Undone Basecamp Automatic 40mm – $295
NOTE: Looks like Huckberry is running low on stock. Green appears to be gone, but the “blackout” option is still available. UNDONE also has them available through their site direct.
My first reaction when I saw these show up online was: WHAT is THAT?
In a good way.
Somehow, this watch brand Undone has created a watch with a design that feels like a mash-up between classic field and totally modern styles. And that’s gonna catch a lot of eyeballs (my hand is raised). And while it’s not too expensive, the build quality feels solid, and it undoubtedly looks great, watch enthusiasts might take some issue with a few of the features. Or quirks. Or, quirky features.
The bubble domed crystal is made from Lexan/Plexiglass. And man does it pick up some glare. It’s far from unreadable, but, just know it’s got some glare. And while that Lexan has the benefits of impact resistance 250x stronger than glass, it’s probably not gonna be scratch free over time. But with the explosion in popularity of second hand/vintage watches, many might see that as part of the charm. Watches from decades back used to carry plexiglass crystals all the time. And some guys even search out well worn, well scratched up luxury pieces. While this isn’t a luxury watch, don’t be surprised if you at some point put your own mark(s) on the crystal.
Water resistance isn’t massive. Just 50m. Which is fine, but that isn’t a lot. Yet it has a screw down crown? And that crown is shaped like an octagon. And while my days of banged up digits from either swinging a hammer, or playing the piano for cash, are long gone, my fingers aren’t super sensitive either. I got mitts guys. My hands aren’t fancy. Yet even I experienced a little “damn, sonofagun” factor while operating the screw down crown with that octagon, bolt-head style.
The bezel is a bi-directional, zero click bezel. You read that right. You can spin that sucker either way, but it won’t click. That said, there is enough tension/friction between the bezel and the case to keep the triangle from flying about. But still, some of us feel a bit more secure with a click. Also, there’s a total lack of markings (sterile) around the bezel other than the triangle at 12. It’s a look that’s both retro and modern at the same time. Not super functional, but I suppose if you’re after hyper accuracy, an antiquated technology like automatic/mechanical watches might not be your thing. Use your phone. Or build your own atomic clock.
Diameter is a perfect-for-many 40mm. Straps are 20mm. Hardware and strap are legit too. Really great feel. Thick. Not an afterthought. Watch has an exhibition case back so you can see the hacking and hand winding Seiko NH35A automatic movement at work. That’s a solid movement. Date window shows up between 4 and 5 o’clock, which frankly, kinda interrupts the sleek simplicity of the dial. I dig the GMT style, big orange arrow hour hand myself, but I can understand how some people may think it looks out of place.
Yes there are cheaper field watches. Yes many of those cheaper field watches, even some of the automatic ones, come with better “specs” (water resistance, crystal, etc). No there just isn’t a lot like this Undone Basecamp out there on the market. So while some guys will take a hard pass, I do think these are fun, have a unique cool factor, and will find a home on more than a few wrists.
Enter here to win the UNDONE Basecamp in dark green shown in the post above. Deadline for entry is 11:59 PM ET on 6/25/19. One entry per person. Big thanks to Huckberry for sending along one of these UNDONE watches for review and giveaway!
UPDATE: Congrats to K. Bailey who won the random drawing for the Basecamp!