S I C / Sharing Is Caring for Micro-brands

Swiss, German, Russian, Chinese and other watch companies
Post Reply
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

S I C / Sharing Is Caring for Micro-brands

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 15:40

I am always interested in trying a microbrand since 2yrs ago but duno y, somehow when I have funds, I will still hoot seikos in the end. I know there are some bros here who are into microbrands as well :twisted:

Only recently, I was really into ocean 7 LM3 & decided to hunt for 1 & in the end, I did get one. When I first held it, I understood what's the big hoo-ha behind all these microbrands. Build is solid, ETA movt, attractive package, nice covers etc, for the price of a Seiko Sumo(if you're lucky now ;) )

Prices for these microbrands are inflating, especially Benarus, Halios & Helson. Ocean 7 is kinda quiet now, I dun really like the new design direction they're going to, the new case is too conventional to me.

this was my 1st microbrand

Ocean 7 LM-3
Image

After this LM-3, I found another one..

Artego 300m
Image

this brand although doesn't WOW me that much but I'm sold by the lume :mrgreen:
Image

Then I went to halios, trying to find available pieces on WUS but almost all, no, I shld say , ALL the FS posts were all SOLD... :|
Bopian, I tried local forum with 1% expectation but somehow, sometimes, things are available when its nearest to you,LOL.

Linked up with this seller selling this Halios holotype, waited 2 weeks for him to settle down & went collect the watch from him yesterday. he was wearing a Ocean 7 LM-6C, OMFG, super nice piece!

Halios Holotype
Image

then my itch still there, so I went hunt for Helson, nb, helson Whitebeard jit tao out of my budget & all FS posts are exactly same as Halios, no matter which FS posts u click on, it's all SOLD!

Bopian, lppl, order direct from Helson website :|

Just arrived today morning thru Fedex, watch was shipped last night & reach me at 11:26am :shock:

Helson Tortuga
Image

last but not least....Irreantum Magellan

2 weeks liao still haven receive :| :|

will review here once I have the watch :(
Last edited by lunarin79 on 11 Apr 2012 16:33, edited 1 time in total.
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
Ed.YEO
Senior member
Posts: 5029
Joined: 13 Aug 2011 00:37
Location: Somewhere between Whampoa and Bedemeer, since 1980
Contact:

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by Ed.YEO » 11 Apr 2012 16:11

Ocean 7 auto-chrono today price up up liaoz!
yan sang yew guo dak fai lok, zao yew dui yan hor see zou luo jik xing geh fan sik yu goon cha, ng hai zou yoo chun mong mok dek pan duun... yoo guo yi liong din doh mou geh wa, yat gor yan geh yat sang zao guo dak gey pok gai loh...
pacman1188
New member
Posts: 58
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:14

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by pacman1188 » 11 Apr 2012 16:17

Wow... the HELSON looks good... what's your take on it? how about a brief review? Thks
feilong108
Member
Posts: 359
Joined: 11 Aug 2011 00:37

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by feilong108 » 11 Apr 2012 16:18

All looks good!!!

Very nice choices.....
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 16:29

pacman1188 wrote:Wow... the HELSON looks good... what's your take on it? how about a brief review? Thks
here's a Q&D review if you think it's a review :lol:

sibeh fast, last night shipped from HK, today 1126am collected liao
Image

very well protected, revealing the cylindrical cannister
Image

branding on cannister
Image

Image

i believe you can actually submerge the entire cannister into water cos there is a rubber gasket on the lid :o :lol: chosen serial num #177 as it stands for 'M' :twisted:
Image

black foam inside,hmm
Image

can see it's not cut up nicely,lol
Image

now...what's inside??

voila~
Image

the package consists of
- a strap change toolkit
- a 22mm 'isofrane' style rubber strap
- a 22mm buttery soft handmade brown strap
- a bronze key :twisted:
- a spare bezel

Image

the buttery soft strap with signed Helson(skull) logo & signed buckle
Image

Image

the watch- Helson Tortuga(means Turtle)
Image

combination of polished & brushed finish on the case
Image

signed skull logo crown
Image

nice caseback
Image

helium valve escapement
Image

on the leather strap
Image

overall, a nice quality watch which runs on Miyota 9015 movement, hacks/handwind, 28,800(supposedly to rival ETA2824?), sweeping secondhand is smooth.

