drilled lugs. This little detail makes bracelet and strap changes so much easier and less likely to scratch up the lugs.

As I have discovered, Dan from OWC has OCD and is more than happy to be honest about his condition. He is a little too black and white, his focus is far more on engineering than it is on aesthetics. He has written extensively on the benefits of Torx vs Philips vs Hex heads. He uses Torx screws throughout this watch including the minimalistic case back.

One very small point that most will not see, is the changed solid end links. The solid end link is now longer and it follows the lug right to the end. I have never see this on any other watch. This means the first middle link is longer and the bracelet hugs the wrist better. OWC sources the parts from different manufacturers in different counties and they all arrive in Orange for inspection. If the part (including movement) is not up to par it is thrown away and the search continues until it is found to meet OWC’s standards. Each watch is assembled and tested individually. Every OWC watch is individually made to order which gives a special and individualistic feel to your timepiece. OWC is very transparent in their sources, they source from China, Taiwan, Japan, Hong Kong, Germany, Switzerland. Currently trailing leather bands from Vietnam, using OWC’s own leather. But these are not quite up to OWC’s standards yet, but I am very excited to see them once they meet OWC’s high standards.

OWC uses 2 physical identically sized movements that are worlds apart. The entry level movement is a 2892-A2 clone – not the cheaper and less refined 2824-2 or the popular choice amongst micro-brands, the Miyota 9015. OWC’s movements are made by Seagull, China’s premium  watch manufacturer. They are far more expensive than the 2824-2, the 9015 and the 6R15 and offer better performance. If movements choices were a tree, then the Soprod A-10 (now called the M100) Swiss made automatic movement would be towards the top of that tree. Currently only a handful of high end makers such as Sarpaneva use this movement. It is based on a Seiko 4L25 (unconfirmed by Soprod), but as Dan says, “it is the closest one can get to a Grand Seiko without actually buying one.”

Some might think that the MS-6538s price is on the high side. While it is on the high side when it compares to micro-brand watches on the market, but if you look at the engineering and overall design, the MS-6538 punches far above its weight. This watch that has clever engineering, great execution and understatement.

I want to thank Dan & OWC and Thank you all for reading.

Watch Review: DUZU F-35 Pilot

The Specs.

The F-35 specification is as follows:

CASE MATERIAL

Titanium alloy with brushed finish

CASE DIAMETER

42mm (excluding crown) CASE LENGTH: 51.5mm

CASE HEIGHT

12.5mm (case), 14.5mm (including crystal + lugs)

LUG WIDTH

22mm

CROWN DIAMETER

8mm screwed down custom crown with lume 

CRYSTAL

Single domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating

DIAL

Custom dial with lumed markers and numbers

CASEBACK

Custom titanium alloy caseback with deep etched logo and watch specification

LUME

Superluminova lume to markers, hour/min.hands and dial. Available in BGW-9, C3 and Dark Orange

WATER RESISTANCE

100m / 300 feet

MOVEMENT

Japan made automatic Miyota 9122, 26 jewels

STRAP

Cordura with leather internal lining and custom titanium buckle

The F-35 is the sophomore release for Australian brand Duzu which is headed by the passionate Wayne McCay. Wayne was nice enough to send me the F-35 prototype so that I can take it for a spin, actually for a flight. Just like Wayne’s dive watch, the F-35 definitely impressed me. The solid piece of titanium that makes up 75% of the case is executed with precision. I love the simplicity of this case and it’s no unnecessary added bullshit attitude. The only area that didn’t impress me on the case is the button pusher that changes the month sub dial. I would have preferred a subset button that required a special tool to change the month. This would have added even more of a clean/simplistic look to the case. Making this change would also allow for a larger crown thus making it that much easier to grip and operate.

The dial is a modern take on the classic pilot watch dial and it absolutely works brilliantly. This dial is extremely legible with the white accents that are set against the matte black dial. The contrast makes the dial the extremely easy to read even with the quickest of glances. The large, semi skeletonized hands are my personal favorite detail on the F-35 dial.(the 12,6 are a close second) The utilitarian hands are my ideal width and length and by this I mean that the width of the hands don’t allow the hands to get lost amongst the dial and by length the hands reach to the hour, minute, and seconds markers.

