Maritime Carry

Timekeeping Selects: The Eterna Kon-Tiki Mariner Kit (Sold)


April 7, 2015 Watches By Photo by Henry Phillips
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In the spirit of exploration, we’re bringing back our popular (and completely sold out) series, Timekeeping Selects — a partnership with Analog/Shift, the New York-based purveyor of vintage watches. As before, we’ve done the legwork for you, scouring sources to find cool, unique old watches with impeccable authenticity — all serviced and ready to wear. To mark the new year we’ve invigorated the series with a special twist: this time, each watch includes several handpicked accessories for a complete ready-to-go kit, with each item selected to pair with the watch. Each week, we’ll bring you a new watch across a wide variety of price ranges paired with its matching accoutrement (both vintage and new). Because these watches are more than just ways to tell time — they’re each representatives of a distinct way of life. Say hello to your new carry.
August 7th, 1947 — After 101 grueling days and 4,300 nautical miles, Thor Heyerdahl and his crew sailed their rickety wooden craft into a reef on the shores of Raroia, one of the Tuamotu Islands, completing one of the most historic and controversial crossings of the Pacific Ocean.

Heyerdahl, a Norwegian ethnographer, botanist and zoologist, devised the voyage in order to prove it was possible for primitive crafts to traverse the Pacific with relative ease. Despite the presence of evidence to support his claims, the larger scientific community remained unconvinced that crafts of such rudimentary design could survive a cross-Pacific voyage.

To prove the journey was possible, Heyerdahl constructed a raft — which he christened the Kon-Tiki, after the Incan king who had made the journey according to South American lore — using only materials and technology that would have been common to the people of South America in early history.

Defying the odds, Heyerdahl and his team struck out, using only the current and the trade winds to propel them across the Pacific. The crew assembled a collection of modern and ancient equipment, including a store of US Army rations, hand-crank radios and six Eterna wristwatches.

Eterna had been building timepieces since the mid 1800s and had made many horological benchmarks along the way: They filed for the first patent for a mechanical alarm wristwatch in 1908 and the design for the world’s smallest production wristwatch in 1930. The simple watches that Heyerdahl and his crew used were subjected to — and survived — conditions to which many watches would have quickly succumbed.

Shortly after the news of Heyerdahl’s success reached Switzerland, Eterna began assembling a new line of watches in his honor. The new line, the Kon-Tiki Series, came to exemplify the spirit of maritime adventure and exploration. In addition to bearing the name of Heyerdahl’s vessel, the case back of each Kon-Tiki was adorned with a likeness of the raft.

This particular piece — the Eterna Kon-Tiki 20, which dates back to the late 1960s — has a gorgeous sea-blue dial and elegant baton hands. Whether paired with a colorful nylon strap or worn on its original steel bracelet, this watch is dripping with vintage nautical appeal, making it the perfect accoutrement for seaborne summer fun.

Buy Now: $1,700

What’s Included
Joshua+Vela Waxed Dopp Kit
Joshua+Vela designs explore the harmony of style and function. They build their bags to last and grow more beautiful with age and wear. Inspired by their materials, they design to highlight the natural surfaces of canvas and leather. From cutting and sewing the canvas to finishing the leather and hammering copper rivets, their bags are made entirely in their San Francisco studio. 

analog/shift Watch Pouch
For decades, American servicemen and women have relied on small, durable pouches like this one to hold compasses, medical supplies and ammunition. Hand stitched by Maine-based craftsman and designer Jared Desimio, the analog/shift watch pouch evokes those trusty military pouches and is produced from reclaimed military pup tent fabric. Suitable for carrying one watch plus two or three straps.

Nylon NATO-style straps
You can’t adequately celebrate summer without a selection of colorful nylon straps. These pieces from Crown & Buckle are the perfect accompaniment for a day at the beach or for tacking your way out to sea.

Camillus Folding Knife with Marlin Spike
If you’ve ever tried to untie a wet rope whilst on the deck of a moving vessel, you already know the value of the marlin spike. Coming from the antiquated word for twisted rope (marl), the “marl-line” spike is the sailor’s best friend, easily unraveling pesky bowlines and stubborn sheepshanks. And with the stamp of the revered New York knife-maker Camillus, this nearly new vintage blade is ready for years of service.

Vintage Nautical Tie Bar
The dapper sailor must traverse unpredictable conditions on the regular. He also knows that the walk from the pier to the yacht club is a short one. That’s why we’ve included this New Old Stock vintage tie bar. Originally sold by Novick Jewelers in New Bedford, Massachusetts, this elegant bar with ivory centerpiece featuring a hand-etched ship will keep you looking sharp.

Ollie & Boo Paolo WRSTLT
Ollie & Boo seamlessly blends the surfer and city chic edge in all of us. Often utilizing vintage materials from around the world, Ollie & Boo’s WRSTLT collection also pairs seamlessly with an incredible vintage watch. Believe us, we don’t leave home without either! The Paolo model features authentic African trading beads, a gunmetal chain and lobster clasp.

Vintage Carabiner
The carabiner can service as an extra hand, a reassuring friend and indispensable ally for all things death-defying, on the high seas or on dry land.