Saturday, January 25, 2014

Seiko Moon Monster on Strap

So I had the bracelet changed to a strap. I went to Jason at JnS and he suggested the black alligator over the yellow with yellow stitches.

The results are exactly what I wanted - a customized strap to go with the black yellow combo.
Moon Monster Double Alligator photo MoonMonsterDoubleAlligator02_zps42316d35.jpg

Looks a little softer than bracelet. Here's another look with the JnS Strap.
Moon Monster Double Alligator photo MoonMonsterDoubleAlligator01_zps6e1ffd5a.jpg

You can read the original post on the Moon Monster. But I like this one more!

Sunday, January 19, 2014

MoVas - New Releases

MoVas is a Singapore brand and the owners are proud of that fact. They openly tell their fans where their watches are made and what movements go into their timepieces. Specializing in diver watches, MoVas recently re-launched the Oceaner line and also introduced the Prodiver II line.

The launch was held at the Fullerton Hotel in a private suite and some friends were invited to the party. The collection in a trunk.
MoVas Collection Box photo MovasCollectionBox01_zps31b9f2d8.jpg

Amongst all the watches on display, I liked the Oceaner II in red the most. The final dials for the Oceaner is still not confirmed as Sean is still trying out a few others. The Oceaner is rated to 30 ATM.
MoVas Oceaner Red photo MovasOceanerIIRed02_zps35c0ad6b.jpg

The Oceaner in red is still a prototype as Sean wants to make some changes to the markers. The date window is at 6 while the day indicator is at the 3 O'clock position.
MoVas Oceaner Red photo MovasOceanerIIRed01_zpsf2bc2aae.jpg

Coming is three variants, the Oceaner also has a blue inner bezel. In this version, the dial is a sandwich dial as opposed to red version which uses appliqués. According to Sean, he is still not satified with the blue bezel so some changes to the colour will be forthcoming. And it will also be likely that the blue will be launched next year.
MoVas Oceaner Blue photo MovasOceanerIBlue01_zps7c5473b2.jpg

Notice how the day display is in Chinese? Interesting as not many watches has this feature except Seiko.
MoVas Oceaner Blue photo MovasOceanerIBlue02_zps47d7e95c.jpg

Then there is the regular black version. Although the picture shows crowns are not fully flushed, I was told by Sean that the final version will have them identically flushed to the crown guard.
MoVas Oceaner Black photo MovasOceanerIBlack01_zps37046f8c.jpg

The open case back reveals a China made movement from the Seagull Watch Company - ignore the Shanghai Watch Company rotor. The movement is pretty well decorated - perlage. The Oceaner was supposed to be launched earlier but Sean had issues with the case so it took him time to fix those issues before he re-launched the Oceaner. I can say that it is ready!
MoVas Oceaner Movement photo MovasOceanerIIMovement02_zpsbeeb6244.jpg

The new launch was for the Diver VI Bronze. What was on show were two variants - an all bronze case and one with black bezel.
MoVas Prodiver Bronze Duo photo MovasProdiverIIDuo01_zpsb8b83d28.jpg

Featuring a green dial and a similar layout as the Oceaner, the Diver VI Bronze is as chunky as it looks. Definitely a diver's watch. First the all Bronze Diver VI.
MoVas Prodiver Bronze photo MovasProdiverIIBlackBronze01_zpsa6d6e17a.jpg

Then the black bezel version. So which one you like better? Well, I was told the black bezel version may or may not happen as Sean is still trying out various colour combinations.
MoVas Prodiver Bronze Black Bezel photo MovasProdiverIIBlackBezel01_zpse88ccf5c.jpg

Personally, I prefer the one with the black bezel. A little more contrast lends a totally new look and feel to the watch. Coupled with a matching green strap, the watch is rather pretty. More watches to come and another the Prodiver is also in the works. Stay tuned when I have more.

