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So I was contemplating buying a Master Control Date, or possibly a Rolex Explorer (I like the watch, though it's chronically overpriced), or possibly a Glasshute Original 60s, but in the end bought this.

Previously I had actually owned a Polaris Chronograph in black, and unexpectedly found that I just wasn't very fond of it and traded it for a Master Chronograph instead. But there were elements of that Polaris I had liked, and after seeing this version in the metal, decided I really did like it.

I think that the Polaris dial design lends itself to a more minimal look, and really suits the three hander better than the more cluttered chronograph. I even feel that a date wouldn't suit it - it needs the space for the thick markers and large 12/3/6/9, especially with the broad hands - there's isn't room for the chrono subdials. But that's all subjective.

The blue dial is really very attractive, and in my eyes looks much better than the black version. There's a real depth to the blue which isn't so apparent in the black. It's extremely difficult to see in photographs. I've tried to show it a bit, but an elderly camera phone isn't really up to the job.

It's a slim watch (11mm?) and at 41mm across fits my skinny wrists ok just about. Really I need 38mm watches, but fashion is against me currently. Nice to have the sapphire case back, though no gold rotor on this model.

The only downside to the watch is the rotating bezel - it's a really nice feature (I use diving bezels to time things more than one might imagine, it's partly what drew me to this watch over the others), but as others have pointed out, it's not stiff and moves a bit as the crown rubs on my wrist. It's a shame JLC didn't put a sprung ball bearing in there to make it "clicky".

But overall I'm glad I bought it!


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So I was contemplating buying a Master Control Date, or possibly a Rolex Explorer (I like the watch, though it's chronically overpriced), or possibly a Glasshute Original 60s, but in the end bought this.

Previously I had actually owned a Polaris Chronograph in black, and unexpectedly found that I just wasn't very fond of it and traded it for a Master Chronograph instead. But there were elements of that Polaris I had liked, and after seeing this version in the metal, decided I really did like it.

I think that the Polaris dial design lends itself to a more minimal look, and really suits the three hander better than the more cluttered chronograph. I even feel that a date wouldn't suit it - it needs the space for the thick markers and large 12/3/6/9, especially with the broad hands - there's isn't room for the chrono subdials. But that's all subjective.

The blue dial is really very attractive, and in my eyes looks much better than the black version. There's a real depth to the blue which isn't so apparent in the black. It's extremely difficult to see in photographs. I've tried to show it a bit, but an elderly camera phone isn't really up to the job.

It's a slim watch (11mm?) and at 41mm across fits my skinny wrists ok just about. Really I need 38mm watches, but fashion is against me currently. Nice to have the sapphire case back, though no gold rotor on this model.

The only downside to the watch is the rotating bezel - it's a really nice feature (I use diving bezels to time things more than one might imagine, it's partly what drew me to this watch over the others), but as others have pointed out, it's not stiff and moves a bit as the crown rubs on my wrist. It's a shame JLC didn't put a sprung ball bearing in there to make it "clicky".

But overall I'm glad I bought it!


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Congrats on the purchase, and welcome to the club!
 

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Stunning, indeed. I’m warming up to the Polaris model, and the blue steel in particular.


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Great pictures. Looks awesome on you.

How good is the bracelet? Are the quick adjustments as good as in other divers (Submariner, newest Seamaster)?
 

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Congratulations ! An excellent watch indeed. And very good photographs as well !


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Discussion Starter #8
Great pictures. Looks awesome on you.

How good is the bracelet? Are the quick adjustments as good as in other divers (Submariner, newest Seamaster)?
I have a 2019 Seamaster Diver 300m and an older Aqua Terra with bracelets. The Polaris bracelet is thinner and less chunky, which gives the watch a slimmer feel than those Omegas, particularly the Seamaster. The butterfly catch is very nice and very high quality. The micro adjustments are nothing like as good as the Seamaster though. You have to flip over the last link on the bracelet where it joins the clasp (either side), which is fine, but fiddly. You only get two settings; each link gives you maybe +/- 4mm.

To be honest, if I'm doing something physical, I tend to wear the Seamaster, and I treat the Polaris more as a dress watch. Maybe that's because it's still new, but I just don't think it's been designed as a tool watch.
 

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If Longines can make an internal diving bezel that screws down, so too should JLC! The lack of lock has deterred me from an otherwise great watch.
 

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I agree, the dial is amazing, but the inner rotating bezel leaves a slight bad taste in my mouth
For this reason, the brand new (and much more expensive) Polaris Mariner line has a screw-down 2:00 crown for the rotating bezel, to prevent the bezel from advertently being moved around during use.

But I agree, it was a bad move for JLC to design a supposed "dive" watch with an internal bidirectional rotating bezel that isn't controlled by a screw-down crown. A bezel that can be easily moved inadvertently during use is exceedingly dangerous for diving; if it's moved "forward" (clockwise) in time, for example, it gives the diver the impression they have more oxygen in the tank than they really have. This is why most dive watch bezels are unidirectional and only move counterclockwise, so if they happen to get bumped and the bezel moves, it moves in a direction that makes the diver think he or she has less air (and thus surfaces earlier). The JLC Polaris rotating bezel has the double-whammy of being bidirectional and not being secured by a screw-down crown.

Still love the design and look of the Poliaris line, and because of its limitations and price, it's doubtful anyone would actually use such a watch for diving anyway. One great thing about the Polaris line is that the lug-to-lug dimensions are much more compact than you'd expect, so it wears much better on the wrist than its case size diameter might suggest. (Much better, for example, than the Longines Legend Diver, which has really tall lugs.) But it is somewhat sad that much cheaper compressor-case dive watches like the Longines Legend Diver and even the super-cheap Dan Henry 1970, which both have similar inner rotating bezels, have proper screw-down crowns and more water resistance than the JLC Polaris.
 

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That does look great. I only got to see one quickly pre covid through a window and it underwhelmed me compared to photos. To me the black looks better in photos but people seem to love the blue in person I really want to like this watch and love the history of JLC. Right now I’m stuck between the Polaris Automatic and the new(er) IWC Portugieser 40mm (white or blue).

Has this grown on you? So torn right now.
(Not my wrist..but my wrist measures 7.25”)
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Discussion Starter #14
I agree that the polaris maybe looks better in black in the photos, but having owned both a black and blue variant, I feel that the blue looks better in the metal.

That IWC is a really nice looking watch; the blue slight sunburst dial with the liquid looking numerals is lovely. Personally I think that design would look better at 38mm, but hey.

Make sure you see both in person before deciding anything!
 

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I really liked these quite a bit when I saw them in person. The dial was impressive and the movement was finished well. I'd seen some people criticize the new Polaris line for the size of the movement, but this didn't bother me when I held one.
 
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