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Thread: Let's talk about field watches (or field inspired watches)

  1. #1
    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Let's talk about field watches (or field inspired watches)

    For some reason lately I've been thinking strongly about a field watch - a military inspired simple three hander time only piece even though I've never been in the military (although did train for a week - morning calisthenics and running - with the Marines at Boy's State when I was a junior in high school).

    Top on my list is the Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical (hand wind)...I have owned a Hamilton Khaki watch in the past (wish I still had it), and I feel that Hamilton is a sweet spot brand for an entry level Swiss watch at a fantastic value.

    There are a few versions... the older version with date (which I don't care for because the 24 hour numeral is offset by the date window), and the newer 2018 released version with no date and a ETA 2801 hand winding movement. In 2019 that same watch was updated with the caliber H-50 movement which is based on the ETA 2801 but with a free sprung balance wheel instead of regulator that has an 80 hour power reserve at the expense of a slower beating 3Hz movement.

    Pros: Relatively inexpensive for Swiss (Under $500), historical heritage, good looks, pairs well with straps or NATO (and drilled lugs), 38mm, under 10mm thick, Sapphire crystal (though I'm usually fine with domed acrylic or mineral), NO date
    Cons: Not crazy about the sand blasted case, dial is a little cartoonish - I wish the font was sharper and less rounded, longish lugs with the lug holes further away the case causing a gap, no AR coating.







    What are you thoughts? Would you prefer the smoother seconds of a 4Hz 2801 with 42ish hour power reserve or the Caliber H-50 with 80 hour power reserve? My preference would be for the smoother beating seconds hand, but I have read some reports that the Caliber H-50 movement is report very high accuracy out of the box...some people are reporting +/- 1 or 2 seconds a day. That's pretty damn good if it's true and stays that way for the long haul.

    I went to a local Hamilton dealer today to see if they had the new Khaki in stock. They didn't, but they had the older date version which is the same exact case and size, so I tried it on and it it felt great on the wrist. I have to say, I'm not much of a fan of the bead blasted case finishing on the watch (in person or in pictures), but I don't think it would be a deal breaker. Other down sides seems to be the lug holes are quite a bit further out on the lugs leaving a gap if you wear straps as apposed to a NATO. I don't think that's a deal breaker for me either.









    Also to further make the decision more difficult, they introduced an earth colored PVD case, and I thought my preference would be for the traditional steel case, but as I mentioned, I was a bit underwhelmed with the bead blasted case, so maybe the "Ocre" PVD bead blasted case might appear better in the metal. It has a darkish green dial, however.

    If only I could see these option in person. Alas there are none in stock at any of the dealers near me.




    And then there is the white dial version, but I think I would prefer the darker dial on this one, despite there being no anti reflective coating under the crystal... As much as I like this white dial, I keep coming back to the black dial.











    I have and am considering others too... I have read up on a French field watch that looks sharp.










    Also on the more expensive end is the American made Weiss...they have a 38mm automatic field watch that looks exceptionally nice but 13.4 mm thick, and it's nearly $2K! The manual winder is thinner and just over 1K, still on the pricey side compared to the Hamilton Khaki.









    and lastly, I really like the way this MKII looks, but it's so damn thick, I'm not sure I could live with it....








    Any thoughts on others to consider? Would love to see some photos, I know some of you have the Hamilton.... I think Samanator has the white dial version... Would love to hear thoughts on ownership of the Khaki Mechanical...
    Last edited by gnuyork; Sep 17, 2019 at 08:00 PM.

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    Moderator - Central tribe125's Avatar
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    I had a Khaki quartz which was incredibly reflective, more so than any watch I’ve had. I’ve read similar comments about other Khaki models.

    Otherwise, they’re hard to beat.

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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tribe125 View Post
    I had a Khaki quartz which was incredibly reflective, more so than any watch I’ve had. I’ve read similar comments about other Khaki models.

