Sunday, September 03, 2006
Hamilton Khaki Navy GMT
I purchased a late model Hamilton Khaki Navy GMT from a seller on the PMWF sales forum one afternoon while at work and have to tell you; this is a true sleeper watch. I bought the watch on a blue alligator strap but the seller included the original integrated rubber strap, which just turns this watch into a powerhouse workhorse beater with style and a righteous pedigree, comfortable filling almost any role in your watch rotation. I sometime pass this watch over for another and that is too bad since once I am strapped into the Hammy GMT, I often wonder why it would ever take it off… well, the answer is for cleanings of course.
Hamilton Khaki Navy GMT Men’s Watch H77655343
Case ;Stainless Steel with 3 screw-down crowns.
Dial: Blue with GMT time display on semi-circular sub dial. Luminous hands and markers
Bracelet: Blue rubber Strap, Rubber strap with decorative topstitching.
Clasp: Standard buckle,
Movement: Swiss Automatic (self-winding) Caliber ETA 2893.1
Bezel: City display on bezel, Internal-rotating bezel.
Case Diameter: 42 mm.
Water Resistant: 200m / 660ft.
So there you have it. In my mind, a most versatile contender for heavy rotation. Obviously the watch is good sized, simple and rugged while having plenty of style condensed within a fairly busy dial with internal bezel. With three screw down crowns, which operate absolutely smoothly and soundly, the internal rotating and locking timing bezel, and water resistance of 200 meters, this is a perfectly adequate professional diver. It may not be the ultimate diver, but it is a very competent one indeed.
The movement driving the GMT is another ETA, this time the 2893.1, which gives us our GMT function. Couple this movement with an additional rotating and locking bezel with international city names and you have a watch capable of displaying three time zones. I have always loved a GMT function. Time Zone two is displayed with a separate dial that displays inside the 9:00 position. The dial is an understated work of beauty when examined closely with a loupe. The dial is a rich blue with a dazzle of sunray. Each hour is numbered in both 12 and 24-hour time with a luminous marker at each position. There is also a minute track. The date is with white background and displayed at the 3:00 position while time zone two, denoted with a simple “T2” and a white arrow pointing to the 24-hour time, is displayed within a gently arcing cut in the dial under which a white dial with black numerals spins gleefully off the 2893. The GMT is of course completely independently adjustable. On the periphery of the dial sits the internal rotating bezel smartly finished with timing markers and a cut out which displays the international city ring for time zone three. This dial is again white with black lettering and the bezel has light blue highlights surrounding the international city cut out. The bezel is well finished and almost appears ceramic. I wonder what the material is? A pair of saber hands and a mil sub second hand see duty. The lume is adequate but not spectacular with the luminous pips at the hours fading immediately and only the hands truly retaining much luminescence at all. A perfectly flat and tough as nails sapphire crystal finished the package. So herein lies function two of a useful tool watch, the GMT function presented in an easy to understand at a glance fashion.
I guess another great calling card of this watch is its great comfort and durability, not to mention its damn near bombproof dependability. In reference to its accuracy and durability, I have to reiterate how each of the crowns is so perfectly executed that its function is mind numbingly smooth. For me, this is huge particularly with screw downs. Each function operates flawlessly and like butter and the sucker keeps darn good time mostly at about +4 to +6 over 24 hours. The hardworking movement is contained within a beautifully sculpted and brushed lump of stainless steel with down turning lugs. At 42mm, the case is large but not brutishly so and as the dial uses of much of the space of the face, only a sliver of brushed stainless peeks forward. All crowns are protected by guards and the crowns themselves are polished and signed. This is a subtle but tasty treat. With the integrated rubber strap, which snugs right up to the case, you have a piece that is exceptionally comfortable. The case is not overly thick and with the hanging lugs, the GMT has a low profile.
Another essential function has to be style and versatility in that regard. I am a fairly casual guy who can get away without wearing a suit or tie more than half a dozen times during the year and this watch works well from clomping around to work for me. I wouldn’t hesitate to wear this watch with a suit especially with the low profile which slips effortlessly under long sleeves. In my opinion, the styling on the watch is an unforced blending of elegance, sportiness and utility unmatched by many. Do I like this watch? Oh yeah.
Another keeper which deserves more respect. I have yet to try the watch with its dressier strap option, as I cannot get away from the comfort and durability the watch offers on its native rubber strap. I know many do not care for integrated rubber straps but I enjoy this one as well as the one on a Mido diver I own. I treat this watch roughly when I wear it so maybe it doesn’t mind a little extra time in the watch box or on the winder.