Sunday, April 14, 2024

Watch Strap Review: Ritche Quick Release Leather Watch Bands - Top Grain Leather Watch Strap

Over time and with regular use, watch straps deteriorate and eventually need replacing. In the case of my AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane watch, one of the loops for retaining the tail end of the watch strap simply broke. I set the watch aside for a good long time. I shouldn't have. It turns out that lots of suitable replacement watch straps are available on Amazon.

My AVI-8 Hurricane with the old watch strap

I selected a top grain leather watch strap from Ritche on Amazon and it arrived at my home very quickly.  The new strap had a slightly weathered look that is an excellent complement to a watch that evokes a famous series of World War 2 aircraft.

A Ritche Quick Release Top Grain Leather Watch Strap

The Ritche replacement strap is offered in many finishes and tones, but the one I chose comes in a rich "Espresso Brown" and has a black buckle. Where the original strap had white stitching that looked new even after years, the new strap has more subdued stitching in brown that helps the watch look like it's been on a few missions.

The Ritche Leather Watch Strap with Buckle Shown

Installing my replacement watch strap was a breeze because I had a suitable watch repair kit that included a Spring Bar Tool.  It made it easy to compress the spring bar and remove the old watch strap.  Installing the new watch strap was even easier.  It came with a sliding "button" (shown below) that makes installation and removal very easy without the need for tools.

The quick release slide on a Ritche Watch Strap

With great quality, great looks, and a great price, it's not surprising that this Ritche Leather Watch strap is the number 1 best seller in its category on Amazon.  It was definitely one of the best purchases I've made on Amazon in a long time. Refreshed with a new watch strap and a new watch battery, I'm really glad my AVI-8 Hawker Hurricane watch can take flight again. I look forward to years of a continued wear.




Friday, April 12, 2024

TGIF: Are store-brand and designer-brand watches the same?

Sometimes while messing with watches and changing batteries, you start to notice something.  For example, the movements of these two quartz watches are very similar in size, shape, and form.  One of the watches is from an exclusive designer brand from Watch Gang and the other watch is a generic quartz watch from Target or Walmart.  The designer watch retails for around $200 and the big box watch retailed for $20.  The designer watch did come with a much cooler stainless steel case and an internal bezel that rotates.  It's an interesting watch.  The big box watch case in a much more generic base metal case.  But, still, the similarity bugs me.

Beneath the case, are these the same watch?


A generic quartz watch from a big box store & a designer watch

On one hand, the similarity in movements presents an opportunity.  I messed up the movement of the designer watch when a battery change went awry.  So, maybe I could swap the movement of one watch into the other.  On the other hand, are designer watches and store brand watches almost exactly the same when you pull the caseback off?

Maybe it's a good thing that many watch movements can be found in similar shapes and sizes? It might make repairs and replacements easier.  Speaking of replacement watch movements, did you know that there are many watch movements sold on Amazon? Click on the link to have your mind blown!  I might try to build my own watch or, at least, repair some of my broken watches.


Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday - Armitron Stainless Steel Watch

When it comes to watches, I do like the shine of a watch with silver tones.  Even as the sun sets, this watch from Armitron catches the last light of the evening and makes the most of it.

Armitron Stainless Steel Quartz Watch

This watch has been in my collection for over a decade.  If you'd like to see my review, check it out on this blog here. With a new battery, it's keeping time accurately without missing a beat.  Since this watch is almost vintage now, that makes this blog almost vintage, and that makes me almost vintage, too.

Armitron Stainless Steel Quartz Watch

[While I can't find this Armitron for sale in 2024, there are lots of reasonably priced Armitron watches available on Amazon.]






Sunday, April 7, 2024

Wristwatch Review: Caribbean Joe Sport Watch with Subdials

Here's an interesting and inexpensive watch from Caribbean Joe.  You can typically find watches like this at Burlington and Boscov stores for less than $20 in 2024.  It comes with a synthetic leather strap and has a reasonable 38mm and approximately 8mm thickness. for everyday wear. It's a lightweight, comfortable, watch that works well.

