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Samson Watch Company Tourbillon – Cheap? Good?

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Looks like the Chinese tourbillon juggernaut is slowly marching across the horizon and this one, by the Samson Watch Company – not affiliated with the Delilah Haircutting Shears Company – is no exception. Apparently this thing actually isn’t that bad and keeps good time. But when everyone owns a tourbillon, how can tourbillon makers jack up the price?

Do you really get what you pay for? A report. [TimeZone]

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.

The October 2017 WWR Giveaway: Bosun Nautical Minimalist Watch

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Avast ye swabbies! Raise the mainsail and set the rudder because we’re on a long voyage to watchtown, population you. Bosun is a new minimalist watch with a nautical theme that could be yours if you read on.

This minimalist quartz is launching with a Kickstarter in November but until then the team at Bosun want you to feast your eyes on their beautiful watches. The watches come in silver and gold and feature a stark face with thin pips and thinner hands.

The team asks that you hop over to their site to check out their current offerings but they want to give one of you an early version of their brand new models that will launch in November. It’s a great opportunity to grab a great watch.

To get your chance at winning this sea-faring beauty, we’ve got our standard two-part process:

  1. Comment below on why you love the sea
  2. Head on over to the giveaway page and complete your entry

Our thanks to Bosun for sponsoring this giveaway; to our readers, good luck!

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.

Tudor Pelagos ref 25500TN on the wrist

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I love a lightweight watch. In steel, this usually means I need a smaller watch, or a thinner watch. The difference between 140 and 160 grams is something I can feel, and as the day wears on, it gets worse heavier. This all gets better when wearing a watch made of that difficult-to-work-with metal, titanium.

Check out the raised lume plots and beautiful notched chapter ring. Note that the lume plots up close seem to have small whiskers rather than being perfect cubes.

This is one of the most complete dive watches, and is an update to the vintage Tudor submariners, but rather than being a gentleman’s diver with metal surrounds for lume plots, the design of the watch is intended as a tool watch for the water. With its deep dive water resistance and the helium release valve, it’s fitted as a real dive tool–nevermind that any real diver uses a dive computer these days.

The hands are snowflake types, from the vintage Tudor Submariners of 1969 and later. They’re lumed with bright blue, and have white surrounds. The lume plots on the dial are raised squares nestled in a notched chapter ring. The bezel is a fine toothed coin edge bezel with lumed ceramic insert. The lume matches the blue of the dial. The color is a matte black, and it looks great.

The case is, as said, titanium. It’s got pointed crown guards, and a large crown that’s easy to adjust. The opposite side of the case has a helium release valve, because this is a serious diver’s watch in design. The case is brushed, and beveled nicely. It wears very comfortably, even though it is a 42mm size case. Normally, I would prefer a 40mm, but it works here. The crystal is a sapphire with anti-reflective coating, making it easy to look through.

Big Crown Thursday!

The bracelet is also titanium, with solid end links, brushed sides, and a nifty spring-loaded clasp. The clasp has three levels of adjustability, after which the spring kicks in. If you need more length than that, there’s also a diver extension that unfolds. Parts of the fold over clasp are made of stainless steel. It’s tight, not rattly, and the end links have no gaps between the lugs. The clasp adjustability on this specific example has a small issue, where it doesn’t lock preciselyinto its three positions, but otherwise, it feels like everything was made well, and it all adds up to the sort of rugged, tough quality you’d want in a watch like this.

The movement is an ETA 2824-2, which does as reliable a job as ever at moving the hands around the dial. The movement is the heart of the watch, and an ETA is a workhorse that is a solid choice, and will be relatively easy to service by any competent watchmaker. For whatever reason, we tend to place greater importance on a Swiss movement than, say, Japanese, and among the Swiss, greater still on ETA.

The lume is bright, and looks great in color from dial to bezel insert. The traditional pearl in the bezel insert at 12 is replaced with a circular lume dot in the triangle, and the square lume plots on the dial look great nestled in their chapter ring.

All in all, this is a solid watch, built well, with a nice, crisp matte dial, bright lume, an easy to adjust crown. It’s an easy wearer, and one that I enjoyed for the past couple of weeks. The titanium doesn’t account for a huge weight savings on its own – there’s steel in the bracelet clasp, remember. The Tudor Black Bay weighs 166 grams, this watch weighs about 157 grams, and other watches with completely titanium bracelets weigh even less. This isn’t exactly scientific, in that neither bracelet has their full set of links installed. Essentially, titanium is lighter, but this watch may gain a little weight from having steel on board.

