Oriental Abraham, a few words on the oldest watch in my collection.
At the beginning there was Timex, or rather several models of this company. The longer I browsed pages on the KMZiZ forum, the stronger the desire to have an automatic watch. Once upon a time something broke inside me and I decided it was the time when something had to be changed.
In my mind I had an Orient with a calendar that I admired on my physics teacher’s wrist in elementary school. I was then impressed with the shape of the case, the multitude of details on the dial and the dial itself, which shimmered with various shades of green.
Therefore, my first automatic watch was Orient, called a frying pan, or imperial;) Within a few weeks, I decided that I must have two watches, one of which would be a EDC watch, and the other would be worn only for special occasions. I was looking for inspiration and one day it appeared on the forum bazaar. It was love at first sight. I was a bit scared off the amount that I had to collect for this watch, although now I smile under my breath when I think about it, because at this price I could buy two links for my Breitling bracelet, but these were different times and the amount of PLN 700 was not so low. Several days passed and I decided to write to the seller. I managed to bargain dozens of PLN and in a few days a courier knocked on the door. The first impression was quite strongly doomed glass with an inner AR layer that reduces reflections on the surface of the glass A huge surprise was also the weight of the watch, which is 165 grams, which seemed huge to me, which now, with some of my obese quarter-kilo watches sounds quite funny.
I invite you to a short presentation of a watch that has keeper status and it’s so true – most watch geeks know what’s going on;)
I confess without beating that I have a weakness for rectangular cases. In this case, it is not straight, because the sides have been knotted, the whole is approaching the shape of a tonneau. Its width was designed for 38mm, which seems to be a small value. Nothing could be more wrong! In non-round cases, we must consider that the watch is visually enlarging. This is also the case here. The case length, which in this case is as much as 50 mm, also has an impact on the reception of case size. Added to this is its thickness, which is also quite large and amounts to 13.5mm. These are the values thanks to which the watch will look good on the wrist from approx. 17-21 cm, which makes it quite universal. The sides of the case have been polished. The same applies to the bezel. The only unpolished element is the upper surfaces of the lugs, and the edges passing between the sides of the case and the bezel.
What catches the eye in this model is the deeply hidden crown on the left. It is fairly flush with the case, so sometimes you just can’t see it when wearing a watch. Looking at the case from the side, we can see how bent the whole is. Thanks to this treatment, the watch doesn’t slide on the wrist, and wearing it is comfortable. From below, the watch closes with a transparent case back through which we can see the working movement. The case appears massive, well made and this impression has been with me for almost 8 years.
What caught me at the very beginning when I was looking at the pictures of the watch was the dial. We look at it through thick, doomed sapphire glass, which has been covered from the inside with a layer of anti-reflection, giving a purple glow when changing the angle of incidence of light. Below the glass, on the outside there are indices in the form of Roman numbers and dashes. The surface is made in a delicate solar cut, which shimmers gently when we move the watch.
Closer to the center, what draws attention is 24-hour scale, together with the abbreviations of the names of cities in different time zones. They are actually two separate rings, one of which – with an hourly scale – is movable and rotates to indicate the current time in a given time zone. This is really a great solution because setting the world time is maintenance free. You only need to set the time for the time zone you are interested in once and that’s it. I met a lot of world timer watches on my way, but in those models the scale had to be set again each time to read the time in a different zone.
There are quite high indices between the city abbreviations, making it easier to read the time. Above the hands axis there is a scale with days of the month, the readings of which are read with a steel pointer. The date dial is legible, but you cann’t rad it without bringing the watch closer to your face to look closely at the numbers painted on the steel milled ring. Below the guidance axis is the power reserve level indicator, with a metal index, in the shape of a truncated crescent. The tip is dyed black and although it is quite thin, it contrasts well with the bright dial. The manufacturer could use the same trick with the date display, which would make reading the date easier and even more readable.
At three o’clock we will find the manufacturer’s logo, information on the movement used and the type of glass used. The texture of the dial is delicately milled in a circle, thanks to which the light shining on it causes delicate reflections, as in the sun’s cut. The minute and hour hands are of the sword type, and their center is filled with black paint. On the one hand, this increases readability when reading the hour, on the other hand, however, you could be tempted to even trace amounts of luminous paint. The second hand is very thin, which in my opinion emphasizes the elegance of this watch.
All the elements I mentioned were made very carefully and could easily compete with watches from the Orient Star or Seiko Presage series.
Orient movements are not the most beautiful, although they are famous for their reliability, which in this case confirms my copy, which has not been serviced for eight years, and I will only mention that I am the second owner of this watch (yes, I know, in a moment watch purists will eat me ). In this case, the in-house caliber 46K40 was used on 21 jewels, with a 40-hour power reserve. Its gait is quite accurate, but It miss the stop of the second. Hand winding from the crown is also not there, but taking into account its embedding in this model, it would be problematic to use it for this purpose. There is no problem with changing the date quickly and setting the world time ring.
The bracelet is quite thin in relation to the height of the watch case. Its links have been completely brushed, and the only element that has been polished is the middle line. Despite the small thickness of the bracelet, it is made solidly, and its butterfly clasp has been trouble-free for 8 years. It is comfortable to wear and fits well on the wrist. The only downside is the lack of micro-regulation.
Thank you for the sentimental journey to the beginning of my adventure with mechanical watches. About 100 watches have already passed through my wrists, and I’m de facto loyal to one. As you can see a real “keeper” in such a hobby as watches is possible;). (For the uninitiated the term “keeper” in the slang of watch geeks is nothing but assurance that a given watch will never be sold. I know from experience that it is different and each of my watch colleagues will agree with me. In this case this term will not be an exaggeration, I will probably take it with me to the grave, because it is the watch that remembers the most – from my collection – my ups, falls, beautiful and those less beautiful moments, like a silent witness to these events.
The Orient CFAAA003 model has been discontinued for years, but if you like it and manage to find it on the secondary market, do not hesitate to buy, because in reasonable money you get a watch that stands out not only in the Orient collection.