Great to see an Alpina forum and thought id share my new Alpina Extreme Sailing AL525LB4V6B2 300m.
The first thing that won my attention was the nicely sculpted angular cushion case and overall bold design. The second was the nicely integrated mesh bracelet. Ive wanted both a mesh and a cushion for a while now and i loved how this one was implemented, with how the endlinks actually add to the case design by closing it off into more of a monoblock cushion silhouette.
I sourced this beauty from forum sponsor Arizona Fine Time and couldnt be happier with the stellar service provided by Joe Kirk. He is a WIS at heart and was professional as well as easy to deal with. The Sailing Extreme is part of a family of watches released in July last year, the top versions which contain Alpinas in house regatta movt utilising moving discs to show the 10min countdown, requisite for a true yacht race watch, similar to some previous Omega watches of the same niche. My version, however, offers a truly excellent value proposition, utilising a highly decorated Sellita SW200-1 (ETA 2824 clone), 300m WR, uni directional sapphire bezel and a dial/handset design very much akin the well regarded IWC Aquatimer.
The level of construction is truly excellent, the polish is just below Seiko Sumo stds i would i say with a nice interplay of brushed areas, the 120 click bezel action is almost exactly the same as my Seiko Tuna and the forementioned movt finish is awesome making use of engine turning, pvd'd rotor, blued screws and guilloche on the movt edge. Incabloc shock has been used but only std nickel balance in lieu of the more desired glucydur. One impressive aspect of Alpinas work is that they are very transparent and proud about the fact they regulate all their watches to 5 positions and state openly the accuracy performance of all their movts on their website. Mine is stated as 0 - +15sec/day, their highest performing movts are stated as -5 - +5 sec/day. My example has been running at +6sec/day, but unusually, slows down in the 2nd half of its power reserve to reach about par (off the wrist). Not completely consistent but pretty good for a mech nonetheless. Sapphire crystal front and back, front employs a brilliant coating that manages to reduce most reflections.
The rubber strap is extremely soft and pliable, has Alpina and Geneve engraved on alternate sides but uses only a simple buckle, which at this price, imo there should be a nicer push button clasp included. The mesh, though, is just beautiful. Brushed mesh links which are quite thick at around 4-5mm and a beautifully constructed clasp with engine turned hinges and a push button divers extension, (a carbon copy of my Citizen Carbon diver ext) and signed flip lock. Lume is comparatively weak compared to my Japanese divers and a couple Euro jobs. There is no bezel lume aka the Aquatimer, so i guess the extra thousands have to be accounted for somewhere but that watch is unbelievable everywhere to be fair.
Size isnt extreme at 44mm by 13mm thick so wears very well imo on any of the 3 bracelet/strap options (theres a more std bracelet available as well). Crown is a beautiful big screw down job with a very nice rubber grip and the movt is buttery to engage. I have to say, in this regard winding is much easier than any of my 7750's. This is my first Swiss 3 hander strangely enough and i find the sweep is smoother than the 7750s chrono seconds hands as well. It is quite impressive and im surprised here because all my 7750's perform extremely well. Sellita have obviously made a good movt clone.
Overall, im well pleased with the value offered by this watch, it wears, looks and feels as good as any of my other Swiss jobs which cost considerably more. It doesnt exude the toughness of say the tuna, which i love more and more as time passes, but this watch isnt classed as a true diver anyway and with the sapphire bezel, wouldnt suit that application imo. It does, however, provide a beautiful looking very well constructed Swiss watch made by an independent located in Geneva with a true watchmaking heritage, assembled by genuine Swiss elves, very well decorated and adjusted movt, genuine 300m wr, high quality materials and execution all for about 1k. Cool to the max
this thing comes in a monster sized box
the reason, a replica model racing yacht from which the extreme sailing watches are based is included in the package COOL!
rubber textured coffee table quality Alpina catalogue kindly provided by Joe. nice
on rubber strap
the mesh strap isnt actually fitted here, ive mocked this up to show how it would look and how the endlinks change the shape of the watch and take it to another level
a few pics taken before the mesh arrived...
the very similar and sublime IWC Aquatimer, for comparison...
thanks for your patience