Best Military Type Watch

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Georgia Mom, Nov 11, 2013.

  1. Georgia Mom

    Georgia Mom Member

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    Hi Everyone

    My DS has his 18th birthday coming up and we would like to get him a watch which would last yet also be something he could wear in the future while serving. I'm not even sure if the military has an approved list or if there are just certain types of watches that are better suited for the military lifestyle.

    Does anyone have any suggestions for great durable watches?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Bullet

    Bullet Member

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    I wore a CASIO G-Shock for most of my career (about 75 bucs, I think). Almost all of the folks I knew wore something similar, it just differed on the make / model. For a good "in the field / in the air" watch look for the following attributes:

    - Large digital readout of Hours, minutes, and seconds
    - Built in back light so you can read it in the dark.
    - Ability to adjust the time to a 24-hr clock
    - Easy to "Hack" (i.e. adjust it to the EXACT second). Yes, it is THAT important; many of your fancier watches hack themselves off of the GPS signal
    - Built in stop watch / lap reader / and alarm
    - Rugged

    These are just things I would look for. I (like many other AF flyers) also had one other requirement: the bigger the watch, the better. Don't ask me why, we just thought we were cool wearing a big watch. If we could have strapped on a digital Grandfather clock on our wrists, we would have. :biggrin:

    Now, If you REALLY want to treat him nice, you could get him a Breitling. It would only set you back a few thousand dollars (and yes, many AF flyers felt the need to get one with the plane they flew on the face. Me, I didn't see the need for a $3500 watch....)
     
  3. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    Luminox.com

    No better illumination, durability, and quality for the price. You're welcome.
     
  4. Georgia Mom

    Georgia Mom Member

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    Thanks so much for the responses. The Breitling is out of our price range. Has anyone had any experience with MTM watches. We were told about these at an event but we don't have a retailer anywhere nearby.
     
  5. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    You're lucky I'm a watch hog ;)

    The reality with any watch under $3000 or so is that you're paying for style and build quality (mostly the former). Nothing in that price range is a horologically significant timepiece. They're all part jewelry and mostly function, which is perfect for a young man. MTM watches use a Ronda Quartz movement, which is purported to be one of the more rugged and accurate in the industry. Remember, of course, that the "best" is a determination made at the margin. We're talking about thermocompensation and other such trivialities which might matter to the deep sea diver keeping time to the second in 40 degree water, but to the average cadet that's far beyond anything he'll ask of the watch.

    The bulk of quartz movements are made by Seiko, ETA, Ronda, and ISA. They're all good stuff, so the guts are sort of a wash. For what you're REALLY paying for, i.e. the style and the materials and what-not, I don't care for MTM. That's a personal thing. They slap the word "military" and "spec ops" on every last watch (despite the fact that no one in the SOF world that I've encountered wears an MTM watch to do anything tactical). It's too much flash. A lot of sizzle and for some expensive salisbury steak.

    I like the Luminox 3000 series, because it's not overwrought with the patently gauche military stuff. Sure, it's called the Navy Seal 3000, but it doesn't say it on the watch. And it's black and white and bright as hell at night. The perfect tool. If you want to go a little dressier, the Atacama Field Day/Date 1920 is a nice choice, or dressier still is the Valjoux Field Chronograph 1860 series. As far as quartz watches go, it's one of the more handsome offerings around, I think.

    I have owned a Seiko for years (wedding gift) that has taken quite the beating. It did let me down when it died on day 2 of my last Afghanistan trip. I bought $40 Timex off the Germans (worth about $8) and have yet to get the battery in the Seiko replaced. Of course, my wife's gift of a Breitling slowed down my desire.

    The question is one of functionality, which most any sub-$700 quartz watch will give you, and style. The latter is of course a personal choice. You can always go the high-speed route and get him a Suunto, but I think they, too, are a bit gauche and scream "trying too hard to look hard." Less is more, I say.

    Look at the bright side...when he graduates, THEN you can get him the Breitling with all the college money you didn't spend on him :big grin:. I recommend the TransOcean Chronograph B01, if you wondered.

    Cheers.
     
  6. Georgia Mom

    Georgia Mom Member

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    Wow Scoutpilot. Amazing info and I really appreciate it. I will look over the ones you suggest as they all sound great.

    This is why I love this board as people are so helpful and knowledgeable. :)

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  7. JMC0759

    JMC0759 S-USMMA '12 D-USAFA '15

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    I work in law enforcement and most of my co-workers wear Luminox. The watch glows in the dark and you can tell time without having to press any buttons. They are the official watch of the Seals and are worn by SWAT teams around the world. We recently placed an order for 100 watches and Luminox put our department patch on the face of the watch. You can find a really nice Luminox for under $200. I am really hard on watches and these are really rugged.
     
  8. Georgia Mom

    Georgia Mom Member

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    I ordered the Luminox Navy Seal Colormark Chronograph Mens Watch 3081 for him today. Hopefully he will like it. Thanks again for all the tips:thumb:
     
  9. JMC0759

    JMC0759 S-USMMA '12 D-USAFA '15

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    He will love that watch. I wear the Luminox 3050BO. The watch is totally blacked out including the numbers. My wife, a distance swimmer, wears a pink colormark. Mine has the Navy Seals logo on the back.
     
  10. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Nothing wrong with a nice pricey watch. My pretty little thing has a seahorse on it. In the event I die and sink 1000 feet in the ocean, my ghost could still tell the time.
     
  11. kinnem

    kinnem Moderator

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    I understand, according to Einstein, that at that depth, time passes slower and you stop aging... while folks on the surface still grow older.
     
  12. raimius

    raimius USAFA Alumnus

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    For Dressier times, get a nice watch. For utility, I'd go for the Casio or Timex that has the functions you want.
    I go with a Timex Expedition. It's medium sized, but has large numbers, so it's really easy to read.

    ...I also say this because I've accidentally beat my watch against the side of a helicopter more than once. I wouldn't want to do that with a $3000 watch!
     
  13. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/290936638547?lpid=82

    Looks good. You must really like it. :biggrin:
     
  14. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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  15. 84grad19dad

    84grad19dad Member

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    I know this thread is old but reminded me of my "type III Class A self luminous auto-ranging chronograph". Issued in mid 80's. It looked like a 6 dollar Kmart special but was a great watch.
     
  16. JWP

    JWP Member

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    2018 DS has been wearing a Luminox for 2 years and 2019 DS is taking one with him to beast. BTW great warranty for the Luminox
     
  17. scoutpilot

    scoutpilot Member

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    I'm on Luminox number two. My first was a 3000 series original. Now for daily wear I go with the 3001 in full black. Doesn't jump out at you, fits under an ACU cuff, and can be seen better at night than any other watch.

    [​IMG]
     
  18. PhilDavidsonUSAFA

    PhilDavidsonUSAFA Member

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    Just get a casio G-SHOCK. For <$40 plus free shipping on Amazon. Anything else is overkill for a new cadet.

    -

    Phil

    U.S. Air Force Academy
     

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