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Gentlemen, start your chronographs

Lap Timers: Six Great Motoring Watches

The motoring watch has long been a symbol of masculine derring-do and a love of machinery. Here are six modern timepieces that still capture the exhaust smell and sound of engines running wide open on a ribbon of tarmac.

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Keep the revs high

Road Trip Style: Italian Tuneup

One of the best ways to enjoy a summer weekend is a top-down road trip out of town. Pick up a fun roadster like an Alfa Romeo Spider (preferably in rosso corsa) for just these occasions.

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A Pearl of an Oyster

Timekeeping Selects: Rolex Oyster Precision Linen Dial (Sold)

For our series, Timekeeping Selects, we’ve partnered with Analog/Shift, the New York-based purveyor of vintage watches. We’re doing the legwork for you, handpicking stunning, unique vintage timepieces at a wide variety of prices — all with impeccable authenticity, great stories, meticulously serviced and ready to wear. The Rolex Oyster Precision Linen Dial flies a bit under the radar, with baton hands, a smooth polished bezel and a lovely textured cream dial collectors call “linen”. It also comes with its original green box, Rolex guarantee (long since expired) and 19-millimeter steel bracelet with the Rolex logo on the clasp.

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TICKING OFF THE LATEST IN WATCH NEWS

This Week in Watches: July 22, 2014

This Week in Watches: F.P. Journe revamped in gold, a Darwin-inspired series by Arnold & Sons, a modular version of the Inkler DEFAKTO, and more.

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Haute Horlogerie Bargain Hunting

Want This, Get This: Patek Philippe Perpetual Calendar or Montblanc Meisterstück Perpetual Calendar

This past January, Montblanc shook up their lineup with a steel perpetual calendar, a more affordable (though still not cheap) alternative to the unobtanium that is Patek Philippe’s perpetual calendar. How do the two compare?

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Born from the sea

Icon: IWC Portuguese

The contemporary IWC Portuguese is not merely a watch, but rather an entire model line within IWC’s collection, with everything from chronographs to minute repeaters and perpetual calendars counted among its ranks. It is one of the stalwarts of the Schaffhausen brand’s collection and almost universally loved by watch aficionados for the line’s clean, classic aesthetics, purity of design and fascinating history. And it all sprang from a single request from a singular watch market.

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Testing its steely resolve

Time on Our Hands: Breitling Superocean Chronograph Steelfish

The Superocean Chronograph Steelfish ($5,700) is Breitling’s latest addition to its dive watch lineup. We tested it among the toothy predators of Bonaire’s Salt Pier.

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Ticking off the latest in watch news

This Week in Watches: July 15, 2014

This Week in Watches: July 15, 2014. The Bell & Ross WW1 Guynemer, news on Apple’s iWatch, BENRUS lives again, and more.

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Gear Patrol x Analog/Shift

Timekeeping Selects: Wittnauer “Panda” Chronograph (Sold)

For our new series, Timekeeping Selects, we’ve partnered with Analog/Shift, the New York-based purveyor of vintage watches. We’re doing the legwork for you, handpicking stunning, unique vintage timepieces at a wide variety of prices — all with impeccable authenticity, great stories, meticulously serviced and ready to wear. The Wittnauer Professional Chronograph we have this week is classic ’60s style, with widely spaced contrasting colors, “Panda” style, subdials for running seconds and elapsed minutes, blocky hands and a bold red sweep hand. It’s an American beauty.

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The British Brand Beats the Swatch Group's Embargo in the Best Possible Way

With a New In-House Movement, Christopher Ward Sets the Bar High

Last week, while we Americans were celebrating our independence from England, English brand Christopher Ward was celebrating independence of a different sort. The ten-year-old Internet watch company announced that it had created its first in-house mechanical movement, the calibre SH21, for its new C9 Harrison 5 Day Automatic timepiece. While the watch itself is a handsome piece, fitting well into Ward’s lineup of classic sports and dress watches, it’s this movement under the hood that has the watch world buzzing.

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Daring design for (kind of) modest means

Avant-Garde Watches on a Budget

Avant-garde watch design is best designed by what isn’t, rather than what it is: Understand classics like dress, dive, and aviator watches and you’ll know avant-garde when you see it. The problem with breaking the mold is that these watches often come with an equally unbelievable and impressive price tags, leaving mere mortals’ bank accounts wanting. But more recently, a handful of watchmakers have taken a shot at inspired and unique design, without the insane price tags. These are our favorites that at least won’t bankrupt you.

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Ticking off the latest in watch news

This Week in Watches: July 8, 2014

This Week in Watches: July 8, 2014. A pure Pinion, a blacked-out Luminox, a vintage-inspired clock, a poor man’s Heuer and more.

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Earned Wings

A History of Breitling Pilot’s Watches

Step foot on the tarmac at Edwards or the flight deck of the USS Ronald Reagan and you’re likely to see a few Breitling watches on the pilots’ wrists — as much a part of standard aviator kit as the ubiquitous and eponymous aviator shades. Breitling’s connection with pilot’s watches is more than a historical footnote or a well-branded, retro-inspired line of heritage watches. The brand has won pilots’ favor over the decades due to the functionality and rugged build of the watches themselves, which have evolved over time as much as the planes the pilots are flying.

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Flight Time

Buying Guide: Six Soaring Pilot’s Watches

New or old, a pilot’s watch much be legible, tough, accurate and reliable, with extra points awarded if it looks good riding the sleeve of a flight jacket. This flock hits those marks.

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Ticking off the latest watch news

This Week in Watches: July 1, 2014

This Week in Watches: a young watch authority, a mean chopper-edition watch, and an Oris with a mechanical altimeter.

