Longines Legend Diver, the underwater chamaleon

One of Longines icon watches is the Legend Diver, a must have piece for a diver type watchlover. This watch was first manufactured in 1965 and it was one of the first that had an internal turning bezel, the one used for measuring the time spent underwater, instead of having it in the outside.

In 2007, during the BaselWorld fair, Longines announced the re-edition of this iconic piece.  The new version had a round stainless steel case with a domed scratch-resistant sapphire crystal and several layers of anti-reflective coating on the underside, to allow perfect readability. It was water-resistant to 30 bar (300 meter), which is not very much for a diver watch, but more than enough for me because I rarely get them in touch with the water, and the black lacquered dial had the indexes and silvered hands convered with green luminova. 

It carried the L633 self-winding mechanical movement beating at 28,800 vibrations per hour and providing 38 hours of power reserve. You can check the detailed charactersitics in the LD page of the Longines on-line catalogue.

When I found out about this watch, there were 3 things that decided me to buy it:

  • the design is exactly the same as the original model , except for the date, that made it even better for me because the “datarium” is something I consider a must
  • the dial is very clean, therefor the watch appears to be bigger than it’s 42mm width.
  • it’s  very versatile, only changing the strap you put it with, the watch goes from classic, to sporty, to trendy, to xxx (you name it). That’s why I call it “the chameleon” because you can wear with a jacket+tie or with jeans or with a bathing suit in the beach.

I leave you a couple of examples in the post, some mine and some from friends on the web, so you can see all the posible flavours and let you judge by yourselves:

      

This is one of the pieces I’m more proud of and, for sure, one that will stay with me a lot of time. My favorite combination is with the black and beige nato stratp. What do you think about the watch? And about the straps?

Wine and Panerai, two great italian products together

No doubt about it, Panerai is and has something different, or at least that’s how they make me feel. Let me share with you an example on how they make all around them classy and especial.

In january, there’s a huge event in  Geneva where, for one full week, many of the mayor brands present their novelties and trends for the year. This event is called the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, but is better known as SiHH. Maybe the name doesn’t ring any bell to you, something I perfectly understand because 2 years ago I didn’t know this event existed, so if you want to know more about the event, here’s the link to their website.

Back to the main course of the post, a couple of weeks ago I received an invitation from Madrid’s Panerai Boutique to go to the presentation of some of the 2012 novelties that the brand had announced in SIHH. Wow! I could touch the watches I had only been able to watch in pictures, so I marked the date in my agenda and was lucky enough to go and spend a couple of hours with other “paneristi” fans in a perfectly organized event.

It was all about Italy and it’s quality products. We were hosted by a sommelier that came to present us 3 italian wines he selected because of their paring  characteristics with the 3 new models that were presented in the event. The wines were Vajra Dolcetto Dalba Coste&Fossati 2010, Tesdechi Amorane della Valpolicella Clasico 2007 and Argiano Solengo 2007. The models were the PAM424, the PAM441 and the PAM438, better know as the “tutonnero” (all black).

They say a picture speaks better than words, so here are a couple of them. Only watches sorry, the wine was so good that when I tried to make a picture, I had drinked it ;-). The 3 novelties together:

Now, a close picture of each of them, starting with my favorite, the PAM 424, with a california dial (mixed roman and arabic numbers), date at the “3″ and the Panerai logo. In the middle, the PAM 441 with a 1950 ceramic case, GMT function and date. The picture on the right is of the PAM438 with a ceramic bracelet and with darkened pieces of the movement.

    

Once the party got going, some other new models that were brought by the people in the boutique and we started looking and “testing” how they fitted. Another group picture of some of the pieces we were lucky to try. Amazing the PAM422 (first one on the left) that by deserves his own presentation. It’s like the PAM 372, one of the brands most recognized and valued piece, but with sapphire glass instead of plexiglass. Personally, this just makes this watch perfect.

Last but not least, some whristshots with the 422 (it has a 47mm case!), 441 and 438

    

Let’s face it, I’m a Panerai fan. I have to admit that 3 years ago, I didn’t even know them nor the basics of this italian brand founded in 1860 by Giovanni Panerai in beautiful city of Florence. Now, I recon the differences between a Radiomir and a Luminor, understand the special characteristics of their submersible watches, and have them at the top of my pick list.

Now let me get your opinion. Do you like this watchmaker or you didn’t know him at all? From the 3 watches, which one is your favorite?

A watch for each time

At first sight, you could say that all watches are the same and maybe you’re right….”they show you what time is it ¿no?”.  But if you pay a closer atention to them and give a second look, it’s possible to identify many differences between them. Those differences are the ones that determine the type of watch you’re looking at.

Special jobs or activities require certain features within a watch, and because of that, form what I’ve read you can group the types of watches into five big categories:

DIVERS: specially designed to be used underwater. Main characteristics: water resistant, strong lumen to be seen in the darkness, special bezel to track the diving time and encarved drawing in the backside of the case. Maybe the two most famous ones, are the Rolex Sea Dweller Deep Sea (picture) or the Omega Seamaster, mainly for their appearance in the James Bond Movies, but that’s another story.

FLIGERS: specially designed to be used by pilots. Main characteristics: big clear dial, strong lumen to be seen in the darkness, long spades and a triangle instead of the 12 number. They got very famous after world war II. One of the clearest example is the IWC Mark XVI.

CHRONOGRAPHS: specially designed for exact time measuring. Main characteristics: 2 o 3 subdials for the tracking of seconds, minutes and hours (if they have a 3rd subdia), a  bezel with tachymeter for speed calculation and long thin spades. Some divers and fliger watches also include the chrono functionalities, but the “pure blood” are only chrono. 

Perfect example, are the famous “first watch on the moon”, the Omega Speedmaster (picture) or the Rolex Daytona.

WORLD TIME: specially designed for following the time, at least, 2 different time zones. This feature is also included in some of the other types to enhance their usage as timekeepers. Main characteristics are additional spade for the second time zone (called “GMT”) and numbered dial between 1 and 24. Maybe it`s not a very well known one, but the PAM63 (picture) is a good example.

COMPLICATIONS: this is how special features or complex manufactured elements on an automatic or hand-whelled watch are called. Many elements are included in this category like: the power reserve indicator, moonphase indicator, perpetual calendar or the most amazing one, that is the tourbillon. I don’t know how to explain it easily so I show you a video of a tourbillon at work and the definition in the wikipedia.

I personally have reduced this categorization to two types: 
- formal, watches I wear with a suit 
- informal, watches I wear when dressing casual. 

I believe that there’s a watch for each ocasion and I take my time, every day, to decide which one to choose depending on what I’m going to do and how I going to dress. In future posts I will introduce you to them but in the meantime let me ask you:

- Do you always wear the same watch?
- Did you know about the different types of watches?
- Do you have your own categorization?

!!Thanks for sharing your thoughts!!