Will try take better pics when I am free :mrgreen:


OHhhh, the bronze key, i have not explain what's that for..it's actually..

an additional super durable add-on bezel protector :o :o :o
Image








nah, just kidding :mrgreen:

as I mentioned, there's 2 bezels with the package. this bronze key is the tool to remove the bezel off the case. If you guys noticed from one of the pics above, showing the brushed & polished finish combo, just below the crystal, there is a 'hexagonal' kind of shape right?

And yeah, basically you just align the teeth of the bronze key to the hexagonal shape of the case & turn & voila~
Image

set the silver bezel in place & screw it back
Image

personally i prefer the silver bezel more than the black bezel but the lume on the black bezel is oso attractive, hmmmmm. The edge is slightly diff, the silver bezel edge is more 'teeth-like' shaper, more fierce :lol:
Image

Lastly, a wristshot to end the review
Image
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 16:31

Ed.YEO wrote:Ocean 7 auto-chrono today price up up liaoz!
LM-6C?
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
pacman1188
New member
Posts: 58
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:14

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by pacman1188 » 11 Apr 2012 16:37

SOLID review!! I am tempted, very....
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 16:40

pacman1188 wrote:SOLID review!! I am tempted, very....
bro, it's almost 0% chance to pick 1 up on preowned international forum, trust me, I waited 1 week until i give up :lol:

then I ordered from Helson directly, 599usd.

trust me, it's a nice watch :twisted:

to go microbrands is to be exclusive, you wun bump to another one in the wild but if you do, you can go shake hand with him liao cos u know, he definitely noe his stuff :mrgreen:
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
aiken74
Man; earth; to be red
Posts: 4100
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:02

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by aiken74 » 11 Apr 2012 16:42

Nice...tel us more abt individual review for Ocean 7 LM3, Artego 300m, Halios Holotype & Helson Tortuga.

Machaim the comparsion between Ocean, Artego, Halios & Helson on the individual weight, hw de hand-on feel for individual brand, comparsion on individual movement for individual brand... ;)

CEO, sure chiu can do for the review... ;) I believe SC bros ish oso looking 2ward for ur review... ;)
User avatar
roo7
IT Superman
Posts: 6863
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:05
Location: Singapore
Contact:

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by roo7 » 11 Apr 2012 16:51

My short encounters with the micro brands...

Image
Ocean 7

Image
Helson

If you noticed, they are both Ploprof homage... :lol:

Some micro brands have really great design but some are catalogue cases like Deep Blue, so there isn't much innovation.

I won't consider Doxa and Aquadive micro brands, so that's all I have... :lol:
Not as active.
blog: http://jiehong.org/
User avatar
herzausstahl
[61 HER GLA]
Posts: 5601
Joined: 12 Jul 2011 08:14

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by herzausstahl » 11 Apr 2012 16:57

is this microbrand?

Image


SMS/Whatsapp: 9OO3-8999
gasmancc
Member
Posts: 273
Joined: 08 Nov 2011 22:54

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by gasmancc » 11 Apr 2012 18:08

congrats on that lovely piece of watch bro! looks huge with a lot of wrist presence..numerals kinda remind me of Lum-Tec :D microbrands are really bang for buck watches, not only do u get good quality build watches, they usually come with those extra accessories and straps to sweeten the deal which you normall don't get from mass-production brands (of course not all)..Here's my take on microbrands:

PROs:
- good quality solid build watches
- packed with complications and functions at fraction of a price of high-end watches (case in point with your Helson, u get HEV and 1000m depth rating at just 599usd..now that's vfm!)
- extra accessories like spare bezel, signed straps etc.
- good customer service (being just a small company, they can focus on each of their customer's requests and queries and sometimes even the company owner themselves will transact with u! :))
- exclusivity (bro lunarin already explained this)
- and lastly......the price! affordable and yet can compete with most other brands in terms of design, specs, quality..

