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Old 01-09-2014, 06:44 AM
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Mortuus Mortuus is online now
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Default Finally: A Burett Joins My Collection

I’d heard of Burett early on in my pursuit of becoming a serious collector of watches. When I got my first glimpse of one, it was part of the lineup in one of Shawn Wilsie’s ShopNBC watch programs. As was typical of him, he began his presentation with a three-minute dissertation on the proper pronunciation of the Burett name; what I could glean from it was that it was pronounced either 'Burr-ette' or 'Be-yurr-ette.' He then shrugged his shoulders in that goofy Wilsie manner of his, and held the watch up so the camera guys could get one of their trademark close-up shots. I recall thinking, ‘Not too bad, not too bad at all.’ (The watch, that is. Wilsie, on the other hand, was another story... Okay, okay, I'm just kidding, already. Truthfully, and in my not-so-humble opine, Wilsie was one of the good guys at Shop, a pretty decent presenter and a seemingly stand-up guy in a network dominated by the likes of Messrs. Skelton, Temple, Megan and Davis. A piece of fresh fruit, floating in an otherwise offal-laden, if you will.)

The watch was IP black, save for the subdials, lettering and numerals, all of which were referred to as “silvertone” (which, along with “goldtone” and "rosetone," sounds to me like the biggest metallic copouts in the watch biz. I mean, think about it for a second: if I spray-paint the doggoned thing with gold-colored Rust-O-Lium or Testor’s, or whatever, it could rightfully be referred to as “goldtone.” Ditto silver-colored paint. Jeebus, but that chaps my hide).

It was certainly attractive enough, but the price (somewhere in the vicinity of $435 USD) was something I could ill afford at the time. Shawn mentioned that the $435 was actually Shop’s “Once-Only Price,” one that could never (not ever, ever, dammit!!) be sold for less than $435 USD…”Damn,” I thought.

I looked for the original price on ShopNBC’s rather lonely – just one model – ‘Burett page’ and saw that its ‘ShopNBC price’ was right around $525 bones. ‘Damn,’ I thought again, this time appending it with, ‘ain’t that something,’ for no particular reason. (Okay, so my internal repartees weren’t all that glib back then, but I figured that the fewer words I spoke to myself, the better my overall mental health would be. Uh-huh, just so… What that says about me now is, well, something I try not to contemplate too often.) In the end, I figured that my chances of actually owning a Burett weren’t all that great, so I dismissed the attractive-but-pricy brand from any further contemplation.

That was five years ago.

Then, a couple months ago, I was absentmindedly looking through the World of Watches (WoW) clearance pages, when a vaguely familiar visage and moniker pairing showed up on my laptop. A quick double-take verified that I wasn’t seeing things: there, in all its glory, was a black IP Burett sport watch, this one with an even more attractive silver-colored-dial-with-black-numbers option that hadn’t been listed on Shop five years before. But something was way off the mark, so much so that it took me a couple of passes through the item description and photos to realize what it was that was so vastly different.

Nope, not seein’ it…how’s about a closer look?

Dang…still not seeing it…!

Okay, okay, how’s about this: WoW’s clearance price – $209 bones. And only two remained in inventory.

Stifling a cry of ‘Holy discounts, Batman,’ I made quick work out of buying the watch. There was none of that ‘What was I thinking?’ thinking that sometimes hits you shortly after you’ve clicked the pay 'button’ on an item you just had to have. No unfounded panic along the lines of, ‘How Will I ever manage to pay this watch off?’ Nope, all was nice and quiet, both at Casa del Muerto and, more importantly, en el cráneo del Muerto. And when it got here, there was a distinct absence of both types of guilt I regularly experience – my Catholic and Jewish halves were eerily quiet as I walked to my workshop to open the package.

(Cue the strip music - Gypsy Rose Lee's theme...da-da, de-da, de-da-da-da, da-da, de-da, de-DA-da, da-da, DA, BOOM!, DA, BOOM! Da, BOOM!, DA, BOOM!, da-DA, de-da-DA-DA, de-de de-de DA-dum...)

