I suspect that like many men I have often looked longingly at a beautiful watch. Their machinery is fascinating, their designs inspiring, but… I’ve just never been all that comfortable with the idea of proposing to myself – meaning that I’ve never been willing to save months’ worth of salary for the sake of buying myself a watch.
I’m glad to learn that I’m not the only one that thinks a winning watch shouldn’t require a long-term financial commitment. Mercer Watch Co. is a troop from New Jersey fighting to “to design and produce custom mechanical time pieces of the utmost quality for an affordable price.”
Their first time piece is the Brigadier. It has a classic, elegant and sturdy look. A self-winding Miyota 9015 keeps the hands moving smoothly without the need for batteries. The face is made of scratch-resistant Sapphire crystals and is antireflective, which makes it easier to read in troublesome lighting. The casing and band are made of high-quality materials such as stainless steel and leather.
I’m no watch salesman, but, to an untrained eye, the Brigadier appears worth much more that the $329 asking price. That’s still a decent chunk of change, but it buys you a handsome and durable watch of superb value. (Good on Roger Federer for all those commercials he’s done for Rolex, but most of us could stand for the price tag of our watch not covering the fuel expense of his private jetting.)
Both watch and company names pay homage to Brigadier General Hugh Mercer, a soldier and doctor close to George Washington during the American Revolution, whose death in battle spurred on his compatriots. The same fellow gave the town Mercer, where Mercer Watch Co. is headquartered, its name.
Since the smartphone has become the ever-present clock that most of turn to, a watch serves as much as an accessory, if no more so, than a time-keeping device. All the more reason for a watch to be conversation starter. With the Brigadier, you have an interesting narrative on your wrist worth sharing in addition to having a sharp-looking watch.
A Kickstarter campaign for the Brigadier notes that it is also possible to customize the rotors, which gives each watch an added personal touch, a dash of originality…
Yeah, all those bare wrists holding up a smartphone while busily texting – boring. Learn more at either the Mercer Watch Co. website at MercerWatch.com or their Kickstarter page. With just a little over two weeks to go, they’re about 1/3 of the way toward reaching their goal of $35,000 and staying on track to begin shipments next March.
If you’d like an affordable, stylish time piece or want to support an independent small business, make time to have another look at the Brigadier.