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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Name of Reviewer: Mark (AKA andrema)

Watch Reviewed: STOWA T02 "Modern Flieger"

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Company Information:

STOWA GmbH & Co. KG
Gewerbepark 16
D-75331 Engelsbrand
Germany


E-mail: [email protected]
Website: http://www.stowa.de
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Stowa/153715168015163
Instagram: Need info
Telephone: +49 (0) 7082-93060
Fax: +49 (0) 7082-93062

CEO: Jorg Schauer



About from the company website:

For more than 80 years, STOWA is now producing (constantly, with no interruption) very sober designed watches which are focused on the basics of design and form language.

Today STOWA’s collection is full of lovely little details based on former watch designs of STOWA.

The original historical watches are exhibited in our in-house watch museum. Our handcrafted watch production is run by our small and highly motivated team. Our direct-sales strategy enables us to offer you our best price-performance ratio. You are most welcome to visit our factory in Engelsbrand, Germany (near Pforzheim, which is located between Stuttgart and Karlsruhe) or please have a look at our latest collection on our online shop.

One of our main philosophies is, to produce absolutely high quality watches and you are most welcome to assure oneself that we live our philosophies thoroughly.

For those who wonder about the origin of Stowa's name...it is based on the founders first and last name (Wa)lter (Sto)rz -- Stowa (pronouced "STOW-VA"). Check out the original plaque below:



STOWA is proud of its heritage and therefore the Black Forest. Founded in 1927 in Hornberg by Walter Storz; Jörg Schauer as well decided to built the STOWA headquarters in the Black Forest, when he chose Engelsbrand as a location in 2009. The incorporated STOWA museum uniquely reflects the company's history and furthermore provides space for a contemporary and future-oriented watch manufactory.



More information regarding “flieger” watches:

Flieger Watches (aka Pilot, Observation or Avigator� watches)

Here is a nice shot of their factory in Engelsbrand, Germany (near Pforzheim, which is located between Stuttgart and Karlsruhe). The company welcomes outside visitors and provides factory tours:

When you wear a STOWA Flieger, you are wearing a part of History. STOWA is amongst the 5 original companies that were selected by the Reichs Luftfahrt Ministerium or RLM (Imperial Air Ministry) to build the original Type A and Type B watches in the early 1940s -- International Watch Company, STOWA, Wempe, A. Lange & Sohne and Laco. The original watches were built under the following specifications:

• Case diameter of 55mm

• Equipped with a crown that can be operated while wearing gloves

• Long straps so that it can be worn over the flight jacket, although I have read that some wear it on their thighs

• Hacking movement

• Highly legible dial

• Marked with FL 23883, FL for Flight, 23 for Navigation


Photo of original STOWA Baumuster B watch (ca 1940 / 55mm):



For more history on Flieger and military type watches, Konrad Knirim’s webpage is a great read and resource: http://www.knirim.de


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STOWA T02 "Modern Flieger"


Stock photo of model being reviewed:



Description of watch from company website:

The Flieger watch is one of the most famous and popular STOWA classics.
Built since 1938 we offer this watch since its relaunch in 1997 in almost unchanged design.

We wanted to extend the classic version to a more modern version therefore we developed in 2013 the Flieger TO1 Testaf. This model immediately passed triumphantly the demanding tests of the FH Aachen and has since been built successfully.

In 2014 a 24 hour version, the Flieger GMT Worldtime followed.

To complement these two technical oriented watches we present now this year the Flieger TO 2, which is a reduction to a time display precisely as possible without any additional functions.

The sophisticated and tested Testaf technology has also been implemented inside of the watch which means that this watch is likewise shock-proof and water resistant and perfect legible also at night.

You can order the watch with date (on 6 o´clock position) or without date.

Watch Specifications:

Case diameter: 43.0mm
Case height: 12.3mm
Case length: 51.0mm
Strap width: 24.0mm
Dial color: Black
Crystals: Sapphire front and back, both sides A/R coating
Strap material: Rubber
Crown diameter: 8.0mm
Waterproof: 200m / 20 ATM
Weight: 15 grams with rubber strap

Price: $1,210 (1,084.03 Euro w/o VAT, 1,250 Euro w/VAT.)