A Caribbean Joe Watch with 3 non-functional subdials

WATCH FEATURES

This watch has the basic features that you expect for telling time:  big hand, little hand, and second hand.  But what this Caribbean Joe watch doesn't have raises an interesting question for watch buyers and enthusiasts.  The subdials in this watch are non-functional.  That's right.  They are only there for appearance sake.  I used to think that this would be a problem.  But, now, I'm not so sure.  

I don't think I need complications or subdials on a watch anymore.  The one thing about fake subdials is that they seem unnecessary and, perhaps, a little dishonest.  Alternatively, my Caribbean Joe Sunburst watch is a little more straight forward.

This Caribbean Joe watch has non-functional subdials

WATCH CONSTRUCTION

Of course, Caribbean Joe immediately makes up for the lack of functioning subdials with something far more important:  the battery requirement etched on the caseback.  I could hug them.  There's nothing worse than taking a caseback off to replace a battery and then having to start a mad quest to find some kind of obscure watch battery.  SR626SW batteries are very common and easy to find.

The Stainless Steel Caseback of the Caribbean Joe watch

This Caribbean Joe watch has a stainless steel caseback, a synthetic leather strap, a base metal case (in a gunmetal tone), and a Singapore-made watch movement.

OVERALL

I really like this watch.  It is simple, inexpensive, and good looking.  It also came in a nice box.  I like not having to fuss with trying to read the subdials or make sure they work.  I don't know that I'd wear this watch in a physically demanding environment or  into a status-oriented office.  It's not a prestige watch.  But, it works on a "this looks cool" level.  You also won't get mugged for it.  It's a great value at under $25 in 2024.  Plus, I like having a thatched hut and palm tree with me at all times.



Thursday, April 4, 2024

TGIF: Kicking Back with a Caribbean Joe Watch

We've made it through another workweek and reached another blessed Friday!  If you're ready for a palm tree and a hut, so am I!  That's why we'll soon have another review for a fashion watch from Caribbean Joe.  I have a few of these watches in my collection now so you'll see more of them in the coming weeks.

A tiny little hut and a tiny little palm tree adorn the dial of a Caribbean Joe watch.

I know. I know.  With retail prices that are typically less than $30, Caribbean Joe watches are cheap watches. We'll do a bit more prestige with a Bulova sometime soon.  But, as far as I'm concerned, with the little hut and palm tree, these watches come with just the right attitude.  Here is my review for a Caribbean Joe Men's Degrade Watch with a green  sunburst dial.  Never be afraid to have a little fun with a bang around watch!

A Caribbean Joe Watch with Three Non-Functional Subdials


Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Invicta Men's Pro-Diver Automatic with Coin-Edged Bezel

Here's a simple dive watch that I bought about 3 years ago.  It's an Invicta Men's Pro-Diver Automatic Watch with a Coin-Edged Bezel that I bought off of Amazon for less than $100. In the dim lights of a local Mexican restaurant, it looks great. It has rotating uni-directional bezel with a coin edge that is easy to grip and rotate.  It also has an exhibition case back.

Invicta Men's Pro-Diver Automatic with Coin-Edged Bezel
 
This watch reminds me of a certain famous brand of dive watch in many ways.  But, it has a very affordable price tag.  I like many features of this sharp-looking Invicta watch and I'll write a full review soon. 

Sunday, March 31, 2024

Watch Strap Review: Fullmosa 22mm Silicone No Gaps Watch Band

Do you have one of those watches where the strap curves right along with the watch case?  When the original watch strap wears out, finding a new one can seem hopeless.  I managed to damage the original strap that came with one of my Invicta diver-style watches.  Somewhere along the way, I tugged on it too hard and it simply broke.  I didn't think I'd ever find a new one that would look as nice.  Fortunately, Fullmosa offered a 22mm Silicone Watch Band with No Gaps on Amazon for an affordable price.

