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Drek Galloche

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Roger Smith is the best proof there is that the finest watchmaking does not always equal the finest finishing!

I love what he does, but jeezus the movements are thick. He says they are that way on purpose to be more durable and long-lasting, but it doesn’t seem other modern watchmakers have had to resort to such chunky builds.

I mean, look at his new 38mm case for the above model:

View attachment 1642528

It’s a manual, time-only watch for Pete’s sake!
Is this stylistic choice then? Some old-fashioned classic watches do look ok with unnecessary thickness. I have calendar chronograph that looks almost as thick and it makes sense. If this is really over 20mm then I am out.
It looks agreeable on the wrist:
roger-smith-s2-wrist.jpg

roger-smith-wristshot.jpg


It even looks fine if you wear it on your shoe...:bounce2:
roger-smith-s2-shoe.jpg
 

chocomallo

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Maybe we can get am55 to to set up a few bots to see if this is true for watch fellas. Would be too easy to replicate Foo and his “many years” of internet engagement in under 30 minutes.

 

Nickd

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reidd

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am55

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Roger Smith is the best proof there is that the finest watchmaking does not always equal the finest finishing!

I love what he does, but jeezus the movements are thick. He says they are that way on purpose to be more durable and long-lasting, but it doesn’t seem other modern watchmakers have had to resort to such chunky builds.

I mean, look at his new 38mm case for the above model:

View attachment 1642528

It’s a manual, time-only watch for Pete’s sake!
... and 38mm. On the wrist, these hockey pucks don't look as large as say a Lange with 3mm more. And there is something to be said about wearing a heavy chunk of precious metal.
 

TheFoo

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Is this stylistic choice then? Some old-fashioned classic watches do look ok with unnecessary thickness. I have calendar chronograph that looks almost as thick and it makes sense. If this is really over 20mm then I am out.
It looks agreeable on the wrist:
View attachment 1642593
View attachment 1642594

It even looks fine if you wear it on your shoe...:bounce2:
View attachment 1642595
The cases are thick because the movements are thick. He claims that this makes the movements more robust.

Looks very much like a Breguet.
He takes direct inspiration from Breguet (the individual watchmaker, not the modern brand), but more broadly from pre-industrial watchmaking.

Full Calendar dials I love.
View attachment 1642621
View attachment 1642622


Right, in other words, it also looks like a pocket watch dial from 19C.
Patek still takes the cake for best full calendar read-out:

5BFEF161-F37D-4B4C-A24B-C8D03AF90920.jpeg
 

TheFoo

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... and 38mm. On the wrist, these hockey pucks don't look as large as say a Lange with 3mm more. And there is something to be said about wearing a heavy chunk of precious metal.
I have never tried on a Roger Smith watch, but the ratio of diameter to height matters: combining a smaller diameter with a thicker height makes for a more top-heavy, wobbly-feeling watch on the wrist.

More importantly, I just don’t agree with this aspect of what he’s doing. His idea to use pre-industrial means to make wristwatches is interesting, but for the sake of both comfort and elegance, a good wristwatch (or pocket watch) should not be thicker than it needs to be. He will often say that this was the English style: big, beefy pocket watches. What he doesn’t say is that the English got left in the dust by 18th century French and Swiss watchmakers who figured out how to make thinner and thinner pocket watches (e.g. Breguet and Lepine). Nobody back then wanted a thicker watch—they were just beholden to the available technology of their time.
 

Drek Galloche

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The cases are thick because the movements are thick. He claims that this makes the movements more robust.



He takes direct inspiration from Breguet (the individual watchmaker, not the modern brand), but more broadly from pre-industrial watchmaking.



Patek still takes the cake for best full calendar read-out:

View attachment 1642625
This Patek dial, to my eye, looks like a dial designed in 1980s for a women's watch. I prefer Angelus dials because they look like an instrument panels from a plane or some lab equipment from early 20C.
 

TheFoo

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This Patek dial, to my eye, looks like a dial designed in 1980s for a women's watch. I prefer Angelus dials because they look like an instrument panels from a plane or some lab equipment from early 20C.
Lol okay.
 

am55

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Haha, even better. You can get Jimny's where you live?

Fun fact: They got a better crash rating than a new wrangler.
I picked it on purpose due to its limited availability in the US (unlike say a Miata). Only if you really care about the outdoors would you think about it... over here of course there is no offroad and you can get a Jimny relatively cheaply, so they're ubiquitous in bright colours (there's also a hot pink G63 driving around near where I am). In the UK they were recently outlawed by increasingly drastic emissions regulations despite their small engine, so can only be purchased as a work truck. In Australia they're about US$22k with a very long waiting list and higher resale value used.

There is nothing on the market like it. By what I assume are Foo's criterias for a decent car, the Jimny is objectively one of the worst choices: poor acceleration, awful handling (it is a truck, technically), the aerodynamics cause some interesting wobbling at "speed" if you can reach speed that is and wind gusts scare drivers, they're noisy (think 3-4k RPM on the highway at 80kph), the finishing is of cheap plastic...

But the thing has little electronics or sophistication for 2021 and can actually go anywhere which if you're an aussie suburbs resident who likes to go a bit out of the city is perfect. There is nothing stock, from a major brand, that competes with the Jimny. What you'd be looking at instead has a V8 that can pull a tree out of the ground and 7 seats.

It's like the LC 70 series and their double 90l tanks, almost twice the G-class' 100l and not a feature most people would think about until they're doing more serious trips. These are unique designs that become "classic" - new 70 series still sell well in many places where they are needed.

Not sure about the crash rating though - thought they had issues with the head hitting the driving wheel in crash tests. Not something the typical buyer cares about, though...
 

am55

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I have never tried on a Roger Smith watch, but the ratio of diameter to height matters: combining a smaller diameter with a thicker height makes for a more top-heavy, wobbly-feeling watch on the wrist.

More importantly, I just don’t agree with this aspect of what he’s doing. His idea to use pre-industrial means to make wristwatches is interesting, but for the sake of both comfort and elegance, a good wristwatch (or pocket watch) should not be thicker than it needs to be. He will often say that this was the English style: big, beefy pocket watches. What he doesn’t say is that the English got left in the dust by 18th century French and Swiss watchmakers who figured out how to make thinner and thinner pocket watches (e.g. Breguet and Lepine). Nobody back then wanted a thicker watch—they were just beholden to the available technology of their time.
I don't disagree with what you say about Smith generally (as you know from upthread) but I do enjoy a good hockey puck or two. There is a time and place for silly anachronism. Like how organic winemakers will bury cow horns under the full moon.
 

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