Monday, December 28, 2015

Dream Watches - The Legendary Rolex Submariner Date Watch

Ruminations on the Rolex Submariner Watch 

A co-worker received a pristine Rolex Submariner Date watch as a gift. Now, he probably wonders why I keep stealing glances at his wrist. 

Rolex Submariner - Photo By The original uploader was LuckyLouie at English Wikipedia [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

If there is one watch brand that is most associated with luxury, that brand is Rolex. As a wristwatch collector and reviewer, I've reviewed lots of lesser watches. But, I've never actually had the opportunity to actually see a Rolex up close. That changed when a co-worker of mine received a pristine Rolex Submariner Date watch as a gift. His Rolex (probably Model 116613) has a steel case, a black face, and yellow gold trim. Now, he probably wonders why I keep stealing glances at his wrist.

When you look at the Rolex Submariner, you are immediately struck by how familiar looking the watch actually is. It is one of the iconic diver's watches that other brands repeatedly emulate. But, unlike many of today's gargantuan watches, the Rolex is quite reasonably sized. In fact, at 40 millimeters in diameter, the Submariner's dial really isn't any bigger than my latest Timex Expedition Core Analog watch. I think it's a perfectly proportioned watch. One thing I love about the Rolex is the magnification bubble in the crystal over the date window. The magnifier makes it easy to read the date--even from afar!

After the normality of the iconic styling and regular size of the legendary Rolex, the careful observer is struck by the solid construction and quality materials used in the Submariner. The hermetically-sealed "Oyster" case is made of corrosion-resistant, 904L steel. The bracelet, ceramic bezel, and triple-lock winding crown are trimmed with gold forged in Rolex's exclusive foundries. The face is protected by a real mineral crystal. The tough construction adds up to a very substantial watch. While my Caravelle by Bulova Diver-style watch is water resistant to 50 meters, my co-worker's Rolex Submariner is waterproof to 300 meters. That's a staggering 1000 feet. Plus, the Rolex has a perpetual, self-winding, movement while my humble Caravelle is a battery-fired quartz model. The movement is quite a wonder as the Rolex second hand moves amazingly smoothly in comparison to the halting ticking of most watches.

Rolex Sub - By Eternalsleeper at English Wikipedia [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

The Rolex Submariner certainly looks richer and more substantial than any of my watches and it simply puts the Seiko, Skagen, and Nautica watches worn by most of our workforce to shame. Although the Rolex is a well-known status symbol, the watch isn't just about bling. In 1926, Rolex developed the first waterproof watch and in 1927 a young English woman named Mercedes Gleitze proved the durability of Rolex when she swam across the English Channel. Rolex was also worn on the first expedition to successfully climb Mount Everest. Even though it's tough, I like bang around watches that cost less than $30. But, if you need a tough watch, the Rolex name is synonymous with tough, professional-grade, precision for divers and other adventurers.

While I won't succumb to a full-blown case of watch envy, it is really cool to see such a mechanical marvel up close.

Rolex Submariner,

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

What time is it?  It's Christmas Time!  I hope that every reader has a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Last Minute Gift Ideas: Watches from Retailers

It's officially the last minute for Christmas Shopping.  If you haven't bought a gift by now, it's nearly time to panic.  But, there are still some nice watches available.  You just have to figure out where to shop.  When I shop for watches in person, there are three stores that I frequent:

Walmart. (See my article Pssst....Check Out The Watches at Walmart)  Walmart has lots of stocking stuffer watches for less than $15.  They also have a great collection of Timex, Casio, Armitron, and Elgin watches.  If you are looking for a gift that counts as a "nice" watch, you can't go wrong with a Casio G-Shock from Walmart.  They have a pretty good selection and good prices.  One caveat, the amount of merchandise offered varies a lot from Walmart to Walmart.  Typically, better zip codes (in terms of Audi, Lexus, and Volvo vehicles per zip) have better merchandise.

Stocking Stuffer Watches at Walmart
Typically, I've found the Elgin watches at Walmart to be a little over-blinged.

Elgin Watches

T.J. Maxx.  If one store is consistent in surprising me with great watches, it's T.J. Maxx.  Major cities like Atlanta typically have at least one "Runway T.J. Maxx" with the best fashion merchandise.    See my article "Watches at the Runway T.J. Maxx in Atlanta".  You can often find watch brands including Bulova, Croton, Wenger, Tissot, Tommy Bahama at T.J. Maxx.