The Fullmosa Watch Strap Neatly Packaged

One thing that I liked about this kit was the spring bar tool.  That made removal of the old watch strap a breeze.  The old Invicta watch strap used two pins on each set of lugs.  However, the Fullmosa only uses one.  

Invicta Watch with 2 spring bar pins per lug

Fortunately, this didn't pose a problem.  Since the Fullmosa replace watch band came with built-in quick release pins, I didn't need to bother with pesky spring bars during installation.


The Fullmosa No Gaps Watch Strap is curved to minimize gaps

As you can see from the photos above and below the Fullmosa Strap does a pretty good job minimizing the gaps between the watch strap and watch case.



If you'd like to get a variation of this watch strap, you can find it here on Amazon:  Fullmosa 22mm Silicone No Gaps Watch Band,



Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Good Times with the Diesel Fastback

 It's that time of year, the blooms start to appear, the days begin to lengthen, the temperatures begin to warm, and, naturally, thoughts turn to basketball.  That's right! It's NCAA March Madness!  I took in some of the early First Four action at a local sports bar.  On that wrist, was my old Diesel Fastback watch going for dunks in Spinach dip craziness.

Diesel Fastback Wristwatch:  Ready when the chips are down

If you'd like to read my full review of the Diesel Fastback, check it out here on my blog.  The great thing about this watch is that it is honest and readable.  At this point, the strap has faded a bit and I wonder if I should replace it.  It's pretty comfortable, but I wonder if I should try something a little newer and cleaner looking.

The Diesel Fastback on a Sports Bar Table

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Watch Repair Tools: The Spring Bar Tool for Replacing Watch Straps

When it comes time to replace a watch strap or bracelet, it can be a challenge to compress the spring bar that holds the strap in place.  This is one time that having the right tool comes in handy.  There is a tool that is made just for compressing those little springs without damaging the watch strap or the watch.  The tool is available in various forms on Amazon and is called the Spring Bar Tool.

My AVI-8 Hurricane Watch, a Spring Bar Tool, and a Replacement Watch Strap (in packaging)

I was fortunate enough to have a Spring Bar Tool included in my watch tool kit.  But, some replacement watch straps come with a tool in the packaging.  I was pleasantly surprised to find a small one in the packaging for the Fullmosa 22mm Silicone No Gap Watch Band that I recently ordered.

A Fullmosa 22mm No-Gap Watch Strap

All Spring Bar Tools have a flat "blade" tip that slides between the watch case and the watch strap.  The V-shaped gap in the end of the tip allows it to straddle the pin and the handle gives you a little leverage so you can compress the spring bar and remove the watch strap from your watch.  Some Spring Bar tools have interchangeable tips for handling various diameter spring bars and watch sizes.  Sometimes the indentation is too small for a given spring bar.

The Tip of a Spring Bar Tool

The Spring Bar Tool allows me to remove a watch strap easily and without hassle.  I highly recommend getting one or getting a watch repair kit that includes one.  It make the life of a watch collector much easier.


Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Men's Grenen Sports Watch with Analog Calendar Features

 When you were a kid, did your grandfather ever give you a wooden token or small coin that was marked as a "Round Tuit?" If you got a "Round Tuit," it was supposed to empower you to go out and do all the things that you were going to do if you ever got around to it.  It was kind of dumb, pre-baby boomer, humor that usually elicited a combination of a suppressed sigh, groan, rolling of the eyes, and a strong attempt to pay attention and give respect to the World War 2 and Great Depression generation.  In our hobby, getting around to changing the batteries on quartz watches can be put off for a long time.  But, when you do change those batteries, it's like Christmas.  The gift is all kinds of watches that you haven't worn for awhile.  This watch (below) is from Skagen and was sold through it's Grenen brand at stores like Kohl's.

Grenen Men's Watch with Analog Calendar Features

I wore this watch a lot for the first couple of years of ownership and then it got packed away for about a decade when the battery died.  Now, it's back and it looks great.  It's like a vintage sports car now.





