Are Fossil watches cost-effective?
One of the most well-known fashion watch manufacturers worldwide is Fossil. Since I can recall, they have been a staple of internet jewelers and department stores, but up until this point, I had never tried one. However, I haven't ever tried the main Fossil brand; I've only tried a few of their subsidiary brands.
Since I personally don't like the way they look, I'll be honest and say I've never wanted one. I believe that many of their rivals have more appealing products, and the designers at Fossil appear to have a peculiar preoccupation with syringe hands. They are installed in so many of their watches that their product catalog must not be too dissimilar from a drug magazine.
Whatever the case, I decided to pick up one of their top models to see what all the excitement was about. After all, it's one of the brands that get the most requests on our blog. So, I used the average rating to restrict the search results, and this "Coachman Chronograph" was among the top outcomes. The vast majority of the n 5 stars ratings, and based on the product photographs, I believed it appeared to be at least somewhat nice. Maybe it was worthwhile to review this Fossil? Amazon therefore sent me the watch, which we'll talk about later.
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I absolutely appreciate the bright tin it came in when it was delivered. It has a pleasant retro vibe and shines out against some of the more boring boxes I've seen. However, when you open the tin, the watch is crammed into a subpar cardboard inner that, in my fiancée's opinion, feels like a McDonald's cupholder. This is the first instance of it I've seen; even other less expensive watches have what I would deem to be more protective linings. Not the finest of starts.
As you can see, this is a fairly large watch, measuring 52mm from lug to lug, 12.6mm in depth, and 44mm in diameter. Obviously, this doesn't fit my thin wrist, but I'm not going to let that influence my opinion of the watch because I know many of you won't be concerned about the size.
As it sort of ties into the watch proportions, I want to talk about the strap first. This CH2891's standard mounting is a brown leather bund strap in military fashion. Given the positive experience I've had with my leather Fossil wallet, which has been my go-to for several years, I had high expectations for this. Sadly, this is just the beginning of many disappointments. These straps are comfy even though I don't like how they look, however, this one has very obvious problems. First off, the upper has a cheap appearance and feel. Although the thickness may keep the strap intact for a long time, it soon exhibits considerable creasing, and I expect it would start to look ragged pretty quickly. Cheap straps don't age well, as we all know.
Furthermore, the on-wrist depth is increased to well over 15mm by its sheer heft of it. This strap makes the watch, which was originally very deep, to begin with, the thickest one I've ever seen. It will look rather hefty on the wrists of the majority of guys, which is a look I don't like. Unless you have a huge wrist, I'd immediately swap this out for something that doesn't pass behind the case. It contains quick-release tabs, which makes it easy for you to rapidly get rid of it.
I was really intrigued when I saw the images online because the case design is fairly distinctive. It has two odd spots where an angled transparent part sits above a black internal bezel at 12 and 6 o'clock, just above the lugs. It's very astonishing to see this bespoke shape so seamlessly incorporated into the mineral glass that appears to cover the rest of the dial. The glass will provide you with some limited scratch protection and is the kind you might anticipate at this price point.
The rest of the case, however, is inadequate. Because it felt so cheap, I actually had to check the material used online. This is stainless steel, according to the case back and other independent websites, albeit intriguingly, none of them indicate the specific type of stainless steel utilized. Given that it feels substantially lighter for its size than the normal 316L used in most current watches, it wouldn't surprise me if this variety is inferior. That, together with the drab finishing, led me to believe that the watch was made of another low-quality alloy at first.
The pushers and crown are underwhelming despite their appealing appearance. These appear to be screw down pushers at first glance, but they are merely designed to do so. There is absolutely no use for the ridges. The buttons aren't great to operate, but they aren't bad either.
Sadly, it is the unsigned crown. It appears fine at first glance, and as for grip, I have no concerns. On a wrist watch, this is by far and away the loosest crown I've ever felt. Quartz watches typically have crowns that can be turned even while not being taken out, but this goes a step further. Even with the slightest pressure, you may spin this like a Beyblade, and it will keep revolving for a little period of time. Although difficult to communicate online, this is hardly motivating. Functionally, adjusting the time and date is simple and better than I had anticipated considering the complexity.
The fact that this watch boasts a 10ATM water resistance rating is what surprises me the most. A watch with this rating ought to be suitable for shallow diving and swimming. I don't understand how a watch with such a bad case and a freely rotating crown has such a robust seal. I would have assumed this was at most splash-proof if you had handed it to me without mentioning its water resistance. However, if Fossil is to be believed, then they must be commended for making this watch fairly waterproof, despite its shortcomings. Only additional testing will be able to determine the genuine performance.
The dial is a complete mess. Some features, like the drab date window and the expertly integrated, textured subdials, give you reason for optimism. Although this is a real product, the watch I felt was fairly nice in person but appeared quite cheap online.
The direction of the arrow above the marker at 12 o'clock is plainly off to the left. There is a clear misalignment of the 12 o'clock markers themselves, with the right one resting higher. Other applied hour markings are slanted and put wrongly as well. The top of the dark date window is chopped off, which could be a sign of a dial or movement that is out of alignment (or possibly both).
Although closer investigation reveals that the rings are put on top of the smooth surface, the rose-gold rings create the appearance that the sub-dials are inset. Those of you with keen eyes may have noted that the hands change slightly from those in the renderings. My research indicates that the product images are out of date and that the prior skeletonized hands have been replaced by the new, solid handset. This has some lume, in my opinion, and is a visual enhancement. However, I believe that color-coordinated hour markers and hands would improve the appearance of the watch.
Despite all of those things, I find the second hand to be the most annoying feature of the watch. One of the most inconsistent I've ever encountered is this. The second markers are frequently missed by inexpensive watches with Chinese movements, but at least those I've tried regularly miss them.
This second hand leaps around, often striking the markers before suddenly jumping past or behind them, especially when moving around the right side of the watch. This implies that the movement itself, not its alignment, is at fault. I attempted to examine what kind of cheap Chinese movement was housed inside the watch by opening the rear, but instead I found a Japanese Miyota JS26. When I googled the module, I discovered that some websites were selling each individual unit for as much as $30. In quantity, these will undoubtedly be considerably less expensive, but even so, I've examined watches with much less expensive movements that are much more reliable.
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