Kohl's.  My other go to store for watches is Kohl's.  Check your junk mail for a catalogue with a pull off coupon for something like 10 to 30% off of your purchase.  Also, if you've already bought from Kohls this season, you might have Kohl's cash coupons.  To see what a good deal from Kohls looks like, check out my article:  "The Anatomy of a Good Deal at Kohls."

If all else fails, there is always a Gift Card from Amazon, you can either send them via e-mail or print them out at home! An Amazon gift card can be a life saver when it comes to gift giving!

Finally, if you want to give something really cool, gift the gift of Amazon Prime.

Shop Amazon - Give the Gift of Amazon Prime

Your recipient will get great deals on shipping, lots of free e-books, and plenty of streaming content and the click of a mouse or the tap of a finger.

Good luck and happy holidays!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Wristwatch Review: Timex Expedition Vintage Metal Field Watch

Reviewing a Classic Military-Style Timex 

Do you need to liberate France? If so, you might check out the Timex Expedition Vintage Metal Field Watch.   Originally published by me on Yahoo Contributors Network, this review examines a Timex watch that looks like World War II relic.

Timex Expedition Vintage Metal Field Watch

Adventure is always just around the corner. All it takes is a willingness to take a walk in the woods or drive down a country road. If you are looking for a watch with an adventurous spirit, you might check out the Timex Expedition Vintage Metal Field Watch. After weeks of researching military-style field watches, I simply happened across this Expedition on the shelves of my local Walmart. Priced at only$39.92, I couldn't let it languish on the shelf.

Patterned after classic military field watches and aviation watches of World War II, this Timex Expedition has a vintage sensibility with a low key brown face, a base metal case (with brass doing a great imitation of stainless steel), and a weathered-looking brown leather band. In terms of looks and style, this Timex field watch nails the vintage field watch look precisely. However, the vintage looks are only skin deep, the watch has a modern quartz movement and an Indiglo illumination for the dial. While field watches look like they may have marched across Europe and would look great on a camping trip, they also work well with the khaki pants and earth toned polo shirts that have conquered America's business casual workplace. To me, this ruggedly-constructed Timex looks a little more suitable for the office than the woods.

At heart, the Timex Expedition Vintage Metal Field Watch is a no nonsense watch with readable numbers 1 through 12, a stainless steel case back, a mineral glass crystal, a protected crown, and 50-meter water resistance. The watch is 40 millimeters in diameter and 10 millimeters thick. The leather band easily accommodated my now 7 and 1/2 inch wrists with 3 adjustment points to go. The case back is etched with the Timex Expedition logo. The case back etching also conveys additional information like the water resistance, the Timex URL, and the battery type. Additional small numerals at 5 minute intervals are found on the inner wall of the bezel in the space between the watch face and the crystal.

While nice looking field watches from elite manufacturers can run hundreds or even thousands of dollars, Timex sells this Expedition online for $54. However, the every day low price of this watch at Walmart makes it a very affordable part of any adventure. At the $40 big box store price point, you could easily issue this Timex to all of your troops without running a deficit or breaking your family treasury.


Monday, December 21, 2015

Wristwatch Review: Drive by Citizen Men's Black Ion Plated Eco-Drive Strap Watch

Reviewing a Solar Powered Watch 

Are you looking for a watch that incorporates interesting and ecologically sound technology? You might check out the Eco-Drive line of watches by Citizen.
(I originally published this article via the now defunct Yahoo Contributors Network.)

Drive From Citizen Eco-Drive CTO 2.0 Black Ion Plated Watch

The special thing about an Eco-Drive watch is that it is powered by light. It harnesses the power of sunlight or artificial light and combines this solar energy with quartz watch accuracy. The result is a watch that can theoretically run forever and always keep accurate time. Fully charged, an Eco-Drive watch can run for six months in light or dark. I was excited to receive a "Drive by Citizen" Eco-Drive watch for my fifteenth wedding anniversary. The name of this watch seems to vary by merchant, but it is model AW1135-01E. Amazon calls it this catchy little moniker: Citizen Men's Drive from Citizen Eco-Drive CTO 2.0 Black Ion Plated Watch. I have also seen it called CTO 2.0 and simply Drive by Citizen. No matter what the retailers call it, this Eco-Drive model is a sporty watch with understated but technically sophisticated styling.

