Tag Archives: gents

Accurist Retro Racer is a Winner

Ladies n gentlemen, can we have a tip of the hat to Accurist who have launched a pretty decent 1970s chronograph for under £130. In fact we saw one example at £109 on Ideal World today.

The Retro Racer has a qaurtz movement, the usual chrono functions and a Milanese mesh bracelet option too. It only has a 50m depth rating so don’t go swimming while wearing it, but this is an everyday watch that captures 70s motorsport style with a selection of dial colours. We love the blue best, but the silver is cool and the black option with red second hand gives you that older 60s vibe. The brown leather strap has the Paddy Hopkirk perforated look as well.

The thing we like about this is that the case has those rounded angles on its old fashioned TV dial look. Accurist has been making round case chronographs for ages, but since they dropped the Sekonda Monaco homage, they haven’t really produced anything a bit different from most of the budget fashion quartz watches out there. (Yes, Sekonda, Limit and Accurist are owned by the same company)

This new Accurist watch could pass for one of the many Indie brand VK64 models out there on Kickstarter right now and yep, that’s a good thing.

Why? Well, Accurist has become the Honda Jazz of watches, it’s an old person watch brand, so if it’s going to survive then they need some punchy, sharp designs – and they need to make much more of their 1960s Old England heritage. Spaceman cases, steering wheel watches, Twiggy Union Jack revival…the opportunity is there, get busy.

Accurist has produced a sort of Zen And The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance video for the Retro Racer, which is worth a look;

 

 

Best Mens Automatic Deals On Amazon

We thought it would be a good time to have a look on Amazon for the best deals on gents automatic watches. Not that we aren’t fans of old school watch shops, especially those that sell pre-loved watches. But there is no denying that for new watches, it is hard to beat the low overhead, store-your-stock-in-a-warehouse approach, then ship it from Bratislava when the sale goes through online.

SEIKO 5

OK this is an old Seiko 5 model, nothing special in terms of movement and you have to shake it, it does not wind up like the later Seiko 5 or Presage models. But for £99 if you sign up for a Mastercard deal, or £119 without the credit card, you cannot grumble. It’s got a guarantee, the box, paperwork and you can always sell it for about £70-£80 on eBay a few years down the line if you liek to churn your collection. Yep, we did say churn it like butter.

ROTARY SUPER 7

Not as cool as a Party Seven giant can of ale from the 1970s of course, but the Rotary Super 7 has that Rolex Submariner Pepsi look nailed down, and it claims to be waterproof down to 1000 feet, yes 300 metres. That a 300m dive watch for under £230. Great daubings of superlume on the dial too. Hard to fault on tech specs, this steel case, sapphire crystal watch is NOT made in Switzerland, but arguably has a few Swiss level quality features for the money. On Amazon, supplied by Watchnation based in Chester, Cheshire.

ORIENT MAKO II

Yes, like the Seiko 5 this is another end of line watch, but the blue dial Orient has an elegant look, an ideal case diameter at 42mm and a 200m depth rating. So yes, swim or dive in it – it’s made by Seiko so it’ll cope. Steel case, steel bracelet, although you can get a NATO strip for an extra tenner on the Amazon deal we spotted. The Orient brand is NOT officially imported into the UK so many examples you see are from overseas sellers in Germany, USA, Singapore, HK etc. That means import duty and VAT on top, so paying £119.50 on Amazon solves that paperwork problem.

BENYAR MILGAUSS

Yes, you could buy a convincing Rolex fake from somewhere in China for £400-£500, but frankly this Milgauss homage, or shall we say blatant copy, is just £55 and yours from Amazon delivered in a day or two. It has an automatic movement inside, plus see-thru caseback, so you can appreciate the rough casting finish on the rotor and the appalling bridgework. We say buy this as a gift for the bloke in the family that you don’t like, Uncle Nobhead basically. He’ll have it round to Cash Converters quicker than you can say `I’m too sexy for my TJ Hughes Shirt.’

That’s an automatic watch for £55 though, you cannot even buy a fashion quartz from Michael Coarse, sorry, Kors, for that money.