    Otherwise, they’re hard to beat.
    Yeah, that's the worry with the black dial over the white (without AR coating)

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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Incidentally, it's this image on IG that really made me dive into to checking this out - great combo:


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  8. #5
    MWC is that my watch's Avatar
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    you could possible get a real field watch for the prices your thinking ok mainly be quartz off the top of my head , but think the Hamilton could be a flavour of the month I really wanted one went quartz as saw one for a good price and bought it but I was a bit underwhelmed with it to be honest used it about five/ten times in over six months /year it is worth doing a search on here as theirs been a few field watch threads of late so you could gleam something from them maybe
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    Moderator gnuyork's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by is that my watch View Post
    you could possible get a real field watch for the prices your thinking ok mainly be quartz off the top of my head , but think the Hamilton could be a flavour of the month I really wanted one went quartz as saw one for a good price and bought it but I was a bit underwhelmed with it to be honest used it about five/ten times in over six months /year it is worth doing a search on here as theirs been a few field watch threads of late so you could gleam something from them maybe

    I tried that same watch on this afternnon, but a hand wind version... but otherwise same dial and case... I was not overwhelmed with the dial. Case felt good on thew wrist though.

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  12. #7
    MWC is that my watch's Avatar
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    oh yes got some good points I wonder if mech I might have like more and to be honest not sure I would ,being in america maybe a benrus or some thing may be easier to get or a marathon am I spelling that right ? think depends homages are good but their are some real field watch at reasonable prices too

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    Hall Monitor Samanator's Avatar
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    I have the White dialed Hamilton, but I would consider the brown or black dialed versions. It is an awesome watch and has started me actually liking NATO straps. I don't think you can go wrong with any color. True White will always be my first choice if given the option, but that is just me.
    Cheers,

    Michael

    Tell everyone you saw it on IWL!

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    MWC is that my watch's Avatar
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    read a article well glance at.. had a few good idea then of cause had to include tudor omega rolex but least they was the last three

    https://gearpatrol.com/2019/04/11/best-field-watches/


    These Are the 10 Best Field Watches of 2019


    APRIL 11, 2019 WATCHES By ANDREW CONNOR







    For most tool watches, the requirements are pretty clear-cut. A dive watch needs to survive meters of water pressure. A racer’s chronograph needs to have the ability to record time. A pilot’s GMT should keep a second time zone. But a field watch? There are no real clear-cut rules — many watches can handle an outdoor excursion, but few are made specifically for the job.
    So what should you look for in an ideal field watch? The same attributes the military found in classic general issue watches like the American A-11 or British W10 — that is, simplicity, durability and legibility. Dials should have big, contrasting markers and little else adorning them. Cases should protect movements from hard knocks. There should be lume aplenty.
    And that’s pretty much it. The good news is that because they’re less complex than other tool watches, even the best generally come pretty cheap (though you can treat yourself to a $6,500 Rolex Explorer, if you wish). These ten are our favorites — take them camping, hunting, overlanding or simply to your next happy hour, and know that they’re ready for whatever you have to throw at them.

    Bertucci A2-T


    With a much better strength-to-weight ratio than stainless steel (and hypoallergenic, to boot), titanium is a fantastic material for making durable watches. Typically, the price of titanium watches reflects this, but watchmaker Bertucci makes well-priced titanium filed watches for under $200. The A2-T combines that titanium case with a Swiss-made quartz movement, as well as a vintage-inspired dial, made plenty legible thanks to big Arabic numerals, a healthy smattering of lume, and a 24-hour layout.
    Movement: Quartz
    Size: 42mm
    Water resistance: 100m


    Marathon General Purpose Quartz


    Military-issued field watches aren’t really a thing anymore — most service people tend to prefer buying their own watches — but the tradition of mil-spec timepieces continues. Marathon’s General Purpose which is, thus, made to those specifications, and what you get is a stupidly simple watch with the classic military dial layout (though complete with tritium gas lume!) and a quartz movement housed in a modest 34mm case.
    Movement: ETA F06 quartz
    Size: 34mm
    Water resistance: 30m