Watch Style. The Drive watch has basic black style. It has a black ion plated stainless steel case, a black leather strap with black stitching, and a couple of orange accent stitches near the lugs. The dial is black underlying a silver mesh or honeycomb design. The dial is a subtle feature as it can appear silver or black depending on the light and angle of the watch to the future. This Drive also has a date window that shows 5 dates with today's date being outlined. Hours are marked by white batons around the perimeter of the dial and are further highlighted by an orange dot just inboard of the batons. At 12 o'clock, Citizen Eco-Drive is spelled out. At 6 o'clock, the water resistance is noted. The style of this watch is confidently masculine. The Drive CTO 2.0 has a refined muscular look without a bulky case or unnecessary gadgetry. There is nothing that screams "Solar" when it comes to this watch.

A "Drive by Citizen" watch that makes solar energy unobtrusive and routine!

Movement. The Eco-Drive has a solar powered Japanese quartz movement. When you first get it, you need to charge it up. However, ambient lighting seems to be enough to keep it going. Citizen basically recommends that you expose the Eco-Drive watch to sunlight or strong lamp light for one day per month. Unlike less expensive solar watches, the solar panel is built directly into the dial surface and you cannot explicitly see a traditional "solar cell."

Citizen Eco-Drive Watch

Watch Size. The size of this watch is an understated 41 millimeters. It is 11 millimeters thick and has a strap that tapers from 24 millimeters at the lugs down to 19 millimeters at the buckle. The watch is perfectly proportioned to wear under a long-sleeved shirt cuff.

Watch Construction. This watch has an ion-coated black stainless steel metal case and shiny stainless steel back. The Drive is built with 100 meters (330 feet) of water resistance. The strap is genuine leather with a "soft touch" finish. The leather is soft inside and out. It is truly a very comfortable watch to wear.

Price. This watch retails for $250 but smart shoppers can use sales to knock the price down considerably. However, Citizen is not one of those brands that claims a high retail price but is routinely 80% off.

Overall. In a world where tech gadgets grab headlines every day, the Citizen Eco-Drive line of watches delivers on the promise of solar technology in a low-key manner. There is no Richard Branson promising a space voyage. There is no Elon Musk crusading for an electric car in every garage. There is no goofy product shape to let the world know that that the wearer is ecologically correct. Instead, there are Citizen timepieces that simply work well, wear well, and happen to be solar powered. This Drive by Citizen watch is a very cool addition to any collection.


Friday, December 18, 2015

Casio Watches for Imperial Storm Troopers

Today is the release date of a long anticipated movie -- Star Wars:  The Force Awakens.  The movie will re-unite the original Star Wars cast and has excited fans worldwide.  With Christmas just days away, the question has to be asked:  Do you have any Imperial Storm troopers on your Christmas list this year?  If so, these watches from Casio might make the perfect gift.  These are simply white Casio Tough Solar watches, but I think they capture the sheen and attitude of Star Wars imperial storm trooper armor perfectly.  I have the "jungle" version of the Casio Tough Solar have previously reviewed it.  As of 2024, if you'd like to get a Storm Trooper look at a decent price, you can find the Casio Men's AQ-S810WC-7AVCF Analog-Digital Quartz White Watch on Amazon.  But, you'll never be able to say the name three times fast.

There is also a purely digital version for the high tech set.  Both of these watches look very cool.  Since they aren't actual Star Wars(tm) products, they also need to work first and foremost as watches.

These aren't expensive watches and you aren't paying a premium for Star Wars branding.  [As of 2024, you can find this Casio Tough Solar Digital watch on Amazon.]

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Wristwatch Review: Men's Casio HD Series Analog Watch

Need a Watch for the Next Decade? 

A review of a Casio HD Series men's watch that offers an amazing ten year battery life for less than $20. 

Batteries are the Achilles' heel of quartz movement watches. They don't last long enough. I've actually had watch batteries die within two hours of purchasing a watch. But, now, Casio offers affordable HD series watches with batteries that last for a decade. For today's high tech worker, that's long enough to live in five cities and get laid off at least once. Imagine a decade of always knowing the time.

