Comet Chronograph (Review) – Best microbrand chronograph of 2019?

Today we will take a look at a very special brand! It’s called Comet! It is a new brand that just launched their first Kickstarter project! I have been following them on Instagram and facebook just when they had only sketches of the watches and immediately fell in love with the watches that they designed! The mastermind behind the brand is Bavhan Patel, I will actually post the interview with him in a week from this article.

The brand was born when Bavhan in September of 2017 was in the market for buying a 1940’s Pierce Chronograph on eBay. He came across this beautiful vintage watch with a high price tag of $1,400 USD.  With no room for negotiation, he sadly had to let it go. It was after this experience that he realized the prices are jumping for all popular vintage models in mint condition and many people cannot afford to buy them. This is when he decided to make his own affordable microbrand focusing particularly on 1940’s vintage watches and his passion towards vintage watches gave birth to Comet Chronograph. Design elements are taken from Doxa, Enicar, Pierce, Eberhard, Universal Geneve Compax series, Tissot, Longines, and Jardur Bezelmeter.

So why do I like this brand so much? Well, first of all, they choose the vintage-inspired chronograph style and made the dials in all imaginable colours and made them interesting! Usually, when a microbrand company comes out with a vintage-inspired chronograph, they usually look too modern or are homages to something that already exists, while this is a homage to some early chronographs, it has something unique too in the design and doesn’t feel like a copy! I actually always wondered why no other microbrand didn’t think of making a watch like this and I was waiting for someone to do this, some of my regular readers should know this as I talked about it in the past. And the coolest thing is that Bavhan has already made some future plans for other Chronograph watches

The Chronograph series 1 will come in 7 different colour options. There are additional 3 colour options available as a stretch goal once the funding surpasses $75K, $85K and $100K USD.

Before we check out the watch itself that Bavhan sent, let’s take a look at the pricing, which is another thing why I like this watch so much! Super early bird on Kickstarter will just cost you 199$ (around 160€) which is crazy considering how good the watch looks! The early bird will cost 229$ or more, you can also get two for 385$ and so on. The MSRP price will be 299$ after the Kickstarter campaign is done and backers have received their watches!  And even after the Kickstarter, the price in my opinions is really great, so even before I received the watch, I said that this will definitely be the Best microbrand chronograph released in 2019!

The watch that we are gonna take a look is a prototype that was made just for me to review, it isn’t a full production model. There will be small changes like the dial manufacturer has been changed to make the dials better and more legible to read! Otherwise, the watch will be the same. Mine wasn’t sent in a box, but I can assure that they will come in nice boxes and if the design of the watch is so good, then the box will be something cool too! The first impressions were better than I could expect, the Comet Chronograph looks good in the pictures, but in reality, it looks even better! All the details on the dial are so nice, I especially like the overlapping telemeter scale over the subdials.

The case of the Comet Chronograph is made of 316L stainless steel. The case is very well machined with nice lines, angles and everything. The finishing is also done very well. On the case, you will find a mix of polished and satin-brushed surfaces. The case is round with nome small lugs. The case diameter is 41,5mm, the thickness is 13mm and from lug to lug it is 48,5mm. The size for some would feel big on paper, but it actually wears a bit smaller than it is. I think the proportions are pretty great and on my middle-sized wrist, it looks and feels pretty good throughout the day. I received the watch about 2 months ago and have been wearing it a lot and couldn’t find any problems at that time. At 3 o’clock we have unsigned push-pull crown. The crown is pretty big and very easy to use. The pushers are at 2 and 4 o’clock, and I like these pushers a lot. I like when companies put these rectangular pushers instead of pump pushers. The pushers feel very mechanical and have that “clickiness” to them just like a mechanical movement would have. The solid screw-down case back is kept very simple. It has the Comet Chronograph logo engraved on the case back along with some specifications. On top of the watch sits a domed K1 mineral crystal with sapphire and AR coating. When I asked Bavhan why he didn’t choose the sapphire he said that it would make the watch a lot more expensive and I get it as I think for this price I don’t mind a mineral crystal, I actually don’t care about crystals that much, I just care about the design, movement and how well it is built! The water resistance is just 5ATM (50m), it isn’t a lot, but as this is a chronograph it doesn’t need a high water resistance! So no swimming with the watch, haha!

When Bavhan actually wrote to me and let me choose the dial colour, it was really hard as I liked all of them! But I went with the cream dial with black subdials and red accents. I think this dial represents the 1940s chronographs the best! So the dial is in this cream colour with a shiny surface and the black subdial are matte. On the dial, you will find Tachymeter and Telemeter scales printed in black and red colour. In the middle, we have a very nicely designed Comet logo, saying that as a graphic designer myself. The hour and minute hand have that nice almost sword shape and they are lumed. The lume is only on the hour and minute hand, but that is fine as it wouldn’t be possible to lume the hour markers too due to all the colour options for the dials. The lume on the hands is pretty good, but I think that on the productions pieces it will be even better! The top subdial is 60min counter for the chronograph and the bottom subdial is just a small second. The chronograph seconds hand is stick-shaped in red colour, it is pretty simple, yet very easy to see.

The movement that Bavhan chose to put in is the Miyota 6S11 quartz chronograph movement. Why this movement and why not the Seiko meca-quartz? Well, this was one of the rare movements where the subdials were in vertical, and not horizontal order. But no worries, the movement is super great! It is Japanese, has hacking as all quartz movements so you can synchronize all your watches and of course it has that sliding chronograph seconds hand with 4 ticks a second. The movement performs pretty great, I especially like the action on the start and stop pushers, it feels very mechanical, has some resistance and that “clickiness”.

The straps that will come with Comet Chronograph will be black or brown Horween leather straps. And that is surprising that they can manage to sell this watch for 199$ on Kickstarter with straps like these and not even talking about the other specs. Mine sample came with a black leather strap with vintage stitching at the lugs and buckle. The leather is very soft to touch and the strap itself is pretty supple, although it will need some wear-in time. The underlining is in this tan colour with very soft to touch surface so you get a maximum comfort on your wrist. The strap is signed with Comet logo and the Horween leather logo. The straps also feature the built-in quick release spring bars which make changing straps very easy. The strap is 22mm wide at lugs and 18mm at the buckle. The tang style buckle is just a regular one in polished finishing.

Overall I really like the watch! When I first saw the dial sketches on their Instagram, I instantly knew that when this watch will come out, it will be a hit! Everything here is done just like it needs to. It has a very nice vintage design, the dial is amazing, has a domed crystal which matches the vintage aesthetic, good quartz chronograph, nice Horween leather strap and of course the price, which is super affordable! I just wish Bavhan will make something similar in the future with a mechanical movement (Sea-Gull ST19 for example). Anycase, I highly suggest you check out Comet Chronograph as it is on Kickstarter right now for a very great price! 

 

2 thoughts on “Comet Chronograph (Review) – Best microbrand chronograph of 2019?

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