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Sneak Peek: The MAEN Skymaster 38 is coming

MAEN is exactly what we like to see: They began life making a very nice quartz moonphase. And that would have been enough, but they have since followed up with the hard work of making automatics like the Hudson diver. What do they decide to do after making the Hudson? This is a sneak peek at the Skymaster 38 Automatic Chronograph.

UNDONE takes us back to BASECAMP

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Basecamp is where you set up supplies and camp before beginning an ascent. It’s also UNDONE’s latest customizable watch. UNDONE has a history of making watches with online customizer websites, so that you can choose how you’d like your watch to look. This time, UNDONE’s back with BASECAMP, a vintage styled dive watch.

Ferdinand Berthoud takes us to the moon

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The Chronomètre FB 1L is one of those watches that stops the heart. This beautiful piece shows the time at 12 o’clock and “large hand at 6 o’clock indicates the age and phases of the moon in a continuous back and forth movement.” The watch is accurate to within 577 years of operation. Yeah, you read that right: the moon phase will be correct for centuries.

Hands on with the very Unique DWISS RS1

DWISS (Design Watch Independent Switzerland) was founded in 2011 by Rafael Simoes Miranda. After designing hundreds of watches for over 15 different brands, Miranda decided to branch out on his own and comes up with his own line of unique Swiss made watches. The latest series from DWISS is the R1 Collection, and you can get some nice really nice options. There are two dial options for the R1; the RS1 and the RC1. Movement options range from quartz, automatic, and even a tourbillon. I was able to get my hands on the RS1-BL which is their blue and black model with an automatic movement. I have worn this for a week now and here are my thoughts.

Hands on with the Meccaniche Veneziane Nereide

I have been following Meccaniche Veneziane since they started and really like the look of their watches. When I found out that after January 2018 all of their watches were going to be Swiss made, I got pretty excited. The folks at Meccaniche Veneziane were kind enough to send me out a Meccaniche Veneziane Nereide to review, and I like what I see. So what does Meccaniche Veneziane mean, and what is a Neriede?

Hands on with Hamilton’s new Jazzmaster Thinline Automatic

The Jassmaster Thinline Auto is a 40mm automatic that offers the ideal size and other watch-wearing essentials like an ETA automatic, sapphire crystal, and display case back. If you want a basic dress watch with super simple and reliable elements, then you may need to have this watch in your arsenal.

Background

Hamilton continues to be a respected player in the Swatch Group’s middle-range market along with sister companies like Tissot, Certina, and Mido. This year, the 38mm Field Mechanical from Hamilton’s Khaki Collection got a lot of attention with its vintage-inspiration.

With less fanfare, the Jazzmaster Collection released this Thinline Auto 40mm.  If you go searching for this Thinline keep an eye out for other models with a similar look. The Slim Auto has a 43mm. There’s also an Intra-Matic Auto that shares a similar dial design but straddles the sizes with a 38mm and a 42mm in their American Classic Collection.

First Impressions

The sample I got from Hamilton had me at “hello.” The polished case was brighter than the images on Instagram and the dial color was striking. The leather strap was soft and easy to size although the crown was a little small for my sausage fingers.

The crown may be small, but the case size is spectacularly perfect. I loved their watches of the 50s and 60s, but always laugh when I see the small size on my wrist. I feel like I’m a giant, even though my wrist is only 7.5” in diameter. Today’s watches at 42mm seem too large and often feel like a fashionable ticking timebomb. Eventually, the size is going to be too big.  The 40mm case size (and varying lug to lug lengths) is my sweet spot.

The size of the dial to case can convey a larger or smaller feel, and this one looks larger since there’s not a lot of case around the dial. The Doxa dive watches are great examples of a what a small dial can do to the overall feel of the watch.

Case size, height, crystal and dial

The case is 9mm slim by my calipers and the sapphire crystal has no meaningful impact on the height. The crown was a little disappointing since it seemed exceptionally small, or because I’m used to my Oris Big Crown Propilot. I guess the crown size is a good thing since the case can still be big for those who like the 38mm case size when crown digs into the wrist. This crown will not do that at all.

