Some of you may remember I was considering a (for me) high priced watch. I decided I wasn't ready/willing to drop that kind of $$$ on a watch, but I had an itch to be scratched, so I went with two Tudors. A BB 36 and a BB Chrono. Wanted to share some thoughts I have on these so far. For context, these join my daily wearer Rolex Sub 16610.
(1) BB 36:
There seems to be a lot of accolades for this watch online, and I think it's absolutely deserved. It's a very nice balance of sporty/dressy/casual. It fits well on my 6.5 inch wrist. I got this primarily for 3 reasons. I wanted a cheaper "beater", something that would dress up better than the Sub, and something I could wear whenever I felt I was in a situation I wouldn't want to wear a Rolex watch for whatever reason. For the dress up part, this is not a dress watch by any means, but I also only wear a suit maybe 1-2 times a year, so I just wanted something that would dress up better than the Sub without being a total dress watch. I think it would perform all 3 duties admirably. The ETA seems dead-on accurate so far, and of course it's a bulletproof and easy to service movement.
Again, I think this would be an amazing daily wearer for someone looking for such a watch. Versatile. 36mm, but seems to wear a tad larger on wrist. Comfortable, and very legible. The only quibble as a daily could be the lack of a date. For me that would be nearly a deal breaker, but again I am not intending for this to be a daily.
If I had a quibble with this watch, it's that it IS so versatile. What I mean by this is that I'm not sure if I'd be happy with this as a non-frequent wearer playing second fiddle to my Sub. For all the reasons mentioned, I think this is a watch that begs, indeed NEEDS, to be worn as frequently as possible. As such, it might work better for someone that is intending to use it as their only watch, or as the daily driver of a small collection. I am planning on keeping it a bit to see how much wrist time it will steal from the Sub. But the Sub is a very versatile daily wearer in its own right, so we'll see. Ultimately I think I might be better off getting a very generic dressier looking quartz Seiko/Citizen that can serve the duties I got this BB 36 for at a much lower price. But it's early days, so we'll see how I get along with the BB 36.
(2) BB Chrono:
So this is the watch that surprises me. I liked the design since it was announced at last year's Baselworld. Which seems to be put me squarely in the minority. I continued to like it when I saw it in stores, although without the ability to adjust the bracelet, I couldn't fully gauge how it would fit on my wrist. So when I saw one in excellent condition pre-owned, I decided to pull the trigger and test it out.
Once I got it on my wrist, I think I finally figured out why I like the design so much when so many don't. The design is essentially a combination of elements from what are probably my 2 favorite all-time watches. The Sub that I own, and the Daytona that I want one day. Clear diver elements (more BB than Sub of course, but still in that Tudor/Rolex family look), and elements that seem borrowed from the Daytona like the bezel and screw down pushers. I've even heard some people refer to this as the "Baytona". So instead of seeing an ugly amalgamation of design elements that don't work, I instead see a sweet combination of design elements from my 2 favorite watches. Hence why I think I liked this design from the get go.
Another criticism is the thickness, and yes, the watch is thick. That being said I think it wears a bit smaller than its 41mm diameter (which I guess isn't even that big relatively speaking) and thickness would suggest. It definitely feels like it wears smaller than the Speedy Pro I owned a while ago. There's a noticeable heft, especially if I go from the BB36 to the Chrono, but I think it balances quite well. I still think the overall thickness and heft would prevent this from being a daily wearer for me, but I didn't get it to serve that role. Rather as a casual weekend wearer, I think it might actually work quite well.
Now, my main criticism that I am absolutely hating on this watch. The screw down pushers. Now this is completely unfair I know, because I knew beforehand these had screw down pushers. And I'm guessing they help with the impressive 200m WR. Not to mention it's a design element borrowed from the Daytona that I like. But man, in practice, I hate them. I'm not going to pretend I need to use the chrono function for anything. But when I have a chrono watch, I at least like to play with the functions and just time random stuff. That's the fun of having a chrono, imo. But having to unscrew those pushers everytime is such a PITA. I guess I could leave them unscrewed, but I hate the unbalanced look that results in. It does make me wonder if one day I'm able to get a Daytona, how I would feel about it then. One of those things I like the look of, but I'm hating in practice.
This is not a Daytona homage watch, and I don't think I've ever seen anyone criticize it as such. At most it borrows some design elements. That being said, my fondness for the Daytona and certain of those design elements is what led me to this purchase. And so far I'm enjoying it a LOT more than I imagined, despite the criticism of the pushers. I'm not sure it would cure my itch for that oh so pricey Daytona, but I think it's definitely scratching some of that itch for now. If ultimately I end up being satisfied with this, or that maybe something like the screwdown pushers would be a deal breaker, this BB Chrono ends up saving me quite a bit of money.
Thanks for reading!