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JLC Reverso Squadra Hometime In-depth review

 
 By: Ed. W : November 18th, 2011-19:49

Reverso Squadra Hometime on Stainless Steel Bracelet

MSRP: $9350 USD

Ref. 7008120/230.8.77

Calibre 977

-Small seconds

-Date

-True GMT function with AM/PM indication

Applied Arabic numerals

Silver dial

Water resistant 5 atm/50 meters/165 ft




Recto wrist shot



Verso wrist shot

This is my first review here so please be gentle.

I bought this watch used upgrading from a Breitling Colt GMT (ETA 2893-2 based on ETA 2892-A2), which happens to be a GMT watch, but not in the true sense since the hands are not independent. I travel somewhat frequently and since home is 12 time zones away, the hometime function is very useful.



Typical modern JLC box



300 page manual with about 10 relevant pages






Happy but not extremely impressed by the box (not important at all, but the Breitling Bakelite box is considerably nicer)

 

Equipped with a Cal. 977, which is the exact same thing as the 975 autotractor movement, reviewed by the wonderful PuristSPro team http://www.thepurists.net/Patrons/Members/wsw/jlc_at/jlc975finweb.htm and http://indepth.watchprosite.com/show-nblog.post/ti-352097/

 

It has been running at a consistent +4 seconds every day, I’d rather have my watches fast than slow so I don’t really mind. I wear it daily doing pretty much anything and it’s held up so far. It’s quite heavy at 190 grams with 3 links removed but still quite comfortable. Both Recto and Verso crystals are curved and uncoated. It may not be something that catches the eye immediately but over the past week it’s really grown on me.




Recto side, the dial is a matted silver with some guilloche, looks very nice under a loupe (can't say the same thing about the applied numerals unfortunately).

Adjusting the time:
There are three crown positions:
Position 1: winding only

Position 2: Change the local time (non-skeletonized) hand in one hour increments, this hand controls the date. Can be adjusted in both directions, so on date change is done by jumping ahead 24 hours.

Position 3: Change the hometime (skeletonized) hand by adjusting the minute hand, hacks the small second hand.

 

The system is quite convenient and the ability to change everything in both directions at any time is a big advantage.


The bracelet:




Bracelet held together by opposing screws all the way around

 

The bracelet is held together by screws and each link is removable, personally I’d rather have the 4 links closest to the watch head sealed and only be able to remove the few links around the clasp, but this is more flexible. The butterfly clasp can be micro-adjusted by 2mm on each side without tools.





Normal length


Quick adjusted by 2mm (can be done on other side as well)

 

The finish of the bracelet is good, but could be better since the clasp still has two unfinished edges, which feel rough to the touch. Overall the bracelet seems to be mediocre value considering they sell it for over 2000 dollars.

Strap costs are as follows: (in USD)

 

Rubber strap (no clasp) - $305

Matte Alligator strap (no clasp) - $495

Butterfly clasp only – $485

 

I think they’re overcharging quite a bit for all this, the articulated rubber bracelet costs around 2000 dollars as well.




Beautiful perlage as usual


Verso side


The Movement

While the PuristSPro team has thoroughly reviewed the 975 (everything about that movement applies to this except the gold rotor), I’ll just say that it seems to be quite clean but not well finished (lack of chamfers, minimal sinks).





Caliber 977

Overall, am I happy with the watch? Definitely.

I just wished that the bracelet and case were a bit more finely finished. Since the watch is automatic maybe a bit more water-resistance would be welcome, the Tag Heuer Monaco is rated to 100 meters after all.

I’m hoping that my photos can allow those considering buying this wonderful piece to know more before they buy. I wanted to know a lot more but had trouble finding much online about this piece.

Feel free to ask any questions you may have about this.



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re: review

 
 By: DRMW : November 18th, 2011-21:34
Thanks for sharing your impressions!  Do you travel much to take advantage of the hometime function?

-MW
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I make something in the neighborhood of 10 trips a year, most of which are abroad.

 
 By: Ed. W : November 18th, 2011-21:36
And since home isn't where my permanent residence is, i always keep the hometime to Beijing.
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Very nice first post and great pictures.

