After more than six months since placing my order, I finally received my new Alpina Worldtimer Manufacture yesterday. I knew they were extremely scarce in North America, and only a handful had shipped since their introduction almost a year ago (and none since November), so I assumed we were getting the short end of the stick over here. It turns out it's a case that very few of them have actually been built in the past year, as my serial number is in the 130's. I think the availability issue is probably due to scarcity of the in-house movement, with most probably ending up in the Frederique Constant Worldtimer Manufacture. In the past twelve hours the accuracy has been well within COSC specs, and will hopefully get better as it breaks in.
Anyway, it's a very handsome, aviation styled watch as compared to the dressy versions put out by FC., and it suits my taste for something like this perfectly. If I have one complaint about it, it's the strap. It's a thick, alligator embossed leather strap with matching stitch, but it feels and looks plasticy, and the all-black scheme is a bit too formal looking for this watch IMO. A contrasting white stitch would have better suited the sportiness of the watch, as would higher quality leather or genuine alligator. My first order of business is to decide on a new strap for it, so I'm looking for suggestions.
Just to test a couple of looks, I tried it on the black calf/white stitch strap from my Breitling Transocean, as well as on a custom cognac alligator strap I had made for a Hamilton Pan Europ LE (with Grand Prix holes), hoping to get an initial sense of possible styles and colors that might look good on it. I'd love to hear comments from people about the OEM strap versus the other two, as well as hear any other suggestions about what would make a great pairing.
ON THE OEM EMBOSSED LEATHER STRAP
ON A CONTRAST STITCHED STRAP
ON AN ALLIGATOR STRAP (COGNAC)