Military watches are as in vogue as ever but it looks like Christopher Ward is currently dominating the conversation. The accessible British watch brand was approved by the MoD last year to create a trio of vintage-slanted, land- sea- and air-inspired pieces (much, I assumed to Bremont’s dismay). Now they’re getting distinctly more modern, not to mention stealthy, with the new C60 Lympstone.
Lympstone, in case you’re not up on your elite military training camps is the training centre for the Royal Marines’ Commandos. It goes without saying that the navy’s special forces are a touch demanding, hence the need for one serious survival watch.
The 42mm Lympstone is similar in some respects to the standard C60 trident, with the same case shape and 600m water resistance. Yet there are some notable differences. The first is the material, which is lightweight, hardwearing (and usually pricey) forged carbon, complete with a matching carbon-grained dial. It’s precisely the kind of spec ops look you’d expect from a commando watch.
The layout is a little more unusual. At first it looks like a supercompressor layout with its dual crowns. Yet the unidirectional diving bezel is still on the outside; instead, the second crown rotates the inner compass bezel.
Obviously the compass doesn’t work as a usual, electromagnetic north-pointer. Instead, it makes using the sun to find north that much easier. Where usually you need to use the positioning of the hands and the sun, which move throughout the day, here you just use the compass. Sure, you’ll still need to keep checking your heading, but at least it takes out some of the faff.
The Sellita SW200 automatic movement is COSC-certified, which generally I’m not too fussed about, except when it comes to professional standard pieces, as is the case here. Jungles are hard enough to trek through as it is without having to worry about your watch, particularly if its doubling as your navigation aid.
Set on an orange-backed, black hybrid strap, the C60 Lympstone is a statement watch. Sure, I miss the retro, 1940s style of their other military pieces, but at least there’s a reason. A couple of milimetres bigger and the Lympstone would be Expendables-worthy.
Price & Specs:
Model: Christopher Ward C60 Lympstone
Case/Dial: 42mm diameter x 13.8mm height, stainless steel, rotating inner-compass bezel
Water resistance: 600m (60 bar)
Movement: Calibre Sellita SW200 COSC, automatic, 26 jewels
Frequency: 28,800 vph (4 Hz)
Power reserve: 38h
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
Strap: Cordura® and rubber hybrid in black or black and orange
Price/availability: £875 GBP
More details at Christoper Ward.