The Casio HD

Of course, if you're going to live with a watch for ten years, you're going to want it to look good. How does the HD series Casio compare to other watches in its price range? The HD series what that I bought for just under $20 at Walmart is an interesting looking timepiece. It has a small (1-inch diameter) golden face with raised numbers at twelve, six, and nine o'clock. The numbers are outlined with golden trim and filled in with luminous material. A small date window is provided in the three o'clock position. The hour and minute hand are generously sized and also filled with luminous material.

The band is a fairly stiff black plastic or rubber watch band with perforations every 1/3 of an inch or so. The band has a raised center with a very tight stippling pattern that continues the entire length of the band and is integrated into the black plastic watch case. The stippling evokes more sophisticated materials like carbon fiber. The immediate bezel area around the face of the watch is a smoother area of black plastic. A raised area surrounding the watch face and beneath the crystal presents small numerals for minutes at five minute intervals.

To conserve battery life, the HD series watch does not include internal illumination or backlighting. It's not as fancy as my Casio Telememo 30 World Time ana-digital watch. However, I found it easy to tell time in low light conditions due to the luminous material in the hands. While the watch is a no frills model, the crown offers two positions: one for changing the time and one for changing the date. The watch also has a stainless steel back and is water resistant to an astounding 100 meters.

In wearing this watch, I found myself captivated by the shiny golden face of this timepiece. The gold color scheme has a monochromatic effect and the watch presents many facets to the sun. For a cheap watch without subdials, I find the watch visually stimulating. The band was generously sized, but feels a little cheap. It would fit my wrists a little more precisely if the perforations were slightly closer together. The black band and case do a good job of balancing the brightness of the golden face. Similar HD watches with more normal color schemes are available. Casio also sells a men's analog dress watch with a 10-year battery for less than $40.

Overall, this watch and the entire Casio HD series represents a great watch value for less than $20 at Walmart.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Wristwatch Review: Men's Pulsar Chronograph Dress Watch with Roman Numerals

Examining a Stainless Steel Chronograph Watch from Pulsar

Power, sophistication, and sensibility are the perfect combination for a man's dress watch. Does the Pulsar Chronograph Model PT3399 demonstrate all three? I received one for Christmas 2013 and will look for those qualities.

Pulsar Chronograph Model PT3399
[This is a re-print of a review that I published on the now defunct Yahoo Voices.  Spoiler alert - This watch is still available and still looks like a million bucks.]

 Watch Style. Roman numerals on a dress watch always up your game. Instead of piloting an aircraft or driving a sports car, a dial with Roman numerals suggests that the wearer is likely to pilot a major corporation or drive an important court case. It's a different kind of power and the Pulsar PT3399 demonstrates it. Roman numerals circle a silver dial with XII exerting its authority with a larger font in blue. The hour, minute, and second hands are done in the same blue. The hour and minute hands have a luminous white insert for night visibility.

This Pulsar has chronograph subdials at three, six, and nine o'clock. The subdials are silver with small black arabic numerals on raised rings. The subdial at three o'clock provides the 24-hour time. Seconds are provided at six o'clock and minutes are provided at nine o'clock. The pushers work well to activate, stop, and reset the chronograph subdials. However, I wouldn't really use this watch to time anything athletic.

A date window is canted and sits between four and five o'clock just inboard of the numeral track. The date and all of the other numerals on the watch are readable even with my aging eyes.

The watch itself is all stainless steel with the bracelet and case elegantly alternating high shine and flat satin finishes. The bracelet has a fold over clasp with push button. It fit me well with a little room to spare, but smaller wrists may need to remove a link or two. I think this watch is very sophisticated looking.

Watch Size. The diameter of this watch is officially 43 millimeters but that's about 45 millimeters counting the crown or pusher buttons. It is 10 millimeters thick and has a wide bracelet that measures 21 millimeters at the lugs and 20 millimeters at the clasp.

Watch Construction. Despite the Roman numerals, this Pulsar is built with a respectable water resistance rating. The watch has a hardlex crystal. It also has a screw down caseback. These features help the PT3399 achieve 100 meters of water resistance. Since Pulsar is a Seiko brand, it has a reliable Japanese quartz movement.