Despite the amount of detail on this dial, it is still simplistic. The two sub dials are dedicated to the date, the dial at the 3 o’clock position is for the month, the dial at the 9 o’clock position is for the 7 days of the week and then the small circular date window is located between the 4/5 o’clock position. The added detail of the date dials being subset lower that the dial itself adds a nice amount of depth to the F-35 dial without that overcrowding too busy feel. Duzu kept consistency on the dial as evidenced by the Duzu logo also being subset. These little details actually become much larger details overall because it shows commitment to delivering a product that even the smallest of details were intentionally thought out/executed.

Speaking of details, the caseback is packed full of cool details, details about the watch itself and details through art. As you can see by the pictures, it has that badass military look/feel to it which is consistent to the entire watch itself. Even the strap itself retains that consistent level of badassery. The tough cordura is double stitched with matching blue-gray stitching which is attached to a closely matching blue-gray leather lining. The strap has a titanium pin style buckle which is signed with the Duzu logo.

The F-35 is a stunning beauty which is made with quality and more importantly attention to detail. When Wayne told me of his plans to create a pilot watch as a follow up to his diver, I have to be honest I wasn’t very excited. When he sent me the renderings, then my excitement began to take root. I was filled with more excitement when I saw the prototype pictures and then the more important step happened. I received the prototype and my excitement was confirmed. Everything functions with absolute precision and it looks damn good while it functions.

The watch wears extremely comfortably on the wrist thanks to the lightness of titanium and because of the case size itself. The F-35 is an excellent example of where size doesn’t matter. I personally prefer that 45mm-47mm case size but when a watch is extremely well designed I don’t pay attention to the size of a case. It becomes about the watch itself and it’s design details coming together in consistent harmony! This watch is exactly that, a watch that makes you forget what case size you prefer and what style of watch you prefer. Hell of a deal especially if you get in on the $329 super early bird.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/f-35/274451188?ref=8mpdd3&token=d865f9b7

I will be doing a follow up review to this when I have a chance to experience an actual production piece. Thanks Wayne for this honor and opportunity for allowing me to spend time with the F-35 prototype.

Thank you all for reading!

Watch Review: Zoid MYSTERY

“Zoid Mystery, an avantegard collection that tells time in a unique way” Zoid Website. Unique is definitely a perfect way to describe this watch. I first saw this style of many years ago and I never took the time to really look deeper into it………Fast forward to 2019 now I had the chance to explore this style of time telling dial closely with Zoid’s Mystery.

The modified automatic miyota movement is housed within a 46mm x 12mm stainless steel 316L case.

Winding, setting the time can be accessed via the push/pull stainless crown that is decorated with an etched Zoid logo.

The Zoid Mystery caseback is done in the exhibition style allowing a look at the modified miyota movement.

Strapping the Mystery onto the wrist is done via a quick release style calf leather strap which features a stainless buckle with an etched Zoid logo.

The matte black dial is bordered by a fixed bezel and can be viewed through a sapphire crystal.

Telling time on the Mystery is done via one oversized minute hand that is attached to the hour wheel. The printed hour numerals are coated with superluminova as it the oversized arrow shaped minute hand.

I definitely enjoy the unique style of the Zoid Mystery, both in the unique time telling and in the unique design of the case & dial. As unconventional as the dial may appear, it is extremely easy to understand/read what time it is. The large arrow shaped minute hand functions just as any minute hand does, rotating clockwise 360 degrees around the dial in 60 minutes. The minute hand is semi skeletonized, allowing the obvious view of the dial underneath it and also acting as a frame for the hour to be viewed for time telling purposes. In other words, the printed numeral on the hour wheel that is in the frame, is the hour of what time it is. As the oversized minute hand makes it’s journey around the dial, the hour wheel is rotating slowly until eventually the next hour comes into “frame”.

I really like how the dial is designed to look like a bunch of individual industrial plates that are riveted in place, giving the dial depth. Also giving this dial even further depth is the open heart and the exposed small circular gear. I’m not a huge fan of open hearts on a dial, but it works well on this dial and occasionally it’s covered up by the hour wheel. You get the best of both worlds in my opinion.

The Zoid Mystery was produced in very limited numbers, only 18 of each color variation were produced giving you not only a unique piece but also a “rare” piece. (As my kids refer to getting mystery pack characters, “did I get the rare one?”)

