Today we are gonna look at another Thomas Earnshaw watch. About half a year ago I reviewed the Cornwall Bridge watch with hand wound movement. So as we know Thomas Earnshaw is under Dartmouth brands which also include AVI-8 (Soon will post a review for this brand too), Dufa, Spinnaker and couple of others. Thomas Earnshaw, of course, is an old name in watchmaking and Dartmouth brands just licensed the name. And a couple of years ago they still were marketing their watches with that old Earnshaw brand history, but right now they ditched the backstory and started to make their own story. So they are making classic looking, skeleton watches, mainly with mechanical movements. There are also Swiss Made series which will be a bit more expensive. They have some good looking watches in their collection which I really like.
Thomas Earnshaw sent me the new Beagle Skeleton automatic – Woolwich edition watch. Yes, that is a long name for the watch. It is one of their newest models and it has skeleton dial and movement. When they said which watch they wanted to send me, I looked at this and was kind of disappointed by the looks, but after I received it, and saw it in flesh, I was blown away by the looks. The pictures on their website really don’t do justice to this watch. It looks amazing! They sent me the black dial and steel case version, but there is also blue dial/steel case, white dial/yellow gold case, rose gold dial/black case, rose gold dial/rose gold case and black dial/black case versions. I think the version they sent me and that one with blue dial looks the best. The black case versions will cost a bit more.
So the watch came in a classic Thomas Earnshaw box. The outer box is a brown cardboard box and inner box is a wooden box with Thomas Earnshaw logo. The box is fairly good. I like that they went with a smaller box, as some brands tend to make very large boxes and it kind of takes all the attention from the watch. Inside there is the watch, instructions and warranty. The first impressions were good. The quality of this watch is a lot better than on the Bridge watch that I looked at half a year ago. And the dial with all its layers looks just amazing.
The case of Beagle Skeleton is made of 316L stainless steel. The case shape is round with mid-size lugs. The machine work on the case is pretty good, all the lines and corners are sharp. The finishing on the case is brushed. The bevelled edges of the lugs are polished, the bezel and case back are also polished. The finishing is also done pretty good. There aren’t any problems and flaws that I can see. The diameter is 42mm, the thickness is 13mm, lug to lug 48,7mm and lug width is 22mm. Overall the watch wears nice. The 42mm size doesn’t look that big, on my wrist at least it wears nice and I have a mid-size wrist. The watch also doesn’t feel bulky, the 13mm is a decent thickness for an automatic watch. At 3 we have a push/pull signed crown which has polished finishing. The crown action is very smooth, it winds beautifully. Also, it is pretty easy to grab it and set the time as it is quite large, even for big guys. The other side of the case has “Earnshaw” engraved in it. I kind of don’t like that Earnshaw watches all have this engraving, but this one is a bit smaller and looks like the engraving has also better quality than before. The case back is a screw in with exhibition window. The crystal on the back is sapphire glass. The case back has some specifications engraved on it. The crystal has also the Earnshaw logo printed on it. On top of the watch sits a domed sapphire crystal with AR coating which in a light shines blueish-purple. The water resistance is 5ATM (50m). The case isn’t anything crazy, they kept the design classic and simple.
Now we come to the best-looking part, the dial. Well there is a lot of going on. The dial has so many layers and cutouts that it is hard to explain what is what. I actually never liked skeleton watches, but some look really good and this one looks good. So the hour markers are slanted, they almost look like a chapter ring. The hour markers are brushed in silver colour and are lumed. The dial itself is black with a lot of cutouts to see the mechanical components of the movement. There are some screws which seem to not do anything, they are there just for the looks. At 3 we have a shiny Earnshaw logo, that actually looks good on the dial. Under the hour markers, there is another layer where there is a silver ring going around the dial with a black printed minute track. The hands are polished and have index shape to them. They are partly skeletonized with lume on them. The second’s hand is just a polished stick shaped hand. The lume on the hands are a bit brighter than on the hour markers. The lume on hour markers doesn’t shine long, but the lume on hands lasts about 2-3 hours which for a dressy piece is more than enough. Overall the dial is pretty interesting and the design is something that appeals to my eye, as I’m a graphic designer. I also like that it is skeletonized and you can see all the mechanical parts of the movement moving.
The movement inside this watch to me is unknown and Thomas Earnshaw doesn’t say what it is too. But from what I can see, it looks like a China made movement, although I can be wrong. But remember that China made movements nowadays are sometimes a lot better than Japan made or even Swiss-made movements. The movement is skeletonized, it has no finishing as there isn’t a lot of places where you can finish it. It has some blued screws, but from what I see I think they are just lacquered in blue. Accuracy is pretty good, it gains about +7 to +10 seconds a day throughout the week. I really like the look of this movement. When I was little I liked to look at my father’s watches and I could watch the movement through case backs for hours. And in this case, it’s the same. You can see all the gears going and when you wind the watch you can see the spring winding up and the gears moving, it is really cool.
The strap is thin and good quality. The thinness of it helps it to be very comfortable on the wrist. But I kind of doesn’t like the faux crocodile texture on the genuine leather strap. I would like them to put just a plain black strap with stitching or something different, these fake pattern straps are getting old. The strap has another slight flaw – the buckle. Whilst it looks good as the top bar is in a shape of the E logo, that usually ends up wrecking the centre of the strap due to the strain on it. The brushed top bar has the Earnshaw logo engraved, with polished flanks.
Overall I really liked this one. I like the dial and the domed crystal really makes the dial pop and gives it a deeper look. The skeletonized movement performs well. The price maybe is a bit too much, I think 300€ to 400€ would be a good price, but this one costs around 507€ and that is just too much for the watch in my opinion. It is a good watch, don’t get me wrong, but the company, in my opinion, is too young to offer watches at these prices. Would I suggest it? Yes, but wait for a sale on their site or get a promotion code.
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