    Hamilton Khaki Field Mechanical


    Hamilton’s 2018 update to the venerable Field Khaki is one of our favorite overall introductions this year, both for its affordable price and its convincing vintage aesthetic that harkens back to the old Hamilton-made US military watches of the mid 20th century. What’s more, the movement inside is a decidedly old-school hand-cranker, adding to those vintage vibes.
    Movement: ETA 2801-2 hand-winding
    Size: 38mm
    Water resistance: 50m


    CWC W10


    Cabot Watch Company (CWC) is known in the watch world for making many of the British military’s watches in the latter part of the 20th century. The watch here is based on the W10 design issued in the 1970s before the introduction of the quartz G10. This version uses an automatic in place of the original’s hand-winder, but it’s still close to the original.
    Movement: ETA 2824 automatic
    Size: 38mm
    Water resistance: 50m


    Luminox Atacama Field


    Luminox’s lineup mostly consists of bold, chunky and quartz-regulated timepieces, but the brand’s Atacama Field is a decidedly more classic timepiece. The dial lacks the Arabic numerals you’d normally see at each hour but makes up for it with the use of tritium gas tubes that consistently provide crisp, clear luminescence without the need to “charge up” with UV light, as SuperLuminova does.
    Movement: Sellita SW220-1 automatic
    Size: 44m
    Water resistance: 200m


    Lum-Tec Combat Field X2


    Lum-Tec is based in Ohio, where the company designs and assembles a range of tool watches that feature its own proprietary luminescent material on the dial. The Combat Field X2 is a reinterpretation of vintage filed watch design and, as such, features details like a domed crystal and a coin-edge bezel. It rocks a chunky 44mm case with a titanium carbide coating (to reduce vulnerability to scracthes) and is powered by an automatic movement from Swiss manufacturer Sellita.
    Movement: Sellita SW200 automatic
    Size: 44mm
    Water resistance: 100m


    Sinn 856


    Sinn is known for making over-engineered, tough watches, and the relatively basic 856 is no different. On the surface, it’s a legible time-and-date stainless steel watch, but note that said stainless steel has undergone a hardening process leaving the case surface particularly scratch-resistant. What’s more, the brand claims the use of a copper-sulfate capsule that absorbs and diffuses any internal moisture that could enter, preventing the crystal from fogging up and the degredation of the internal lubricants.
    Movement: Sellita SW300-1 movement
    Size: 40m
    Water resistance: 200m


    Tudor Ranger


    As Tudor has revamped most of its heritage lineup — especially its Black Bay diver — the Ranger has remained mostly unchanged since its introduction, but it remains a favorite today. Why? Its undeniably handsome dial, an archetypal field watch design if there ever were one, is based on a sought-after (and oft-faked) Tudor of old, and its relatively low price and un-fussy ETA-based movement make it an easy proposition to own.
    Movement: ETA 2824 automatic
    Size: 41mm
    Water resistance: 150m


    Omega Railmaster


    An oft-forgotten tool watch in the Omega lineup, the Railmaster’s legacy is some 60 years old. In its current guise (which debuted last year) the watch features the brand’s Master Chronometer-certified co-axial movement, meaning it has both chronometer-grade accuracy and resistance to magnetism. It’s the dial, though, that stands out most — thick plots of vintage-hued lume surround it, creating a legible, but handsome, time teller.
    Movement: Omega 8806 automatic
    Size: 40mm
    Water resistance: 150m


    Rolex Explorer


    Watch nerds know the Explorer as the first watch up to the peak of Everest (though a Smiths came along for the ride as well) and this fact, to many, makes it infallible. (Being a Rolex probably helps, too.) This reference is the most recent and boasts an automatic movement with the brand’s superaltive chronometer accuracy (as in it’s guaranteed more accurate than your standard COSC-approved watch), and features the brand’s proprietary Chromalight lume that glows a sharp blue in the darkness.

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  17. #10
    Member boatme99's Avatar
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    Long Island Watch has Marathon fiber cased field watches
    Name:  WW194015-2T.jpg
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    $208, quartz, tritium, 34 mm.
    $160, quartz, Maraglo.
    54650

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