The Zoid Mystery is well executed in terms of design and quality. Is it perfect? No, but a few changes can make it closer to perfect. I don’t like the leather strap at all. It’s thin, and it feels cheap to me. I think that the crown should have been done as a screw down style. I don’t care about the argument of does a screw down crown really offer more protection, but I care that a screw down crown feels more durable. I understand Zoid’s decision to make the fixed bezel polished(catches the light) but I personally think that it would have looked better as a brushed matte finish.

Zoid absolutely nailed this dial, I love every detail on this dial. The consistency of the using the electric blue as accentuating detail on the hands, numerals, minute markers and the arrow/circle. The blue looks absolutely stunning against the matte black dial.

I believe that this style of dial/hands layout is going to be the next thing for a while. Azimuth did it many years ago and as awesome as their watch was, it was a little ahead of its time. I think Zoid’s Mystery will be the first of others to come.

https://zoidhours.com/collections/mystery/products/mystery-blue

$888.00 USD Zoid Mystery

Thanks so much to Alex and Zoid for this opportunity.

A huge thanks as always for reading my review!

Watch Review: EVOX DV1-05

Today we will be looking at a new release the DV1-05, from a new company EVOX. From the website: “Where heroes are made of, to fight, to conquer, to celebrate victory. To embrace victory, every timepiece is exquisitely designed and engineered to meet the demands of total defence of our homeland. We make sure our watches stay accurate and strong on your wrist.” Did EVOX live up to their promise? Let’s explore this watch and find out.

The watch is equipped with a raised, slightly domed sapphire crystal.

This version has my personal preference for a dial, which is glare resistant matte black. The applied markers and hands are coated with Superluminova. At the 9 o’clock position there is the orange bordered date window, a white date wheel with black print.

The case is 48mm x 15mm constructed out of 316L stainless steel black IP. The unique case shape is due to the large helium escape valve located on the right side of the case.

The watch features a large, oversized screw down crown that is signed with the EVOX soldier logo.

The screwed down stainless steel caseback features an embossed EVOX logo and some details about the watch, including the limited edition number out of 68.

The DV1-05 comes on an extremely soft orange silicone strap that is fitted with a case matching (signed) black buckle.

The DV1-05 is a nice debut piece for this new brand. Right now and for the next two weeks this watch can be purchased from http://www.evoxtime.com for $347 USD. There are a few areas for improvement in my opinion. The hour and minute hands are a nice size, shape and design while the second hand is undersized, has no lume and is mismatched to the hour and minute hands. In my opinion all watches that are specifically geared towards diving should have a lume coated second hand. My other area that would improve this watch in my opinion is to have eliminated the 1000m that is on the side of the case located where the helium escape valve is.

I do think that the watch features some details that make it a watch worth looking at, especially for those on that under $500 budget. The watch features a sapphire crystal, a large unique case, oversized screw down crown, and the 1000m depth rating. The bezel functions with precision, it’s easy to grip and lines up perfectly with the dial. At the 12 o’clock position on the bezel inlay is a lumed pip which is definitely helps when using the watch for diving or just timing in general.

Yes this is a large watch, but it wears comfortably especially because of the crown position on the left side of the case. This helps prevent anything digging into the back of your wrist/hand. The case is well constructed and extremely durable. As you can see in the pictures, the shorter lugs helps manage the 48mm case from wrist over hang. (I have 7 1/4″ wrists)

I wore the DV1-05 in several different environments during my review. It handled itself without fail in all environments from work, to the woods, to the water/beach. The dial was extremely legible no matter what lightning I was thanks to the large orange and white applied markers. The Miyota 8215 kept time within the movements time tolerance. The case and strap held up well as to be expected. Everything functions as I expect from a watch and quality control. Timing to the second would have been much easier had the second hand reached the chapter rings numbers. Despite the areas for improvement, the DV1-05 is a strong debut piece for the under $500 market. The DV1-05 is packed full of nice little details like the matching orange helium release valve to the orange on the bezel, the He stamped on the valve stem, just to name a few.

Pros:

Affordable preorder price

Well designed case

Legible dial

Everything functions without flaw

Cons:

Undersized second hand

No lume on second hand

Unique lugs makes changing to other straps difficult.

I want to thank EVOX. I also want to personally thank you for reading.

