Akil Wingate | Mar 28, 2017 | 0
Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical Review
Score 85% Score 85%
Founded in 1884, Victorinox is now the sole supplier of knives to the Swiss Army (hence “Swiss Army Knife”). Victorinox began building watches in 1989. A multi-faceted company that produces many products, Victorinox timepieces tend to be more focused on utility and sensible design.
Victorinox watches are built in Switzerland.
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Great looks, excellent build quality, and a quality movement make this classic by Victorinox a good buy. Priced at $875, the Infantry Vintage Mechanical comes with a reliable ETA movement and plenty of value built in. Recommended for those willing to spend a bit more for something unique.
Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical Technical Specifications
Automatic, ETA 2832-2
Approximately 38 hours
Setting the Time
Manipulating the watch is handled via the crown. The Infantry Vintage Mechanical uses a high-grade ETA movement and is very precise when being manipulated.
How To set the time:
- Pull crown to the furthest position (position 3). Turn the crown clockwise to set the time. Note that the day/date display will roll over at midnight, indicating AM time.
How To set the day & date:
- Pull the crown to the middle position (position 2). Turn the crown clockwise to set the date, counterclockwise to set the day. Note that you should not set the day/date between 9 pm and 3 am.
Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical Aesthetics & Design
The craftsmanship that Victorinox has bestowed upon the Infantry Vintage is incredible. Easily missed at first glance, but obvious under careful observation, you can see the attention to detail and precision of craft throughout the dial. It justifies its price tag and then some.
I wouldn’t call it handsome- I would say that it’s attractive in that it dutifully fulfills its intended purpose. The army-green backdrop is broken by highly luminous dial markers. A finely-grooved rim makes it seem as if the dial markers are miles above the face, when in reality it is the grooves themselves that are recessed. It looks fantastic, especially under zoom.
Without light, the Infantry Vintage shines. Victorinox has done a fantastic job of making the dial easy to read in no light settings. The lume charges quickly and is in abundance- I’m not exaggerating when I say that you can see the watch in the dark from across the room. I’m particularly keen on the lume around the Victorinox Swiss Army logo at 12 o’clock.
Victorinox has chosen to keep the movement sparsely decorated, choosing to leave a brushed finish and their logo on the rotor. It makes sense for the type of watch the Infantry Vintage is.
While I’m a fan of its militaristic appearance, I’m disappointed in the strap. It isn’t particularly comfortable, and it doesn’t measure up to the aesthetic standard set by the dial.
Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical Build Quality
There are no compromises made here. It has excellent build quality. It feels strong and sturdy, with no point of weakness. The bezel does an excellent job of shielding the crystal from harms way. After several months of wear it shows little in the way of use.
Crystal, Case, and Dial
Sapphire is the obvious choice for a higher end timepiece. Victorinox has used it here on both the front and rear crystals, and that makes sense given that this watch looks like it was designed to time tactical artillery strikes (or some other heroic rhetoric, you get the idea).
As mentioned above, it looks great despite being worn fairly regularly. The close up of the dial was taken after a year and a bit of ownership. It was worn for at least 100 hours by then- yet you’d have no idea by looking at it.
Strap and Clasp
One wear item I did notice fairly early on into ownership was the cracking and folding where the clasp was secured. However, the wear did not substantially increase from where it set in initially. The leather strap has been quite durable despite its initial signs of use.
The clasp feels heavy duty, though it looks like any other clasp. It is fitting for the look of the watch.
More About the Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical
Victorinox uses ETA movements. In the Infantry Vintage Mechanical, an ETA 2834-2 is used. It is a hacking movement, of high grade, and is typically accurate to within 6 seconds per day. My experience has echoed that standard.
ETA movements are reliable. They are manufactured to exacting tolerances, and are viewed by many as the standard by which other movements are measured. It seems fitting that a movement of this quality is powering such a purposeful watch.
Value for Money
An MSRP edging $1,000 places the Infantry Vintage in close proximity to other watches that also feature Swiss movements, but with greater sets of complications. In that respect, the Infantry Vintage is at a disadvantage- it doesn’t offer a chronograph, or a complete calendar, or a moonphase display. It’s a day/date complication that is priced on the higher end of day/date complications.
It’s worth every penny, though. If not for the quality of build, then for the fact that Victorinox invested the time in their quality of manufacture, the materials used, and the movement inside. The MSRP is pricey, but if you look at the cost per year of ownership, I bet you it will be one of the lowest. This watch is built to last.
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Victorinox Infantry Vintage Mechanical Review
My thoughts It's hard to find fault in a watch that is built like a tank, using one of the most reliable movements on the market, and constructed with top-grade materials. The looks are subjective- you'll either love it or hate it. No matter what side of the fence you're on, it's hard to ignore the quality of build and attention to detail. It is an excellent daily driver, wear anywhere, never have a problem kind of watch.
Aesthetics & Design
Movement Accuracy & Reliability
Value for Money