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For this watch review, a STOWA T02 with date automatic watch model was selected for review. This is a stainless steel flieger style watch, with an automatic movement and sapphire crystals. For this review I have also included several photos with the watch on aftermarket NATO straps, to provide an alternative pairing for the watch as well as a more casual feel.




Packaging:

The T02 arrived from Germany very well packed. It comes in the standard STOWA branded outer cardboard box, with their inner aluminum paneled hard case. The case itself is well made, with a hinged lid and vinyl lined interior as well as compartments to hold the watch and warranty card.





Inside the case, the T02 sits safely in nice slot, with the newly designed warranty booklet sitting beside it.





Case and Crystal:

The TO2's case is constructed of 316L stainless steel, with a finely brushed texture applied throughout its surface. The design itself is STOWA's modern interpretation of their Classic Flieger design, which is a derivative of the original WWII observation watch design. The new design features a more substantial 43mm case as compared to their 41mm Classic Flieger, with a deeper bezel, wider lug spacing and a slightly longer lug to lug case length.






For comparison purposes, below is a stock photo of the STOWA Classic Flieger and its technical specifications:

Specifications:
Diameter: 41.00 mm
Height: 12.00 mm
Strap width: 22 mm
Lug-to-Lug size: 50.20 mm
Waterproof: up to 5 ATM
Weight: 77gr. (leather strap)

Stock Photo:




The finishing on the case is quite nice. As you can see from the photos, the brushing is evenly applied and transition between the case surfaces is excellently executed, with crisp edges.




The T02's bezel is fixed and has a 45 degree bevel from the top of the watch case to the height of the slightly domed sapphire crystal. The crystal has antireflective coating applied to both sides, which nearly eliminates all reflection and allows the dial to be viewed easily from most any angle. Both of these create a nice, crisp appearance to the watch design.







Below is a closer look at the T02's more aggressive, downward turned lugs. The lugs' shape enable the watch to wear smaller than the lug to lug dimensions would suggest and sit close to the wrist when worn.



The watch is built with a 316L stainless steel display style caseback, with a sapphire crystal installed. The crystal has antireflective coating applied to its underside, which enables the nicely finished movement to be clearly seen. The watch's technical data as well as model number is engraved nicely around the perimeter of the caseback.



Below is a closer shot of finishing on the top grade ETA 2824-2 through the T02's sapphire caseback. The movement finishing features tempered blue screws, rhodium-plated surfaces with ribbing, perlage and other engraving throughout its surface.




The T02's crown is a very cool and unique design. The best way that I can describe it is an updated version of the diamond style flieger crown, with a modern twist. The crown itself is a nice size at 8.0mm, with a taper down to 6mm at the case, which provides a nice shape for pulling the crown out -- Especially with pilot's gloves. The sides of the crown have wide grips carved into them, which have a scalloped shape when viewed from the top. The action of the crown is very smooth.




Like the case, the crown is constructed of 316L stainless steel. It's entire surface has a brushed finish, with the the STOWA logo engraved into its end.



Dial and Hands:

The dial is matte black with white painted indices and company logo 12 o'clock position on the dial. In keeping with the flieger style, the contrasting colors of the indices and limited marks on the dial make it extremely easy to read with a quick glance. The layout of the dial pays homage to the classic WWII observation watch designs of the past, but update the design by eliminating the numeric indices.





The hands on the T02 are flieger style hands, with a black base and white Superluminova BWG9 paint applied on its entire surface. Unlike the traditional flieger hands of Stowa's classic Flieger, the hands are not blued and do not have a border. This update provides a more sleek appearance, which works well with the modern updates that were incorporated into the T02's overall design.

As you can see from the photos, the Superluminova used on the dial and hands has a nice blueish tone. The lume lights up like a torch when fully charged and then fades away slowly over time. As you can see from the photos below, it is glows nicely and provides fantastic visibility in low lighting conditions.





Straps:

The T02 can be ordered with either a 24mm leather or rubber strap. The 24mm rubber strap was selected for this review. The strap has a nice smooth texture along its length and tapers from 24mm wide at the lugs down to 20mm at the clasp. At 4.0mm thickness the strap is rather firm, but its textured underside helps it to grip the wrist and keep the watch from flopping around on the wrist.

Please note, for those familiar with STOWA's Seatime sport watch line, this strap is very similar to that design. The only apparent difference is the wider lug width.