Watch Review: Advisor Ascent

On my journey to healing, I have found a lot of help thanks to meditation, exercise, self reflection and Buddhism. All of these have been an extremely helpful formula for me personally. There are days when I still struggle with PTSD, anxiety and panic attacks, but thankfully these things no longer control me. I wear a Tibetan skull prayer mala bracelet every day as a physical reminder to help keep myself centered. In Buddhism, the skull represents emptiness, which is regarded as a quality of this world. This usually means that has no character by itself. It is essentially saying all occasions are impartial – but we opt to magnify them. This is partially the reason why I was interested in seeing Advisors new Ascent watch, with this particular dial.

Without a doubt for me the open-heart layered skull dial is the attention grabbing center of attention on the Ascent. The brushed skull is set against a black background adding to the dials 3-dimensional appearance. The open heart is perfectly placed within the mouth of the skull. I am typically not a fan of skeleton dials or open heart but it works brilliantly here on the Ascent. Advisor kept everything else on this dial simple to allow the skull to be the obvious focal point. The gold hands are great accent details to the Ascent’s dial and case. The hands are not only perfectly sized to the dial but they are also coated with BGW9 lume. Protecting this dial and adding to the legibility is the scratch resistant sapphire crystal that is treated with an anti-reflective coating.

Advisor could have taken this dial one step further by adding lume to either the eyes of the skull or to behind the movement in “the mouth” of the skull. The details of the hands were done extremely well in terms of shape and overall execution. Both of the hands are segmented, almost in a cathedral style which adds to the completed look on the Ascent’s dial. The triangular tip of the hour hand, the sword shape of the minute hand and the arrow shaped second hand, all these details all the three to nicely accentuate each other. This dial is kept pretty clean as the text was kept to a minimum with just the Advisor logo and name located just under the 12 o’clock position.

The only numbers that can be found on this dial are on the rotating inner chapter ring. The top crown is responsible for operating the bi-directional chapter ring. I’m a little disappointed that this crown isn’t a screw down style crown, but it is full of beautiful detail as you can see from the pictures. Both crowns are easy to grip and operate because of both generous sizing and because of the edges of each crown. The bottom crown is screw down style and as you figured is responsible for setting the time and for manually winding the watch.

The case itself is 316L SS with IP rose gold plating and is 42mm x 13.5mm with a lug spacing of 22mm. The majority of the case has a brushed finish but does feature polished accents around the fixed bezel. The angular shaped edges of the bezel allow for the polished accents to be more pronounced especially when they catch the light. The angular shape of the lugs adds uniformity to the Ascent’s case, matching the angles of the bezel. The Ascent has a good hefty feel to it not anything like that toy watch feel of some titanium watches.

I absolutely love and appreciate the case back on the Ascent and you can see what I am talking about in the picture below. I am so glad that Advisor went this route and not with a sapphire crystal case back. A solid, engraved case back is much more interesting in my opinion.

The Ascent comes on a dark brown top grain calf leather strap and attaches to the wrist via a standard matching finish/rose gold coated pin style buckle. The strap and watch both wear comfortably on the wrist in all environments/conditions.

Currently the preorder price for this model is $310 and if you prefer the more classic style dial, that preorder price is $280. What should you expect for that price? I think if you are spending your hard earned money on any product you should expect quality first and foremost and if the quality isn’t there, then save your money for a quality piece. I definitely understand and respect wherever a person may fall into the financial affordability for watches. Not everyone can drop “big name” price amounts on a watch. The Ascent has some very nice details and specs for its price point. It also has some areas for improvement, not deal breakers, but areas to give a more finished product.

This watch is done in what Advisor refers to as a compressor case. Please note that the Advisor Ascent contains none of the actual compressor “technology” which would make it a true compressor case. Check out my review of the OWC 6538 for an more in-depth explanation of how a true compressor case works. https://www.google.com/amp/s/timetoblogwatches.com/2017/08/07/watch-review-owc-ms-6538-james-bond-crown/amp/

Thanks for reading my review and thanks to Advisor for the opportunity to explore the Ascent watch.

https://www.advisorwatches.com

Case Design: Custom-Made Case  

Case Material: 316L Stainless Steel(IP Plating with Rosegold)

Case Back: Screwed Down Embossed with Individually Numbered (limited to 150 pieces) 

Case Diameter: 42mm

Height: 13.5mm

Lug Width: 22mm

Dial: Open-Heart Layered Skull Dial

Bezel: Bi-directional Rotating Bezel

Date: With Date Function Index & Hands: Applied Index (BGW9 Luminous)

