Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The Eterna Heritage Military limited edition watch was among the more unique timepieces we saw in Basel this year. At the Baselworld 2014 watch show, Eterna had a bold presence, thanks to their new corporate ownership and fresh internal direction by Mr. Bruno Jufer, who was formerly the CEO of Antoine Martin watches. Retro-revival was a big thing for Eterna, and it remains to be seen where the brand ends up in a few years after it has settled in with its new leadership. In fact, all of the new Eterna watches are based on retro models. I do hope that they will offer some more modern designs soon, but what I can say is that for the money the quality of the 2014 Eterna watches is fantastic.

The Eterna Heritage Military watch is a strange item that I really didn't know what to make of at first glance. To be honest, I wasn't too excited about it when I first saw it, but the design oddly grew on me. I still don't know whether I really like the watch because of its design or because of its incredibly legible dial. Part of me thinks the watch is too simple, while another part of me thinks the watch is deceptively complex. I don't know if the Heritage Military watch is right for yours truly, but in many ways I like it a lot, especially because of the impressive detailing.

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

As a vintage inspired timepiece, the Eterna Heritage Military watch is a modern version of a timepiece from 1939 that Eterna produced for the Czechoslovakian army. On the rear of the original 1939 model was an engraved statement of "Majetek Vojenské Správy," which roughly translates to "property of the military" from Slovak to English. Further, some (but not all) of the original 1939 watches had a small set of crossed daggers engraved into the upper left lug of the case. These military property watches where apparently used by pilots and other important soldiers in the Czechoslovakian army.

Today the Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition watch isn't for military use, but rather for collectors and those who enjoy historic military-style timepieces. Also, all things considered, it isn't all that expensive given today's luxury watch pricing. In most ways, the new Eterna Heritage Military watch is similar to the original 1939 model, though the modern version is larger, at 40mm wide. Though they share a very similar cushion-style case with round dial for the time.

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

The cushion style steel case is perhaps one of the most desirable as well as distinctive elements of the Eterna Heritage Military watch design - and the new model has a case very similar to that of the original. Eterna wasn't clear on the size of the 1939 original, but you can imagine it was much smaller than the 40mm wide size of today's Eterna Heritage Military watch. The case, in steel, is very well finished and the unique angled sections of the bezel look very cool, I must admit.

Eterna will produce two versions of the Heritage Military limited edition watch case. One is in polished and brushed steel which is a more direct analog to the original. The second one is the model I was able to photograph, and it is in a matte PVD black coated steel case. I think either one is probably going to be interesting but admittedly, the PVD clack case is more interesting. The sober finishing of the case mixed with the utilitarian dial feels like something that would have made Eterna proud back in the late 1930s.

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

Eterna produced a number of military watches in the 20th century, and many of them are quite different looking. What holds many of them together is a focus on pure legibility and wide open dials - often with similar hand styles. Again, according to Eterna, these specific vintage models were mostly used by the Czechoslovakian air force. To me, they look like little wall clock faces for the wrist.

The dials themselves are very nice overall, albeit perhaps too simple for some tastes. The face itself is matte black and each of the hour markers are Arabic numerals. The luminant - which is used on the hands and hour markers - is purposely very green and should work well in the dark after it has been charged. Even without charge, the dial is very easy to read in poor lighting conditions.

Eterna Heritage Military Limited Edition Watch Hands-On Hands-On

What do you think?
  • I want it! (2)
  • Thumbs up (1)
  • Classy (1)
  • I love it! (0)
  • Interesting (0)
  • Ulysses31

    It’s a strange looking watch, but I like it.  Reminds me of a vintage watch from another brand though I can’t remember the name off the top of my head.  I think it was a certain Longines model.  That’s the thing about I me, I can never remember names, only (watch) faces.  It’s distinctive enough to be desirable anyway.  Also, happy birthday to me; cheers!

  • trj66

    Ulysses31 Maybe you’re refering to this model?:

    http://novelties.longines.com/heritage-collection.html

    Happy birthday!

  • steveal

    trj66 Ulysses31 Well spotted.
    I think the Longines is a much superior watch.

  • Ulysses31

    trj66 Ulysses31 Yeah that’s the one.  Cheers mate 🙂

  • Fraser Petrick

    I always appreciate a watch that eschews glamour, gimmick and bling. A very handsome, masculine watch.

    (I’ve never used the word “eschews” before. Now I have.)

  • With the black case, the whole design clicks for me. Well except for the date. I know the placement is correct, but it seems distracting somehow.  Maybe leaving it off would be better. I like the simple yet refined interplay of the elements.  Very clean design (‘cept for the date). Almost too classy for a field watch, yet not formal enough for a true dress watch (assuming you swap the strap). But rather than not being either of those ethics, it strikes its own look in the middle ground.

  • Ulysses31 Happy birthday. Are you old enough for a pint now? Kidding of course.
    I like this Eterna more than the Longines which seems to be a bit busy with the 
    knurled bezel and more case surfaces. What I like about the Eterna is how the case has been reduced to its most basic set of planes within the desired shape. Organic (I know that term is overused, but it may just apply here). Cheers and have a pint for me!

  • Ok, this needs an intervention from Colonel Graham Chapman–“Now this date placement is just SILLY! I SILLY, SILLY, SILLY. will have no more of it!”

  • GBD

    I really like this one. All the elements come together and make it work. Of note, the brushed pvd finish is nice (you usually see a smooth matte finish), and agree with Ariel about the proper length hand set, which is something so many companies get wrong so often. I actually like the date function, but I think the date window is a little too close to the six o’clock marker.