BULOVA MARINE STAR

Orange is nice to have in your collection, just for those sporty days, or a trip to the beach in summer when you want a watch that handles some seawater. The Bulova brand is owned by Citizen, so you are getting a reliable Miyota auto movement inside, plus a mineral crystal, 200m of depth rating and a big 45mm case width too. The white dial is quite rare on Bulova models, so it’s a left field choice. Good value for someone with a bigger wrist, especially at £269.

 

Ball Roadmaster GMT: Classic Black, Pre-Order Discounts

Ball watches has released a classic black dial, black bezel Roadmaster GMT, making it ideal for post-pandemic jet-setters, influencers and international business travellers. The Marine GMT is already available with blue, white and green dial/bezel options, plus a Pepsi bezel by the way. The day/date option also adds a certain businesslike function to this model – this is a watch for someone who wants to know the exact time, and demands Swiss build quality without a prestige brand price tage. It’s COSC certified, just like class-leading Omega, Rolex or AP models, but you pay less to get the same job done. Just saying.

Here’s the word from Ball;

Innovation for fearless exploration, a belief that’s not only held dearly in the BALL Watch family, but also fostered the creation of the Roadmaster Marine GMT series. Engineered to the specifications of a 35-year Navy Mariner veteran, it’s the world’s first GMT timepiece with day and date functions, delivering utmost functionality. The pioneering quick-set GMT push buttons revolutionize the way GMT hand is adjusted with its ease-of-use. The tough titanium material and COSC certified mechanical movement guarantee perfect performance in the most imperfect situations. Topping off with the darkness-conquering luminosity of the micro gas tube. The watch that once ran America’s railroads now empowers world explorers to live freely and fearlessly.

Our specially-made GMT movement module allows for three time zones to be tracked simultaneously. Simply by turning and pressing either one of the patented quick-set buttons, the GMT hand can be easily set instead of turning the main crown. The button at 8 o’clock moves the GMT hand backward, while the 10 o’clock button moves it forward. When travelling, the GMT hand reveals the local time in conjunction with the bi-directional bezel whereas the main hour hand shows the home time.

The classic black bezel version marks the latest addition to the signature Roadmaster Marine GMT ceramic series, a statement piece that fits for all occasions. Limited to 1,000 pieces each. The Roadmaster Marine GMT Black bezel is now available for pre-order until 12 May 2021 at an exclusive price, which is £2110. More info at the Ball website.

Timex M79 Auto Has a Batman Spirit Animal

Timex automatics are pretty fair value, although the Miyota movement found inside them is very similar to the one found in an Accurist auto at half the price. But then again, we buy watches because they look the part and the M79 certainly does that. Seaparated at birth from a Rolex GMT Batman? Well, yeah, you could say that at a distance. So if you want a 40mm auto that looks retro but kinda modern too, theis fits the bill for £255 we reckon.

Blue/Black or Red/Black bezel options by the way. See-thru caseback, acrylic crystal, stainless steel case and bracelet – 50m resistance. Here is the word from Timex;

Our M79 Automatic is something entirely new, even though it might look familiar. Inspired by the 1970s Q Timex and elevated with a 21-jewel mechanical movement, this watch is a fresh interpretation of a much-loved Timex® icon. Powered by your movement, this automatic watch packs a 40-hour power reserve and can also be wound manually by using the crown. Featuring a unidirectional black and red bezel, black dial with luminous markings, a woven stainless-steel bracelet and exhibition case back, this modern watch captures the bold spirit of an era that changed everything.

Kickstarter: Zeitgeist H1 Bronze is Understated Brilliance

This Kickstarter project caught our eye for two reasons, first it is a bronze watch that is ultra thin. This is great because quite a few bronze watches look like an old school Jules Verne diver’s helmet. Secondly, you can specify ETA or Miyota movement inside, which is always good for those who want that Swiss vibe. It can boost resale value too, let’s be honest.

The Miyota models start at just $489 on the early bird deal, with delivery expected around June 2021. The ETA models start at about $1000 and you get a premium, handmade-in-Japan, leather strap and box with it as part of the deal.