Crystal: Scratch Resistant Sapphire with Anti-Reflective Coating

Crown: Screwed Down

Movement: Automatic 82S0 (Miyota)

Water Resistance: 200m / 600ft

Straps: Top Grain Calf Leather

Watch Review: Fonderia Navale Stella

Variety is definitely the spice of life and when it comes to watches this is no different. I recently read something about bronze/brass watches being played out which I thought was a bit drastic. Why should we be limited to stainless steel and titanium? I personally love having a variety of choices in my collection and bronze/brass cases offer that variety in more ways than one. That variety can be taken further in terms of patina, forced, natural, or even if you prefer no patina, the fact that you can change the appearance of the case offers variety. I don’t consider bronze/brass watches as a trend, I consider them just another welcome option to case material.

Today we are looking at the newest dive watch offering from Fonderia Navale, Stella. For those of you who’s mind went to a Streetcar Named Desire you are not alone. But as iconic as that movie is, Stella in this case has a much older origin. Stella is the guiding spirit of the sea that is represented with Polaris the brightest star in the Ursa constellation. Polaris is notable for currently being the closest bright star to the North Celestial Pole. The pole marks true north, which makes the North Star important in navigation.

So let’s start with the immediate obvious here, that obvious being the case. Stella’s case measurements are 44 mm excluding the crown – lug to lug 53 mm and she is made up of CuSn6 bronze. When I received Stella she already had a good start on some natural patina. I personally love any kind of patina, therefore this was a welcome sight. The case is packed full of personality through design details.

I have to say that the fixed bezel is what truly caught my attention here on Stella. The bronze bezel held in place assisted by 6 steel screws. The steel is a nice contrast to the sea of bronze that makes up a majority of Stella’s case. Stella has a fantastic industrial shape to her case that makes her have a no nonsense appearance. At the ten o’clock position is the tin phosphor bronze screw down crown, measuring 10.5 mm. The material used was a conscious decision for the simple fact to avoid galvanic oxidation which would potentially negatively affect crown function/operation. The crown is extremely easy to grip and operate because of its generous size and edge design. The signed crown is nicely protected nestled close to the large angular drilled lug and single crown protector that extends out from the case itself. I personally love the crown itself and it’s placement on the watch case. Definitely works for me.

The screw down case back features a lovely compass rose that has been etched onto the stainless steel. A question that I have been asked quite a bit is why do bronze watches have stainless steel case backs? For those who haven’t experienced bronze/brass touching against the skin for extended period of time, the material will often cause greening on the skin. Certainly not life threatening but can be an annoyance to some people.

 When I saw the initial pictures of this dial, I wasn’t exactly sure how I was going to like the shade of green FN chose once I would see the watch in person. The green actually works really well because of all the other accenting details on this dial. I wasn’t sold on the green initially in person either. The oversized white and orange hands help in breaking up the sea of green. The oversizing of the hands and hour markers allow for Stella’s easy legibility. The flat sapphire crystal makes viewing Stella’s dial extremely easy from different angles. I definitely grew to appreciate the dial because of what FN did with the overall design. The textured dial combined with the applied markers, assist with keeping the dial from becoming a flat & monotonous bore.

The orange border around the chapter ring offers a nice touch of contrasting color to Stella’s dial. The chapter ring features a very legible white printed minute track, allowing for ease of timing even when your wrist is at awkward angles. Personally I could live without a date window on any watch and I could have done without it here on Stella. Date windows interrupt the flow of a dial in my opinion.

Stella comes on a brown leather strap with a standard pin style buckle. The strap has a good amount of padding to it which adds to the comfort of Stella when on the wrist. The patina/off white stitching on the strap is a nice little accent of detail that pulls together the strap and watch with continuity. I like that companies such as Fonderia Navale continue to bring out bronze/brass watches because variety is much appreciated. What is also appropriated is Fonderia Navale’s commitment to improving quality with each of their releases. Stella is by far their best piece to date in terms of overall quality and overall design. Stella keeps beating thanks to her heart which is a Citizen Miyota Parashock movement. This piece would be darn near perfect in my opinion if the date window was eliminated. My favorite details are the ones found on the case itself. The thick, drilled lugs, the bold fixed bezel, the oversized crown, the caseback, all work perfectly together. For just under $500 you definitely get your money’s worth here.

Thanks to Fonderia Navale and thank you all for reading!