Fore more information, visit Sean's website at MoVas.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Precista Czech Air Force Watch

Every now and then, you come across some interesting watches and I found one in the Precista Czech Air Force Watch is one such find.

The Longines has a version of the Czech Air Force watches which this watch probably replicates. A cushion-shaped military watch with rotating bezel and a red pointer, the Precista is close to the original.
Precista Czech Air Force PRS-9 photo PrecistaCzechAirForce01_zps8a87d5c7.jpg

The Precista PRS-9 is a manual winding timepiece with the AS1130 movement underneath. According to the brand, the movement is a New Old Stock, Swiss made with 17 jewels and beats at 18,000 beat per hour. The movement has a power reserve of 41 hours. In true military style, the strap comes with rivets and is made of padded leather.
Precista Czech Air Force PRS-9 photo PrecistaCzechAirForce02_zpsb5cb3cc1.jpg

The front crystal is acrylic and that gives the watch a more authentic "old" look of the past. The Squelette hands are coated with super Luminova. The dial is matte-black and the case stainless steel. At the back of the case is a well engraved case back.
Precista Czech Air Force PRS-9 photo PrecistaCzechAirForce06_zpsaf9f16c9.jpg

The Arabic numerals are well coated and the dial is legible. Watch is water proof to 30m. Oddly enough although it houses a Swiss movement, the dial says Great Britain and the brand says the watch is made in Germany.
Precista Czech Air Force PRS-9 photo PrecistaCzechAirForce03_zps9b1d8bd6.jpg

Comes with a nice presentation box.
Precista on Wooden Box photo PrecistaCzechAirForce07_zps963f9fbb.jpg

Shall be slapping on a nice brown leather Nato Strap soon!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Picnic or BBQ? This is Nomos

For all the publicity they have as a brand, Nomos does not have an authorized retailer in Singapore. So when I went to Hamburg some time back, I had to seek them out. And what a pleasant surprise it was - well at least for my wife.

Nomos probably has one of the most varied range of Limited Editions many of them for the Germany company Wempe. So when I was in Hamburg several years back, I walked into a Wempe store and what greeted me were the last few pieces of some Nomos Limited Edition pieces. Oddly enough, the LEs are priced cheaper than the regular range Tangente!
Nomos Tangente BBQ, Rosemarie & PickNick photo NomosTangenteTrioLE01.jpg

The three pieces available were the BBQ, Rosemarie and the Picknick. BBQ because the checkered patterns resemble that of a table cloth used for outdoor BBQs. The two BBQ and PickNick look nice as a pair.
Nomos Tangente BBQ, Rosemarie & PickNick photo NomosTangenteTrioLE02.jpg

The Rosemarie has an intricate rose motif and the blued hands lends a nice contrast to the pinkish dial.
Nomos Tangente Rosemarie photo NomosTangenteRosemarieLE03.jpg

The limited editions come limited to 100 pieces and are engraved at the case back. But I understand that Nomos is willing to do limited dials in as small a quantity as 20. Nomos changes the dial and hands colors to create different LEs.
Nomos Tangente Rosemarie photo NomosTangenteRosemarieLE01.jpg

The open case back reveals the Tangente Manual winding Calibre Alpha. Featuring the Glashütte three quarter plate with Glashütte ribbing. The Alpha is an in-house developed movement.
Nomos Tangente Rosemarie Case Back photo NomosTangenteRosemarieLE02.jpg
Nomos Tangente BBQ Caseback photo NomosTangenteBBQLE02.jpg

One feature of all Nomos watches is the strap - they all come with Shell Cordovan hand made straps. And the buckle is also engraved with the brand name.
Nomos Shell Cordovan Strap photo NomosTangenteShellCordovanStrap.jpg

Nomos also makes automatic pieces they call Tangomat. I am particularly taken by the grey yellow combo of this piece. So three for my wife and one for me - fair right?
Nomos Tangomat photo NomosTangomat02.jpg