Saturday, March 16, 2024

Watch Review: Invicta Pro Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch

This beautiful watch is an Invicta Pro Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch (Model 6981) with "Master of the Oceans" inscribed upon the caseback. It's a big bold watch that really stands out on the wrist.

Invicta Pro Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch - Model 6981

WATCH FEATURES


This watch has a uni-directional rotating bezel, an extended calendar window, chronograph functions, and three subdials.  The subdials support the chronograph function and provide the 24-hour time, a 60 second stop watch, and a 60 minute stop watch.  The watch is powered by a Japanese VD53 quartz movement and takes a SR-920SW battery. 

All of the watch features worked as advertised. I initially found the date a little challenging to pick up at a glance, but it provided within a gold-toned box at the 4:30 position on the watch dial.  In my opinion, the chronograph features of the watch would be a little more useful if the subdial at 6 o'clock was graduated in 1 second increments so you could time things down to the second.  Similarly from a functional perspective, I like hashmarks on the first 15 minutes of a rotating bezel.  But, these criticism are mere nits.  This Invicta is a fashion watch.  It's designed to draw attention and it does that very well.   

WATCH DIMENSIONS


The Invicta Pro Diver Model 6981 is an undeniably big watch.  It feels solid and hefty.  The case is 48mm in diameter and 16.8mm thick.  The watch weighs in at 190 grams (6.7 ounces).  It definitely feels like you are making a statement when you put this bad boy on your wrist.  It's a flashy watch to wear when you are going out to a restaurant, bar, or club.
 
The Invicta Pro-Diver (Model 6981) is a big watch

WATCH CONSTRUCTION

This Invicta is constructed of stainless steel and feels very solid.  It has a black silicone band and a mineral crystal.  The watch offers 100 meters of water resistance which makes it suitable for swimming, but not SCUBA diving.  In truth, it's a fashion watch that would look perfectly at home at the yacht club.

Invicta Model 6981

OVERALL IMPRESSION

I really like this watch. It's fun to own. I sometimes wear it out to restaurants or for short jaunts around and about town.  Due to its size and weight, it's not a watch I would chose for all day wear. It simply gets a little heavy. This watch is like a flashy car.  It's not always practical, but it is usually a lot of fun.  As a statement timepiece, it's a good addition to a well-rounded watch collection.  If you'd like to get an Invicta Pro Diver (Model 6981) at a good price, look for it here at Amazon.

To see more photos of this watch, check out my Watch Wearing Wednesday feature.

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Invicta Specialty Men's Watch

Here's a cool watch that I picked up from InvictaStores.com.  It's simply called the Invicta Men's Speciality Stainless Steel Watch.  It's available for a similarly great low price here on Amazon.  

Below is just a quick shot taken while chilling in the car.  From this angle, the sun shows brightly, but also highlights some fingerprint smudging on the crystal.  The watch is a nice size at 45mm in diameter.

Invicta Specialty Men's Watch

The watch is from the Invicta Specialty Collection and can be found at nice discounts on Amazon and on Invictawatches.com.





Monday, March 11, 2024

New Watch Models - Bulova Surveyor Classic Watches

If you like classical men's watches with a minimum of muss, fuss, and artifice, there are some real treats coming your way from some respected watch brands.

Bulova Men's Classic Surveyor Watches

Bulova has recently released a new series of watches for their Men's Classic Collection called Surveyor.  These watches demonstrate an understated class and substance at a price point that is luxurious without being ridiculous.  You can find Men's Bulova Surveyor watches here on Amazon.  The watch that really stood out to me is the Bulova Men's Classic Stainless Steel Watch (Model 96C125).

Bulova Men's Classic Watch (Model 96C125).

This basic watch has a beautiful blue dial, a quartz movement a day window at 12 o'clock, a data window at 3 o'clock, and the beloved Bulova Tuning fork logo.  It also has an excellent price for a dress watch of this caliber. You can find the Bulova Model 96C125 here on Amazon. While the blue dial drew me in, other combinations feature an attractive leather band, or a gold-tone accented case and band.  Other models in the collection feature automatic movements, exposed apertures to show the watches movement, a skeleton watch, and a watch with chronograph subdials.


