Sunday, April 6, 2014

Reviewing My Men's Relic Sawyer Chronograph Watch

This is a review of the Relic Sawyer that I published on Yahoo Contributors Network a few days ago.  This watch is one that I consider a classic part of my collection.  I'm reprinting the entire review here:

Places like Norfolk, Portsmouth, and Hampton Roads are world renowned naval ports. They are also places where the Relic Men's Sawyer Chronograph watch (Model ZR66037) would look right at home. This quartz chronograph sports a battleship gray band, bezel, and 40 millimeter diameter face around a gleaming, 12 millimeter thick, stainless steel case. The look is beyond nautical. It's a naval warfare look for sure.

The Relic Sawyer
While style is important, this watch is also quite functional. The hour and minute hands have inlaid luminous material and the second hand is black. Each hour is marked by a luminous baton and small dot. Each minute is marked with a short white hash mark. The date is readable and positioned at a canted angle between the four and five o'clock batons. The 20 millimeter wide silicon strap is supremely comfortable and generously-sized to fit most wrists.

Relic Sawyer at the Battleship North Carolina
Three subdials handle chronograph functions. At the six o'clock position, seconds are counted by a small white hand in a subdial with only the bottom half of the subdial. Minute counting is handled at the 9 o'clock position in a circular subdial with numerals for 15, 30, 45, and 60 minutes and hash marks at five minute intervals. Finally, twenty-four hour time is provided by the subdial on the right at three o'clock. The Chronometer will time events for up to an hour. But, the 24-hour subdial provides only the time and is not part of the chronometer feature set. The crown for this watch is flanked by buttons to start, stop, and reset the chronograph subdials.

This Relic watch does have a few weak points. First, there is some looseness to the rotating bezel. If you tap the bezel, it will click like an old-time telegraph station. For the steampunk set, the ability to tap out Morse code could be feature. But, the rest of us might find it a slightly annoying lapse in quality for a watch at the top end of the Relic product line. Full retail for Model ZR66037 is around $95. The second flaw enhances the look of the watch at the expense of functionality. The flat black numbers on the bezel are simply hard to read at a glance. Overall, these a fairly minor criticisms of a novel approach to the diver-style chronometer.

The Relic Sawyer is a fine looking watch and a great addition to any casual collectors watch box. If it had a cool nautical name, it would probably cost five times as much.

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