Off the Cuff: DIY Watch Club

To begin, the DIY Watch Club Diver Series Kit strikes me as a good value proposition. If you price out the various components required for building a watch from scratch, add in the shipping and duty, and then consider all of the tools you will need to carry out the operation, $350USD begins to look pretty good. And I have also seen these kits go on sale recently for as much as 30% off. The added benefit for an inexperienced modder/builder is that nothing gets left out.

Off the Cuff: Vanbanner Parkingmaster

Legend has it that the idea behind the Parkingmaster came to LV after watching a YouTube video where a woman mentioned that she used her bezel to time parking meters. Of course, the majority of dive watches sold today never do anything more adventurous than “desk diving,” so why not repurpose the appendix? While the Parkingmaster bezel appears, and functions, more-or-less like a traditional dive bezel, it does have a “red zone” indicating that you should return to your car and feed the meter. I think that this cheeky addition would also function nicely as a wily wink among other watch enthusiasts.

On Spec: The Farer Field Watch Collection

The launch of any watch by Farer is reason enough for fanfare. The brand’s new Field Watch Collection is no exception. And unlike a lot of microbrand launches, there will be no wait time on this one. The Exmoor, Lomond, and Pembroke are ready and waiting for immediate shipping.

Other Watchy Bits: ‘Eza’ on the Eyes

Trampe, unlike a lot of microbrand founders, is himself a watchmaker. He studied the craft for four years in Schoonhoven, Netherlands before seeking to launch his own company. In fact, he also studied commercial economics and undertook two important internships—one at a jewelry and watch business, the other behind the bench at a Rolex service centre. Simply put, Trampe had apprenticed himself to both sides of the watch industry: technical and commercial.

Other Watchy Bits: Aurora Borealis

The Aurora Borealis, those beautiful polar lights visible here in Canada and at other high latitudes, are caused by the “excitation of atmospheric constituents.” That’s a little how I feel when the Borealis Watch Company launches a new timepiece. I bought the Borealis Olisipo around this same time last year. One of few personal highlightsContinue reading “Other Watchy Bits: Aurora Borealis”

Other Watchy Bits: Lorier’s Vintage Eye for the Modern Guy

That a microbrand might wish to democratize the watch purchasing process—that is avoid markups while producing a quality product—is nothing new. What does, however, differentiate Lorier from other brands is that they are not fixed on collectors. Lorier, instead, has constructed their brand around the principle of the “one watch collection.”

Off the Cuff: Aevum Advance Carbon

In 2019, after a successful Kickstarter campaign, Aevum released its second automotive-inspired watch, the Advance. The Carbon Limited is the latest in this new series and maintains all of the automotive references of the original Advance. Its name refers to ignition timing, or the moment a spark plug fires during its compression stroke to provide more power.

Off the Cuff: The Ambassador GMT by Whitby Watch Co.

The Ambassador takes it lead from the Flieger tradition which put the Whitby Watch Co. on the map, but then banks hard right with more contemporary design cues. The lovely sweep of its traditional stainless-steel pilot-style case offers a choice of modern updates: a brash brushed silver or a deep black PVD.

On Spec: Aquastar Deepstar

The whisper of it conjures images of Cousteau, Marianna’s Trench, and the Trieste Bathyscape—in other words, the Aquastar invokes the Golden Age of maverick ocean exploration when divers pushed the limits of technology and sanity in plumbing the depths.

Off the Cuff: The Limited Edition Arrow Pilot Watch

The Arrow Pilot Watch furthers the narrative which began with the company’s successful Intrepid Diver. While this first watch resurrected the memory of Sir William Stephenson—a WWII Canadian operative—the Arrow grounds itself in the most controversial moment of Canadian military aviation.