Life through lenses (I wear glasses)

Gear Review: Maratac Pilot Watch

This Christmas, Santa was generous. He got me a watch. I’ve never been much into “blingy” man-jewelry, but I admit that I have a thing for watches. My aesthetic for man-jewelry and trinkets tends to steer towards understated and functional. So when I came across the Maratac Automatic Pilot watch from County Comm, I was immediately drawn to the “purity” of its look. This watch is clean…literally, as there are no branding marks or even the date on the face. In a classical sense, it does what a watch does…it tells the time. The hands and numbers feature “C3 lume”, which I learned is among the brightest on the market. It’s the brightest that I’ve personally seen. I compared it to my dad’s Victorinox and we could clearly see the glow fade after less than 10 seconds on the Victorinox while the Maratac continued to glow steadily. The domed sapphire slightly magnifies and accentuates the clean face. The case back is also clean, only showing a few specs for the watch and “Maratac.”

The Maratac Pilot Automatic Watch

My first Automatic Watch - The Maratac Pilot

The watch is pretty big in circumference, but is relatively slim in height so I expect this will become my go-to watch for “nicer” occasions. Mind you, I’ve always liked large face watches (45mm+). I wore a Casio Sea-Pathfinder for years and then just last year moved to a Suunto Core with a beefy Hirsch Extreme band on it. Neither of those watches was very long-sleeve shirt-friendly. ┬áThe Maratac nylon band that comes with the watch has proven to be very comfortable for the 2 weeks that I’ve worn it, but I don’t feel that it does the watch justice. So I’ll likely upgrade to a Steinhart Pilot leather band. I like the vintage look with the rivets in leather.

Maratac Pilot Watch

Note the clean caseback of the Maratac branding.

Aesthetics aside, I really dig that this watch is an automatic. The idea of a watch being powered by energy stored in a spring, I feel, gives it an air of old-school. As a novice watch “enthusiast”, I’m floored by the craftsmanship involved and still have plenty of research to do to educate myself. I still haven’t tired of hearing (and feeling) the watch wind itself whenever I move my arm. In fact, I’ve pretty much been flinging my arm about everyday for the past 2 weeks. So if you happen to see a man flinging his arm around like he’s got Tourette’s, it’s probably just me winding my watch.

In all, I love this timepiece and will likely be playing with it for years to come.

Maratac Pilot Watch Band

Maratac Pilot Watch Sapphire

Maratac Pilot Watch

4 Responses

  1. Paul Devey

    That Martac is a sweel looking watch. Great value too. I will have to see how I can get one to Canada.

    Thanks for posting.


    November 13, 2011 at 11:10 am

  2. Henry

    Nice writeup. Any additional thoughts now that you have had it for a year?

    December 30, 2011 at 9:09 pm

  3. nagooyen

    Hey Henry, after having owned the watch for a year, I’d say that I still haven’t gotten used to the ins-and-outs of owning a mechanical time piece. I wear my Suunto digital watch more often so by the time I put on the Maratac, I have to wind and reset the time on the watch. Annoying? Yes. End of the world? Not at all. Other than that, it’s a beautiful, simple, functional time piece. I just noticed that County Comm is now selling a “medium” sized version of the watch. Might be something to consider for those intimidated by the beefy size of the original watch. :)

    February 8, 2012 at 5:15 pm

  4. nagooyen

    You’re quite welcome Paul! I wasn’t aware that County Comm doesn’t ship outside of the U.S.?

    February 8, 2012 at 5:16 pm

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