Living in the 21st century comes with a lot of advantages. Primarily, you get to live a fairly comfortable life thanks to the advent of numerous electronic devices. Now, I’m fine with all of that. However, when it comes to timepieces, I like to have them analog and vintage. Don’t get me wrong, I get the appeal of digital watches and how practical and low-maintenance they can be, but they simply make me feel lazy and impatient. Therefore, I started exploring the world of pocket watches. It doesn’t get more old-school than that! The one in particular that has caught my attention is the Stuhrling Original Men’s Vintage Mechanical Pocket Watch.
The reason why I am drawn to the Stuhrling Original Men’s Vintage Mechanical Pocket Watch is that it promises the full vintage pocket watch experience. It has a skeleton dial, Roman numerals, onion crown, the whole lot. All of that for a fairly reasonable price (retails for around $85)!
Purchasing a Pocket Watch
You may think that the only needed prerequisite for purchasing a pocket watch is a vintage aesthetic preference. However, there are quite a few things worth knowing prior to cashing out for a new pocket timepiece like the Stuhrling Pocket Watch . Here is what you need to look after in order to secure yourself with a good deal!
I Rest My Case!
Pocket watches can be divided into two major categories related to their case types. The most common ones are the hunter-cases. You know, the pocket watches which come with metal lids (cover). Their advantage, apart from additional space for ornamentation, is their safety. At all times, the face of the watch is protected by the cover.
The second type to which the Stuhrling Pocket Watch belongs to, are the open-faced watches. These are the ones I generally prefer because of their exposed mechanical skeletons. When you get to see their mechanics in motion, you start to treat them differently, as if they were living things.
Know Your Jewels
Oftentimes, the most important criterion in determining the quality of a pocket watch is the number of “jewels’ it has. Quality pocket watches tend to have at least 19 jewels within the internal mechanism in order to keep it running smoothly for years and years to come. If the one you’re interested in has 11 or something like that, please make a pass on it.
Pocket Watch Movements
True vintage pocket watches come with either key-wind movements or stem-wind movements. The former requires a key in order to get wound-up, whereas the latter relies on their stems. Regardless, you get to have a daily mechanical interaction with the watch, which makes the whole experience grow on you faster!
Of course, there are numerous things that are worth looking out for when purchasing a pocket watch. Nevertheless, if you are a true vintage enthusiast and you appreciate the old-fashioned gentleman’s dress code, how can you not treat yourself with a decent pocket watch? On the flip side, if the likes of Polar M400 sports watches are more appealing to you, and you can’t imagine having a watch that is not smart per se, pocket watches will be nothing more than a waste of your time!
The Stuhrling Original Men’s Vintage Mechanical Pocket Watch
From the bottom to the top, the Stuhrling pocket watch truly is the real deal. Compared to the Gotham Silver-Tone , which is one of the top-sellers on the market, the Stuhrling is almost $100 cheaper and comes with two more jewels (19 in total)! However, it’s open-faced, unlike the Gotham, and comes with a 2-inch shorter link chain. All in all, from the smallest details like the onion crown stem to the core mechanical movement, the Stuhrling pocket watch has really captured the essence of these type of timepieces!
- Dual-sided skeleton dial
- 19 jewels
- Krysterna Crystal Windows
- Onion crown stem
- Very affordable
- If not wounded-up right, it loses on its accuracy
- The desk stand gets loose quickly
- The link chain isn’t very long
Stuhrling Original Men’s ‘Special Reserve’ Mechanical Hand Wind Brass Pocket Watch, Color:White (Model: 6053.33333)
- Vintage-inspired pocket watch layered in 23K yellow gold featuring silver outer dial with black Roman numeral markers and center skeleton cut out
- Protective Krysterna crystal dial window
- Features 12″ chain with belt clip
- Mechanical Movement – the crown needs to be wound 25 -30 winds or until you feel resistance, every twenty four to thirty six hours.
Breaking Down The Features of The Stuhrling Original Men’s Vintage Mechanical Pocket Watch
The Stuhrling is made from stainless steel with a Polished Rounded Step Design bezel. Since it is an open-faced pocket, like old Fossil watches, it does not come with a metal lid. This beautiful timepiece has a dual-sided skeleton dial with Roman numerals and three Breguet-style hands on it. Both the front and the back side are protected by Krysterna crystal dial windows. The stem is traditionally designed as an onion crown.
With Stuhrling, we are looking at a mechanical movement pocket watch. Through its dual exhibition case, you’re able to see its mechanical poetry in motion. Hard-rock-wise, the Stuhrling comes with 19 jewels, and as I have mentioned, for a quality watch, 19 is the bare minimum! In order to wind it up, you need to do at least 25 winds until the mainspring gets tight enough to set the clock in motion. Every 24-30 hours a rewind has to be performed in order to keep the watch accurate!