But the real value of this watch is in the details. Things like the superlume on the markers and hands, the polished caseback and Harrison H1 chronometer etched-on logo, ceramic bezel and much more. The wave effect on the dial for example, just catches the eye and makes you want to glance at the watch again. This watch is 42mm across and just 13.4mm high. That is super slender, like Instagram pout model skinny.

Bear in mind the H1 model has a depth rating of 500m, yes that’s over 1600 feet deep, so this has to withstand a lot of pressure. In short Zeitgeist have created something very premium, impressive build quality, with a dive functionality that matches some Blancpain models, at a Hamilton or Tissot price. That is a powerful set of reasons to consider this watch and it is no surprise that the Kick project has been over-subscribed already, with £22,000 pledged.

More here. 

 

Was Rothmans THE Motorsport Paint Job of The 80s?

We reckon it was. Seen on rally cars like the insane Porsche 911, the Le Mans racers of the famed 24 hour endurance events, US sports cars, or the amazing Honda V4 race bikes – and a few road bikes – the Rothmans red/white/blue combo just defined that era. Which some today even cite as the greates decade in motorsports of all time.

Yes, we just started a pub debate and the pubs aren’t even open. But look at the evidence; Doohan vs Rainey and Schwantz in 500 GPs, the Audi Quattro and Group B in Rallying. Then there’s the battles between Piquet, Prost and Senna in F1, plus the bonkers turbo cars of the time. World Superbikes also started in the late 80s. I rest my case, and my can of Kestrel lager.

So this Omologato Heritage watch, with a Seiko quartz movement inside its 42mm steel case,  chrono functions, plus natty Italian leather strap is a vintage delight. Reliable and decent value at £370. That’s all, it just does exactly what a retro watch should do – looks like a million dollars standing still.

More here. 

Oris Aquis Whale Shark Ltd Edition

This one is a limited edition of 2,016 pieces, has a 42 hour power reserve and striking, almost skin-like dial finish. The Whale Shark edition from Oris is a novel twist on their Aquis dive model, with a GMT function to boot. It’s just over 43mm wide, with plenty of lume on the dial and at 300m depth resistance it’s a genuine dive watch.

Not cheap at £2250 or so, but a percentage of the cost is supporting Oris in its work to highlight the need to conserve the whale shark, which plays a vital part in the ocean eco-system.

We absolutely love that teal coloured dial, very reminiscent of a Seiko or Zelos dive watch. Therein lies the problem, because a beautiful Zelos Swordfish, with 300m depth rating is just $500. OK it has a Seiko auto movement inside, but as an alternative, it offers you dive ability plus a chunk of change left over to put in your grail watch fund.

Oris Whale Shark Limited Edition, courtesy of Oris Press Office

You could buy a teal dial Oris Aquis without the GMT function and fancy dial finish for £1600. Always that option.

But then, maybe the Aquis Whale Shark is that grail watch for you? More here at the Jura watches site. Nope, we aren’t commission.

Kickstarter Watches: Ten Eleven Nine Is Minimalist Perfection

There are a ton of watch projects on Kickstarter, but some just stand out and this no-nonsense, old school automatic watch is one of them. It’s made in Germany, has a decent depth rating if you want to go underwater on holiday, and a classic dial that simply tells the time. No messing, no sub-dials. Not even a date window.

There’s a Sellita SW200 movement inside the 38mm case, sapphire crystal and some handy lume on the markers and hands. Three different steel strap options.

Here’s a little bit of the philosophy behind the project from its creator;

“The aim was to create a timeless, very robust case, a quintesence of the very balanced watch cases I really liked from the heyday of mechanical Swiss watchmaking in the 50s and 60s. A case, on the one hand is elegant and self-contained, but on the other hand also exudes a certain robustness and serenity. Water resistance of 200m / 660ft was also very important to me, because I wanted to design a watch that can master all activities and that you don’t even have to take off for diving (important, always screw on the screwed crown….:-)). And if you asked yourself why “TRUTH BEAUTY LOVE” on the caseback? That’s what we  stand for, “TRUTH, BEAUTY, LOVE“. I will explain further down. But if you like it more clean and minimal – easy – it’s only an option.”

HOW CAN YOU CALCULATE IMPORT DUTY ON EU WATCHES NOW?

Good question.

