Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby TemerityB » July 27th 2018, 2:48pm

Since it's been a while, I figure I'd bore you fellows and prove what little I know about the watch hobby with a brief overview of something I picked up at Central Watch in New York City a few weeks ago: The Dan Henry 1970 auto, which I believe was one of the first watches the brand debuted when it arrived on the scene last year. And I have to thank foghorn, because I never would have heard of DH at all without his prose about them here.

Worn & Wound had a mini watch fair this past fall in NYC, and Dan Henry – the guy as well as the brand - was actually there among the sellers at his very busy booth, and I talked with him. I picked up a 1968 Dragster Chrono, a quartz piece that had my wife oohing and ahhing, and at just $200, I gave it a shot. The watch:

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I was really pleased with the dial and the casework; the watch was way more solid than I had any right to expect, and Dan Henry kinda blew away every other micro at the W&W even by about 40 yards – especially as so many of the other startups were asking for anywhere between $500 and $1,000 for their Miyota-packed Chinese-assembled stuff.

The new one:

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The thing about Dan Henry is that the guy claims to have purchased about 1,500 vintage watches, and his designs kinda sorta grab pieces of their styles from this brand or that brand without really copying any of them. Really good designs, from where I sit; I really like most of them, as I tend to prefer traditional watches that aren't too blingy or gaudy. A lot of blogs and sites are nutty for DH; there's one horse's ass on YouTube that has a video blasting DH for a defective watch he received, but most people seem pretty pleased. Another thing: I think (at press time, gents) that if you want a DH you have to order one directly from their website. I don't know how they hooked up with the Central Watch repair kiosk at Grand Central station here in New York, but they sell them there now.

Specs:
Rotating bezel (controlled by a crown at two o'clock)
44mm stainless steel 316L (also comes in a 40mm version but it seems to be sold out)
14.8mm thickness
24mm lug width
50.5mm lug to lug
Depth 200 meters (660 feet)
Screw down crown
Screw-back case with “Scaphtopus 3D medal” (in other words, the same thing every other watch on the planet has)
“Sapphire coated double domed mineral glass with anti-reflective treatment” (in other words, not sapphire)
Automatic Seiko Caliber NH35 with 24 jewels; manual winding and hacking; the power reserve is rated at 41 hours (real life: Not even close, but with my too-vast collection, the next morning is good enough)
“Swiss lumens” (in other words, weak, nondescript lume)
Rubber perforated strap
Comes in a watch roll, packed inside a plastic tube case
Warranty card; no manual
#1967 out of 1970 (or as the dolts at WatchInTyme.com would enthuse: “Eye gots ay spessel won!”

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My thoughts: For a $250 dive-style watch … I'd say this watch is worth its price – but no more than that. Which isn't to say it's bad; I find the lightweight yet sturdy-feeling rubber strap (which pretty much looks like leather to the naked eye) to be exceptionally comfortable on my Angelo Mosca-hairy wrist, and once again, the case work exceeds expectations. I like the style of this one most of all; it's as if a vintage Longines married a Seiko, and gave birth to a Longko. Again, the case work and the buffing of the metal is just superb; look at the buckle, for instance.

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I don't know how many of you fellows actually dive other than belam, which leads to the obvious question of whether I'd get it wet. I'd say no. At least with the watch I received, the crown does screw down but doesn't close to complete tightness. Also, with the choppy choppy NH35 inside – it is to auto movements what Slipknot is to smooth jazz – I wouldn't risk it.

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The Dan Henry 1970 is exactly what I knew it would be, however: A fairly priced everyday watch with styling and casework that punch way above its weight, with the minuses that you'd expect in any other Chinese-assembled watch you'd buy at this price point. Dan Henry remains the only “micro brand” that I'd even consider, though I'm sure a few more are okay as well. As for you guys? I haven't ordered direct from DH to find out how the shipping and service are, but other than that one pinhead at YouTube who wants to create an international incident over his, I've yet to see anyone complaining.

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Supposedly, DH is coming out with at least one new model any minute now, but July is almost over and they announced a July release months ago.

Note: I forgot to resize these photos; Imgur, at least for me, had been down for about a week. I'll shrink 'em next time.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby Thunder1 » July 27th 2018, 3:01pm

Great review of a nice piece...
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby foghorn » July 27th 2018, 3:05pm

Dan Henry makes great watches, I sold my 1970 because it was a tad to large for the newer,discreet in the street, foghorn but I still have , and occasionally rock, the 1939 and 1963 model quartzies.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby 3Flushes » July 27th 2018, 3:10pm

I like DH- Like you said- nice designs, well constructed- unpretentious and priced accordingly. Nice catch.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby JAS1125 » July 27th 2018, 3:15pm

Nice review and pics.
Good to see you posting again TB
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby MKTheVintageBloke » July 27th 2018, 3:35pm

TB's back! Where's my whisky, got to drink to that!

Oh, and that's one fine-looking watch!
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby Racer-X » July 27th 2018, 4:15pm

Yeah, I like most of these although some are a bit big. His collection site is amazing.

https://www.timeline.watch/
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby artman » July 27th 2018, 5:22pm

Awesome review of a cool watch. I've never seen these in real life, but you guys sure make them look good. I bet these would sell well this part of the world.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby conjurer » July 27th 2018, 7:57pm

Outstanding review, T. Absolutely first class.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby biglove » July 28th 2018, 7:57pm

Dan Henry watches look great. They just need to get their bracelet game together.

Very nice review.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby labman » July 28th 2018, 8:50pm

Not a thing wrong with that piece - great looking watch.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby luonggiawatch » August 5th 2018, 9:04pm

This is the watch I saw for the first time ... Very beautiful and delicate!
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby codguy » August 6th 2018, 5:31am

The size is abit big for the design imo.
That sayd, it is a stellar looking watch TB.
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Re: Dan Henry 1970 Automatic Diver

Postby TemerityB » August 20th 2018, 6:20pm

FYI: For those who might be interested, they now have more of the 1970 autos in 40mm. For some reason, they just raised the price of both the 40mm and 44mm twenty bucks (now they're $270).
I would rather be seen wearing an Invicta than a Hublot - at least I can explain away the Invicta.
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