The quality of materials is there. The comfort is present. The clasp is a minor annoyance, but that’s limited to this specific example. The end links on the bracelet fit the lugs, leaving no sunlight to shine through between end link and lug. The dial, hands, and date wheel all look good. The print on the dial is nice, and in this example, a svelte two lines, rather than crowding the dial with four or more.

There’s just one thing; This watch is a replica. How on earth could we, a more-or-less legitimate watch review site, cover a replica watch? Like this: Our mission is to try and help more people become interested in wristwatches, fascinated with all things mechanical. People buy replicas, and they enjoy them, gathering on replica websites to talk about them with other replica-owning enthusiasts. These enthusiasts include modifiers, who live for knowing the most minuscule details of their favorite watches, and modifying their replicas within an inch of the watches’ life until it looks, acts, and bears many parts of the original. Their cardinal rule is, ‘don’t pretend it’s not a replica.’

A word is required on water-resistance. The watch bears the same dial markings as the original, but it’s not necessarily water-resistant to that depth. Even though it’s very similar in construction, it’s entirely possible that the seals should be greased, and the watch should be pressure tested before taking it to any real depth. It’s fine for a swimming pool, but exercise caution if you were to take it on a dive at all.

NO DIVING (sorry about the thumbprint)

How can we talk about quality when we’re talking about a replica? It’s important to remember that quite a lot of parts of respectable watches are made in China, including Swiss watches. Swiss law requires that a watch be assembled in Switzerland, to comply with the requirement that the majority of the added value be generated in Switzerland. You could have a Chinese case, bracelet, dial, etc. and a mostly Chinese movement assembled in a self-storage unit in Switzerland, and it would still fit the Swiss definition of “Swiss Made.” Indeed, storied Swiss brands have told me in the past that they make the cases in China, that it’s too expensive to do so in Switzerland. All this is to say, we know very well that manufacturing in China is capable of making high quality watches. We set out not to address any of the trademark infringement issues, but to only address, is this a well-made watch that could be enjoyable to wear? Yes. Yes, it is.

Traser Aurora GMT – Northern lights on my wrist.

If you are a fan of tritium watches then you should know the brand MB-Microtech. MB-Microtech is the leading manufacturer, if not the only manufacturer of tritium tubes for the watch industry. Their tubes are also used in gun sites and anything else the requires these self-luminated vials. Aside from providing these tritium tubes to all the watch brands that use them they also have their own brand of watch. MB-Microtech is the parent company of Traser. Traser has just released a new model called the Traser Aurora GMT and what is special about this is some serious crazy lume. 

Diefendorff brings Brooklyn cool to your wrist

Ayyy! Fugetaboutit! I got yer egg cream right here! In the hand that is wearing my Diefendorff watch, a new $949 timepiece from a real Brooklyn watch house.

The watch, which comes in multiple styles, shines brightest when comes with a carbon fiber face and brightly polished steel case. Called the 1776 Design, the watch is slightly reminiscent of a Patek Nautilus but without the odd case design.

Watch winding taken to an art form with the Bernard Favre Planet Double Axis

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Now that my watch obsession has made watch collection large enough to wear a different watch everyday of the week, I needed to keep my watches ready to go on a moments notice. After getting a six watch winder I was pretty happy since it does a great job. Watching my watches rotating around is really cool, but I could only see the dials. I want more. 

Major Chinese Replica Watch Factory Known For Tudor Fakes Raided, Shut Down

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A genuine, or “gen,” Tudor Black Bay 58 Navy Blue. Photo credit: Tudor

Replica watches are not something we talk about too frequently ‘round these parts but there appears to be big news on that front this week. Reports online suggest that Chinese officials have raided the prominent ZF factory that’s perhaps best known for creating high quality Tudor and IWC replicas, or “reps” as they’re sometimes called.

Hands-on: Christopher Ward C5 Malvern 595

Simplicity is hard to do. Features and flash move product. It takes courage to market a watch based on what it lacks. But that is the essence of the Christopher Ward C5 Malvern 595—a watch that is great for what it leaves out.