Flieger Original or...

Thread: Flieger Original or...

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  1. #1
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    Flieger Original or...

    ...an IWC Mark XVI. I know, I'll probably get a different answer here than the IWC forum. But I'd like to know what you guys think. I own an IWC pilot's chrono, and have always liked the Marks as well. The truth is I've never seen a Stowa Flieger in person, so it's really hard to know what you're getting. (I do have an FO2 on order.)
    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    I think a more appropriate comparison would be of FO with IWC Big Pilot, but still...
    I own a Stowa FO LE and IWC Spitfire UTC (not quite your choice, but close enough to allow me to make some observations).
    The quality of FO is superb. You could say that IWC has somewhat better casework (with subtly polished case edges giving it a higher degree of refinement). It also has higher technical features (anti-magnetic soft iron core, highly modifies and regulated movement), but that would be comparing apples and oranges since the 2 watches are designed for a different purpose.
    I'm a big fan of IWC, but FO just feels more unique (though you could also say that IWC is unique in its simplicity in this age of garish watch designs).
    Also, and not everyone is going to care about this point, FO feels much more historically correct. Of course, it's not 55mm of the original Flieger etc., but one can see all the little thoughtful details in design and execution which make it interesting. From this perspective, I was disappointed in Mark XVI's design, since the Mark line had been (up until Mark XV) a continuation of the classic British MOD WWW watch. Mark XVI looks like a combination of British MOD & German Flieger designs, which doesn't make it any less of a great watch by itself, but I wish IWC hadn't discontnued Mark XV and just called the latest version a "Mini flieger" or "Big Pilot Jr."
    I'm happy to have both watches. Neither one is a substitute for the other.

  3. #3
    Member Capt. Canuck's Avatar
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    I quite like the IWC 3717 chrono, but I much prefer the FO to the IWC Mk XVI.

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  5. #4
    Member dc_in_sf's Avatar
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    I was investigating the Mark XVI as well (looking at the IWC forums on timezone is actually how I found out about Stowa). The Mark XVI doesn't really 'pop' for me, not sure why. I really like their UTC watches though, if IWC would make a black dial UTC I think I would be all over it.

    I've never actually seen a FO in person but have an FO3 on order. Given the huge price differential between a Mark XVI and an FO3 I'm ok with buying it unseen though, and I imagine the secondary market will be reasonable if (for whatever reason) I don't like it.

  6. #5
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    Quote Originally Posted by dc_in_sf View Post
    I was investigating the Mark XVI as well (looking at the IWC forums on timezone is actually how I found out about Stowa). The Mark XVI doesn't really 'pop' for me, not sure why. I really like their UTC watches though, if IWC would make a black dial UTC I think I would be all over it.

    I've never actually seen a FO in person but have an FO3 on order. Given the huge price differential between a Mark XVI and an FO3 I'm ok with buying it unseen though, and I imagine the secondary market will be reasonable if (for whatever reason) I don't like it.
    That's pretty much how I feel. IWC used to make a black dialed UTC, as a matter of fact there's one available on one of the forums now, used. They're pretty cool and in fact I think I like the looks of them better than the Mark XVI, though because I don't travel the world often, the UTC doesn't make a lot of sense for me. I guess I'm lamenting that I didn't get a Mark XII when I had the chance, the Mark XVI is a sort of compromise.

    And I do like the looks of the Stowa- a lot. I like that it's so simple and doesn't have a logo. I also like that it has an interesting history- though I'm also not interested in dressing like a WW2 aviator- from any side...

  7. #6
    Member dc_in_sf's Avatar
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    Quote Originally Posted by roseskunk View Post
    That's pretty much how I feel. IWC used to make a black dialed UTC, as a matter of fact there's one available on one of the forums now, used. They're pretty cool and in fact I think I like the looks of them better than the Mark XVI, though because I don't travel the world often, the UTC doesn't make a lot of sense for me. I guess I'm lamenting that I didn't get a Mark XII when I had the chance, the Mark XVI is a sort of compromise.

    And I do like the looks of the Stowa- a lot. I like that it's so simple and doesn't have a logo. I also like that it has an interesting history- though I'm also not interested in dressing like a WW2 aviator- from any side...
    Looks like that black IWC UTC sold :)

    I am not 100% sure but I believe that the IWC UTC is like the Omega and Rolex GMT watches and allows you to set the hour hand independently which is incredibly useful when travelling across time zones. It's really the one thing that I missed when I went from my Quartz Tag to my Omega 2254. So there is more utility to a watch like that then just for world travellers :)

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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    Quote Originally Posted by dc_in_sf View Post
    I am not 100% sure but I believe that the IWC UTC is like the Omega and Rolex GMT watches and allows you to set the hour hand independently which is incredibly useful when travelling across time zones. It's really the one thing that I missed when I went from my Quartz Tag to my Omega 2254. So there is more utility to a watch like that then just for world travellers :)
    Yes, the IWC UTC is like the Omega & Rolex GMT watches with an independent hour hand. It's what attracted me to this model (as opposed to the regular Mark) in the first place. Not too many watches implement the GMT function correctly.
    My Spitfire UTC is the discontinued black-faced version with the UTC wheel at the top (see borrowed pic 1). To be honest, I'm not completely crazy about its looks and would rather have an older less dressy non-spitfire version (see borrowed pic 2).
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    Quote Originally Posted by roseskunk View Post
    I guess I'm lamenting that I didn't get a Mark XII when I had the chance, the Mark XVI is a sort of compromise.
    That's exactly how I felt when I contemplated a Mark XVI, and then decided that I'd rather get a used Mark XII or XV.

    Quote Originally Posted by roseskunk View Post
    ... I'm also not interested in dressing like a WW2 aviator- from any side...
    Ha-ha!.. Good point. I wasn't taking it that far either I just think that some historical details make a timepiece interesting. For instance, I never seriously considered posing as an astronaut, but I do enjoy wearing an Omega Speedmaster partly due to its history.

  10. #9
    Member siddhartha's Avatar
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    One thing going for the Stowa FO is the uniqueness factor- you will probably never see another one on anyone else you encounter in your day to day life.

    I love the attention to detail on the FO, and how exclusive it is. It is for true lovers of this style, and is just so cool.

    That's my vote at least

    Chris
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    "What you think, you become"

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    my current collection: '68 Tudor Sub-military, '83 Rolex Seadweller 16660 (matte dial), '62 Rolex Zephyr, Doxa Sub 300T Professional Reissue, Doxa Divingstar 750 GMT, Omega Flightmaster c911, Omega Seamaster 300/date, Omega PloProf 1200, Omega PO Chrono c9300, Seiko MarineMaster 300M, ZRC Etanche Grand Fondes reissue, B&R BR-02, Seiko Scubamaster M726, Helson Sharkmaster Destro, MeisterSinger Scrypto

  11. #10
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    Re: Flieger Original or...

    Well, I'm going to stick with the FO. As much as I like IWC, I can't afford the one(s) I really want... I'm really looking forward to the Flieger, it is pretty unique- though in my neck of the woods anything that you don't get a Wal-mart is unique... I like the fact that Stowa is such a small and close-knit company. I do own a Pro-diver and it's very well made.

    So the next question...MO or Dornblueth?!

    Let the waiting commence!

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