Thursday, November 28, 2013

Deep Blue Pro Seadiver 1k Blue Dial - An Excellent Practical Sports Watch, A Review

This watch gave me my first experience of Deep Blue, a brand from America (Subsequently I got another Deep Blue. Click here to see a review on that model). I chance to see it on Amazon and the price quoted of approximately USD250+ got me interested to know more. Two specifications that stood out were the use of automatic movement in a casing that can withstand 1,000 meters of water pressure.

After making the decision to get it, I made my order and within a week it is on my table.


Friday, November 22, 2013

Buran Special Edition Soviet Space Shuttle Quartz - A Cheap Watch But A Workhorse Nonetheless

In 1988, the Soviet Union built its own version of the space shuttle called “Buran”. Launched in the same year, it was its first and last flight. To commemorate the event, a quartz watch was made with the figure and name of the spacecraft on the dial complete with the colour of the Soviet Union.


The dimensions of this watch is approximately 38 mm wide and 40 mm long (lug to lug). It has a tonneau shape which does make it look handsome. The leather strap is in red and matches perfectly with the colour of the dial. Lug width is 20 mm.

As the watch is relatively old, a nice patina has developed on the casing as well as the dial. From the photo above, it does appear that the hands are lumed but due to age the chemicals have lost their power to retain the light energy.


The buckle on the strap is simple and elegant.

The crown is a simple push-in crown.


The case-back is is a snap-on and painted on it is the brand as well as the type of movement used as well as the water rating which in this case is stated at 3 ATM or 30 meters.


Using a generic Japanese quartz movement, this watch lay dormant for more than a decade. However, like the Phoenix rising from the ashes, a simple change of the battery breath back life into the watch. In all honesty, I didn’t expect it to move. This goes to show the quality of Japanese quartz movements.

The case looks rough but considering it’s 25 years old and no TLC given since it was manufactured, it looks good for its age. The strap looks frayed and I need to replace that. Otherwise, a functioning watch.

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The first and only launch of the Buran space shuttle.




Friday, November 15, 2013

Deep Blue Depthmaster 3000m Green - A Monster From The Deep, A Review

Apart from my Rolex Deep Sea Sea Dweller which I reviewed earlier, I do own another extreme dive watch with a depth rating of 3,000 meters. From the brand Deep Blue, the Depthmaster 3000m Green is cheaper, bigger, heavier and more tool-like when compared to the Rolex DSSD.

This watch is designed with a singular purpose; to enable extreme divers make it their first choice watch for diving. Deep Blue went on to make its creation tool-like and affordable for the normal Joe.


Monday, November 11, 2013

Rolex Milgauss 116400GV - Solid And Youthful, A Watch Review

I have to declare upfront that I do not work as a scientist. Therefore, the likelihood that I will ever need a tool watch that could withstand intense magnetic fields is close to zero. Nevertheless, I am a techno geek and a watch nerd. The thought that it is possible to combine anti-magnetic properties into a watch intrigues me immensely (Anti-magnetic watches are defined as watches that can still operate in highly magnetized environment).

I got myself a Rolex Milgauss 116400GV where "GV" is glass verte or green sapphire glass. This model is under Rolex's professional series but is the only one dedicated to scientists.


The first Milgauss was introduced by Rolex back in 1954 to help scientists work in the highly magnetic charge research environment of CERN (it was postulate that it was CERN that requested Rolex to come out with the Milgauss but it has yet to be proven. For more on the earlier history of Milgauss visit: http://www.timekeeperforum.com/threads/review-of-the-rolex-milgauss-116400gv.2174/).

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Zeppelin 7360-1 Features Series Flatline - Axis Watch Which Is Truly Value-For-Money

Back in 2011, after serving for 5 years with my company, I was rewarded with a service award in the form of a wrist watch. What I got is the Zeppelin 7360-1 Series Flatline watch. A made in Germany watch with a Japanese automatic movement and Italian leather strap.

The watch is an 'open-heart' design with the opening scene at the 7 o'clock position. You are able to the the balance wheel via this opening. On its right is a similar sized sub-dial that houses the second-hand.

The dial is white with anthracite digits / markers and 12 green luminous dots. However, the hands are not lumed.

The case is made out of stainless steel, designed for an extra slim look. Its dimensions of the watch casing are 40 mm wide (excluding the crown) and with a height of just 12 mm. Water resistant rating is approximately 5 atmosphere.


The dial is covered with a domed mineral crystal which gives it a vintage watch look. Coupled with the font used for the digits, it is easily be mistaken for a pre-WW2 model. Lug width is a standard 20 mm.


The watch comes with an exhibition case-back. Note that the back is also designed to be domed-like and has that strong reference to the round shape of Zeppelin airships. The rotor is also unique in that it is cut in the middle.

The movement for this watch is the Cal. 82S5, mechanical, self-winding movement by Citizen under the Miyota brand. It has winding and second-hand hacking capabilities.This movement operates in the 21,600 vibrations per hour range and comes with 21 jewels. The main power springs can save 40 hours worth of potential energy.

The accuracy has been rated at just -20 +40 seconds per day. For my particular piece, it has been operating well within the manufacturer's benchmark.