The strap features a "cut to fit" design. This enables the wearer to get a more custom look, without the tail of the strap sticking out.



The T02 comes with a good quality 316L stainless steel deployant style divers clasp, with a safety clasp. The clasp has a brushed finish and the STOWA logo is nicely etched into its top surface. There are three micro-adjustments in the side of the clasp which help to get the perfect fit. This size clasp is appropriate/sufficient for a flieger style watch, but I would like to see a larger, updated clasp design for the brand's dive watches.





Movement:

The T02 utilizes an ETA 2824-2 top grade automatic watch movement. This is a very reliable movement and is well regarded within the watch industry. This movement is adjusted by ETA in five positions with an average rate of +/-4 seconds/day, with a maximum daily variation of +/-15 seconds/day.

ETA 2824-2

(Stock photo - undecorated)



Technical Specifications:


Caliber: ETA 2824-2 top version
Mechanism: automatic
Half vibrations per hour: 28,000 A/H
Function: hour, minutes and central second complication
Power Reserve: min. 40 hours
Number of jewels: 25 synthetic rubies
Finish: Geneve Stripes finish, blued screws, rhodium plated golden STOWA engraving


Performance:

I timed the review watch on my timegrapher to check its accuracy. The timing results were +3 seconds per day, which is actually better than the movements stated accuracy specifications from the manufacturer.



For more information on the movement, please refer to the following link:

http://www.eta.ch/index.php?id=54&L=2

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Wrist Shots:

For reference purposes, my wrist is 7.25 inches.

The STOWA T02 measures 43.0mm in diameter and 51.0mm in length. With these dimensions, the watch is the perfect size for MANY and is certainly a popular size in the WIS community. It wears very comfortably on the wrist and will fit nicely on most wrist sizes.

Overall, I have to say, this watch is outstanding on the wrist. It has great balance, fantastic proportions and its overall appearance in person is excellent.













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Overall impression and final thoughts:

The STOWA T02 Flieger is a great interpretation of the original WWII observation watch design. Overall, I am very impressed with the modifications made and feel that it tastefully pays homage to their original "Classic Flieger" design, while it holds its own with its contemporary queues. As it is typical to expect with STOWA watches, the finishing throughout the T02 and the components utilized are excellent. With this being said, I feel the watch is very well thought out and should be a "must buy" for Pilot watch collectors in the marketplace.


While preparing my review and evaluating the watch, I normally will point out a few items that I thought that could be addressed. However, in the case of this specific model, I feel that there is nothing that I would change in its design, quality or components incorporated -- As usual, STOWA has produced an excellent quality timepiece...I will just finalize this review by saying, great job!


Well, that concludes my review …Thanks for reading and I look forward to your comments ~ Mark
 

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Wow, that is a super clean looking Flieger.

I like the look of the hands being fully lumed with no edge.

I really like the looks of this one.
 

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Great Review. Really like the design of this one, and Stowa makes a great watch in general.
 

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Enjoyed the review Mark. Thanks for teaching me how to pronounce Stow-Va....I had no idea. 🏼


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STOW-VA say that a dozen times...


gr8 review... thought i was done...30 must haves in the box...lots a vault queens...


loyal card carrying 3 hand tool man... thought i would never go FLIEGER...but...this


POST MODERN MINIMALIST BAUHAUS FLIEGER from heart of the EURO ZONE...cat's meow


paypal get ready poppa gonna ram it home
 

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Great review of a well crafted no nonsense high quality watch. Great photos and info Mark. perhaps when I visit Germany next summer i will pop by the factory. Understated quality and simple design. I like that
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Great review of a well crafted no nonsense high quality watch. Great photos and info Mark. perhaps when I visit Germany next summer i will pop by the factory. Understated quality and simple design. I like that

You should. I heard the museum is cool and Jorg & Co are great hosts. Send them an email prior and they will hook you up!


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I completely enjoyed reading this review. Awesome info and incredible pictures (as always with your reviews!)

This watch is not my normal personal style, but is absolutely a super clean presentation of a classic pilot style watch.

Great review. Thank you for posting all of the info.
 

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Excellent review.
I want so much to like this style of watch. It's just not my current style.
However: I can appreciate Stowa's design aesthetic and their talent. Very nice watch.
 
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