Saturday, March 9, 2024

Daylight Savings Time Fun for Horologists, Nightmare for Everyone Else

Have you "sprung forward" yet?  At what is now 3:35 a.m., I'm not sure I have much "spring" left.  I just got robbed of an hour's sleep.  We all did.  My state, Georgia, is one of many that have voted to end the practice of Daylight Savings Time, but according to this report on 11alive.com, Congress has to repeal the uniform time act of 1966 for us to actually make the change. On the bright side, as a watch enthusiast, I have an excuse to mess with all my watches now.  

In the photos below, you'll see three watches for past and future blog posts.

Watches from Invicta, Sperry, and Grenen (Skagen)

I've been sleepily setting times on a my Invicta Pro Diver Model 6981, my Sperry Top-Sider Skipper (reviewed here), and a now vintage Grenen watch from Skagen.  I've had the Grenen since 2012 so it's almost vintage now.  You'll see these watches and more on this blog in the coming weeks.






Wristwatch Review: Timex Expedition Gallatin Watch

The watch for today's review is a simple classic:  the Timex Expedition Gallatin Watch.  It's a nice comfortable watch for everyday wear.  As always, Timex provides an excellent watch value for your money. 

The Timex Expedition Gallatin

WATCH DIMENSIONS


It features a 22mm wide silicone strap and a lightweight 44mm diameter resin case that is 11.5mm thick.

WATCH FEATURES


While it has the style of a dive watch, it's only rated for 50 meters of water resistance and the bezel doesn't rotate. Of course, this is a watch you wear for comfort and style. It does have indiglo lighting when you push the crown and it has a little bit of lume on the hour markers and hands. The crystal is acrylic. It's not really a tactical watch, but it looks great (below) on the dieselpunk boardgame battlefield of Scythe from Stonemaier Games.

The Timex Gallatin looks gallant on a boardgame battlefield.

OVERALL IMPRESSION

As an inexpensive watch without a lot of metal, it's also a great watch for travel. If you lose it or damage it, you won't cry for long.  For a fairly low price, you get a great looking watch that is readable, functional, and reliable. I like it. This is a Timex watch I often choose for my everyday expeditions.


The Timex Expedition Gallatin waits for a flight

 

Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Invicta Pro-Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch

Sometimes, you just want to wear something substantial and flashy.  On those days, you need look no farther than the Invicta Pro-Diver stainless steel quartz watch. It's a bad dude. The case diameter is 48 millimeters and the case thickness is 16.8 millimeters. That's big!

The Invicta Pro-Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch

If you'd like to pick up a watch like this, you'll find them available here on Amazon.

The Invicta Pro-Diver Stainless Steel Quartz Watch Out on the Town

If you'd like to read my full review of this watch, check it out here:

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Replacing Watch Batteries on Timex Expedition and Timex Elevated Classic Watches

I recently revived a couple of my favorite Timex watches.  It was time for long overdue watch battery replacements for my Timex Expedition Vintage Metal watch and my Timex Elevated Classic.  Fortunately, they both used the same battery.

A Timex Expedition Watch with the caseback popped off revealing the battery.

Steps for Replacing a Timex Expedition Watch Battery

The steps in replacing a watch battery for a simple watch like the Timex Expedition are simple and straight forward:

  1. Pop the caseback off.
  2. Remove the dead battery.
  3. Place the new battery in the watch.
  4. Check to make sure the second hand is moving.
  5. Press the caseback back onto the watch.

Timex Expedition Vintage Metal - A Military-Style Watch

What kind of watch battery does a Timex Expedition Vintage Metal watch use?

The venerable CR-2016 watch battery.  Fortunately, it's a relatively large battery, easy to handle, and commonly found in retail stores or on Amazon.

What kind of watch battery does a Timex Elevated Classic watch use?

