|03-02-2010, 09:50 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Citizen Calibre 9000 Minute Repeater
Authored by: Leon Eckell
Responding to our kind Mods request for watch reviews. I present the Citizen Minute Repeater Calibre 9000
The Calibre 9000 I have is the BL9000-59F. It is SS and on a bracelet
This is a minute repeater. You push a button and the watch will chimethe hours and minutes, allowing you to tell the time in the dark. Thiswas a expensive and high tech/ high degree of craftsmanship in the1800's and early 1900's. In the days before reliable electric lightsand no lume on watch hands, this represented a chance to be able totell the time. It also offered folks that were blind a way to tell timealso.
Largely phased out except for high dollar watches now due to today'stechnology, the minute repeater is still a very interesting watch.
I had admired this watch at the local department store and loved thesound the thing made when you pushed the minute repeater button. It isvery bell like for this price range( I have heard a few complaints fromfolks that say this watch sounds a bit electronic but keep in mind itretails for $500. If you want a realistic bell sound be prepared tospend $2000-$50,000+)
For the price it sounds good.
I got mine from a department store clearance for $180 (marked down from $599 due to being discontinued in that store)
So I will discuss briefly some aspects of the watch
The band that came on it was a 21mm metal bracelet with hidden clasp.This allows the watch band to be perfect looking visually. The big confor me on this is that the design does not allow placement of a microadjustment hole for those with wrists that are not lucky enough to havethe watch fit perfectly with link removal.
I wound up trying leather to discover it sucked(I have never found aleather strap that I like) also. At that point I almost returned thewatch back to the store but I decided to tray a 22mm 2 piece nylonstrap and it worked perfectly and wore great. The band looks like itwas made for the watch and being black matched the number part of thedial.
This is by far one of the most complex watches out there to set thefirst time around. It took about 5-10 minutes after I read the ownersmanual to set up the calender and home time.
The case is polished and exquisitely done. The buttons are big a easyto push. The chime is loud enough to hear when the watch is worn.
The dial has a very art deco look to it.
Watch is only rated for 30m which is because it is a dress watch andalso because it needs the small slits in the case back to allow thechime to be heard.
It is eco-drive so there is no need for an inconvenient battery change
While I do like the watch a lot, I have a few cons
1. Water resistance could be more
2. Original bracelet should have had a couple of micro adjustment slots in it.
3. Buttons with play in them. While the buttons are secure and don'tfeel like they would ever fall out, they do have play in them due totheir design
4. No atomic time. This would have increased sales.
All in all a great watch and one that was discontinued in the USA soyou should be able to get one at a discount. They came in SS withbracelet, SS on leather, Gold Plated on leather and Gold Plated onbracelet.
While not as flashy as the Skyhawk AT, it feels more solid to me(I have both and hate the flimsy Skyhawk Bezel
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