Watch Review: Feynman One Classic

There are so many unique designs in the watch industry that catch my attention for good reason. Unfortunately there are also designs that are not so unique that blindly follow the herd. Yes the submariner is iconic but extremely boring which makes 99.9% of sub inspired watches even more pedestrian/boring.

These boring, uninspired designs allow watches like the Feynman’s One Classic to standout. The OC is a great example of what I say about the how too much attention is paid to the size of a watch case and not to the actual design. The OC caught my attention immediately not because of the 39mm x 12.5mm case size, but because of the case and dial designs. The gray dial is simplistic yet has enough smaller details that add up to make a bigger impact.

The dial of the OC is made up of textures and layers, giving the dial depth despite it’s overall simplicity. The black honeycomb style of the lowest section of the dial creates a nice backdrop for the sharp, silver steel hands. The hour and minute hands are sized perfectly for this dial allowing for ease of legibility and for overall aesthetics. The seconds are counted by their own sub-dial which is located at 7/8 o’clock position. The position of the sub-dial is a welcome break from the typical and symmetrical choice of placing it directly center at the 6 o’clock position. The curvature of the second hand is quite a small yet beautiful detail. The gray and black color scheme of the dial is broken up with the welcome addition of the blue pinion cap.

Feynman allowed the textured details to create the overall unique beauty of this dial instead of packing it full of unnecessary printed details. There are very simple printed numerals on the very outer minute/hour track and on the inner track as well. Simple Roman numerals representing 12 & 6 on the outer track and Arabic 12 & 6 on the inner track. The exclusion of a date window helps keep the chi to flow throughout this dial brilliantly. One detail that is responsible for the initial grabbing of my attention is actually the small plaque at the 4/5 o’clock positions on the dial that has Feynman simply printed in black. I also appreciate the contrast in printing the second track in black on the silver backdrop and the white printed track on the dark gray backdrop on the dial and the chapter ring.

The highly decorated details of the mechanical ETA “Peseux” 7001 movement can be viewed via the OC’s exhibition case back. Mechanical movements will always have a soft spot in my heart because they remind me of my grandfather’s pocket watch. The case back isn’t the only detail on the OC case that is worth mentioning. The uniformity between the case side and the signed crown are some details that are definitely worth mentioning because they certainly are attention grabbers. The lines of both the diamond shaped crown and sides of the case are quite beautiful especially when the light catches them perfectly.

The angles of the solid lugs are just as unique as the other details found throughout the OC. Unique uniformity. The brushed finish on the lugs plays nicely off of the brushed finish on the fixed bezel. Light also plays nicely off of the polished portions of this case. The genuine lizard leather strap allows the OC to wear with all day comfort and the texture/color accents this piece perfectly. The OC is a versatile watch because it can easily transition from work to play. I definitely recommend this piece to anyone who is looking for a break from the monotony of watch clones that are over saturating the industry right now. The quality of this piece is fantastic and Feynman’s attention to detail is apparent throughout this watch.

https://feynman.watch

Case Diameter

39mm

Lug to Lug

45mm

Case Height

12.5mm

Lug Width

20mm

Case Water Resistance

100m / 10atm

From the Feynman website:

 

Who we are

Primarily, watch lovers. Feynman is a collective of collectors and artisans, who share a common passion for watches. We believe in the art of Mechanical Timekeeping, and work towards sharing our reverence with the world, starting with the communities closest to us.

What we aspire towards

1) Creating mechanical timekeepers for watch lovers

2) Inculcating an appreciation of watches in new watch collectors

3) Spreading the passion for mechanical timepieces

What we are inspired by

The prevalent beautify that is all around us, in both natural and urban environments, extracting aesthetic inspiration from all that is beautiful in our surroundings. We seek guidance from natural design principles, as well as architectural practices, creating silhouettes which are aesthetically pleasing, coupled with synergistic colour palettes, to create designs which will stand the test of time.

 

About the Feynman One collection

In the inaugural release, Feynman introduces the Feynman One, a mechanical hand-winding timekeeper which seeks to revive our interaction with our watch. The Feynman One is a modern interpretation of classic silhouettes and design cues, creating an entirely new visual take on the dress watch.

With the Feynman One, we were able to achieve our idealised vision of a modern dress watch, with a multi-layered dial design, unconventional case, and a venerable Swiss movement.