The ORSA military watch is a homage to the Hamilton watch issued to US soldiers in Vietnam. The watch is manufactured by a Canadian company, ORSA Watch Co. (www.orsawatchco.com). As I understand it, they are a new company, starting to manufacture watches in 2003. The military line is one of the 2 lines that they manufacture. The other is the popular ORSA Monstrum 300m, a divers watch. I am reviewing the Matte Cream Dial version of the watch.
Manufacturer: ORSA Watch Co.
Functions: Hours, minutes, sweep seconds, window type date display
Movement: ISA 317 quartz movement, Swiss made
Case: Stainless steel case, screw back, domed mineral glass, 5 mm crown non screwed, water-resistant 5 ATM
Strap and clasp: 20 mm NATO Mil series nylon strap
Dimensions: Diameter 39 mm, Height 9.5 mm, Lug to Lug 46 mm
Versions: Matte Black Dial, Matte Black Dial with Orange Numerals, Matte Grey Dial, Matte Cream Dial and Matte Green Dial.
The watch case is bead blasted and is very well crafted. All the edges are pretty smooth and does not cut into the wearers hand. It does not come with a display back. The case back is screwed down into the case and the watch offers a water resistant level of 5 ATM (50 m). The manufactures name is etched into the case back.
As this is a military homage, the dial has the inner 24 hour ring. The indices are C3 luminous coated as are the hands. The dial is very legible and the luminosity is good. The minute hand extends onto the minute ring, which makes reading off the minutes easier. The hour hand does not extend beyond the inner 24 hour ring. As with most quartz watches, the second hand does not align with the second markers. The date window at the 3 o'clock position is large enough to make reading the date easy. It is also large enough to balance the dial.
The 5 mm crown fits comfortably between the thumb and forefinger because it is large. Underneath, there is a gap between the crown and the case that can aid in pulling out the crown. The crown has 2 positions, the first to adjust the date and the second to adjust the time. The ISA 317 movement second hacks at the second position.
The strap on this watch is very long as is with most NATO Mil. series strap. When I first got this watch, I did not know how to use the strap. I also wondered about the once piece design of the strap. The one piece design is such that if one of the strap spring bar were to break, the watch would still be held by the other spring bar. We will of course talk more about strap design in a different post as that is another interesting topic.
The watch is very comfortable to wear as the case is slightly curved at the lugs. I found that having the strap loop behind the watch adds to the comfort especially on cold days as the strap prevents the cold metal case back from touching my skin. The nylon strap is soft and is very well made.
I got this watch used, but am very happy with it. For the price (between USD 35 to USD 75) and quality, I believe this watch offers exceptional value for money. I am sure other who have purchased this watch would feel the same.