  • Fraser Petrick

    MarkCarson Ulysses31  Totally agree about the Longines bezel. The Eterna’s  is more organic, yes;     but is it gluten free?
    As for the pint, may I recommend Fin du Monde from Chambly, Quebec. It’s the best beer…in the world.

  • Fraser Petrick MarkCarson Ulysses31 Drink more craft beer. Although that certainly is one of unibroue’s better labels. I do enjoy a Blanche de Chambly from time to time.

  • Quite handsome. I do think I prefer the PVD model, but were you review this while listening to emo or something Ariel? Your pictures are all so dark… 

    The 1st pic on page 2 shows some interesting wear to the strap in the centre of the lugs – common for aftermarket straps, if you cut them too thick and they rub against the case. I have also seen that look ‘forced’ for effect, with specific burnishing done in that area to give the look of experience – does the strap touch the case in the centre there? If so, poor planning.

  • DangerussArt

    I like the vintage one best. I think this watch would have been an appropriate place for that aged tritium faux vintage luminant. The green is off putting and looks inexpensive in this application.

  • Fraser Petrick

    Panagiotis  At least the date placement isn’t between the 4 and 5, looking as if it had stepped on a banana peel and had slipped down from the 3.
    From Leghorn Foghorn to Col. Chapman: “You realize, sir, this means war.”

  • chronoshop_cz

    Just a little correction „Majetek Vojenské Správy” is in Czech language.

  • watchgoober

    Nice watch, but 2 grand for a plain jane 2824? Case is nice but not really that special. Many better military style watches for much less out there.

    Then again, I think all the new Eternas are overpriced. How they survive is beyond me….

  • funkright

    I was thinking the same thing as one of the other posters ‘nice watch, but for 2k I’d spend my money elsewhere’. For $700-$900 I’d think of picking one up.

  • Waltermaximus

    That’s a very nice overpriced watch

  • Fraser Petrick truth be told the 4.30 placement might have been better on this watch! I can’t get over the 6 over 6, or 8 over 6, or 31 over 6 or whatever…The date and the 6 are too close 🙂

  • trj66

    Gosh, heritage pieces from the vaults of the Czech Army/Airforce
    certainly are in vogue: first the Longines (with a ghastly date, but
    otherwise nice looks) and now this Eterna (with a ghastly date…).

    Czech Heritage the new black?
    (I really like the original sans date)

  • Intriguing case shape, and the logo does give a truer vintage feel.  Interestingly enough, with those gold scales, it gives this a very instrumentation-style feel.

  • Nothing particularly inspiring about this watch though it looks well constructed.
    Date window totally unnecessary and kind of throws everything off, but at least it didn’t cut into a marker like some brands do. 
    Why not source a manual wind center seconds movement like the original? 2824 just seems too lazy and at over $2k, seems excessively greedy unless they’re planning a very limited run and need to recoup costs?
    Nice tribute to the original but I think I’d rather search for the inspiration.

  • Hacker4748

    Small corrections:
    – “Czechoslovak”, not “Czechoslovakian”, please
    – as chronoshop_cz correctly noted, the text “Majetek Vojenské Správy” is in Czech, not Slovak
    – “Majetek Vojenské Správy” translates rather to something like “property of the military administration”

  • Shawnnny

    For 2K + it should have a sapphire back and slightly decorated movement. Instead, you’ll be getting a very horrible looking caseback. In fact if you look at a zoomed in image of the caseback, it looks like the build quality is extremely terrible.

  • Shawnnny

    In fact, they should be ashamed by that caseback!!

  • Shawnnny A sapphire case back to look at what? An undecorated pedestrian 2824? At least you can engrave something on a solid back. Something like “I think I paid too much for this”

  • trj66 Seems the most noteworthy thing about the Czech military was their watches.

  • Shawnnny

    They should decorate it.

  • Shawnnny If you mean the stainless case back (as opposed to the black one), I totally agree as that entire case is crap. However the black one is very different. Perhaps the SS one is a vintage reference photo for comparison.

  • Fraser Petrick The watch is probably cholesterol free, sugar free and contains no GMOs. But a bit crunchy to chew.

  • antjay

    Shawnnny  Although it is not made clear in the text , I am pretty sure the photo of the case back is from the original watch . The crown in this photo somewhat different to the other photos . I hope this is the case because the case back pictured is rough as guts !

  • antjay

    I like this one and would definitely wear it , just not sure if I would pay 2 grand + for it .

  • antjay

    Chaz_Hen trj66 And the BREN gun.

  • spiceballs

    SuperStrapper Fraser Petrick MarkCarson Ulysses31  prefer a Swakopmund Lager

  • spiceballs

    Like the simplicity and finish except maybe the gilt (and yes I suppose the date could be a bit further away from the “6”, at least its in the right place to my eye) but price does seem a bit OTT for a bog standard ETA movement.  Why don’t they use their own new movement?

  • luis6

    spiceballs Yes, I agree. The position of that date windows kills an otherwise handsome watch.

  • marbstiu

    magrette..zzzzzzzzzzzz

  • aayushithakur32

    It’s a strange looking watch, but I like it.  Reminds me of a vintage
    watch from another brand though I can’t remember the name off the top of
    my head.  I think it was a certain Longines model.  That’s the thing
    about I me, I can never remember names, only (watch) faces.  It’s
    distinctive enough to be desirable anyway.  Also, happy birthday to me;
    cheers!
    http://flashgamingportal.com

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