 
 By: grigo : November 18th, 2011-23:16

Congratulations on getting the watch and thanks for the very detailed review.

It will definitely give people a lot to think about.

Best regards,

George
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Thanks a lot for taking the time to write this review, D.

 
 By: amanico : November 18th, 2011-23:20

It is always interesting to read owners opinion on a watch which is their trustful companion.

A comment or two, if you allow me: 4 secs per day is excellent and much better than the COSC requirements. ( - 4 + 6 per day, if I remember correctly ).

About the finish of the movement, I agree that it could have been better, but this Squadra never has been targeted as a high horology piece in its conception nor in its price, soo I would say that it is honest, but could have been better.

Otherwise, you have a modern re interpretation of the Reverso, with a much bigger and more quare than rectangular cae ( hence its name ) housing a very friendly and useful complication.

Thank you so much, once again,, your time and efforts are much appreciated.

Best,

Nicolas.

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Agreed

 
 By: Ed. W : November 18th, 2011-23:34
I was really just nit-picking and thinking of ways it could be "better", but I agree that for the pricepoint and purpose, the finishing is adequate.
In terms of the consistent +4 seconds, i'm not very concerned since if it was driving me crazy (it's not) i could get it adjusted, i'd be much more concerned if it were erratic.
I was more keen on the squadra since I figured the reverso was originally a sports watch, but has since become a dress watch whereas the squadra is now the sports watch with the autotractor movement and larger size (this is probably as large as I feel comfortable going though).
Thanks for the encouragement

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You perfectly described the difference between the Reverso and the Squadra. Well said.

 
 By: amanico : November 18th, 2011-23:36

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Very nice review

 
 By: Madhatter : November 19th, 2011-07:52
Thanks for the review.  I thought it was very thoughtful and accurate. 

I would have to say that the only complaint with mine (minor) is that the luminous hands are not very bright and unreadable in even the blackest of nights.
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Good point

 
 By: Ed. W : November 19th, 2011-10:38
I didn't even know the hands were lumed until I shined a flashlight at it and saw the faint glow, it's effectively not lumed.
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The verso side of this watch is amazing. It will keep my eyes glued to it...

 
 By: Ruckdee : November 19th, 2011-08:08
...for a good part of the day if I had it on my wrist. I think this watch serves you well as you have to manage multiple timezones. And as a travel watch I think this is as low profile as it gets for a stainless steel watch.

I came very close to buying the black version of this watch twice but eventually shifted my target elsewhere one time because of availability and another because of another reason which I cannot recall at this moment. I planned to wear it on a leather strap though. The massive bracelet is too overwhelming for my wrist anyway.

Thanks for posting your review and thoughts on how this watch could be improved. As you said, it is already a very fine watch.

Ruckdee

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One small correction...

 
 By: watchme : November 19th, 2011-10:17

I believe the summer/winter - day/night adjustment is 4mm x 2 (4mm on each side).

I've always liked this watch, especially since the Autotractor is such a robust movement.

In truth, I think I prefer the Grande Automatique, due to having a large date and a flat-back for personalization. But, none-the-less, the Squadra Hometime is a great watch and, considering that JLC makes the entire watch (except crystal), I think it's a bargain within the playing field.

-Dean

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You're right, i just measured and it's 4mm each side.

 
 By: Ed. W : November 19th, 2011-10:37

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Great read!

 
 By: blomman Mr Blue : November 23rd, 2011-12:50

Thank you for sharing!

I jumped on the Squadra when it was released.

First the HT in SS and later the first LE RG version...

The SS is long gone be I still enjoy the RG!

smile

 

 

Best

Blomman

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Thanks for sharing

 
 By: Ed. W : November 25th, 2011-17:41
How is the articulated rubber bracelet? (in terms of comfort compared to say the normal flat rubber or the bracelet)
D
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congrats on an oustanding reverso and thanks for the review

 
 By: georgeszaslavsky : November 27th, 2011-12:48
All I can say is congrats for having chosen a very nice version of the reverso which is functional and elegant. For me the movement is very clean and enoug helegant.
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