The case has a high polish finish and weighs practically nothing. I was a little disappointed in the weight thinking that the heavier a watch means tough, but that’s not completely rational. I know this. The great thing was that the 53 grams had exceptional comfort for the entire day of wear.

Part of the comfort comes from knowing how easy it is to change straps. They used a “EasyClick” system to provide a tool-free means of removing the straps, which come in four colors including the white champagne dial I reviewed and the slate gray, midnight blue, and bronze. The strap also had a polished and signed buckle which was exceptionally easy to size for the wrist.

The luminescence is slight on these dials, but I didn’t mind it too much, because you really want to see these dials in full sun. The light hitting the color is very handsome. The date window at 6 o’clock is small but not deep under the dial making the date easy to read from any view point. There is no seconds hand and I really didn’t miss it. I doubt you will either.

Movement

The ETA 2892-A2 is the standard bearer of automatics in the Swatch Group family and this movement is not a surprise. I was surprised how audible the rotor was as I wore it. I could tell it was delivering on its promise to wind the mainspring, but at times I didn’t want to hear it.

Cost and value

Face it. Everyone needs at least one, thin dress watch that will be an understated time teller when you’re dressed up. This one offers the dial and strap options for any taste, has a basic reliable movement and sapphire crystal, and has the brand that’ll be around for a long time.  It retails for $945 USD on their Web site.

Watch Overview:

  • Brand & Model: Price: Who we think it might be for: This is for the person who loves the vintage simplicity design and modern, hassle free every day dress watch.
  • Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: I would buy this watch.
  • If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: I would experiment with crown sizes that are easier to grab and set.
  • What spoke to me the most about this watch: I wanted to wear this watch the minute I saw it. It’s the ideal size with timeless design.

Specifications:

  • Brand Model: Hamilton Jazzmaster Thinline Automatic Reference H38525811
  • Movement: Automatic ETA 2892-A2
  • Size of case diameter: 40mm
  • Lug Width: 20mm
  • Case height: 9mm
  • Weight: 53g
  • Case material: Stainless Steel
  • Case Back: Open Case Back
  • Crown: Stainless Steel
  • Crystal material: Sapphire Crystal
  • Water resistance: 5 bar (50 m)
  • Strap/Bracelet material: Leather

 

 

Normalzeit Vienna cube clock on my wrist!

Back in the early 1900’s when the people of Vienna Austria needed to set their watches, they would set them to the time on the public clocks. There was some issues with doing this however. The public clocks were not that accurate and there were different time zones within the city districts. In 1907 the first electronic Normalzeit, or normal time clock was erected. In 1910, Vienna started following Greenwich Mean Time, which meant an end to the multiple time zones. More and more of these Normalzeit clocks were erected and now people all over the city of Vienna could accurately check the time and set their watches anywhere in the city.

Hamilton Jazzmaster Face 2 Face II: The Dual Personality Watch

Do you hate it when a complete stranger stops you to ask about the watch you’re wearing? Are you a watch introvert and afraid to divulge your strange passion for wrist watches? If either of these applies to you, please do not buy the Hamilton Jazzmaster Face 2 Face II! If, like me, you’re a sick and twisted wrist voyeur and see every social situation as an opportunity to geek out on watches, read on. This may just be the perfect watch for you.

Introducing the TC-9 1970s Diver in Stainless Steel

Taking inspiration from vintage divers, TC-9 has made some pretty cool looking watches. I have reviewed their TC-9 1970’s Bronze Diver and their TC-9 Bronze Navy. Both were very cool and I really do like bronze watches. However, it was nice to see, that they have now offered their TC-9 1970’s diver in stainless steel. TC-9 was able to send me one, which I have been wearing it for about a week straight and I must say I am very pleased with this watch. Lets take a look at this tough, not-so-little diver.

Hands on with the LIV Rebel – Dare to LIV!

Back in March of 2017 I did the review for this LIV Rebel Kickstarter, which you can see here. Their Kickstarter campaign was one of the most successful watch campaigns ever. LIV brought in over 1.7 million dollars which I must say is a bit more than their $30,000 goal. I have been anxiously awaiting the production of these watches so I could get my hands on one – and finally my day has come.  LIV watches was able to send me out the LIV Rebel A and I am loving what I see.