The Ten Eleven Nine watch is priced at 923 euros, with no VAT levied on UK sales of course, but you will get stung by HMRC on import taxes however. How much? Nobody seems to know. There is no information on products over £630 on the UK gov website, no handy calculator to let buyers work it out. Worse still, once you pay the duty, there’s VAT on the total cost, including postage and the import duty, so it’s impossible to know in advance what a watch from Switzerland, or the EU will actually cost. Your parcel courier company or Royal Mail will just email a bill and you either accept it, pay up, or reject the parcel. Crazy.

Verdict; It’s a handsome, clean design that will attract anyone who likes 50s/60s dress watches like the Omega De Ville/ Geneve, or the Seiko Sportsmatic. It’s an added bonus that it has 200m dive resistance as well. The potential retail price in the UK with all import duties and VAT on top could be about £1250-£1350 and at that level there are some tempting alternatives on Kickstarter, and from brands like Yema, Baltic, Tissot or Hamilton, although the Jazzmaster Thin only has a depth rating of 100m.

New Wristwatches: Best of The Black Friday Watch Deals

We had a quick look at some Black Friday and Christmas wristwatch deals for you.

TORGEON

The T14 Tactical model, which features sporty orange details on the dial is down to $296, from $395. Quite a decent saving. The T10 Tanager is down to £115, from about 190 quid, and we love the blue dial on that model too. More here at Torgeon’s site. 

An Ordain

The Christmas delivery deadline is this Saturday the 28th November, so if you want a watch made in Scotland, with a beautiful hand enamelled dial, then check them out here.

Newmark

There’s a very handy 10% off across the board at thei UK based watch manufacturer, with the Panda chrono being our fave model. That is valid until the 28th November by the way. More here. 

Gruppo Gamma

All sorts of year end discounts on the Gruppo Gamma watches, including the Venturo Field II model, which has that military look and feel. That one is down to $369 plus shipping costs. The ETA powered Divemaster is down to $950, which is water resistant to 500 metres. Yep 500. Try getting that depth rating from a prestige Swiss brand for under $3000. More at Gruppo Gamma here.

Skagen

We got an email saying 40% off flash sale – could be valid over the weekend.

Stella Watches

Stella has 25% off the RRP of around $1200 on the V2 Felix gents model. STP Swiss movement, 40,mm case, sapphire crystal, see-thru caseback – it’s a decent looking watch with that amount of discount. Offer expires when stocks sell out. More here.

Hamilton

The Swiss brand has launched a special all black edition called the Lewis…no only joking. They have a new Aviation Converter automatic. 80 hours power unit, probably the shared motor from the Tissot 80 Powermatic. Great looker, chunky 44mm case size and a dial that is a touch Breitling Navitimer – dare we say it? We dare. It retails at 1490 CHF which is about 1200 quid in UK money. More here.

 

 

 

Baltic Gets Set to Launch Aquascaphe GMT

If you’re a fan of Baltic watches then the Aquascaphe GMT launch on Nov 27th is a date to remember. The new watch features a very high spec, with domed sapphire crystal, 316 steel case, superlume numbers and hands, the famous GMT hand of course, plus a beads of rice, polished steel bracelet which lends it a kind of Omega feel. It has a date window at 6pm, plus a glossy balck dial – classic lines we reckon.

Green and blue bezel combo is our fave from the trio.

Inside there’s a Swiss Soprod movement, with 42 hours of reserve on full wind. Bi-directional bezel is made from sapphire too, which may well prove to be more durable long term than some ceramic bezels, or those with PVD coatings, on rival watches. Time will tell. The first 600 Baltic GMT models will be numbered 1-600 too, so that adds to the collector appeal. Made in France, the Baltic is a beautiful GMT, and priced at just over £1100 on pre-order.

This is an undeniably handsome watch and the GMT feature is always good for those lucky enough to be allowed international travel in these climate emergency times. The only downside is the 100m depth rating, which isn’t that impressive at this price level, you would expect 300m, maybe more. For example the LPW Luna offers 200m depth for just £549, then there’s the Marloe Morar which has 310 metres for under 400 quid. Made in Scotland too.

More details at the Baltic website.