Price. The suggested retail price for this watch is $175. However, with smart shopping at Kohl's, my wife was able to get a considerable discount for this watch on sale.

Overall. I like this Pulsar Chronograph very much. It has the classic, powerful, styling that is seen in many far more prestigious mechanical watches. This Pulsar has Roman numerals to up the sophistication game. Plus, it has a reliable, economical, Japanese quartz movement. The Pulsar PT3399 has everything I look for in a dress watch. This watch will be my go to dress watch for important meetings, job interviews, and other important business functions.


Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Dream Watches - The Breitling Navitimer 01 (46 mm)

As a watch collector, my eyes are always drawn to billboards and posters advertising watches.  Sometimes the watches are well out of my price range.  But, they are always fun to dream about.  A recent stroll through Atlanta's Hartsfeld-Jackson International airport recently brought me eye to eye with this poster for the Breitling Navitimer 46.  It proclaimed that "An icon just got larger."

A Breitling Ad at the airport called ATL

I was intrigued as the Breitling wings always catch my eye.  As soon as I was waiting for my flight, I looked up the Breitling Navitimer on  There it was a dream watch:  the Breitling Navitimer 01 (46 mm).  It's a new version of the Breitling Navitimer with a 46 millimeter case diameter.  It has a stainless steel case and what I can only imagine is a supple black calf leather strap.  Of course, this dream watch is an automatic and it has three sub-dials.  It has a minimum of 70 hours power reserve. 

Breitling Navitimer 01

All I knew was that Breitling makes watches for pilots.  I've read a few reviews in high end watch magazines in the past.  But, when I reached my destination, I read even more while waiting for my bags and ground transportation.

From the company website, I quickly learned that Breitling has been a leader in technical watches since 1884.  Each of their movements is chronometer certified.  Plus Breitling is one of the last remaining independent Swiss watch makers.  Thus each of their movements is "their movement" and today that is truly special.  I found the Navitimer 01 on the website and learned that there are even options for the watch in red gold.  I wasn't surprised.  Nothing proclaims success and competence better than a Breitling.

Of course, I had work to do and such a fine watch is still outside my comfortable price range.  But, if it's within your price range, this dream watch would be a wonderful addition to your collection.  It would also make the perfect Christmas gift.  You should get one here on Amazon.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Daniel Wellington Watches for Christmas

I just came across a new watch brand right in time for Christmas! If you are still looking for gift ideas for a preppy man, you should check out Daniel Wellington watches for men. They look like great weekender watches with GQ, ESQ, and The Hamptons written all over them.

The watch above is the Daniel Wellington Classic Watch (Silver Fabric) which is available on Amazon.  It's a very classy Weekender for sure.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Seven Great Men's Watches for Less Than $30

Bargain Watches that Make Great Stocking Stuffers

Many watches deliver excellent value for very low prices. These inexpensive watches are the perfect buy for Christmas stocking stuffers, office party gift exchanges, or birthday bonus gifts.

[This is reprinted from my Yahoo Contributors Network articles.  However, most of the watches mentioned are still great deals and are still less than $30. ]

While most watch enthusiasts focus on expensive, luxury, watch brands, many low end watches offer high end features and deliver excellent value for very low prices. At low price points, watches really make the perfect Christmas stocking stuffers, office party gift exchange, or birthday bonus gifts. Here are seven really nifty watches that cost less than thirty dollars.

1. Casio Men's Digital Watch (W-201). The Casio W201 is a capable little watch that offers all the expected digital functions in a retro 80's style package. The W-201 provides the time, date, dual time, 12/24-hour time display, stop watch with split times, an LED light for night, and even 50-meter water resistance. When people think of a digital watch, they probably envision this exact model. While this watch is a rather small band, the W-201 remains the perfect nostalgia watch gift for older nerds and geeks.

Casio W-201 on Amazon

2. Timex Expedition (Model T18581). The Timex Expedition watch series is the backbone of the Timex watch line. The watches are available in a variety of forms from low end to high end. At every price point, the Timex delivers good value. If you are looking to stay under $30, check out the camper Timex Expedition. This classic military-style watch has a black face and black strap that will satisfy any low budget commando.

