A friend and I picked up a couple of new watches for the collection (see my love of watches explained here.)
The watch I got was a second hand G-Shock in near new condition. As you might expect from a quartz digital, it has oodles of features. 5 alarms, 24 hr countdown timer and stopwatch, 48 city world time plus multiband 6 solar atomic capability. Being a G-Shock, it's probably bombproof as well.
I haven't worn digitals on my wrist since I was a little kid. Not only was this my first ever G-Shock, it was also the first digital I'd owned for many years. To be honest I got it mostly to try out the multiband 6 atomic function; so far I love it. The watch syncs flawlessly to the UK tower every night at 1.02 whether it's left near a window or not. This is going to be super handy when flying through Europe, the US and Japan – as long as I remember to reset the home city to the new location upon landing.
I paired it with a Suunto scuba clipper compass that sits on the resin strap. Now it shows magnetic north in addition to telling time. You can get G-Shocks which have internal compasses, but I can't bring myself to trust them; I prefer the traditional oil filled compass.
Looks wise it's just... chunky. If the Jaeger LeCoultre Reverso is Bruce Wayne's Lamborghini, the G-Shock is Batman's Tumbler. No one would ever accuse this brick of being beautiful, but boy is it useful. G-Shock's model number is GW2310-1ER. After a little investigation, it apparently uses the same internal module as the hugely popular GW6900 G-Shocks.
Quick photo of the G-Shock solar atomic GW2310-1ER (a bit dusty.)
My buddy shelled out his hard earned cash on a Rotary automatic. Brand new, very nice with a glass caseback so the movement inside is visible. While it looks exactly like a chronograph, I was surprised to find out it isn't.
The subdials indicate months (12 o'clock), days of the week (9 o'clock) and a 24 hour clock (6 o'clock). What at first appears to be a moonphase in the 6 o'clock subdial is really a simple day/night indicator which moves in sync with the 24 hour clock.
The buttons on either side of the crown are there to help set the time. I found that out by mistake when I pushed the top button to start the chrono and it did something else! The piece arrived on a very nice stitched crocodile leather strap. I imagine any standard Rotary steel bracelet would fit as well.
Your average man's watch these days seems to be 42mm or larger. At 38mm across this watch is noticeably smaller on the wrist, which gives it a somewhat vintage look. Rotary's model number for this is GS02377/01.
Quick photo of the Rotary automaic GS02377/01.
After a few days my friend and I checked his Rotary against my G-Shock atomic right after a manual sync. The Rotary was running just over 40 seconds fast, so the tolerance is about +10 seconds a day. That doesn't hit COSC standards, but good lord it was brand new for under £150! I was highly impressed.
So I learnt something new – watch lovers, don't sniff at Rotary just because their pieces won't hit you for £3000. They make some darn good autos.