The Stuhrling Original pocket watch comes with a 12-inch long link chain and a belt strap. Plus, in case you ever want to make the Stuhrling your desk clock, you can just use its desk stand to make the transformation. Lastly, we are talking about a 3ATM (100 feet) water resistant watch!
Top Three Alternatives
Gotham Men’s Silver-Tone Double Cover Exhibition Mechanical Pocket Watch
With a retail price of around $180, the Gotham is among the most affordable and beautiful pocket watches on the market. It has a double cover body, cobalt hands, scratch resistant mineral crystal back and front windows, 14-inch link chain, and 17 jewels. In case you are looking for a pocket watch ideal for engraving, you might want to check-out the Gotham .
- Exhibition dial
- Cobalt Hands
- Scratch resistant windows
Gotham Men’s Silver-Tone Double Cover Exhibition Mechanical Pocket Watch # GWC18800SB
- Classic round silver-tone 17 jewel mechanical double cover pocket watch suitable for engraving
- Intricately designed front and back covers that both open to expose movement
- Rich blue cobalt hands and scratch resistant front and back mineral crystals
- Includes 14″ steel curb pocket watch chain with deluxe lobster claw end piece
- Arrives in beautiful presentation box with Selvyt polishing cloth, lifetime limited warranty and operating instructions
Treeweto Antique Bronze Dragon Mechanical Skeleton Pocket Watch with Chain
In case you prefer a more colorful pocket watch, the Treeweto is definitely worth getting a look in. It is made out of bronze, has fluorescent pointers, has a dream dragon pattern on the cover, and can be used as a desk-watch. Running at $26, it could be the cheapest decently built pocket watch on the market.
- Great looks
- Great price
- Fluorescent pointers
- Cool dragon pattern
- Even though it’s good value for money, it doesn’t feel solid
Treeweto Antique Brone Dragon Mechanical Skeleton Pocket Watch with Chain
- Classical pocket watch with double cases. Dream Dragon pattern half hunter, Skeleton Blue Roman Numerals Dial. Bronze pocket watch can bring your memory back to 18th, fashionable and attractive!
- Special Blue Fluorescent pointers，can read in the low light conditions. can STAND on table, also can put your photograph inside it.
- Comes with a high quality chain and TREEWETO nice gift BOX. Perfect present for your friends, families, lovers or yourself
- 100% brand new with excellent workmanship, Precise golden mechanical movement. Please wind up the watch before every usage. *For safety, the front face is made of Acrylic instead of Glass.
- No need to use battery, Twisting the top button on the spin, Tightening a walk for 24 hours, Please keep the watch away from magnet to avoid making the watch stop working.
Speidel Classic Smooth Pocket Watch
The Spidel Classic pocket watch could be a great choice for all of you who are into nautical themed accessories. Retailing for only $70, this thing of beauty includes a 3-hand quartz movement, link chain, engravable top cover, as well as day-date-month subdials on the face of the watch.
- Great color combination
- Day-date-month subdials
- Very affordable
- Quartz mechanism
Speidel Classic Smooth Pocket Watch with 14” Chain Silver Tone with Blue Dial in Gift Box – Engravable
- CLASSIC FEEL: This pocket watch has a blue sunburst dial that gives a great contrast to the silver-tone body. A modern take on a vintage watch, Speidel’s pocket watch is sure to bring back classic styling.
- ENGRAVABLE: Smooth, classic design on the outer case to engrave and personalize.
- FEATURES: The watch face has 3-hand movement, day, date and 24 hour sub dials, highly polished index makers and a 14 inch chain. It has 3ATM water resistance, and uses quartz movement to operate.
- PERFECT GIFT: This item comes in a special, sleek, black gift box. Perfect for Father’s day, Birthdays, Anniversary, Valentine’s Day and all other holidays.
- 2 YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY: We know you are going to love your pocket watch but we guarantee a 100% refund if you are not satisfied with the products you received within 30 days and we provide 12 month warranty, If anything is wrong – please feel free to contact us – we will make it right.
All of This Being Said…
For me, personally, the Stuhrling pocket watch is one of the best watches under $500 currently on the market. The reason why I say that, apart from the obviously reasonable price, is that it genuinely feels like a piece of history. It takes you back in time. You have to wind it up every single day, but you get rewarded by its mesmerizing dual-sided skeleton dial and its meditative mechanical movement, every time you do.
If you too are an analog man in a digital world, make sure to check the Stuhrling Original Men’s Vintage Mechanical Pocket Watch out!