Also, the CR-2016 watch battery.


What kind of tools do you need to replace a watch battery?

While replacing watch batteries is relatively easy, it really helps to have some specialized tools.  To pop the caseback off, you need a stout little blade to find an indent and use as a lever to pop it off.  Watch repair kits like this one on Amazon, usually have such a blade to make easy work of the job.

Watch Press Case Setback Tool

Another tool that really helps is a Watch Press Case Setback Tool.  It can be easy to pop off a watch caseback, but pressing it back on again without a tool can be an extreme challenge.  

Drawbacks to Replacing Your Own Watch Battery

The biggest problem I find in replacing a watch battery is that you can scratch up the back of the watch trying to pry off the caseback. You also need a special wrench to remove casebacks on diver-style watches.  It can sometimes be difficult to find the right replacement watch battery. If a watch is expensive, you may want to take the watch to a watch repair shop for professional assistance.

For more details, check out this post on how to replace a watch battery.



Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Citizen Weekender Eco-Drive Sport Watch

Sometimes a simple watch is the most wearable of watches.  My Citizen AR Weekender Eco-Drive Sport Watch is a simple pleasure to wear.  With hassle-free solar power, light weight, perfect proportions, and great style, this Weekender is a pleasure in every way.  I find it to be a very easy grab-n-go watch.  You can read my full review here on this blog.

The Citizen AR-series Weekender Eco-Drive Sport Watch

If you'd like to own one of these impressive everyday watches, you can find them here on Amazon.

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Wristwatch Review: the Men's Timex Expedition Core Analog Watch

A Tough Looking Timex for Daily Wear

The Timex Expedition Core Analog Watch provides the dark and dangerous looks of a professional military or divers watch in an affordable Timex package that costs less than $50.

[My review originally appeared on the now defunct Associated Content / Yahoo Voices site. However, since I've been gushing about this watch since 2012 and it is still available at a low price on Amazon, I'm reprinting it here.] 

Timex Expedition Core Resin Quartz Watch
Are you old enough to remember Timex Watch commercials? The venerable watch company's slogan was always that "it takes a ticking and keeps on ticking." It's been a long time since I've seen a television commercial where a Timex gets strapped to an outboard engine and dunked in a tank of water for a high rpm spin. But, some Timex watches still look tough enough to take that challenge. One example is the Timex Expedition Core Analog Watch.

I chose the Timex Expedition Core Analog Watch because it provides the dark and dangerous looks of a professional military or divers watch in an affordable Timex package. The watch itself has a 42-millimeter diameter black resin case that is about 11 millimeters thick. A durable resin band with a belt-style fastener secures the watch to your wrist. The case back is stainless steel. Contrast is provided by very readable white numbers that stand out against a jet black dial. Large numbers are placed at the 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12 o'clock positions. Small numbers inboard of the primary numbers provide the 24-hour or military time (14, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, and 22 are marked). At the 3 o'clock position a small window provides the date with black numbers on a white background.

The bezel has diver-style markings with pale blue numerals denoting the minutes in ten minute intervals. Unfortunately, the bezel does not rotate which undermines the use of this watch for timing. I really like functional, rotating, bezels especially on a watch that looks this purposeful. This Timex has water resistance down to 50 meters. The durable resin band is flexible, but not as soft as many watches with increasingly popular silicone bands. Like all Timex Expedition watches, the Core Analog Watch has Indiglo lighting technology. You simply push the crown to illuminate the face of the watch. I found that this feature works very well.

The main appeal of this watch is its para-military styling. The black case, band, and markings are similar to watches costing hundreds and even thousands of dollars more. If you aren't jumping out of planes, hunting down terrorists, or diving to the bottom of the sea, this Timex should certainly look good and accurately provide you with the time and the date. Since the crystal is recessed within the bezel, it should be protected from at least some minor lickings that might occur during daily wear.

Overall, I like the Timex Expedition Core Analog Watch. It's a tough, good looking, watch for an affordable amount of money. I only wish the bezel rotated! Then, it would be perfect.  

