|03-02-2010, 09:15 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Citizen Nighthawk BJ7000-52E Full Review
Authored by: NoDecoDiver
Adapted from Original at http://www.thetruthaboutwatches.com
I can remember the day clearly, the first time I saw a Nighthawk. I wasdoing a "drive-by" at the Citizen Watch Store in the local mall, justkilling time. I snapped a picture of the Nighthawk in the case with theintentions of looking it up when I got home. Like most other things, Icompletely forgot about it by the time I got back to the house.
About a year later (last week) I was talking to MINIDriver about howdisheartened I was that after all the time looking for a SUN005 KineticGMT, I finally received one and just didn't care for it. He suggestedthe Nighthawk as a replacement. I sold the SUN005, and the Nighthawkarrived two days later.
I have never been more enamored with a watch upon opening the box as Iwas with this one. Even after a week of wearing it around, the dialstill captivates my attention, and I can't help but stare at it.
The Nighthawk has a case that falls in between the Submariner-styledDivers, and a Tool Diver watch like a Monster. It's big enough that itdoesn't have that "dress watch" style that I can't stand, and it's notso large as to be a sore thumb, and can be worn with long sleeves. Thecase has an absolutely beautiful brushed finish, one of the best I'veseen.
As you can see here, the case has two distinct parts, separated at thebezel. Although this watch has no external bezel, just a brushed metalring that sits on top of the actual case.
Like most Eco-Drive's that I have owned, the case back is inscribedwith the EcoDrive logo. Again, unfortunately, the engraving looks to becheaply done, as it is very shallow, almost indistinguishable byrunning your finger over the case back.
It is, however, extremely detailed, and has the "Nighthawk" name in the middle of the logo.
The 3:00 crown has the Promaster logo signed, and I was a littlesurprised by this, as I was unaware that the Nighthawk is part of thePromaster family of Citizen's. It also bears the Promaster logo on thedial, as you will see below.
The Nighthawk wears well, and sits nice and flat on my wrist. It doeshave a tendency to ride up, but I have the bracelet set on the looserside of my normal comfort level, which may contribute to this.
The Nighthawk case also has an 8:00 crown, which is used to turn theinner slide rule bezel. For a really good explanation of how to usethis, without being bored out of your mind, check the video reviews tabfor a video by "Nikudes" regarding the Slide Rule Bezel on a CitizenSkyhawk.
One of my favorite parts of the Nighthawk is it's fabulous crystal. Theopen face crystal design with no external bezel gives the Nighthawk avery "Fortis" like look. It's truly spectacular, and has to be seen inperson, as no photograph can truly show how clean and clear the crystaldesign is. It truly appears as though you could reach in and touch thedial of the watch.
One thing to note here, I was under the impression from online photosof the Nighthawk, that the crystal was "set into" the case of thewatch. I thought that the outer ring of the case extended past thecrystal, like on an Invicta Russian Diver. This is not the case, and asyou can see above, the crystal actually sits above the case by a smallmeasure.
Lets start with the particulars. The Nighthawk uses Citizen's B877EcoDrive movement. I have recorded a timekeeping accuracy of +/-0Seconds in the five days it has been in my possession. I will continueto update this review as time rolls on.
The dial of the Nighthawk is one of the most complex, yet simple andeffective dials I've seen. For a truly interesting and fun descriptionof the dial and it's unique styling queues, check out http://www.larrybiggs.net/scwf/index...&id=1099233931 (Thanks, MINIDriver)
The inner slide rule (stationary) has two sets of numbered indices. Alogarithmic scale, and a time (in hours and minutes) scale. This allowsyou to view a Rate/Time/Distance calculation using a common form oftime, instead of a decimal version of time. The outer ring (rotating)has a logarithmic scale and several conversion factors, includingGallons, Miles, and many more.
On the left half of the dial is the 24 hour GMT indicator. The fourthhand is a single post with two pointers, a red and a white airplane.The red hours are PM, and the white, AM. As the white hand leaves theAM hours, the red hand picks up the PM hours, and the hand that is offthe dial "flies" around the right half of the face until it once againlines up with it's markers. This is an extremely cool iteration of theGMT watch, and is functional and stylish simultaneously.
You can see the Time scale, and both logarithmic bezels, and the GMTindicator in the above picture. Again, I feel like I need to say thatpictures do not justice here. This dial is stunning in person, and theoverall dial is remarkable on the wrist. This has one of the bestwrist-presence factors of any of my watches, regardless of size orcolor. The red accents on the dial really make it stand out.
The time indices and the hands have a Bell&Ross-ish design cue, andhave a very "mechanical" appearance. They are precisely machined, andlook striking against the black dial.
Setting The Time
My only qualm with this otherwise perfect watch is the mechanism ofsetting the hands. The first stop sets the date, which worksswimmingly. However, turning the watch counter-clockwise sets the hourhand in one hour increments. There is a large amount of play in between"jumps" of the hour hand, and though it does work, it's a littledisconcerting at first.
The second stop on the crown sets the minute hand and the GMT hand, which works without issue.
I don't believe there is any problem with this, it's just a quirk ofthe watch, and there may be a perfectly legit mechanical explanationthat I am not privy to.
Bracelet and Clasp
The Nighthawk ships on a solid, heavy, attractive bracelet. One ofCitizen's better examples, in my opinion. It holds the watch well, andhas a cool multi-linked style. The end links are variation of a solidlink, and seem sturdy.
The end link looks awesome against the lugs and case, and completes the more tool-like aspects of the design.
The Nighthawk uses the typical Citizen "Natulight" lume compound, whichhas the signature blue glow. While not exactly on par with Seiko'sLumibrite, the Citizen version glows strong and lasts for 4-5 hourswith 10 minutes of sunlight or a high powered flashlight.
Overall, I cannot say enough good things about the Nighthawk. It'sbecome an instant favorite, and will probably see a lot of daylightoutside the closet in the coming weeks.
You definitely cannot go wrong with the Nighthawk.
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