That’s right – our pal Matt H ran across another watch project over on Kickstarter. This one seems to have a coherent design ethic, but is it the one for you to back?
First, let’s address the design of the P-70 (project page). Many of the elements were created to hearken to, well, lets call it the “good ol’ days” of aviation, from the 30s and 40s. This includes such nods as:
- Hands that resemble wing ribs
- A calf skin perforated strap (somehow called a “leather bomber jacket style” – where’s the fleece?) with deployant clasp
- A custom pinup design engraved on the case back
As far as the hard details, it looks to have a Ronda 715 quartz movement inside 43mm stainless steel case, and offset crown (ostensibly for comfort), sapphire crystal, and 100m water resistance rating.
One different twist is rather than using spring bars, they’re using screw-in pins to hold the strap in place. On one hand, this should make for a more secure attachment. The flip side of that coin is that they’re using allen head screws. If you’re a strap changer, this means you’re going to need to make sure you have a key that fits (and don’t lose one of those screws!) Personally, I think a simple slotted screw would have been the better choice.
Those are my thoughts on the piece – here’s what Matt had to say:
I like the watch, but at $400, it is overpriced for a quartz in my opinion. I wish I could just slap these new designers and tell them that they are not creating some unique product that can not be had in the market.
I am all for these start ups creating a product that hits their vision, and that they can make a buck selling, but these pitches get redundant. Plus, for about 1/2 the video, he is staring to his right of the camera. What on earth is he looking at over there?
I would point out that the color switch of black on white is a nice, and unique, take on the design. These watches are typically seen with a black (or blue as with the Praesto) dial and white markings. The aviators I do see with white dials don’t have the double chapter rings.
Do I sound jaded? I have backed 27 projects, and 20 of them have made it to market. (EDITORS NOTE: That means he’s got a good grasp of what’s going on in this marketplace).
As Matt states, $400 and up is a steep price for this quartz, even though that’s likely driven more by low production quantities than anything. In further discussions with Matt on this, I pointed out that the Shinola stuff is above that pricepoint. He rightly replied that, at least with Shinola, you have a boutique, in-house built movement, and not an outsourced production.
In short, it’s a clean design, but at that price, it’s got too much working against it. If you’re a fan of the style, you may wish to check out Praesto, as they have an aviator with a Miyota 8245 automatic movement that looks similar (for under $400), as does Aristo (possibly with an ETA movement).
Let us know in the comments – would you spring for this watch? If not, what would you consider a viable (and similarly styled) alternative?