If you buy a Walter Mitt watch you are not doing so because you want a well-know brand or a classic vintage piece that will impress your mates. You are buying a watch that is pretending to look like a vintage diver and to maybe scratch an itch that you have had for some time while you are saving up for your dream companion.
It isn’t like buying a homage watch or a fake because WMT is on the dial and the company is very open about what it is aiming to do. Indeed, you can age individual parts of the watch and choose from a huge variety of bezels, dials, straps etc to effectively create the vintage watch look that you have always wanted.
And while there is no attempt at fakery in these watches, it is clever how the brand displays the text and logo on the dials to mimic legendary typesetting on the most popular vintages watches of today. All in all you do end up with perhaps more than a vintage inspired timepiece, the initial reaction is that it looks and feels ‘exactly’ like a vintage watch.
Sizing is important in any watch, whether it wants to be faux vintage or not, and here we have near perfect dimensions. 39.5mm diameter, 47mm lug to lug, 12.5mm height and 20mm lug width. That is perfect isn’t it.
The crystal is mineral which is not ideal, but I guess it is preferable to going full vintage and offering a variation of plastic. The Miyota automatic movement is also not ideal. It does not hack, but it does appear to be hand winding and so far I have been more than surprised at the accuracy; 5 seconds in 2 full days is more than acceptable so far.
The bezel looks OK, but is maybe a little too new and shiny to fit the vintage dial. Also, it is absolutely horrible to use. It is bi-directional and has no click at all which is bizarre for what is classed as a diver watch. I don’t get that.
As it happens the bezel is the main downside for me and even that is not a huge problem because I have never gone diving in my life. Still, if a watch has a bezel you do expect a decent click mechanism.
On the wrist this is a charming piece and the sizing makes it feel perfect proportioned on my 7.25” wrist. The dial is the highlight, however, and everything from the faux vintage hour markers to the text in the centre work together perfectly. There is a hint of Tudor in the curved ‘Hand-Winding’ text and the mix of cream and white add the tiniest hint of variety to make it stand out, just a little.
The second and minute hands match the markers perfectly with the second hand tipped in red for a hint of visual expression. It is altogether consistent, interesting and strangely a realistic vintage aesthetic that works in almost every way.
This particular model came with a leather strap which matches the case so well, but it is quite stiff and will take some time to break in. I suspect that it will age well though and over time will actually become genuinely vintage if you give it long enough.
The watch cost £234, from Amazon, and for that money you are getting more than you may expect. The Miyota movement is not going to set the world alight in terms of specifications and craftsmanship, but it is arguably hardier and more accurate than you would get in any true vintage watch from decades ago. The case is well finished and every part works with everything else which is not always the case even with some much more expensive watches.
It has settled with me in a way that I did not expect and it has not left my wrist yet. I am hugely surprised by this as I have many much more expensive watches here, but the WMT really does have something.
I expected to look at this as a pretend vintage piece, but ended up liking it a LOT more than I expected.
You can make your own here.