Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post Reply
User avatar
conjurer (Online)
ASSHAT & Master of Time
Posts: 32712
Joined: July 13th 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by conjurer » February 1st 2011, 12:50pm

Image

Mary, mother of God, those (Germans) sure know how to build a boat.


They know how to build a watch, too. The Stowa Seatime:

Image


Pros:
Pretty cheap for a chronometer
Superb machining and construction
Excellent accuracy
Good wrist presence without being Invicta-huge

Cons:
Very long delivery times
No AR coating on crystal
Minutes hand rather thin
Bezel is very stiff

I got this watch in a trade with member Joe (CoachH). I’d wanted a Stowa for some time, but I was put off by the price (not cheap) and the very long wait times for delivery (from several weeks up to several months.) I traded it for my Doxa Sub1000T Divingstar, which is a wonderful watch, but I’d gotten rather bored with it over the last few months. We came to a deal and within a week the Stowa was on my wrist.

Stowa started up in 1927, founded by Walter Storz. It was purchased in 1998 by its current owner, Jörg Schauer. It was probably best known for its B-Uhr, or “observation watch,” for the Luftwaffe in WW Deuce, a fact unsurprisingly not mentioned at the Stowa website. (B-Uhrs were also made by A. Lange, Laco, Wempe, and IWC.) The Seatime is one of the two sports watches that the company currently makes, the other being the Prodiver. The Seatime—more of a dress-sport watch, actually—is WR to 300 meters; the Prodiver is more of a tool watch, rated to 1000 meters. It also sports a HRV, is thicker, and has a domed crystal.

One of the nice things about the Seatime is that it’s not just a homage to another watch; it looks pretty unique. The case, which is nice and chunky, is solid stainless steel, sand-blasted, and particularly nicely designed and machined into a cushion shape that, apart from the bezel and crown, doesn’t look like it’s got a curved line anywhere else. It reminds me of the bodywork on a Cadillac CTS, or, to be more jingoistic, an F-117 Stealth bomber: (I apologize in advance for the dust and poor quality of the pics)

Image

Image

Image


Interestingly, the Doxa and the Stowa measure almost the same, case-wise. The Doxa is 42.5mm, the Stowa 42mm, but the Seatime wears larger—almost like a 44, while the Divingstar wears like a 40. The Seatime’s case, like I said, is chunky, and it’s also long, and it covers the top of my 6.75 inch wrist. Anyone with a smaller wrist should take that into account, as the overhang at the lugs might prove uncomfortable.

The dial is flat black, with a bare minimum of text:

Image


It is very legible in all lighting. The Superlumanova is quite good, and lasts all night. It easily passes my patented quick-glance-in-a-dark-car test. The minute hand, however, is rather thin, and dims faster than the lume-covered seconds hand.

Image


The bracelet is quite good; it’s a five row, brushed-steel beauty that is just the right thickness and heft to balance the watch. The links are screwed in with single-headed screws. The outside links also have a very nice bevel that adds visual interest:

Image


The clasp is a standard stamped steel divers with safety; it also has a rather cheap diver’s extension:

Image


Like any other SS clasp, you may note, this one picks up desk-diver marks rapidly.

Stowa, like German luxury cars, tends to make buyers pay for their options. You want the base model, with a leather strap? That’s $777 (at today’s exchange rate; prices are posted in both dollars and Euros.) You want a metalbracelett (as the website calls it)? That’s another $114 for you, homeboy. COSC movement? Cough up another $265, Yankee. As you can see, the prices start mounting up, BMW-like, PDQ. Luckily, the Seatime I got from Coach was fully loaded.

This is the first chronometer I’ve ever owned. I’m not sure if it’s a “Top” grade or “Chronometer” grade, but it’s an ETA 2824, and it’s shore purdy:

Image

Image


I wasn’t sure what to expect from it, accuracy-wise; I’ve owned plenty 2824’s, and they range from great (my d.freemont Barcelona is about +3 seconds a day) to appalling. A couple I’ve owned were more than +10 seconds a day. The Seatime, which comes with the COSC cert, was better. Much better, in fact. I hacked it with my atomic clock the night I got it, and over the last five days it has lost one second—and that’s not a second a day, either, but over the total time. I wear my watches all day, and only take them off for sleeping and showering; when off at night I put them on my nightstand, dial up. I noted a very slight loss in the morning, which was made back up during the day. Today, the fifth day I’ve worn it, is the first I noticed any deviation at all.

