The Butler J80 is named after Jet Route 80, a flight path that spans from California to Maine. This globe-girdling skylane helped pilots fly without instruments back then that was a thing.

The new J80 is an homage to all that. The Butler line is made for pilots by pilots and as a tool watch and quartz chrono it is truly one of the nicest I’ve seen from a small manufacturer.

The first thing you’ll notice about the J80 is the austere design. Slightly evocative of the original Speedmasters, the J80 has a white on black dial with big, sharp lumed hands. It has a small date window at six o’clock and an elapsed minutes dial at 9 o’clock. A running seconds hangs out at 3 o’clock.

The founder of Butler, Corey Butler, is a pilot himself and loves watches. I would argue that this makes him a pretty solid expert on pilot watches and what folks need in the cockpit. What I see here is a very simple, very austere watch that is easy to read, easy to set, and easy to use. It’s exactly what you need in a cockpit.

This Swiss Made piece costs $459 with the metal bracelet or $489 for the DLC coated model. You can also get a leather band.

I think it’s nice to own gear that is beloved by the men and women who use it every day. A pilot should know what a pilot needs in the cockpit and it’s clear the Butler put a lot of thought and effort into creating a readable, usable watch for the exacting standards of modern flight. Who knows, after all, if maybe you’ll find yourself in a cockpit without a clock and have to look down at your trusty chrono.

Hour and minute sweep hands. Sub–dial with seconds hand. Date at 6 o’clock position. Chronograph with 30 minute counter sub–dial and center stop–second sweep hand. Add and Split functions.
Swiss Made Ronda Caliber 5021.D Analog Quartz movement. Power saving mechanism with pulled out stem. Operating temperature 0 to 50° C.
40mm Ø dia. 12mm Height. 20mm Lug Width. 316L Stainless Steel case with brushed metal finish or DLC Black matte finish.
Case Back
316L Stainles Steel screw down case back with decoration.
Domed Sapphire Crystal with anti-reflective coated interior.
Screw down Stainless Steel Crown with logo decoration.
Metal Dial face and inner bezel with SuperLumiNova ® luminous compound coated numerals, indexes, and hands.
Water Resistance
10 atmosphere/100 meter/330 feet water resistance.
Genuine Leather strap Made in the USA.
Certified Swiss Made according to the standards of the Swiss Federal Council.

By John Biggs

John lives in Brooklyn and has loved watches since he got his first Swatch Irony automatic in 1998. He is the editor of WristWatchReview.

One thought on “The Butler J80 roars into the stratosphere”
  1. Butler is offering 20% off to WristWatchReview readers. Use coupon code “WWR” at checkout to receive your discount.

Leave a Reply