Thursday, 26 April 2018

ON THE WRIST: TAG Heuer Golf Quartz Watch


TAG Heuer Boutique, Bicester Village / 24th April 2018

Just before I left the outlet, I spied something I've been curious about for a long time, but never actually handled - the TAG Heuer Golf Watch. It's a funny little thing, designed for a particular purpose and with a very unusual way of fastening the strap.

The first thing you notice about the watch I think is the dimpled dial, designed to resemble a golf ball of course. I really liked it actually, it's so different to anything I've ever seen before and I appreciate the willingness to try something new and unique. 

The watch is quite small, it must be said (37mm, so the same as the smaller Monacos), but it is designed to be used for playing golf and as such small and light is clearly the way to go. Also, you will notice the crown is on the left hand side of the case, so as to be out of the way when swinging your club.

Now, what you may not have noticed before (as I didn't) was the two buttons which sit at the top edges of the case. What might they be for I wonder? Well, as you can see the rubber strap has no clasp and while it is somewhat stretchy, it isn't stretchy enough to get over your hand. So in fact, what those buttons do is release the bottom half of the case and release the end of the strap.

Damned weird, right? But actually pretty neat really. The only slight issue is that you have to cut the strap to (near) the right length as there is no possibility for the excess to exit the case on the other side. Once closed the 'teeth' on the insides of the case clamp down on the rubber strap and (I would imagine) hold it pretty solidly, given that it's rubber and rubber doesn't tend to slip very easily. Oddly enough, it makes you wonder how thin this (already pretty thin) watch could be with a conventional pin a buckle strap, as you can see in the picture above, the bottom half of the case is a pretty substantial piece of the overall thickness.

One thing I did notice was that while the hands are very legible, the markers and in particular the number 12 are very reflective and tend to look black most of the time, if you look at the picture at the top of the page that gives a pretty fair representation of what I mean. I've experienced this same design flaw on some otherwise very nice Carreras too, like the Calibre16 'Nismo' for example.

Clearly this watch wasn't for me, 37mm is just too small, but I did quite like it overall. I get that it's for golfing and so needs to be light, thin and generally unobtrusive on the wrist, but I can't help wishing they'd made a 40mm version for those of us with larger wrists. But anyway, I did really like the dial and funnily enough I saw a fake Link 'Tiger Woods' the other day with this kind of dimpled effect and I must admit I thought it looked rather good, maybe they've missed a trick there?

The Golf certainly isn't going to appeal to everyone, it's definitely a quirky one, but I can well imagine it's probably got it's own little set of fans who won't hear a word against it.

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