So, how does the Seatime wear on the wrist? It wears extremely well. I’ve noticed, with a few of my watches, that they simply seem like quality on the wrist. My Doxa was like that; so was my long time Rolex Air King. It’s not just comfort, actually, although naturally all those were comfortable on the wrist. Perhaps it’s a snob thing, but I feel better when I wear them. That’s how the Stowa feels on the wrist, like a quality item that has been well thought-out, designed, and engineered:

Image


Thanks again to CoachH for a great trade. I’m perfectly happy with the Seatime.
User avatar
koimaster (Online)
Founder
Posts: 43825
Joined: December 16th 2009, 11:00pm
Location: Oregon, Thanks for visiting! Now go back home!
Contact:

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by koimaster » February 1st 2011, 3:01pm

Great review. I am a great fan of Stowa watches. The Seatime is a favorite of mine. Without exception, those I know who own one love them.

No apologies for the photos, that would be door number one, a trip to wallyworld. Enjoy the watch. I am glad you and CoachH were able to work out a trade that made both of you happy.
Image

1946-2006

“Your heart was warm and happy

With the lilt of Irish laughter

Every day and in every way

Now forever and ever after."
User avatar
conjurer (Online)
ASSHAT & Master of Time
Posts: 32712
Joined: July 13th 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by conjurer » February 1st 2011, 3:03pm

foghorn wrote:Very well done,
Your use of the word "jingoistic" more than makes up for any visible dust in the pictures.


Thanks, foggy! I hadn't used that word in a review up until now, and was really looking forward to springing it on the forum.

I actually shot two bunches of pics today for the review; my camera's battery died after the first set, and when I saw how terrible some of the shots looked with dust and God-knows-what-else, I shot some more this afternoon. Photography not being my strongpoint, I used the best of both sessions.
User avatar
conjurer (Online)
ASSHAT & Master of Time
Posts: 32712
Joined: July 13th 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by conjurer » February 1st 2011, 3:03pm

koimaster wrote:Great review. I am a great fan of Stowa watches. The Seatime is a favorite of mine. Without exception, those I know who own one love them.

No apologies for the photos, that would be door number one, a trip to wallyworld. Enjoy the watch. I am glad you and CoachH were able to work out a trade that made both of you happy.


Thanks, Alain!
User avatar
DX
Watchlord WIS
Posts: 1392
Joined: November 6th 2010, 10:00pm
Contact:

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by DX » February 1st 2011, 3:41pm

conjurer wrote:
Bourbon City wrote:Good Review on a good watch. Stowa is a brand that I have in my sites for some time. My present dream watch is a Marine Original.

bc


Thanks, bc. The Marine Original is killer.


Shhhhhhh don't let my surprise out of the bag...

MOLE ii coming my way.
eddiea
Founding Member & Master of Time
Posts: 10649
Joined: December 25th 2009, 11:00pm

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by eddiea » February 1st 2011, 5:52pm

conjurer wrote:This is the first chronometer I’ve ever owned. I’m not sure if it’s a “Top” grade or “Chronometer” grade, but it’s an ETA 2824, and it’s shore purdy:

The Stowa Seatime COSC, is fitted with upgraded 2824-2 Chronometer grade movement... awesome deal!
Few notes on the movement....
The 2824 Chronometer grade, have a rate of -4/+6 , maximum daily variation of +/-5 seconds/day, the chronometer grade movement in your watch should be serial numbered (a requirement of the certification) movement decoration, if only an aesthetic improvement.
Last edited by eddiea on July 9th 2016, 9:44am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Mortuus Fakeuus

Re: Impressions of Stowa Seatime COSC

Post by Mortuus Fakeuus » May 7th 2012, 4:13pm

Another great review, Conj, as always. I'm firmly of the opinion that, much like the VJ 7750, you can never own too many ETA 2824's...and they is awful purdy, too! Time to add yet another German watch to the 'want list.' (And, as Vince 'the ShamWow Guy' says, "You know those Germans - they make really good stuff." Image)
Post Reply

Return to “Your New Watch”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest