Sometimes you just really want a big watch… and, apparently, other times you want a huge one. Have no doubt that this IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage Replica Watches 55 timepiece is barely wearable in most instances. I mean, yes, you can rather easily (and surprisingly comfortably) attach the titanium case to your wrist on the plush leather strap – but this is a pure novelty watch through and through.
It’s sort of a shame that timepieces like this need to cost so much money. That means only a handful of well-funded weirdo collectors will be able to enjoy (from time to time) a massive modern timepiece such as this that is based on historic military pilot watches built for a certain German army around a certain global conflict during the early middle of the 20th century. Circus size and controversial inspirations are probably a good thing when you want to sex up a wearable desk clock. On that note, the Cheap IWC Replica would make an excellent desk clock. Unfortunately, despite the large case size, it doesn’t have a long power reserve.
If anything, the biggest let down in a timepiece such as this that IWC didn’t make better use of the space inside. With all that case real estate, they could have easily included some movement with a power reserve of at least week or more. I mean, the standard IWC Replica Watches is both an automatic and has a power reserve of about a week. Instead, IWC preferred to go an alternative route and get a bit more vintage chic with the mechanism inside of this reference 5104 timepiece.
For the movement, IWC chose their in-house-made caliber 98300 which operates at 2.5Hz and has a power reserve of just 46 hours, being manually wound. The idea here is likely that Replica Watches UK wanted to convey the most pure sense of “old-time winding” since on most accounts the caliber 98300 (despite its contemporary construction) is based on rather old horological architecture. What it lacks in things like performance, complexity, and convenience, it makes up for in feeling like you are winding up an old timepiece – which is exactly the feeling you want while driving around in your modern automobile enjoying electronic… everything… as you appreciate the tick tick tick of your timepiece inspired by yesterday’s yesterday.
IWC makes it clear that this reference 5104 watch is “aimed primarily at collectors and lovers of authentic pilot’s watches.” Aren’t the majority of people buying expensive mechanical timepieces collectors? I suppose not everyone can have one of the original pieces from 1940. Perhaps Cheap IWC Replica should make the timepiece part of a collector’s kit that includes a bomber’s jacket, scarf, hat, gloves, and goggles. What the hell, just double the price and call it a kit. I really don’t think enough “collectors’ watches” come with enough lifestyle accessories. Doesn’t IWC work with Santoni and enough other fine leather makers to make something like that happen?
Speaking of straps, attached to the IWC Big Pilot’s Heritage Watch 55 is a thick brown calfskin strap that is designed like a cross between a pilot and NATO strap. That means the strap itself is very long (if needed), which is sort of good because I think “back-in-the-day” timepieces such as this were often worn on the thigh (while a pilot was seated in the cockpit, that is). That makes me happy, as I don’t find enough thigh-sized straps available – especially not at IWC quality.