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Off-Kilter in all the right ways

Breakdown: Longines Heritage Avigation Watch Type A7

The new Longines Avigation Watch Type A7 differs visually from the 1930s original (most notable for its 45 degree canted dial) only in minor dial details. Other features remain: the 49 millimeter diameter, the hinged case back, the Breguet hands, and Arabic numerals. We break it down.

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A different WWW

Timekeeping Selects: Cyma British Military Watch (Sold)

For our new series, Timekeeping Selects, we’ve partnered with Analog/Shift, the New York-based purveyor of vintage watches. We’re doing the legwork for you, handpicking stunning, unique vintage timepieces at a wide variety of prices — all with impeccable authenticity, great stories, meticulously serviced and ready to wear. Our third offering is a Cyma British Military watch ($995) that fulfills the British Ministry of Defense’s “Watch, Wristlet, Waterproof” specification with several unique twists.

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One Breath, One Dive

Learning to Freedive with One of the World’s Best

Most of the people who come to Bonaire are SCUBA divers, hauling heavy bags of gear — buoyancy vests and regulators. But on this visit, I decided to try something different: freediving. No tanks, just a breath of air. I wanted to experience the transcendent silence and freedom freedivers talk about. The best man to learn from is in Bonaire, and I was about to get a one-on-one lesson from him.

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Ticking Off the Latest in Watch News

This Week in Watches: June 24, 2014

This Week in Watches: The Sistem51 hits U.S. shores, Audemars Piguet’s new digs, the missing watches of ten great men and much more.

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Lean and Clean

Six Great Ultra-Thin Watches

While thick, robust watches have their benefits, they often fall prey to door jams and snags on cuffs and jacket pockets alike. More often than not, a truly practical and comfortable watch will also be a thin watch. These watches feel wafter thin (because they are) but still look of consequence, and are in fact some of the best dress watches around. For an understated yet stately look that fits under a cuff with heaps of clearance (10mm thick at max, including crystal), these six are some of the best.

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YOURS, PERPETUALLY

Breakdown: A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Perpetual Calendar Terraluna

The A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Perpetual Calendar Terraluna ($230,400 in white gold, $229,200 in pink gold) is, as you can tell from its name, a watch for the man who enjoys complexity. It’s a perpetual calendar indicating time in a regulator style; it has a unique power reserve indication at 6:00; it has an orbital moon phase on the back. And that’s just the tip of the horological iceberg. Let us try to explain.

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Shades of Tennis's Most Unique Tournament

Photo Essay: French Red

The French have two Brits to thank for their beloved red playing surface, which today lives on in small training centers on the outskirts of Paris, tournaments for the rising stars of the sport, and one of professional tennis’s oldest events. We were on hand during the week of the French Open to capture all the nuance of the storied surface.

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Ticking of the Latest in Watch News

This Week in Watches: June 17, 2014

This Week in Watches: June 17, 2014. A bronze Pinion, Dwight Eisenhower’s Rolex on sale, a watch that displays time using liquid and much more.

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Time for a new dive watch standard

Time on Our Hands: Cartier Calibre de Cartier Diver

ISO 6425 is an international standard that spells out in great and unambiguous detail the criteria for what can be called a “diver’s watch”. Aside from the obvious water resistance requirement (100 meters, by the way), there are rules for legibility, salt water resistance and more. But the fact of the matter is, not many watches are even subjected to the testing required to earn the ISO seal of approval. So when Cartier, best known for its classic Tank and elegant Ballon Bleu watches, introduced its Calibre de Cartier Diver ($8,200) this year with full compliance with ISO 6425, the watch world took notice.

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Playing the field

Field Watch Buying Guide

Field watches tend to be ignored among the tool watch set, mostly because their definition is a bit less clear than divers’ or pilots’ watches. In fact, a field watch’s rugged build and clear dial markings makes it the perfect candidate for all sorts of expeditions. These five are particularly excellent candidates for bumps and bruises, be they from scree-scrambling, brush-clearing or desk-bumping.

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Gear Patrol x Analog/Shift

Timekeeping Selects: Seiko 6139 “Pogue” Chronograph (Sold)

For our new series, Timekeeping Selects, we’ve partnered with Analog/Shift, the New York-based purveyor of vintage watches. We’re doing the legwork for you, handpicking stunning, unique vintage timepieces at a wide variety of prices — all with impeccable authenticity, great stories, meticulously serviced and ready to wear. This week we go east for our Timekeeping Select: a late 1970s Seiko 6139-6002 chronograph ($895 Sold), a watch that is significant for several reasons yet remains an outright bargain by any measure.

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Contrast is for suckers

Five Best Murdered-Out Watches

All-black, or “murdered-out”, watches aren’t flashy so much as menacing; they’re the pimped-out Rolex’s archnemesis. But what makes one example stand apart in a burgeoning field of blacked-out watches stand apart? As our list shows, there’s no single formula for success. Just add Batman’s favorite color, loads of lume and an even bigger dose of badassery.

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Depth of Spending

Want This, Get This: IWC Aquatimer Deep Three or ORIS Aquis Depth Gauge

Comparing two great depth gauge dive watches: the top shelf IWC Aquatimer Deep Three and an ingenious alternative from ORIS that works without any moving parts.

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We Tick Off the Latest In Watch News

This Week in Watches: June 10, 2014

This Week In Watches: The Rolling Stones get a Zenith, Linde Werdelin’s secrets revealed, two opulent auctions and much more.

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The Watch as A lesson

Father, Time

Unlike many family traditions, including those shown in Patek Philippe ads, in our family, watch gifts didn’t flow from father to son but rather the other way around.