For more information about the Cal. 82S5, visit this link: http://www.citizen.co.jp/miyota_mvt/download/pdf/spec_82S0_S5_S7.pdf



The side profile shows the sphere-like design of the watch. It also shows the domed glass for the dial.

The crown is a push-in crown and it has only two positions. The push-in position or rest position allows one to manually wind the watch whereas the pull-out position or position two allows one to adjust the time.


The leather strap that is provided is Italian. The design is simple.


The watch on my wrist. The size is just nice for my 7.5 inch wrist. Unfortunately, the lack of anti-reflective treatment on the mineral glass makes it act like a mirror sometimes.

The shape of the watch makes this a very wearable piece for formal events. It easily slips under cuffs and it has a sophisticated look to it. 


The simple buckle without any reference to the brand at all.


I called this my Axis watch due to the presence of Germanic, Japanese and Italian influences. For the price that my company paid for this watch, it was worth it. A true value-for-money watch. I would recommend friends to have at least one piece from this brand.



Monday, November 4, 2013

Aristo Flieger Automatic 3H114 Pilot Watch - German Construction Quality But Poor Paint Job Spoils An Otherwise Excellant Watch, A Review

The first "pilot" watch as well as my first German watch that I got was the Aristo Flieger Automatic 3H114. The design concept is similar to the vintage German flieger watch with clean dial with luminous markers and luminous sword hands.


The history behind this watch brand started in the early 20th century. In 1907, Julius Epple in Pforzheim, Germany, founded the company ARISTO. For three generations, the enterprise went under the name Julius Epple, ARISTO Uhren-und Uhrgehausefabrik. In the beginning of the 90's, Helmut Epple, the grandchild of Julius Epple managed more than 100 co-workers. Because none of the descendants of the family could further the business, he sold the company to the trust enterprise UTW Uhrentechnik Weimar. In 1998, Helmut Epple found a suitable successor, Hansjarg Vollmer, which acquired the trademark of ARISTO Watch GmbH.


The watch is 42 mm wide and made out of stainless steel. The surface of the case is sand blasted to give it the vintage looks. The short angled lugs aids in the wear comfort. What really sets this watch from the others is the large diamond shaped crown.


The large crown was a design standard in German Flieger watches as it allows the airman to manipulate the watch without needing to take off his gloves. The width of the watch including the crown is approximately 47 mm.


It has a black dial with Arabic numbering. The bezel is bead blasted and it has a hardened mineral crystal for the face. All the indexes as well as the numbers and hands are lumed generously. Meanwhile, it has a date at the 3 o'clock position.


The display case-back allows you to admire the Aristo signed movement at work. The engine that's powering the watch is the Swiss ETA 2824-2 caliber movement. Operating at 28,800 VPH, this 25 jewel Swiss workhorse has second-hand hacking and winding capabilities. The main springs is able to have on standby approximately 40 hours worth of energy. Meanwhile, the main rotor has been decorated with Aristo's brand name.


The watch comes with a brown padded leather strap. The buckle is simple without any decorations.

Due to the lack of a screw-down crown, the watch is only water rated to 50 meters. This is not unexpected considering its main purpose is to fly high up in the sky!



As mentioned earlier about how generous Aristo has been to the amount of luminous paint on the indexes as well as the numbers and hands, above is a set of pictures of the dial in the dark. The first was taken in partial darkness and the second was taken in complete darkness. The quality of the luminosity is just awesome.

Despite the expected quality of German engineering, after wearing the watch for a few days, I noticed a number of imperfections. The obvious problem was the quality of the painting of the lume on the dial. If you refer to the second photo in this posting, focus on the triangle index at 12 o'clock. You can easily see smudges at the edges of the paint.

If you now focus your attention on the same photo but at the Arabic numeral "3" you can clearly see that the "painter" could not even follow the guide print that must have been printed on the dial prior to adding the lume. See the missing the ends of the number "3" in the photo?

Mechanically, the quality of construction is sound but the paint job on the dial is relatively poor. Hopefully, Aristo has gotten this problem sorted out by now for the sake of its brand franchise.

Nevertheless, I will still recommend the watch. Anyway, my investment for this watch is RM1,212.71.





Friday, November 1, 2013

PierCarlo d'Alessio Quartz Dress Watch - Nothing Spectacular But Does Have Some Styling Cues; A Review

I only knew about the PierCarlo d'Alessio watch brand when I got this watch in my hand. Honestly, I didn't buy it - I wouldn't, there is nothing at all particularly intriguing about the watch. I got it as a gift when I renewed my Readers' Digest subscription.

I trolled the internet but after the third search page I couldn't be bothered anymore. If you are not on the first 3 pages of Google, you are nothing.

This watch is just a cheap quartz watch. Very simple dial with 3-hands. The case-back is the push-in kind. I doubt it is water proof tested. 

Nevertheless, at 42 mm wide and with a cheap leather strap, it does exudes some form of sophistication. In fact, I used it a few times at work and it looks good with a suit.


I have yet to open the case-back but I suspect the quartz movement is Chinese made. Nevertheless, I am impress with the accuracy, after many months, it still able to keep the time.



So, why would you ask would I list this watch under "My Western Watch Collection"? The listing is just because of the brand. If anyone could shed a light on the history of this company I would be most grateful.


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