WatchUSeek Watch Forums banner

1 - 20 of 69 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,128 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Meranom released 4 versions in this series ranging in price from $93-103usd. I'm not sure exactly when, but two have been out of stock for a little while, including the one I got from ebay. Komandirskie has them a little cheaper and they are out of stock on the same ones. I'm sure many will notice this price is higher than the standard Amphibia classics, but I think you get more for the money with these watches which I will go into more detail below.

I'm sure most of you are going to be familiar with the Amphibia, but I'll include some basics for those who aren't.

The one I got is the 170862. The reported movements are 2426.02(or 2426.12?) for the two with the 24h hand and 2416 for the other two. Mine lacks a date function while the others all have it.
Many of the features of this watch are common to most Amphibias. It has an acrylic crystal. The screw down crown feels loose when you unscrew it, just like other Amphibias. The 170862/863 have 24h bezels and the 864/865 have 60 minute bezels.

Case dimensions I measured are:
Case size: 42x15.25mm (including dome crystal, but not including crown)
Lug-to-lug: 46mm
Lug width: 22mm
Weight with supplied strap: 95g
Stainless steel case and caseback (not sure what type of SS as they don't specify).

The 42mm width is offset by the relatively short lug-to-lug and the 22mm lug width sort of creates the illusion of a narrower case. There's also a nice curve to the case which is even more pronounced than many others. I think it wears well on my 7" wrist and doesn't really feel or look like a 42mm watch. This does give it more of a square appearance which some may or may not like.

The supplied polyurethane strap is actually quite nice and I find it very comfortable, but I kind of like polyurethane straps. For reference my wrist is about 18cm (7"). The strap should fit wrists from about 17cm to 22cm just going by my ruler. So I'm at the next to first hole with the watch fitting snug on my wrist. At least at this point I see no reason to swap it out for a different one, which as many know is uncharacteristic of a Vostok as I see most people tend to swap out the bracelet straight away.

A casual look at this watch does not give the impression of a Vostok. Like it or love it not many have the secondary dial for the seconds hand. The bezel and Milsub type sword hands are at least somewhat unVostoklike and the dial has a lot of detail and craftsmanship not found on many others from the brand. The supplied aluminum bezel insert appears to be the same size as the SKX bezels as near as I can measure with my calipers, but I don't have a SKX one handy to verify, so don't take that to the bank. Speaking of the bezel insert, the black color changes to blue incrementally from 6 to 18. I think you can see this in the pictures, but it's hard to make it out on the wrist unless the light hits it just right as the blue is quite dark. I guess technically you could call it a batman, but most of the time it just looks black. I'm not a big fan of batman bezels, but on this one it works for me as the effect is very subtle.

This watch is not what I would call a true GMT because the 24hr hand is always synchronized with the main hour hand and can't be independently adjusted. You can get GMT functionality with the bezel. In my case GMT is +6 where I live, so I set the bezel to line up 6 with the 12 hour mark and now the 24hr hand will read the current GMT time on the bezel. Naturally you could do the same thing with an alternate time zone.

The bezel is typical of Vostok and is bi-directional. I do like how it looks, but I'm not all that thrilled with how it operates. The bezel is mostly smooth and round, but does have 12 chamfers around the top which allow you to grip it. They don't grip very well which makes the bezel a little hard to turn. I know I could loosen the spring a bit, but I think then the bezel would be too easily moved if bumped. I don't really plan on moving the bezel much, so this isn't a big issue for me. The two non-24hr hand versions have a different style of bezel which appear to be easier to grip, so maybe this is by design.

The case finish is very nice. The shape and design reminds me very much of the 62MAS with it's simplistic straight lines. I rather like that in a tool watch. The case has a very nicely brushed finish which I also rather like in a tool watch. Despite the straight lines and corners the watch is smooth to the touch. The only sharp edges I found were the inside of the lugs in the 4 places where they square off at the corners. I don't really see that being much of an issue. The underside of the case where it comes into contact with your arm is chamfered and even where it's least obvious the attention to detail is good. The crown has nicely knurled sides and the "B" Vostok logo. I'm sure it's the same one you can get OEM from Vostok for their other watches, but nice that you don't have to. I wasn't sure I'd like the 17 case as it just seems out of proportion to it's width and length. On the wrist it looks great, so I'm happy with it so far.

The crystal is nicely domed. It appears to flatten at about twice the length of the minute indices, so it creates a very aesthetic distortion at sharp angles. As is characteristic of acrylic light reflections are minimal and it looks very clear. Naturally regular polishing will be required to keep it that way.

