Kobold Arctic Diver

Discussion in 'Watch Reviews' started by solar, Aug 11, 2009.

  1. solar

    solar

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    Hi all, I recently received a Kobold Arctic Diver, a beast of a diver's watch that has case, crystal and dial design aspects that are a departure for me from my regular daily Rolex wearers.

    Its a hefty beast, large and in charge, with serious wrist presence. Its also born to wear a Nato strap, of which I have four (including the black one that Kobold ships it with, which my wife likes better than any of my other Natos......).

    The dial has a 60 click bezel with very very definative clicks. The top triangle does come right onto the centre-top 12 o'clock with solid authority. Some have said that the coin edge of the bezel is too sharp, but I find this bezel easier to grip and turn in the water. The sharp-ish edge of the bezel does really facilitate turning it when its wet.

    The sapphire is a nice domed crystal, different from my Rolexes. Its a really nice look, and the anti-reflective treatment is on the inside of the crystal only, so it affords a degree of anti-reflection without the problem of an outer layer of AR coming off. Best of both worlds to me.

    The date is not huge, but with my ageing eyes preferring a cyclops or a date magnifier, this date is actually legible to me, so good on that. The dial is a nice matte black, similar to the Omega Speedmaster, the quintessential, most legible watch in the world (and beyond). This matte black dial lends itself really well to legibility with the use of the hour indices that are dots of Superluminova (SLN). The indices are without metal surrounds, similar to the older 1960's Rolex sport models. I like the metal surrounds with SLN such is is on my Rolex sport models, but the dot of SLN without the metal surrounds of the AD looks more utilitarian and it has a nice visual presentation, to my suprise. The words, "Arctic Diver" are a wonderfully-discreet grey-platinum lettering, which takes a second glance to see. I really like this low key approach and it looks the business on the dial.

    The case is utilitarian, with a brushed case and lugs. The crown is either bead blasted or it is titanium. Either way, it works in my opinion either intentionally to add a slight contrast to the case stainless 316L, or as an impromptu marrying of materials ("Hey, we got a great price on 10,000 bead blasted crowns....where can we use them?"). Regardless, it does work.

    The caseback is as we've seen already in previous posts, bare of any engraving. I would have liked to see something there, but there is nothing beyond the simple engraving on the caseback edge giving the company name and the info about the particular watch.

    The hands are metal and SLN, and the overall face appeal of this watch is, for someone who wears a Rolex Sub LV as a daily wearer, very easy on the eyes and bold without being over the top. Reading the time for me--with my ageing eyes--is quick. I wondered how it would be without the minute hash marks on the inner chapter ring, but its actually really easy, because the bezel has number increment markers every five minutes....20-25-30 etc. A glasnce at the dial allows you to reference off of the bezel and quickly determine if its 10:18 or 10:17......

    This is my first Kobold, I've been interested in the brand for years. I pulled the trigger on the AD, and it is quite a watch with big presence, rareity and uniqueness of design in the big case and monster lugs and the unusual, bare dial. As I wrote earlier, it was born to be used with a Nato. Strap changes are tricky for other straps, and Natos you can change faster than changing your mind, since the lug bars stay in place. It looks like the Kobold Large Soarway Diver (LSD) without the splash of colour that the LSDs yellow second hand adds. I like the blue used for the AD second hand, and have two straps (a black NATO with the blue line in the centre of the strap and a so-called Kevlar-rubber sandwich with blue stiching, which I'm wearing now) that really work great with the watch.

    Over the past 48 hours, its running at +7 seconds.

    And now, the pictures......

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  2. colemanitis

    colemanitis

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    Great review! :thumbsup: That's a great looking watch. BTW, I love the sharp teeth on the bezel! :thumbsup:
  3. solar

    solar

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    The teeth on the bezel are a good design feature, in that I find the Sub bezel (and the SD before that) quite hard to turn when wet; the water makes the bezel stick, and I can't seem to gete a decent grip. The Kobold AD has a biog, clicking bezel that's more Tonka Toy than scapel, but that's what you want when you're in the sandbox.........
  4. DSimon9

    DSimon9

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    Great looking watch and a great review. Thanks for the effort and for the posting. I like the clean, uncluttered look of the watch.
  5. RW16610

    RW16610

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    Awesome :thumbsup: Nice looking watch and great review of it. Always nice to see some more reviews around here :rocker: Thanks for sharing this :cheers:
  6. SPACE-DWELLER

    SPACE-DWELLER

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    Fabulous review, Chris! :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
  7. solar

    solar

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    Thanks gents. I have it on a Nato strap now. Very comfortable in that fashion.

    C
  8. daveathall

    daveathall

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    Wow, absolutely stunning review, thank you very much for posting it for us, I really enjoyed it.

    That face really is a truimph of minimalist legibility, I love it.
  9. loszabo

    loszabo

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    Great photos and review. Thank you!

    I'm very interested in Kobold and such reviews help...
  10. T-R

    T-R

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    Very nice watch!!! Me like it.
  11. Baco Noir

    Baco Noir

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    That's a great looking watch and a very nice review. Love it on the black nylon strap with the blue stitching to tie into the second hand color. I also agree that a bigger date wheel would be better - and not too much since the dial is so uncluttered.
  12. SLRdude

    SLRdude

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    I really like it!

    The SEAL is really nice as well.
  13. KeepTheTime

    KeepTheTime

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    Great review! Wonderful watch indeed. With that blue ticker it's just perfect on that black/blue stitch strap! How about some pics of it on your NATO?
  14. Elmo

    Elmo

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    dimensions:

    from the Kobold web site


    45.85 mm diameter (bezel end to bezel end);
    49.65 mm diameter overall (bezel end to crown end);
    55.25 mm length overall (lug end to lug end);
    24 mm lug width (between lugs; measures strap width);
    15.25 mm height overall
    154.6 g. weight (with strap attached to watch)
    crystal synthetic sapphire; domed, anti-reflective (inside only); extra-thick
    crown screw-locked; signed
    bezel rotating; uni-directional with count-up minute scale
    back stainless steel (surgical grade); screw-locked
    ratings* waterproof (50 atm/1,650 ft with crown locked);
    (3 atm/100 ft with crown unlocked); antimagnetic (80,000 a/m); shock-resistant; pressure-proof to 50 atmospheres;


    the lug end to lug end 55.25 mm length is very large. Too large for the "slim" wristed
  15. SPACE-DWELLER

    SPACE-DWELLER

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    Thanks for sharing those dimensions, Elmo! :thumbsup: :cheers:
  16. Pete17

    Pete17

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    Great review of a very nice watch.:thumbsup:
    Love the clean looking dial and beefy case.
  17. solar

    solar

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    I've been wearing it a great deal while the GMT II Pepsi and the LV are spending more time in the safe. The big dial is easier to read, and the bezel turns really well on 60 definitive clicks. That said, I do have the LV on today.

    C
  18. Cmaster03

    Cmaster03

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    Great review, don't know how I missed it before.

    I like the Kobolds a lot and like I this one, but it's really too big for me--I'm one of those slim-wristed guys. :-(
  19. DeepSea12800

    DeepSea12800

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    I like it!
  20. Korean Cowboy

    Korean Cowboy

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    Nice watch and review mate...tell me, does it come with a cloth strap? Do you have a rubber one that you could swap out with? I've always associated rubber straps with diver's watches myself...