CONs:
- Slim to No chance of in-house movements (if you are fussy type of person)
- warranty for repairs (if there's no local AD, any problem u have to ship the watch back to overseas and pay for shipping fees not to mention possible long waiting period to get your watch back)
- long term value (if u plan to buy and preserve for a long time like NOS pieces then later decide to sell, there won't be any demand for your watch since the majority don't really know your watch! hence the value depreciation..)

Of course these are all my humble opinion so don't take my word for it.. :mrgreen: if u like the watch and did enough research to merit the purchase, by all means take the plunge!! I'm sure it will be a satisfying experience..personally I love microbrands hahaha! :lol:

Here's my Magrette Regattare Brass in denim strap saying hi! This was supposed to be a bronze case watch but that's a whole different story LOL

Image
aiken74
Man; earth; to be red
Posts: 4100
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:02

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by aiken74 » 11 Apr 2012 18:46

gasmancc wrote:congrats on that lovely piece of watch bro! looks huge with a lot of wrist presence..numerals kinda remind me of Lum-Tec :D microbrands are really bang for buck watches, not only do u get good quality build watches, they usually come with those extra accessories and straps to sweeten the deal which you normall don't get from mass-production brands (of course not all)..Here's my take on microbrands:

PROs:
- good quality solid build watches
- packed with complications and functions at fraction of a price of high-end watches (case in point with your Helson, u get HEV and 1000m depth rating at just 599usd..now that's vfm!)
- extra accessories like spare bezel, signed straps etc.
- good customer service (being just a small company, they can focus on each of their customer's requests and queries and sometimes even the company owner themselves will transact with u! :))
- exclusivity (bro lunarin already explained this)
- and lastly......the price! affordable and yet can compete with most other brands in terms of design, specs, quality..

CONs:
- Slim to No chance of in-house movements (if you are fussy type of person)
- warranty for repairs (if there's no local AD, any problem u have to ship the watch back to overseas and pay for shipping fees not to mention possible long waiting period to get your watch back)
- long term value (if u plan to buy and preserve for a long time like NOS pieces then later decide to sell, there won't be any demand for your watch since the majority don't really know your watch! hence the value depreciation..)

Of course these are all my humble opinion so don't take my word for it.. :mrgreen: if u like the watch and did enough research to merit the purchase, by all means take the plunge!! I'm sure it will be a satisfying experience..personally I love microbrands hahaha! :lol:

Here's my Magrette Regattare Brass in denim strap saying hi! This was supposed to be a bronze case watch but that's a whole different story LOL

Image
Lub de comment on CONs bt some noe n some dun noe at as long buyer sibei happy n find it vfm thn ok Liao n I oso believe buyer nvr care abt de value depreciation...:)
gasmancc
Member
Posts: 273
Joined: 08 Nov 2011 22:54

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by gasmancc » 11 Apr 2012 19:07

aiken74 wrote:
Lub de comment on CONs bt some noe n some dun noe at as long buyer sibei happy n find it vfm thn ok Liao n I oso believe buyer nvr care abt de value depreciation...:)
ya I agree..if u like the watch just buy it! :lol:
User avatar
roo7
IT Superman
Posts: 6863
Joined: 10 Apr 2011 22:05
Location: Singapore
Contact:

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by roo7 » 11 Apr 2012 20:08

I won't argue with finishing quality as they are pretty much ok, but not in the QC area. You will probably see certain flaws somewhere but of course, we will look past it given the value of the watch.

My Ocean7 was great, time keeping was superb with the SW-200 sellita movement, +1/2 over a week but my Helson Sharkmaster wasn't that lucky, it had a problem with the bezel insert sealing, air gaps appearing underneath the bezel insert, of course there's also horror stories about the sharkmaster got flooded during a dive.