3. Mossimo Digital Watch. Mossimo is a designer and design firm with close ties to Target. Mossimo has many innovative watch designs and they all retail for about $20 at your local Target store. I particularly like the Mossimo Digital Watch. However, you can find many Mossimo Watches at Target.

Mossimo Digital Watch

4. Casio Forester. If you are ready for adventure, but don't have a big budget, check out the analog Casio Forester. It's a rugged, well protected, watch with an internal backlight and a case that fits into most camouflage schemes.

5. Casio Telememo 30 World Time Ana-Digital Watch. If your adventures are more jet set than jungle, check out the amazing Casio WorldTime Ana-digital watch. It has a data bank for storing phone numbers and can display multiple timezones. Plus, it has a ten year battery and very cool retro-futurist styling for a low budget timepiece. [As of 2024, this watch cost a little more than $30, but it was still inexpensive on]

6. Precision by Gruen Diver Style Watch. Kohl's offers a series of "Precision by Gruen" watches for less than $30. I particularly like the Diver-style watch with a rotating bezel. If you swap the cheap velcro band for an inexpensive rubber watch band like I did, this watch will look like a million dollars. It offers a great diver-style look in a bang-around watch. However, I wouldn't go in the water with it.

Precision by Gruen

7. Casio HD-Series Men's Analog Watch. The Casio HD-Series watch presents a rich, golden, champagne-colored, face for shoppers on a beer or soda budget. Once upon a time, you could find this watch for less than $20 at Walmart, the Casio HD-series analog watch offers an amazing 10-year battery, a date window, luminescent hands and markers, and an endlessly fascinating face.

A Casio HD Series Watch

These watches certainly show that there are a lot of cheap watches that look great and offer cool features. Each of these bargain watches would fit into a tight gift-giving budget.

[This article was updated with new photos and links in 2024]

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Watch Collecting: The Most Essential Watches for Men

How to Build Your Watch Collection 

There is one place every man can express his personal sense of style: the wrist watch. If you are building a watch collection, you don't need a hundred watches. A half-dozen watches should suffice to cover most occasions. This article covers the watches you need. 

(This article is reprinted from my Yahoo Contributors Network Content, but it stands the test of time.)

What kind of watches should a man have in his collection? It's an old question. There is one place every man can express his personal sense of style: the wrist watch. I have been collecting watches for years. I now have nearly hundred watches in my collection. In truth, that is far to many watches for any mere mortal, but I enjoy wearing a different watch almost every day. There are only a few types of watch that are essential for any man.

Types of Watches. If you are building a watch collection, you don't need a hundred watches. A half-dozen watches should suffice to cover most occasions. All you really need is a nice dress watch, a business casual watch, a fashion watch or two, a sport watch, and a "bang around" watch. A watch in each of these categories would cover you for job interviews, office work, evenings out, sporting occasions, and hard manual labor. From this foundation, you could build out your collection to match specific suits or specific manly pursuits.

Dress Watches. Do you have a nice watch that you wear to job interviews, black-tie functions, funerals, and church? You probably should get something that is functional, well-made, under-stated and fits under the cuff of a dress shirt. When it comes to dress watches, brand matters. You don't want something that will make you look cheap in your best suit. It would be great to wear a Rolex Perpetual Oyster Datejust. The 36 millimeter dial is the perfect size and it looks sharp. But, in the real middle class world, brands like Pulsar, Seiko, and Bulova have some great choices in a $100 to $250 range. In my collection, I have two Pulsars, a Bulova, and a Seiko that fit the bill. The key is to look competent, understated, and professional. A job interview or funeral isn't the place for a big honking watch with a 57 millimeter diameter case.

A Simple Bulova dress watch like this one is perfect for the workplace

Business Casual Watch. Once you've got the job, you can probably switch to business casual attire. You can wear all kinds of watches to the office and that is part of the fun of having a big watch collection. However, some watches just look great with khakis and a collared shirt. For business casual wear, I like watches with leather straps. My AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane has an interesting multipurpose dial in dark green and a rich brown leather strap. Similarly I have a Fossil Decker watch with chronometer markings, a stainless steel case with a vintage bronze tone, and a brown leather strap. Both of these watches have a rich, professional, look and don't break the bank. You can express yourself with a business casual watch, but I generally don't get too radical.