[If you'd like to get this watch, it is still available in 2024 on Amazon here in 2024.]

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Watch Wearing Wednesday: Tommy Hilfiger Dive-Style Watch

For this Wednesday's watch, I'm wearing a Tommy Hilfiger Diver-Style Watch with 24 hour clock and date subdials.  It's a great quartz watch that hits a lot of buttons for me.  This model appears to have been discontinued since I don't see it on Amazon.  This watch has a rotating bezel and subdials for the day, date, and 24 hour time.

Tommy Hilfiger Diver-Style Watch

There are a spectacular array of current Tommy Hilfiger watch models on Amazon.  They all look great and bring a lot of style to the wrist.  You can see Tommy Hilfiger watches for men on Amazon here.
The Tommy Hilfiger Dive-style Watch on the wrist

Here's a shot of the Tommy Hilfiger Dive watch on my wrist.  As you can see, it's a well-proportioned and readable timepiece with a simple design.  It has a thickness that is just right for fitting under the cuff of a long-sleeved shirt.  Definitely worth hunting for this watch.


Saturday, February 17, 2024

Wristwatch Review: Timex Men's Ironman Triathlon 30-Lap Oversize Digital Watch (T5K4139J)

A Great Timex Watch - but Doesn't Convey Superpowers! 

[This watch review was originally published on Yahoo Voices back about a decade ago.  But, the watch is still available for a great price on Amazon.]

Ironman. The name evokes images of powerful athletes, superheroes, and an awesome Black Sabbath song. Over the years, Timex Ironman watches have gained a reputation for being tough watches that amateur athletes can depend on. So, when you strap on the Timex Ironman Triathlon 30-Lap Oversize Digital Watch, you certainly feel ready for action. 

Timex Iron Man Triathlon 30-Lap Oversized Digital Watch

While you don't gain the ability to fire disruptor rays from your palms, this Ironman watch will allow you to time things, countdown, remember lap times, and remember up to 15 dates.

The plastic watch case of this Ironman watch looks rugged and adventure ready. The bezel is deep blue on black. Yellow is used for the Timex Name and Ironman icon. The function button labels are white in a large, readable, no-nonsense font. The case is well-integrated into the band and extends around your wrist gauntlet style. I think the shape and taper of the case into the band subtly evokes the shape of the comic Ironman's suit or well-defined six-pack abs. But, sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. The band itself is blue canvas with black velcro extending along its entire length. The case measures about 1 3/4 inches across and is about 9/16-inches thick. The watch fits my 8 1/2-inch wrists with room to spare. The band measures 15/16-inches wide. 

According to Timex.com, this Timex Ironman has an INDIGLO Night-Light with Night-Mode, a 100-Hour Chronograph with Lap and Split Times, a 30-lap memory recall, a 99-lap counter, a 24-hour countdown timer with stop and repeat, and fifteen date reminders. The watch also appears to have up to three alarms. In truth, as a bit of an analog guy, I find all of that just a little difficult to set up. Fortunately, the small print instructions found in the watch box can be difficult to read. Adobe acrobat versions of the manual are available at Timex.com. I was easily able to set reminders in the watch for birthdays, my anniversary, and holidays. That function alone may save many iron men. While there is an initial learning curve, it's nice to have a watch that offers a wide array of alarms and reminders. The stopwatch itself is actually very easy to start, stop, and reset. 

This Timex Ironman watch looks great, fits great, and offers a lot of features. But, it doesn't offer any superpowers. 

Setting all the Ironman functions aside, I like this watch because it goes with my blue shirts. I also like the streamlined styling of the Timex Ironman a lot more than the clunky looks offered by its Casio-competitor the G Shock. While this watch won't provide any superpowers, it will support a lot of athletic activities and provide lots of useful reminders, alarms, and stopwatch functions. 

Overall, I like the Timex Ironman Tradition 30-Lap Oversize watch. At Walmart, this watch sold for considerably less than the Timex suggested retail price of $50.  

