My Journey with IWC continue...
For something a bit different, I’m going to do a bit of a photo essay in the classic watch forum way, more often than not entitled something along the lines of “Look what arrived today!” Unfortunately I'm unable to start the piece with, "The UPS/DHL/Fedex guy showed up at my door today..." since I took delivery personally...
A plain cardboard box with some alphanumeric code on the side. What could it be???
Ok... So that IW at the beginning of the code is for IWC...
I like this black box. The previous IWC box I have was a smaller, leather white box, which didn't really do the watch justice. This is a great box and matches what's inside perfectly...
...And a close up...
Unlike the previous diversion, this one I’ve actually always liked since its launch around about 5 years ago. But at the time, I only had eyes for the titanium AMG version, as I quite liked the red seconds hand as well as the AMG connection, and I simply preferred the stepped dial over its stainless steel cousin. Some people found the cut numeral (10) annoying, but it's actually one of the points I like about the dial. And IWC, being the pioneer of using titanium to make watches, it would make sense to buy a watch in titanium from IWC, right? Since they’ve done it the longest.
IW3227-02 Ingenieur Titanium AMG
Another major selling point is the use of the in-house movement cal 80110. Although shrouded in controversy in its inception, I think the heat’s died down considerably since then and I don’t think most people even remember what all the fuss was about.
IWC Caliber 80110
It’s amazing how tastes change over time eh? Although I’ve always thought that if ever I do get the Ingenieur, it would be the titanium AMG version, every time I see the steel one, I always double back for another look. Warning bells should’ve been ringing, but it just didn’t register. The steel version is also amazing in photographs, with the contrasting matte overall finish against the polished edges of the case and bracelet. Truly, the bracelet is a work of art. It reminds me of the Vacheron Constantin Overseas where each link is individually finished and you can really see the work that’s gone into it.
The bracelet is a work of art
Again, this is another one of those watches with an integrated bracelet design, meaning you can’t just take the bracelet off and fit any old strap. But I’ve had some experience with these sort of watches, namely the Vacheron Constantin Overseas Chronograph, where I’d homemade a replacement strap by modifying the strap to fit the case. I thought I might do the same with the Ingenieur. And it’s also quite a looker on straps too, except unlike Panerai, IWC doesn’t offer a wide range of alternative straps. Googling also resulted in a few places where straps can be custom made to fit the watch, and this is another avenue I plan to explore in the near future.
Who needs a gold watch when a bit o' clever lighting will do?
The Ingenieur was completely redesigned in the 70s by Gerald Genta (who also designed many iconic watches including The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak, Patek Phillippe Nautilus, Vacheron Constantin 222, which evolved into the Overseas, Cartier Pasha, Omega Constellation and Seamaster to name a few) and his design cues are retained on the latest incarnation.
I love the blue tinge from the anti-reflective coating on the crystal
I think it’s not the kind of watch that appeals to everyone. Especially considering its size (thickness)… but most definitely it’s a watch that grows on you. And ultimately, that’s what you want. Something that you will grow to love more and more as time goes by. And it is such a photogenic watch. I can't seem to take a bad photo of it. Believe me I've tried!
I should talk a bit about the anti-magnetic properties of the Ingenieur. The reason why it is so thick is because the movement is housed in a Faraday cage that protects the movement from magnetic interference. It's made up of the dial, a thick ring around the movement and a soft iron case back. A couple of gripes though... The lume is worse than my Chinese watches and the watch is a real scratch magnet. possibly due to its size and plentiful sharp edges... Other than that it's a great watch and it definitely have a special place within my collection.
Part VI: Portuguese 7 Day Automatic
I am determined not to be distracted any more. The next IWC I get will be… nay, must be the Portuguese 7 day automatic, with the silvery white dial and blue hands/indices. And I hope that Part VI of this journey with IWC won’t take too long to complete.