Fashion Watch. For fun with radical watch design, I'd look for exciting watches to wear to social events. A big watch from a brand like Diesel or Invicta would totally work when you want to draw attention in a crowd. The Diesel Men's Advanced Black Watch has a big 52 millimeter diameter case and an bold urban feel.  The Diesel Deadeye is another great choice. The Invicta Stainless Steel Grand Diver gives you the look of a traditional dive watch in a big 49 millimeter case. Each of these watches is an affordable accessory that gets noticed.

The Diesel Deadeye Fashion Watch

Sport Watch. If you try to get out and get some exercise, then you'll want a watch that supports your sports goals. For example, if you are a runner or a swimmer, you may want something like digital Timex Ironman Traditional 30-Lap Strap Watch. If you are into rugged sports like paintball or rock climbing, a trendy analog or digital Casio G Shock may provide the armor you need for tough impacts.  The Casio Tough Solar Ana-Digital Watch is a lower cost alternative to the G Shock that will stand up to outdoor activities as well.

A Casio Tough Solar

"Bang Around Watch." Finally, everyone has manual labor to do from time to time. It doesn't make any sense to mow your lawn, paint your house, or fix your car while wearing an expensive watch. There are lots of inexpensive watches for less than $50 that keep perfectly good time and aren't a big loss if they get scratched or damaged. Timex makes plenty of good bang around watches.

Timex Classic Dress Watch (Model T2P383)

Once you have a basic watch collection in place, it can serve you for years or you can expand it over time. While some may think that cell phones tell time just fine, they are really missing out. Men have never had more choices in affordable wrist wear.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Cool Kickstarter Watch Project: Chronoquatic Sub Sonar Automatic Watches

My friends over at the Chronoquatic Watch Dept. turned me on to another cool Kickstarter watch project.  They are raising funds for a series of automatic dive watches called the Chronoquatic Sub Sonar.  So far, these watches look really good!
Chronoquatic SS395 - Solid Steel Sub Sonar  (Photo courtesy of Chronoquatic Watch Dept.)
The Chronoquatic plan is ambitious, but very achievable.  They plan to release 4 models with three different bezels.  They are all classic diver-style watches.  Most will have 39.5 mm diameter cases and 10 Atmosphere (100 meter) water resistance.  However, some models will have 45 mm diameter cases at 30 Atmosphere (300 meter) water resistance.  The movement will be a "Japanese, Caliber Seiko NH35A, hacking system and 41 hours Power Reserve."   The price points look reasonable and delivery is planned for April 2016.

If you simply like the look of a classic dive watch or you want a hard-core dive watch, one of the Chronoquatic Sub Sonar watches will fit your needs and your budget.  This is a chance to get a classic watch with solid components at a very nice price point.  The project site is worth checking out for the pictures and technical drawings alone.  Without further ado, check out this project -

Sunday, November 22, 2015

A Complete Review of my Walmart Casio Edifice

I noticed that I had a dead link on one of my most popular posts: The Casio Edifice from Walmart.  This oversight has been corrected and I have updated the post with my complete review.

Plus, I've actually found this watch model on Amazon so anyone can buy it easily without having to hunt in holiday crowds at the Big Box!

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Clearance Casio Solar Watch

I saw an interesting Casio at my local Walmart last week.  It was solar-powered with a canvas strap and it had a macho, military, look.  It also offered 100 meter water resistance.  Best of all, it was clearance priced for $30.

Casio Solar Watch
 Usually, clearance prices mean you'll have to change the battery sooner.  But, with a totally analog solar powered watch, that  shouldn't be a problem.  With my watch box full and my wallet empty, I left this watch for someone else to enjoy.  I can always get it off of Amazon for around the same price!

Interesting that the Casio at Walmart is upside down on a Timex display tray.  Perhaps, it was sending out a distress signal?

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Wristwatch Review: Nautica NST700 Dive-style Fashion Chronograph Watch

One of the newer watches in my collection is an excellent Nautica chronograph watch.  It's called the NST700 and it's marketed as a casual fashion watch.  However, the beauty of this watch is not just skin deep!