The dark grey dial with the contrasting yellow numbers and markers is outstanding. Clean. This version is called Tangomat Ruthenium. The watch measures 38.3mm across. As with the Tangente, the watch comes with a Shell Cordovan leather strap.
Nomos Tangomat photo NomosTangomat01.jpg

At the back houses the in-house Epsilon automatic movement. As with the Alpha movement, the Epsilon comes with the Glashütte three quarter plate, Glashütte ribbing and NOMOS perlage. The movement features a bidirectional automatic rotor.
Nomos Tangomat Case Back photo NomosTangomat03.jpg

Nomos makes honest watches - they don't charge an arm-and-a-leg for their watches. I consider them reasonably priced especially when they are developed in-house and the level of finish is better than many Swiss brands 3-4 times more expensive. I recall the outrage (for most except the hardcore supporters) several years ago when a particular P-brand fitted an unfinished UNITAS movement into their Limited Edition piece and sold it with a closed case back hoping no one will be none the wiser. Well, all I can say is that Nomos stands far higher than the P-brand.

And in recent years, they have develop some more interesting pieces like the Tangomat GMT, Zürich Weltzeit (world time) and lately the Lux and Lambda range. For more information, please go to Nomos website. And for the limited editions, here is somewhere you can check out Nomos Limited Edition.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

2013 Year End GTG - Leaving 2013 Stuffed!

Every year, we try to have one get-together to round off the year and this year is no exception. Thanks to Larry for introducing the restaurant. We both went there for a tasting more than a month back and came out impressed.

Zen Restaurant is located in UE Square but facing the side of Unity Street. Friends started streaming in at 6pm - Harry being the first this time around. Sorry Jo, you lost that distinction. Zen serves up a Ala Carte Buffet and they have a nice variety of dishes.
Restaurant Scene photo GTGZenDec201304_zpsc2e187ef.jpg

Some of the early birds.
Early Birds photo GTGZenDec201302_zps04934fea.jpg
Early Birds photo GTGZenDec201301_zps30d03acf.jpg

And while we were waiting for the rest to turn up, Zen served us the kawaebi which is fried small shrimps. Great with beer!
Fried Edi photo GTGZenDec201327_zps2a70f0c0.jpg

And while we were getting ready for dinner, someone is already revisiting the menu! Guess who?
Guess Who photo GTGZenDec201328_zpsa0e7f2b7.jpg

Dinner started at 7pm. In order to ensure smooth flow of the food, I had pre-ordered some dishes. First up was the daikon salad.
Daikon Salad photo GTGZenDec201310_zps48542acc.jpg

The sirloin beef steak. It was a crowd favorite and the group made several orders for this dish.
Sirloin Steak photo GTGZenDec201329_zpse8e3535d.jpg

Ginger pork which was done to perfection. Just the right amount of ginger juice to spice up the dish. The chef used the belly pork for this dish.
Ginger Pork photo GTGZenDec201306_zps6af9f059.jpg

Another crowd favorite was the grilled squid - combine that with beer, great combo.
Grilled Squid photo GTGZenDec201308_zps9b8a0134.jpg

The salmon aburi was also pretty good. Not as good as the one at Sushi Bar in Far East Plaza but good enough for a buffet restaurant.
Salmon Aburi photo GTGZenDec201307_zps6ed14663.jpg

Next up the salmon sashimi. Decent fare.
Salmon Sashimi photo GTGZenDec201305_zps0d72edb1.jpg

The chicken and pork yakitori are also nice. A surprising from the grilled skewer section was the chicken liver. Done just right on the outside and mushy soft on the inside.
Chicken & Pork Skewers photo GTGZenDec201309_zpsc60d2101.jpg

