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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I recently posted a photo of my Stowa Flieger Classic 40 with the blue dial in the "Who else is wearing a Stowa today?" thread. A couple of folks requested I review the watch so here is my attempt at a watch review. Please judge the watch on its merits and features and not on the less than professional photos in the review.

This Flieger Classic 40 with a blue dial is to my knowledge the second Stowa flieger with a blue dial. The first was an LE watch released a while back that had a dark blue sunburst dial and a date window at 6. This second iteration of a blue flieger has a relatively matte dial that is a lighter shade of blue - lets call it Royal Blue. The color is not subtle like a dark blue or navy color - it is a bold, loud, punch-you-in-the-face blue. Like the flashing lights on a firetruck, you can't help but notice it. Here is a link to the watch and and the photo Stowa provides on their site.

https://www.stowa.de/en/Flieger+Classic+40+blue.htm



I've always admired the IWC Mark XVIII Le Petit Prince, a pilot style watch with a blue dial but never considered buying one because I do not wear watches with the date function and IWC does not offer the watch sans date. Thus, a similar watch without the date has been on my radar for awhile. On Black Friday I was perusing the Stowa site and ran across the blue flieger; it looked like a worthy Mark XVIII substitute. Unfortunately it was marked as "only one available" and was already in someone's cart. I checked back several times over the next hour but the watch remained unavailable. The next morning I checked the site again and the watch was marked as "Available". Within 90 seconds I had purchased the watch and had a confirmation email in my inbox. I hunkered down to wait for the shipment. Having purchased three Stowa watches directly from Stowa in the past I knew it would be a few weeks or even a month before I would get the watch.

The watch arrived at my FedEx pickup location on the morning of 23 December - about three hours after I flew out to visit family for Christmas. Ouch. Four days later I picked up the watch. It arrived in the standard Stowa metal box with the import paperwork and warranty booklet. The details of the watch are hand printed on the back of the warranty booklet: "FLIEGER CLASSIC 40 BLUE, RHODIUM AUTOMATIC, NO 1, DECEMBER 2019". A check of the information on the engraved rotor through the sapphire case back confirmed I have serial number 1. Sweet!

Upon seeing the watch in person I was struck by how bright the blue dial is in person - to describe it as intense is almost an understatement. The watch is a standard Stowa Classic Flieger with a few twists. It has a 40mm diameter, is a touch over 10mm thick and has a superb onion crown. It has a slightly domed sapphire crystal on top and a sapphire case back on the bottom to allow one to view the top grade ETA 2824-2 movement. It is a great fit on my average 7.25" wrist and is running at a very pleasing +3 seconds per day. Unlike a standard flieger the case is not completely brushed. Only the sides of the case and case back are finely brushed, the bezel and top of the case are polished. The blue dial is balanced by lume-filled polished silver hands rather that the heat blue hands of the standard model. This polishing along with the vivid dial color gives the watch a much dressier vibe than your average flieger watch. Luckily, the dial and hands still glow brightly in the dark just like the standard fliegers.

The watch arrived on a very pale tan strap that frankly did not do the watch justice. For the time being I've mounted the watch on a brown Rios1931 Scirocco strap. I have a Rios1931 Seattle shell cordovan strap inbound that I think will be a good match for the watch.

The dial is a bit of a chameleon, it appears darker indoors and transforms to a lighter, brighter shade when outdoors or when illuminated by bright or florescent lighting.

Stowa_FB_015_1024.jpg

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Serial number 1. Also note the "FL/BLUE" description. FL/BLAU would have been my preference but I'll concede that having a distinct model and serial numbers is enough to satisfy me.

Stowa_FB_CB_001_1024.jpg

Stowa_FB_CB_003_1024.jpg

The movement is described as a "Swiss movement in top quality" and the perlage, Geneva stripes, blued screws and excellent accuracy seem to confirm this. I was, however, expecting to see Incabloc shock protection on the balance rather than Novodiac(?) shock protection. A bit confusing but a minor point in the grand scheme of things.

Stowa_FB_CB_004_1024.jpg

I was asked to compare the difference between the partially polished case of the Blue Flieger and a Marine so I took a couple of (admittedly less than stellar) photos of the watches side by side.

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The dial in less bright lighting appears a bit darker but still quite bold.

Stowa_FB_003_1024.jpg

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Overall I am rather thrilled with this watch. It provides some much needed color and contrast to my modest collection of mostly black dialed, matte cased watches. I am anxious for the new strap to arrive but even on the current strap it has been a joy to wear.

If you are considering this watch I hope I've provided some useful information to help you with your decision.

EDIT: Added a photo of the lume.
 

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I'm one of those who asked for a reveiw and I REALLY appreciate the time you took to do this. The photos you took really capture the different blues of the dial.

Love it!

Thank you so much!!!

I'm placing my order now
 

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Thank you for the report.

Seems like the polished / brush case combination is quite unique and this is probably the first time Stowa offering this configuration.




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That's a beautiful watch, thanks for showing and for the stellar review!!!!
 
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Thank you for the thorough and informative review. I must confess I did not realize that this version has a polished bezel and lugs. I agree that it nicely suits the dial and hands.

A great addition, congrats!
 

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Thanks for the insight and wonderful photos.

It’s going to be even harder to convince myself not to buy this version than it was for the grey LE...


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I like it, but still prefer my WatchTime blue flieger. It is much more subtle. The only issue I have with it are the blued hands upon the blue dial canvas :) They are legible, nothing to complain on the visibility front, but that is mainly thanks to the lume. This watch has a much less stealthy hands, but overall it is very gaudy for a flieger watch at least for my taste. Not that I am conservative about watches in general, military watches though should be austere.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I like it, but still prefer my WatchTime blue flieger. It is much more subtle. The only issue I have with it are the blued hands upon the blue dial canvas :) They are legible, nothing to complain on the visibility front, but that is mainly thanks to the lume. This watch has a much less stealthy hands, but overall it is very gaudy for a flieger watch at least for my taste. Not that I am conservative about watches in general, military watches though should be austere.
As someone who actually is conservative about watches I get your point but I already have some "austere" flieger watches (see below). This blue one makes a great alternative to the standard matte cased, black dialed watches.

hp1_004_1024.jpg
 

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Thought I saw Stowa present this one on a Milanese bracelet on their website/newsletter? Think it would emphasize the blue really nice.
Either way, thanks for the review and enjoy it!!



instagr.am/lifeofmiquel
 

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Opinions on the ringless / simpler dial?

This dial is fully lumed, while the ring'ed dial is only lumed on hour markers (the classic fliegers have the dial which has an inner ring drawn)

I think the ringless dial is a better idea, as it makes the watch appear larger, yet if they'd drawn the markers a bit outwards, it could appear better imo

Edit: or not, I guess it'd need to touch the case, like the missing ring is the case itself, or it would look awkward, as it is, the sizing/spacing looks good
 

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Looks fantastic!
 
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I've been thinking about this: does anybody else think this watch (as nice as it looks) would look even nicer if Stowa used the blue lume.

The blue lume would make the markers look white and not a yellowish tint.

Just my opinion.
 

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Mine shipped today! :)
 
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