After many months of lurking on these fora and collecting research, I have finally received my first mechanical watch: a COSC Stowa Airman no-logo. This was not a decision I made lightly, as it is a foolish man who parts with a considerable amount of his (limited) resources to acquire what amounts to a miniaturized mechanical folly.
I went with the Stowa Airman no-logo for a number of reasons:
- I am obsessed with value for money. I gleaned from months of research that you would be hard pressed to find a better quality or finer finished watch for your hard-earned cash.
- Legacy - the original reason for wanting to purchase a decent watch was the ability for me to pass it on to my daughter or son when the time came for me to depart for Valhalla. With the history, build quality and timeless styling of the Stowa Airman, it fit the bill without breaking the bank.
- I am big on the concept of 'handmade'. Though I certainly understand that there are portions of the Stowa manufacturing process that are automated (some even outside Germany), there is a big difference between Mr. Schauer personally inspecting and finishing every watch that leaves his factory and the assembly line approach of many 'high-end' watch makers.
- Uniqueness - this is a hard one to describe, but sufficed to say I am not one to be overly impressed by someone simply because they are wearing a Rolex or Tag.
So, fast-forward to this afternoon and my first impressions of my brand new Airman:
- It is far more 'delicate' than I thought it was going to be. This is no criticism, for I have relatively small wrists (6.75") and so I am unable to realistically wear many of the current style of oversized watches. I just can't see myself being able to ever wear a Seatime, U1, or any other modern diving watch.
- The detailing on the face is immaculate, and I have already fallen in love with the way the blued hands jump out in the right light. The movement, though more of a workhorse than a racehorse, is beautifully decorated. The handmade and individualized rotor is a great touch.
- After wearing a quartz for a long time, I love the the organic nature of the watch's beating heart.
- I wish that the water resistance was beefed up a little - after wearing a G-Shock for so long, I often forget to take my watch off to shower, swim or do the dishes.
- The people working at Stowa really understand how to treat their customers. Every person I interacted with replied quickly and politely (even when I changed my order at the last second) and I received the watch in good order the day after it was shipped. Thank you Regine, Viveca, Viktoria and Jorg.
I am not the first, nor certainly the last (if the popularity of this forum is to considered), to wax poetic on this watch, I though I would contribute my thoughts.