[You can still find this Timex timepiece on Amazon for a similarly great price.]


Sunday, February 11, 2024

Watch Photos: LaCoste Club Watch for Men

 As I've been wearing the LaCoste Club watch more often over the last few days, I've had a chance to take a few more photos and capture a little more detail about this watch.  You can read my full review here.

LaCoste Club Watch for Men

LaCoste Alligator Logos on the LaCoste Club Watch

The Crown of the LaCoste Club Watch
You can't have a LaCoste product without the Lacoste Logo.  The LaCoste Club watch is no exception.  The watch features the iconic LaCoste Alligator in a few places on the watch.  One of the most important locations is on the crown.  Under magnification, you can even see a few extra details like the scutes and eyes of the alligator.

The Clasp of the LaCoste Club Watch

Another key area where the logo appears is on the push-button deployant clasp.  The all stainless steel bracelet and clasp is very smooth and comfortable.

I liked that this watch is comfortable and fits my wrist perfectly.






The Caseback and Pushbutton Deployant Clasp
One final place that this watch features the LaCoste Alligator logo is the caseback itself.  I've used a photo from Amazon to show this portion of the watch.  As you can see, the LaCoste logo is prominently featured along with some information about the watch itself.

You can click the link to see more details on Amazon about the LaCoste Club watch for men.  You'll also find some interesting bracelet alternatives.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Watch Review: LaCoste Club Watch for Men

Minimalist watches have been a bit of a trend over the past couple of years.  Brands like MVMT have been on the forefront of minimalist design.  They offer a variety of elegant minimalist designs.  But, you don't see many of their watches in stores.  If you are looking for a minimalist watch from a more familiar brand, you might check out the LaCoste Club Watch.  My wife was fortunate to find this LaCoste watch for me at a Burlington Coat Factory for a fraction of the prices listed on Amazon or traditional department stores.

The LaCoste Club Men's Watch

Watch Features

What can you list as a watch feature on a minimalist watch?  This one features the LaCoste Logo at 12 o'clock and a date window at 6 o'clock.  The hours are market with simple shiny silver batons.

It has an hour hand, a minute hand, and a second hand.  It also has a comfortable band that feels smooth and cool against the wrist.

Most of all, it features a simple and elegant look.  You'll find the LaCoste trademark alligator logo on the dial, the crown, the caseback, and the bracelet clasp.  For more photos of the LaCoste Club watch and these details, bang it here.

The LaCoste Club Watch on a table.

Watch Construction

The LaCoste Club watch features a stainless steel case and bracelet. The dial is protected by a mineral crystal. According to the caseback, the watch has 3 BAR (30 meters) of water resistance.  It's enough water resistance to ward off a little rain and wash your hands.  But, this is a dressy watch for the office or a night out, not a watch for SCUBA diving.

It looks just great on the table at my local P.F. Changs.  As a small drawback, I do find that the watch does tend to collect smudges or fingerprints on the crystal.  But, a quick wipe of a napkin or on a shirt fixes it right up.

Watch Dimensions

A profile view of the watch shows its thin case
The LaCoste Club watch has a 42mm diameter case that appears to be about about 8mm thick.  It's a nice thin watch that would fit under the cuff of his shirt.  The watch bracelet is 20mm wide at the lugs and tapers to about 17mm for the trip around the wrist.

The length of the bracelet is generous and I found that it fit my wrists perfectly without any modification.

These proportions are great for wearing to the office or to functions requiring a long-sleeved dress shirt.


Overall Impression

In general, I really like this watch.  It's a nice lightweight watch with solid construction and a band that feels smooth against the skin.  It's a great value and a heck of a find at the low (sub-$50) price point offered by Burlington.  At conventional retail outlets, the LaCoste Club Watch is still a good watch at current price points.  As a familiar brand, it also checks all the boxes for the minimalist look.  

The bracelet and deployment clasp of the Izod Club Watch