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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello dear fellow f71ers,
lately I've been getting the infamous itch for a new piece for my collection.
I'm looking for something relatively cheap (max ~350Eur) and mostly rugged-ish/diver-ish,
the latter not being a strict limiting factor. Enjoying my Steiny O1V on a borealis isofrane style strap as I'm typing this :)
I am liking the bronze/green dial Helson Shark Diver 42 quite a lot. (Also have a Gerlach Navigator on my wishlist for some time in the future).
What are your opinions? I think I rather prefer the green dial than the black, but not certain. Anyone own it or have
different suggestions?
Greatly obliged, waiting to hear your thoughts,
Triode
 

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Just be aware that the $349 Shark Diver is brass. The bronze option starts at $1299.

Still, a nice value but the brass has a Seiko NH35A movement and the Bronze, an ETA 2824-2.

The steel option has a Miyota 9015 and is a nice option too.

I own the red carbon dial 42mm brass and I like it very much and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it. At this price point, also check out the brass options from Armida and Maranez.

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for clarifying EHV, the bronze falls a bit out of my current budget then. Still, brass should be no problem.
Does the case age and patina in a similar fashion to bronze? I love the look of slightly oxidised bronze watches
I've seen and if brass tends to stay super shiny it might be a bit too gold and bling for my taste. Is your photo from when
the watch was new? Looks very nice btw!
All my best,
T.
 

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Thanks Triode. :)
Yes, this is from brand new right out of the box. Brass will patina like bronze and you can force the issue as much as you want as well as return to like new with Brasso polish or a mixture of 80% apple cider vinegar and 20% table salt rinsed with warm water or even 100% lemon juice rinsed off with warm water.

I can tell you that from the instant that you open the package, it will start to patina but it's a slow process without the popular help along process that so many here are fond of.

I'm not sure if bronze or brass will patina more quickly in a natural fashion but I suppose that that will be up to where it's worn, how it's stored and/or how much that it's handled. Others here will know more than I do about that.

And I have to agree with you that the green dial options go very well with the brass or bronze cases.

Eric





Thanks for clarifying EHV, the bronze falls a bit out of my current budget then. Still, brass should be no problem.
Does the case age and patina in a similar fashion to bronze? I love the look of slightly oxidised bronze watches
I've seen and if brass tends to stay super shiny it might be a bit too gold and bling for my taste. Is your photo from when
the watch was new? Looks very nice btw!
All my best,
T.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Triode. :)
Yes, this is from brand new right out of the box. Brass will patina like bronze and you can force the issue as much as you want as well as return to like new with Brasso polish or a mixture of 80% apple cider vinegar and 20% table salt rinsed with warm water or even 100% lemon juice rinsed off with warm water.
[...]
Eric
That's great info, thanks a bunch. Will definitely give an initial force patina a go, just to remove a bit of the brand new shininess and then let the elements take over. :)
How's the Seiko movement performing so far? I've read decent stuff but I'd love an opinion from someone who has lived with it.
One more somewhat weird question - does the brass smell a lot? I remember brass instruments etc smelling a bit funky.
My spidey sense is telling me someone is probably getting a new Helson soon! :-d
Regards,
Triode
 
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LOL, the brass doesn't really smell too bad. My dad was a professional musician, a trumpet player so I am ALL too familiar with that smell.
It was more so the brass coupled with the valve oil mixed with the mouthpiece and the spit valve, etc.
The watch has a very faint smell if you put it to your nose but nothing bad or strong and nothing noticeable from the wrist at all! :) You really need to strain for the scent with the watch right in your nose! It's so odd, I purposefully checked for the scent as soon as I received the watch.

Re: the Seiko NH35A. Well, I have 5 watches with that movement and the worst one performs at +15 a day and the best one being this Helson is at a freaky good +1 a day so far. All the luck of the draw, no doubt as they could be better or worse. Its not regulated much from what I understand and it does have some positional variance but it is totally viable and if inaccurate, it can easily be regulated to much better.
The power reserve is just fine too.

I smell a Helson in your future too but do check out the Armida A8 brass too, just an FYI. Ultimately, this all comes down to a style preference. Both watches are equal in quality, etc.


That's great info, thanks a bunch. Will definitely give an initial force patina a go, just to remove a bit of the brand new shininess and then let the elements take over. :)
How's the Seiko movement performing so far? I've read decent stuff but I'd love an opinion from someone who has lived with it.
One more somewhat weird question - does the brass smell a lot? I remember brass instruments etc smelling a bit funky.
My spidey sense is telling me someone is probably getting a new Helson soon! :-d
Regards,
Triode
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
LOL, the brass doesn't really smell too bad. My dad was a professional musician, a trumpet player so I am ALL too familiar with that smell.
It was more so the brass coupled with the valve oil mixed with the mouthpiece and the spit valve, etc.
The watch has a very faint smell if you put it to your nose but nothing bad or strong and nothing noticeable from the wrist at all! :) You really need to strain for the scent with the watch right in your nose! It's so odd, I purposefully checked for the scent as soon as I received the watch.
That's funny, my dad as well, viola player though. I still have a distant memory of that smell you described - hence my original question :)
Glad to hear the smell isn't overpowering. My reflex would have been to smell it right out of the box as well, you know what they say - great minds etc :-d

Re: the Seiko NH35A. Well, I have 5 watches with that movement and the worst one performs at +15 a day and the best one being this Helson is at a freaky good +1 a day so far. All the luck of the draw, no doubt as they could be better or worse. Its not regulated much from what I understand and it does have some positional variance but it is totally viable and if inaccurate, it can easily be regulated to much better.
The power reserve is just fine too.
Good to hear, indeed worst case I'll have it regulated but it's always something I tend to want to avoid on new watches.

I smell a Helson in your future too but do check out the Armida A8 brass too, just an FYI. Ultimately, this all comes down to a style preference. Both watches are equal in quality, etc.
Thanks for the info, I looked at the Armidas a way back and the A8 which is at a similar price point is just too close to a submariner design and to my eye it seems just a tad kitsch, reminiscing of a gold sub (really not my thing). I find the Helson a nicely balanced and quite charming piece even though normally I would stay away from watches that chunky and non-SS or titanium. Should be ordering mine soon, will certainly post pictures once I get it. Would always be glad to see some more of yours if you fancy sharing :-!. Again, thanks a lot you've been of great help!
Best regards,
T.
 
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Well, another bad photo of mine, this time the lume, which was charged by the day's office lights and the car trip home. Not full on darkness but just after pulling the car into the garage so a bit of outside light present.
Helson, (and it's sister company Armida) have stellar lume!

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Just a quick update for anyone browsing that might be potentially interested, my Helson just got here :)
First of all, props to Helson, they shipped from HK to France in 3 business days (Via Memphis, TN !!)
The watch is absolutely wonderful, feels very solid and I love the looks. Bracelet is nice and soft but has a very faint smell of weird vanilla not quite the traditional vanilla smell of rubber bands. My only comment would be that the bezel does feel a touch mushy, nothing but a tiny nuisance. It probably is related to the brass on brass contact. Anyways, apart from that nothing but good things to say :) Without further ado, a few craptacular iphone pictures for your enjoyment!
Triode
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