Watch Design.  This may be a "fashion" watch, but this Nautica has a sporty, manly, fashion to it.  It has a black non-rotating bezel with diver-style markings.  The bezel has orange in the "short air" fifteen minute danger zone.  The 24.1 millimeter stainless steel bracelet fits perfectly without needing further adjustments.  The 45 millimeter diameter case is 13.2 millimeters thick which puts this watch in a really nice zone for comfortable daily wear.  The dial is black and everything else is silver stainless steel.  While I like the black and orange motif, Nautica NST 700 watches are available on Amazon in a variety of color schemes.

Watch Features.  The coolest thing about this watch is that it actually works as a stopwatch.  The large second hand is stationary at 12 o'clock.  But, when you push the top button, it starts making its way around the dial as a second hand.  Push the top button again and it stops.  The bottom button resets the stopwatch hand back to 12 o'clock when held down.  It's very cool!  If I suspect the waiter is going to be a little slow, the stop watch is just the thing to confirm my suspicions and tip accordingly!


Watch Construction.  While the NST700 is not technically a dive watch, it has a screw-down crown.  The watch is water resistant to 100 meters (330 feet).  That's enough to allow swimming and snorkeling, but not diving.  It also is enough for typing, driving along in my automobile, and watching football games.    If this Nautical watch needs to prove its metal, it has a stainless steel case, bezel, and band.  It even has a mineral crystal.  Overall, it's tough enough!

This Nautica goes by the catchy model number N16656G.  On Amazon it gets solid 5-star reviews and everyone likes the look.  I like it very much and heartily recommend it!

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Classic Cheap Watch: Casio MRW200H Dive Watch

As we've been living out of boxes, I've gained an appreciation for one of the cheap watches that came readily to hand:  my Casio MRW200H Dive watch.

Casio MRW200H Dive Watch

It's so light that you barely realize you are wearing it.  You can even sleep whole wearing this watch.  But, it's tough and offers good 100-meter water resistance, too.  For only $25 or so, it is hard to beat.

If you need a decent bang around watch, you can't go wrong with a Casio MRW200H!  You can read my complete review of this watch here.  If you'd like to buy a watch like this, Amazon has plenty of varieties here.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Cool Kickstarter Watch Project: NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watch

If you are looking for innovation and unique style, you have to check out micro-brand watch projects on Kickstarter.  I recently learned of a very interesting dive watch project.  The NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watch from NATO Brand USA offers all the goodness of a first-rate, automatic, dive watch and adds the innovation of a patent-pending bezel lock that prevents the bezel from rotating once it is locked down.  The watch might take bumps and bashes, but with a locked bezel, your oxygen-tank time doesn't accidentally get shorter!

NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watches
According to the NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watches kickstarter site, the MIL-DIVERs will have a screw down crown and will be water resistant to 300 feet or 100 meters (10 Atmospheres).  The case will be stainless steel and the bezel will be ceramic.  

NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watch partially submerged
NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watches will be built with a reliable Miyota 9015 Automatic Movement.  For night operations, Super Luminova coatings will be used to emit light all night long until your mission is complete!

Higher pledge levels will be able to choose a Stealth Series watch which will feature a black PVD coated case.  If the project reaches stretch objectives, great things will happen.  If the project raises $40,000, a leather strap will be available.  If the project reaches $50,000, each watch will be upgraded to an amazing 300 meters or 1000 feet of water resistance. If the project reaches $70,000 chronometers will become available.

There are a couple of interesting aspects of this project.  First, each watch will be assembled and cased in the United States.  Second, even small donations to this project are welcomed.  NATO Brand USA will provide cool swag for donations as small as $5.  Check the kickstarter project page for NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER watch for details.  This project could be very exciting.  If you'd like to be a part of it, check them out and pledge as soon as possible.

Note:  NATO Tactical Survival MIL-DIVER is a trademark of NATO Brand USA.  Photos used are courtesy of NATO Brand USA.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

This Timex took a licking and kept on ticking!

It's been the move from hell and it isn't even over.  It rained.  I wasn't fully packed.  The movers were late.  We saved too much stuff to move ourselves.  We had too many narrow staircases to navigate.  The apartment we moved to was in unacceptable shape.  But, through it all, my Timex Easy Reader kept good time.

It got wet.  It got scraped against walls.  It got bounced on banisters.  But, this tough little watch held up well.  As the old commercials said, this Timex took a licking and kept on ticking!