Ask Gonzo ’bout watches – XXXIV

Q. Hello Gonzo! I noticed a couple of fine pieces and I am no watch enthusiast. I simply go by the looks but apart from that, I want to know why I should really buy one or all of these. I like the rectangular shapes only because I see not too many people wearing that kind of a thing on their respective wrist tops. Though I like the round variety and it appeals no less – still, I think, a diversion is sometimes, nice. I also noticed a disproportionate circular-to-rectangular rate in the market, which I think, makes it all the more exquisite. Especially, for the square movement!

Anyway, thanks for considering my question. I might sound a bit foolish sometimes but as I declared first – I’m no connoisseur.

A. One thing leads to another; your fascinations for looks brought you near to the innards as you want to know the other pleasures you buy with the Orient. But, just as you said you’re no connoisseur, like that, you must understand I’m no salesman either. You have made your pick and we’ll discuss a little on that; don’t expect any sweetening here. We’ll just correct the points where you went wrong.

Firstly, they are not rectangular. Three out of the five of your initial pick are what we call tonneau; a watch case that resembles the longitudinal cross section of a keg or barrel. The French way to say that is to-no whereas Southerners say ton-yo, the ton comes with a long ‘o’. Northwest says tahwn-o or tawn-oh. Make your pick. The rest are square.

Why, you might also ask.

For everything, there is a reason. Taking dubious privileges is not something that goes down well with the horological world. It makes you drip a mire of ignorance and play rhythms to questions that don’t match.

You must decide first if it’s a rectangular watch that you want or a rectangular movement. It’s not mandatory for both to be similar in shape. A round movement – like the ones you picked – sits very well within square and tonneau cases and yes, also within the real rectangular cases. The 46A- and 46B-40 drives many other Orient masterpieces and are created for the long haul. The latter holds 40 hours of power and beats at 21,600 bph. It sports day, date and 24 hours complications while the former is plain timekeeping. You need to wear them at least on alternate days, for 8 hours.

If you want my honest opinion, I have seen round watches sell 10 times to square, tonneau or rectangular ones. Certainly, it’s not the majority’s preference for you need extremely formal clothing to go with one. But that’s a sloth mind, lacking imagination. If you are creative, these are indeed the rare and genuinely interesting watches in the price range.

Watch(es) mentioned in this post are listed below. Click to see details and buy them:

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