It’s hard to believe, but it’s actually been two years since we last looked at a watch from Farr + Swit (that time, it was the Seaplane). While the case looks to be mostly the same, the Farr + Swit Wayfinder is definitely charting it’s own course.
Of course, that’s a bit of word play, both on the name of the Farr + Swit Wayfinder, as well as the very colorful dial. While the Seaplane was a bit more muted in it’s color scheme, the Wayfinder embraces all the colors. At first, you’ve got the shiny blue of the bezel insert (echoed in the numerals on the dial), bright orange fill on the hands, and a brighter yet yellow on the chapter ring. In the light, that’s one thing, and it gives a bit of a summertime vibe. When the lights go out, though, then you have something really special.
That’s where you realize that the Farr + Swit Wayfinder has a fully-lumed dial. That’s something we see every now and again, but they are few and far between (the watch I had in college was a Lorus with a fully-lumed dial). This really highlights the topographic map on the dial, and shows the fun a brand can have with luminous paint colors. On the dial alone, you’ve got blue, green, and orange, and it gives you a lightshow you’d normally only expect from a tritium-equipped watch (the bezel has a different shade of blue). The photo there just don’t do it justice, it really is one of the best luminous dials I’ve had in-hand in years.
While the Farr + Swit Wayfinder comes with two straps, I kept it on the navy NATO. Why? Well, it was already installed, for one. Secondly, it’s made of a stretchy material (not unlike this BluShark) that makes it just absolutely comfortable. That means that, if you’re like me and like a snug fit, you can put this in at a notch that a solid strap might feel “too tight” and have it just feel absolutely comfortable. Much as I’ve come to appreciate a bit of stretch in a pair of jeans, having this stretch in a watch strap is a delight, and not to be underestimated.
The strap made for a comfortable fit of the Farr + Swit Wayfinder on my 7.25″ wrist, and the 50.5mm lug-to-lug made for a fit that didn’t feel too large for my wrist (though, it’s starting to get there). With the 100m WR rating, the watch could certainly be used while you’re swimming without any issue, and it backs up the dive-watch looks with the timing bezel and beefy crown guard as well.
Tucked inside the Farr + Swit Wayfinder is a Seiko VH31 Sweeping seconds quartz movement, which is going to be ultra-reliable and accurate. Now, some folks may turn their nose up at a quartz movement, but I think that it can be a solid way to have a no-worries sort of a watch that you grab and go at a whim, and don’t have to worry about setting it. Combine that with the 100m WR rating and the brighter color scheme, and I feel safe saying that the Farr + Swit Wayfinder is a perfect “summer” watch – or any day you just want a dose of bright colors (and don’t worry – even on an overcast day, that lume will charge like nobody’s business).
However, if you are set on an automatic, do not fret! There is a new version (using the Seiko NH35) coming in September, and you can pre-order that now. Along with the new movement, it’s got a new, darker color scheme as well, so that’s a way you could pick up something a bit more muted, if that’s your preference. The auto also carries a $60 premium over the quartz version, which itself is going for $399. farrandswit.com
Specs from Farr + Swit
- Built in the USA: Assembled by hand in the Midwest
- Two Straps Included:Navy NATO Parachute Elastic / Grey seat belt NATO
- Dry Bag Included: Farr and Swit 5L Dry Bag Included
- MOVEMENT: VH31 Sweeping Seconds Quartz
- Country of Manufacture: Japan
- Battery Life: 2 years
- Battery: SR920SW
- Crystal Face: Scratch-resistant sapphire crystal with AR(Anti Reflective) Coating
- Case: 316L Surgical Grade Stainless Steel
- Bezel: 120 click Steel with BGW9 Grade A EF Lume
- Caseback: Steel
- Dial Color: Topography Full Lume
- Water resistance: 10 bar (100 meters / 330 feet)
- Case Diameter: 42 mm
- Between Lugs: 22 mm
- Lug to Lug: 50.5mm
- Height: 12.5mm
- Lume: C3 Blue Grade X EF, C3 Green Grade X EF, Dark Orange, BGW9 on Bezel
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