The dial is simply a work of art. Hopefully enough detail is provided in the macro shot to appreciate it. There's a lot of detail that is lost at a distance, but comes in very sharp when you look close enough. There's a bit of a sunburst effect that comes through in the pictures. As you can see the applied indices look very nice. I couldn't find any defects or misalignment on any of them. I'm not a big fan of secondary seconds dials, but with the addition of the 24hr hand I think it's a welcome addition to this watch. Scuba Dude has never looked better and you don't get that on any of the other watches in this series. The lume looks the same as on the Meranom web site. So far it looks great. I'll have to spend a few nights with it to see how it really performs. It's not a big deal, but I kinda wish the 24hr hand was a different color like red or orange, at least at the point. On the 170863 it is blue.

As previously mentioned the 24hr versions in this series are out of stock and I'm not sure if they will ever come back. For purely selfish reasons I hope they don't, but if they do I think they are well worth picking up. If someone else picks up one of the non-24hr versions it would be nice to see some on the wrist shots and hear what your impression is.

DSC_0324.jpg

DSC_1437.jpg
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,056 Posts
Great pictures and review. I'm trying to decide between the GMT Scuba and another Amphibian Classic. Need some great pictures of the one below now as the Meranom pictures are always so flat. They never do the watch justice.

Vostok_Amphibia_170865-01-1800x1800.JPG
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,128 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Is the case the same as the 150?
Hopefully they’ve relocated the spring bar holes in the 170...
I don't have a 150 I can compare it with so I couldn't say, but from the pictures I've seen of the 150 it seems to be reasonably different. The main structure of the case seems to be thicker and the corners are more square. The lug holes are right in the bottom corner which seems a bit odd since the case isn't very rounded at the ends and there's more clearance than there probably needs to be.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
193 Posts
Okay, the 170 seems to be a variant of the 150 series with options for a few different movements, dials, hands, bezels and a brushed case instead of being polished.
Shame about the spring bar holes. They are too low and too far out IMO, and you always get that gap between the strap and the case.

That is a great looking piece you have there in any case, that blue face is stunning.
Might get have to get one myself (once my “in transit” 420BO5PU eventually rocks up from mother Russia that is ;) )
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,565 Posts
Very nice review, well done.

I'll just add a minor comment on the stock strap: it's pretty rigid and I guess will need some time to soften. I actually had to loosen it a bit as I was having pins and needles in the hand despite having tightened it the same way as with other watches. I like this strap anyway, it adds a bit of roughness and vintage flavour in my view.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,128 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Urethane straps aren't as flexible as silicone. They are generally stronger and more durable, but there's different grades of both. Urethane straps are usually cheaper, not necessarily because they are inferior, but because they are cheaper to produce.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,128 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
That is a great looking piece you have there in any case, that blue face is stunning.
Might get have to get one myself (once my “in transit” 420BO5PU eventually rocks up from mother Russia that is ;) )
If I were to get an SE, it would be that one. I like the black face and it's one of the few others that have the sword hands. I think it has the anti-magnetic caseback as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
Hi everyone, I just received my 170 on Friday, and there is very little I can add to the excellent review by dfwcowboy. The watch came well packaged from Meranom and arrived in about three weeks.

The good:
Stunning blue dial, (outstanding, really) beefy brushed case, nice bezel, decent strap but a dust magnet.

The not so good:
Finish is a little rough on the inside of the lugs (not a big deal), and of course, the darn low lug holes! I think Vostok must drill them low to accommodate the thick stock strap end. It really limits the strap options. I have it on a two piece NATO strap and I think it works. A strap with a thin end will look out of proportion and will sit way too low on the case.

Other than the lug holes, love this watch. Vostok continues to up their game. I wore it on Saturday and two people I was speaking with commented on it. It looks like a $500+ watch. I will post some pictures shortly.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,565 Posts
I think it was mentionned in the past that the reason for the low lug holes of the 150 case was that the 150 is actually a "de-hooded" 090. The lug holes on the 090 are low because of the hood. And the 170 is basically a brushed 150.
I might mix things up though, all the more since I don't own a 090 as I don't like its shape (except for the 1967s).
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,128 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Hi everyone, I just received my 170 on Friday, and there is very little I can add to the excellent review by dfwcowboy. The watch came well packaged from Meranom and arrived in about three weeks.

The good:
Stunning blue dial, (outstanding, really) beefy brushed case, nice bezel, decent strap but a dust magnet.

The not so good:
Finish is a little rough on the inside of the lugs (not a big deal), and of course, the darn low lug holes! I think Vostok must drill them low to accommodate the thick stock strap end. It really limits the strap options. I have it on a two piece NATO strap and I think it works. A strap with a thin end will look out of proportion and will sit way too low on the case.

Other than the lug holes, love this watch. Vostok continues to up their game. I wore it on Saturday and two people I was speaking with commented on it. It looks like a $500+ watch. I will post some pictures shortly.
Looks great on a two piece nato. I think I will swap out the strap at some point, but I haven't decided what to go with. I'd like to get a dr.seikostain amphibia strap, but all he sells right now are the clear ones.
 
1 - 20 of 69 Posts
Top