Check out the wood in that box...WOOF!

And teasin' it a little closer... (and now I can't get that stupid striptease music out of my head...DANG!)

Now, I know what you're thinking: very pretty, but can it FIGHT? I dunno, but here's the technical stuff:

Brand: Burett
Model: "Continental"
Model Number: B4203
Type: Sport Chronograph / Tachymeter
Country of Origin: Switzerland
Gender: Men's
Display Type: Analogue
Crystal: Sapphire
Dial Color: Silver matte, oil press guilloche style
Lume: Yes
Case Color: Black IP
Weight (Prior to Sizing): 204 grams
Case Width (W/O Crown): 44mm
Case Thickness: 12mm
Case Back Type: Solid Stainless Steel
Bezel: Unidirectional
Bracelet Type: Black IP Stainless Steel (3-link 'Oyster' Type)
Bracelet Width: 24mm (Non-Tapering)
Bracelet Length: 8"
Clasp: Diver's push-button fold-over with keeper
Movement: Swiss ETA 251-272 Quartz
Miscellaneous Notes: Water resistant to 200M; date display at 4 o'clock; red 'arrowhead' style tip on chrono seconds hand.

A very nice backside...

Much to my surprise, the watch has proven to be very comfortable. The bracelet doesn't snag, even on my sasquatch-level arm hair, and the clasp doesn't rub or pinch. The 5mm-high crown doesn't dig into the back of my hand, which is a very pleasant surprise, given the 44mm case width - which, in and of itself, is about as wide as I prefer to go these days. Its relatively thin 12mm thickness keeps it low on the wrist throughout the day, preventing it from becoming a top-heavy distraction. Taking all these features as a whole, I tend to forget it's there most of the time.

The dial has a goodly number of nice details, but not so many that you'll have difficulty finding out the time, though the polished skeleton hour and minute hands do preclude a quick glance at the time, unless you've just been there a couple of minutes before, and already have a feel for where the hands should be. The subdials' chapter rings are in black, which makes them easy to find, but even with their white numbers, their size is just too small for an easy read (even if your eyes happen to be less than 50 years-old). The oil-press, guilloche-style 'sunrise' design is very attractive, and it enhances - as opposed to being too busy and taking away from - the overall presentation of the dial.

As usual, I don't have any lume shots, but I can tell you that, with the upper portions of the hands bearing a goodly amount of super luminova, along with the baton hour markers on the dial and bezel, this watch easily passes the Conjurer-Quick-Glance-in-a-Dark-Car Test, not to mention the newer, less-stringent Mortuus-Quick-Glance-in-a-Closed-Coffin Test. Either way, the lume does its job with no appreciable down-checks.

All-in-all, this watch has very quickly become a rotation favorite; it has all the style and function of its much more expensive counterparts at a fraction of the cost and total weight. In some ways, its styling is reminiscent of a few of my old Renato watches, but again, it doesn't burden you with too much weight and too much cost, which are sort of Renato traditions. Yes, the subdials are small and difficult to read, but that doesn't preclude my enjoyment of this watch. Still, if a I angle it just so...and shine the light down at the proper angle...I can - sort of - read the subdials quite can sort of read them. At any rate, this lone down-check is certainly not a show-stopper, and it shouldn't be for anyone. In truth, when balanced against the rest of the package, it's an all-but-miniscule complaint. (Even if I do have to carry around a magnifying glass like good old Rasil Bathbone in the good old Sherlock Holmes mystery movies...)

(Note the rare, after-market left-hand mod above - AKA Mort taking the bloody picture upside-down...)

Many thanks, as always, for dropping by...

For those of you in NZ, please use in-country code

Last edited by Mortuus; 01-09-2014 at 05:52 PM. Reason: Corrections to technical data (changes in BOLD type).
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