Although we don't dive, but a monobloc case with 1000M depth, that gives you the sense of the QC. :)

So, just note that you really need to check the watch for defects. It's just hits and misses, like the renowned brands, Seiko MM300 has a small alignment problem with 12 or 6 the hour marker (forgot, we discussed this before), Seiko Sardine has 12 o'clock hour marker alignment problem too.
Not as active.
blog: http://jiehong.org/
Ed.YEO
Senior member
Posts: 5029
Joined: 13 Aug 2011 00:37
Location: Somewhere between Whampoa and Bedemeer, since 1980
Contact:

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by Ed.YEO » 11 Apr 2012 20:15

lunarin79 wrote:
Ed.YEO wrote:Ocean 7 auto-chrono today price up up liaoz!
LM-6C?
Image
LM-PC the pilot chrono
http://www.ocean7watchco.com/cs2/index. ... uct_id=132" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

I think it's Ocean7 staff themselves make the announcement.
Here's the link...
http://forums.watchuseek.com/f133/pilot ... 75002.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
yan sang yew guo dak fai lok, zao yew dui yan hor see zou luo jik xing geh fan sik yu goon cha, ng hai zou yoo chun mong mok dek pan duun... yoo guo yi liong din doh mou geh wa, yat gor yan geh yat sang zao guo dak gey pok gai loh...
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 22:55

aiken74 wrote:Nice...tel us more abt individual review for Ocean 7 LM3, Artego 300m, Halios Holotype & Helson Tortuga.

Machaim the comparsion between Ocean, Artego, Halios & Helson on the individual weight, hw de hand-on feel for individual brand, comparsion on individual movement for individual brand... ;)

CEO, sure chiu can do for the review... ;) I believe SC bros ish oso looking 2ward for ur review... ;)
wah, i no time la,haha

21st u guys can molest gao gao compare ur own mah :mrgreen:
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 22:59

gasmancc wrote:CONs:
- Slim to No chance of in-house movements (if you are fussy type of person)
- warranty for repairs (if there's no local AD, any problem u have to ship the watch back to overseas and pay for shipping fees not to mention possible long waiting period to get your watch back)
- long term value (if u plan to buy and preserve for a long time like NOS pieces then later decide to sell, there won't be any demand for your watch since the majority don't really know your watch! hence the value depreciation..)
movt wise shld be easy to service since it's only miyota or ETA for most brands :)

as fore whether to sell in future, local market will not be easy as there are only a handful of microbran collectors out there, either you kena lowball jialat jialat by those who dun appreciate or u sell it to a good home

best is to repost on WUS & sell, market is alwys there, especially for out of production models :mrgreen:
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
User avatar
lunarin79
CEO
Posts: 12957
Joined: 11 Apr 2011 00:20

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by lunarin79 » 11 Apr 2012 23:05

Ed.YEO wrote:Image
i dun follow the current O7 threads anymore le ;)

their design direction has changed, there's nothing unique about the cases used anymore,lol

i dun understand y those members there can 'wow' over the new current models :lol:

if u guys are getting a preowned O7, take note that the warranty will be void even if it's still under warranty cos Mitch(O7 founder) already mentioned his warranty will only be valid to its original owner ;)

well, one man's meat is another's poison i guess.
Seiko Club Gathering 2016
Becky
Junior member
Posts: 218
Joined: 29 Jul 2011 11:44

Re: Microbrands lovers, lip lai chat!

Post by Becky » 11 Apr 2012 23:25

Yeah, they are going up in prices due to the demand from all over the world.

I am zooming in on the Halios and what they have offered recently (poison by someone here :roll: )

The PUCK and LAGUNA looks killer! Espcially the puck, Tuna's brother!

Always sold out like what CEO mentioned and we even have multiple post for WTB on the regular forums.

Really worth checking out these MB!
Post Reply