Thursday, July 11, 2013

Pilot Watch Worldtimer Showdown!

Recently we received a letter from one of our readers*. It says, "Dear Sydney Tart, I'm a pilot and I travel the world. What can you suggest in the form of a pilot watch with world time zone functions? "

Well Mr Pilot, I'm very glad you asked that question because we have found not one, but 4 watches that are right up your alley, at different price points, so you're covered if you work for Jetstar or Emirates or you fly your own Cessna. Let's explore further.

For starters, as a criteria, all watches features the pilot watch style, along with a world time zone function. All watches in this list shows the cities from the 24 time zones around the edge of the dial, with day/night indicators. Most of the representative city names for the time zones are the same, with some minor differences here and there. One of the watches runs a manually wound movement whilst the other three are automatic. One runs a heavily modified ETA movement, the others are manufacture in-house movements. Two of the watches features no additional functions apart from date, while the other two adds the alarm function, and one goes further with a chronograph built in as well. It's up to you whether you feel you need the additional functions or you're happy with time and date. Two of the watches also feature daylight saving indications, whereas the other two you'll have to add/subtract an hour yourself. You also need to note that none of these watches show half-hour time zones, so if you're based in New Delhi or Adelaide, ahem...

This quartet of watches not only covers a fairly broad price range, they also cover a range of sizes, from 42mm to 46mm. Some will wear larger/smaller than others so as always, we recommend that you try the watches on if you can. As worldtimers, you're not going to have a clean dial, Although one brand does it quite well. All the other have fairly busy dials. Hopefully this will give you a good idea of what's available, and depending on you needs and wants and thickness of your wallet, you can't go wrong with any of them. But, we do have our pick, which we will reveal after the specs for each model.

Alpina Startimer Pilot Worldtimer

Movement: Automatic caliber AL-718, 
48 hour power reserve
Case Diametre: 44mm
Water resistant: 100m
Limited Edition: 8888 pieces
Price: USD3,450

IWC Pilot's Watch Worldtimer

Movement: Automatic Caliber 30750, 
42 hour power reserve
Case Diametre: 45mm
Water resistance: 60 meters
Price: USD9,650

Vulcain Aviator GMT

Movement: Mechanical manually-wound Manufacture Vulcain Calibre V-10,
42 hour power reserve with alarm function.
Alarm Duration: Approx. 20 seconds
Case Diametre: 42mm
Case-back: triple case-back acting as a resonance chamber 
Water resistant: 100m
Price: USD5,525

Zenith Pilot Doublematic

Movement: El Primero 4046, automatic, 50h power reserve, 36.600 A/h, big date, chronograph, World Time, alarm
Case Diametre: 45mm 
water resistant: 50m
Price: USD14,200

Our pick of the bunch would have to be the Zenith. Yes it is the most expensive watch here but to us it is also the best value for money, given all the included complications. 

*the reader and/or the letter may or may not be fictional. Juz sayin'

1 comment:

Unknown said...

of course, there is always the Patek World Timer... for the really well-off Pilot.

But don't forget the original pilot's watch? Rolex GMT.... :)