Two main meals I strongly recommend are the Unagi Chahan (Eel Fried Rice) and the Zuwai Chahan (Crab Fried Rice with Gravy). The unagi fried rice was cooked with good wok hei and the taste of unagi lifted the fried rice. Sorry I have no picture of the fried rice. By the time I got to the table, only a small portion was left for me… darn! What is also nice is the crab porridge. Sitting atop the rice is a deep fried short shell crab. Great flavor and a must-have dish.
Crab Porridge photo GTGZenDec201330_zps8ba19a8e.jpg

And before long, we were all stuffed. How good was the food? Well Jo ate more than he drank! So that was how good the food was. At our table, you can trust David and Larry to order the good stuff. So we started to get ready the table shot.
Getting Ready photo GTGZenDec201311_zps458d9a60.jpg

This time around, we thought two good themes would be "The First Mechanical" and your "Latest Mechanical". Some surprising watches in the "Latest" category. Three Seven Friday - all three of the same variant P2-01. What a coincidence! And three Seiko Monsters - 2 anniversary pieces and one Moon Monster.
Newbies photo GTGZenDec201331_zpsdfe48cae.jpg

Some "First" pieces include Oris, IWC, Omega, Baume & Mercier, Tudor just to name a few.
Table Shot photo GTGZenDec201333_zpsecf81553.jpg

Also a Timex, Seiko 5 and then some like the Patek and Habring in the "Latest" corner.
Table Shot photo GTGZenDec201332_zps730aa749.jpg

A close up of the Sorna Bullhead Chrono. In gatherings like these, one gets to see watches previously unknown especially to a newbie like me who only started in mid 2000.
Sorna Bullhead photo GTGZenDec201313_zps3bc64483.jpg

A Tugaris automatic Day/Date.
Tugaris photo GTGZenDec201314_zps0e032f4e.jpg

A Timex
Timex photo GTGZenDec201317_zps00e6e774.jpg

An automatic early edition of the Tag Heuer.
TAG photo GTGZenDec201318_zps1d92b0b8.jpg

An IWC "Baby" Portuguese ref 3531 in steel and black dial. What a classic!
IWC 3531 photo GTGZenDec201319_zps735665d3.jpg

An Oris Pointer Date.
Oris Pointer Date photo GTGZenDec201320_zps6b3636da.jpg

Another Oris but this time an anti-magnetic piece.
Oris photo GTGZenDec201321_zps7c10159e.jpg

A Tudor Oyster Price Day/Date.
Tudor Oyster Prince photo GTGZenDec201322_zps9779fd26.jpg

An Omega Dynamic vintage - sorry for the poor photos as these were taken in restaurant setting without flash.
Omega Dynamic photo GTGZenDec201323_zps5e5cb88e.jpg

Another rather interesting piece by Seiko 5 - somewhat resembles a Rolex.
Seiko 5 photo GTGZenDec201324_zps507f7875.jpg

And in the new corner, the award winning Habring Pilot Quartz… hahaha, it is a Dead Beat Seconds.
Habring photo GTGZenDec201326_zps83fdcc8e.jpg

And one would have thought this would be a "first" but it actually was bought recently in China. A Chinese chronograph. A 21 jewel manual winding chrono.
Zi Zhan photo GTGZenDec201325_zps37009523.jpg

Then there was the Patek Nautilus Annual Calendar. Not under a "First" category but the "Latest".
Patek Nautilus Annual Calendar photo GTGZenDec201316_zps8bc987c5.jpg

A Dornbluth…
Dornbluth photo GTGZenDec201315_zps871c9c03.jpg

Almost full table shot. Can you spot the Rolex 5513 and a Wempe Chronometer?
Table Shot photo GTGZenDec201312_zps6c09641e.jpg

Unfortunately, I could not take pictures of all the watches but suffice to say it was another interesting gathering - a gathering of sharing and partaking of good food and drinks. Happy New Year to all watch enthusiasts and have a Happy Horological journey in 2014!

Z'en Japanese Cuisine

205 River Valley Road, UE Square #01-75 (facing Unity Street)

Singapore 238274

Telephone: +65 6732 3110