Review of the CX Swiss Military HURRICANE
By: John B. Holbrook, II
By: John B. Holbrook, II
When Christoph Malzl, the President of Charmex North & South America (Montres Charmex S.A. owns CX Swiss Military) invited me to review one of the models from the CX SWISS MILITARY catalog, I was excited to be introduced to this new-to-me brand. But when I had a look at the fantastic red dial on the CX Swiss Military HURRICANE, I knew exactly which watch I wanted to review. The HURRICANE is a limited edition piece (200 examples) in 4 different dial color variations (only 50 examples in each variation). And while their all attractive, the red dial model with the red stitched strap really jumped out at me.
The HURRICANE is a tribute to the British Royal Air Force's ( RAF's) forgotten fighter star of the Battle of Britain, the plane “never known to fail” and is a limited edition based on the CX Swiss Military AIRFORCE I watch. The HURRICANE is a very contemporary styled pilot's watch both in size (47mm diameter, 17mm thick) and in appearance with its very much en vogue DLC coated stainless steel case. The DLC (diamond like coating) applied to the stainless steel gives the HURRICANE impressive scratch resistance and is aesthetically pleasing with the red elements on the watch. As you might expect with a watch sporting these sorts of dimensions, it has impressive heft coming in at about 150 grams in total weight.
To help maintain the impressive 200 meter (660 ft.) water resistance rating, CX Swiss Military designed the watch with screw down chronograph pushers. When the chronograph pushers are not screwed down, you can see the dial matching red paint at the base of the pushers (see the first photo in this review). When they are screwed down, they are uniformly black in appearance.
Normally I almost always prefer an exhibition case back on chronograph watches like the HURRICANE, but the solid case back (also DLC coated) with the special edition designations is particularly well done. The dial matching red screws are a fantastic and very unique decorative touch.
Inside the case of the HURRICANE is a COSC Certified Valjoux/ETA 7750 movement. The 7750 is so time-tested and well respected in the watch community, I almost feel embarrassed to list its specifications. The 7750 is a self-winding (unidirectional rotor) mechanical movement with 25 jewels, and a balance wheel which vibrates at a beat speed of 28,800 BPH. By providing a COSC certified version of this ETA caliber, CX Swiss Militaryl steps into an entirely different category of watch manufacturers - particularly at this price point.
Let's take a moment to talk about the amazing dial of the HURRICANE. Long time WATCH TALK FORUMS members know I love red elements in a watch, and the dial of the HURRICANE has an abundance of red to offer. The dial exhibits an attractive checkered pattern - I normal prefer watch dials without a pattern, but it's well done on the HURRICANE - I like it. The dial is protected by a flat sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating applied which provides an excellent view of the dial from nearly any viewing angle. Wonderful details like the propeller hands on the second hand subdial make this watch fun as well as attractive. Dial legibility is strong despite the impressive amount of information on the dial thanks to its over all size and the contrast of the white sword hands, white markers, and black subdials.
Between the 22mm case lugs of the HURRICANE is a NANOTECH LEATHER STRAP - a genuine leather strap specially designed and manufactured to be highly water and oil resistant. The strap emphasizes the working "tool watch" philosophy behind the HURRICANE - it's meant to be an aviator's tool, and every aspect of the watch, right down to the strap, is designed to be robust and wear resistant. I found the strap to be quite comfortable, and the red stitching is an attractive complement to the other red elements on the HURRICANE. The strap is held together with a simple tang and buckle style stainless steel clasp which like the case is DLC coated.
As a supplement to this written photo review, I've also prepared a video review of the CX Swiss Military HURRICANE:
The retail price of the CX Swiss Military HURRICANE is $2,250.00. You don't often see a COSC certified chronograph (and a limited edition one at that) below the $3000.00 price point. CX Swiss Military doesn't skimp on the extras either, including a HUGE ebony wooden box, cleaning cloth, printed COSC certificate, and excellent documentation with the watch - one of the most complete packages I've seen from any watch manufacturer. I can't really find any critical points with the HURRICANE model itself, though I will say I hope CX Swiss Military produces an example in a smaller version at some point in the future - somewhere between 40 and 43mm would look more proportionate on my 5'7" frame. Personal preferences aside, the movement toward larger watches makes the HURRICANE very attractive. Even though it's a limited edition piece that speculators may be tempted to buy and lock away, the DLC coating on the watch means it will be extremely scratch resistant - there's no reason not to wear this beauty, particularly at the reasonable asking price. The HURRICANE can be purchased on the CX Swiss Military website store by clicking here. If the HURRICANE is any indication, CX Swiss Military is a brand which will quickly rise in popularity in the watch enthusiast community which places a premium on watches that produce excellence AND value. I look forward to seem more CX Swiss Military watches in the near future.
**Photos & Text Copyright 2011 WATCH TALK FORUMS INC. No part of this report can be reproduced outside of WATCH TALK FORUMS without the expressed permission of John B. Holbrook, II.