Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Orient M-Force Model Reference SEL07002B0 (or EL07002B or WV0151EL) “Delta” or “Beast II” – Supersized beater watch, A Review (and Video)

Since the first Orient M-Force was launched back in 1997, I have been following this line very closely. In fact, the last three renditions are part of my collection (the SEL03, the SEL06 and the DV02).

When Orient launched the Titanium M Force (DV02) series back in March 2013, watch collectors complained loudly about the decision of eliminating the power reserve indicator which has been part of all M-Force models. It would appear that Orient listened and in May 2014, the SEL07 series were introduced that included a power reserves indicator as standard.

It took two years before I got the change to get my hands on one of the SEL07 models. I finally chose the SEL07002B0, the model with the black dial and bezel.

Like all M-Force by Orient, this watch is ISO-compliant on three fronts. This watch is certified internationally to be compliant to ISO 6425 i.e. diver’s watch standard. It is also compliant to the ISO 764 standard for anti-magnetic watches as well as compliant to the ISO 1413 standard for shock-resistant watches.



Made using the 316L stainless steel for the case and bracelet, this watch has a one-way rotating bezel, a screw-down solid case-back and crown and protected by sapphire crystal over the dial. It is a supersized M-Force watch with the wrist presence to intimidate. Officially, it is 49.1 mm diameter with a thickness of 13.6 mm. However, if you look closely at the watch, it is more like a diamond shape design where the distance between the Northeast and Southwest (similarly the Northwest and Southeast) quadrants is a much smaller 44 mm while the lug-to-lug distance is approximately 54 mm. There is a compensating bulge on the watch casing at the 9 o’clock position to be symmetrical with the crown and crown guard on the opposite side.



The dial is black but with vertical louvered pattern. Main markers as well as the interesting partial skeleton hour and minute hands are painted with luminous paint. The pip at the 12 o’clock position on the bezel as well as the tip of the second hand are also painted with luminous paint.



The watch has power reserve indicator and a date window. The power reserve indicator is located at the 12 o’clock position while the date function is set in a window situated at 3 o'clock. The scale on the power reserve is up to 40 hours and is indicated using white Arabic numbers every 10 hours. Meanwhile, the date aperture has a white boarder and the dates are black on a white background. It is important to note that the date window did not replace the 3 o'clock marker completely. The partial 3 o’clock marker can still generate illumination in the dark for reference.

Apart from the brand and logo, the more obvious wordings are the words "Automatic" and "200 m" in white; and the word "M-Force" in red. The chapter ring is also black and minute markers are printed on it.

As highlighted earlier, the dial is protected by sapphire crystal. Although not mentioned in any formal documents or reports, some would say that Orient does subject the inner part of the crystal to anti-reflective coating treatment. However, in a simple test of just eyeballing the crystal, the reflection is rather pronounced for a treated crystal. My guess is there is no treatment at all.



The bezel design is new. The bezels on previous M-Force models have some form of ridged top surface. However, for this new model, the surface is flat. Only the side has gear-like protuberance for grip. The bezel is painted black using the PVD process with white Arabic numbers and markers and a luminous pip at 12 o'clock is provided. The bezel is uni-directional and moves with 120-clicks for a full turn.

The bezel is rather thick. Excluding the area covered by the bezel, the sapphire crystal only covers a diameter of 34 mm.



In this model, the crown is located at the 3 o’clock position. Like the previous M-Force models, a red band around the crown is standard and helps user confirm whether the crown has been screwed down properly. The large crown on the M-Force has the brand etched on top of it. It is also protected by two short shoulders protruding from the casing. The large gear-like treads on the crown provide the necessary grip. An interesting note is that at full extension (to adjust time) of the crown, there is a noticeable play of the crown stem from dead center (> 6 degrees of play). Based on feedback from other owners, this is normal. For new owners, it could be quite alarming to see the level of ‘looseness’ of the crown. Some play is expected as a rigid setup may not be able to absorb shocks effectively.



For the first time, Orient chose a unique lug design for this model. The bracelet connects to the watch casing from one central lug instead of a pair of corner lugs. Replacing the bracelet with different types of aftermarket strap options is no longer possible unless you are able to find a strap that has the central lug connection. For me this is not a problem as I don’t replace the standard bracelet or strap that comes with a watch with aftermarket options. However, if you like to mix and match your strap options, this limitation is an issue.

The unique lugs are somewhat angled from the watch casing and short. This has the benefit of ensuring the lugs do not create too much of an overhang over the wrist, especially for those with thinner wrists.

The central lug is 12 mm wide. The solid bracelet is 26 mm at the edge of the watch casing and tapers down to 24 mm near the center before reducing finally to 22 mm at the clasp. It uses the pin-and-collar system for resizing. The bracelet features a threefold double locking clasp with push button to prevent falling from the wrist should a malfunction occurs. The bridge that links the two sides of the bracelet is a pair of stamped plates. The safety clasp has enough flat space to put a lot of information or graphics on. Orient chose to put the brand and logo on it. Nevertheless, there is still a lot of empty space available if you want to etch something on it.

As a diver's watch as capable of 200 meters underwater, I am surprised that Orient did not provide a diver's extension system into the clasp mechanism. If you need to wear a wet suit, it would be very difficult to use this watch.

From a design perspective, the use of a proprietary lug system gives a special “uniqueness” to the model. As a collector, I prefer my collection to remain stock for originality. The special lug system is viewed positively from my perspective. Nevertheless, there are a lot of other enthusiasts that do not share this view and find such a system regressive. The only suggestion that I could give to Orient to help satisfy everyone is perhaps also include lug adapters (i.e. a couple of end-links with a standard pair of corner lugs at one end) or perhaps include a replacement leather or canvas strap as a choice (similar to what was given in addition to the bracelet if you purchase the Orient 300M Pro Saturation Diver). This would be much appreciated by people living in colder regions (you don't want to wear something with a metal bracelet in winter!).

Orient should also consider a diver's extension system for this watch. I have said it before and I will say it again; Orient, please do not advertise this watch as a divers’ watch if it not able to do the job it was designed for. Even in the tropics, most people dive with diving suits as it reduces heat lost (don’t think at the equator the warm sea water don’t sap body heat) and offer some form of protection against sharp corals and such.



Like the previous M-Force models before it, the case-back is a screw-down and devoid of any major graphics apart from a small brand and logo stamped in the middle. Around the peripheral of the case-back, important information about the watch is etched. Behind this solid case-back is the engine that drives this watch, the Orient 40N5A in-house movement. This movement has 22 jewels, and apart from powering the hands, it also controls the power reserve indicator as well as the date function. It is capable of hand winding as well as hacking. Power in the springs has been stated at 40 hours. The movement beats at 21,600 BPH or 3 Hertz with a stated accuracy of +-15 per day. In reality, the accuracy is well within the official boundaries.

The Reveal

The watch box is approximately 15 cm by 10 cm by 13.5 cm. Made out of high quality cardboard; all black with the brand and logo printed in silver at the top of the box. The package comes in 3 sections, the white outer sleeve as a protection while in storage; the storage box in black; and the display box also in black.

In the storage box you will find the display box as well as the manual and guarantee document.



The display box has a red strip running from the mid-point of the left side, front and ending at the mid-point of the right side. In this box you will find the watch resting on a black velvet pillow. The inner section is also in black. On the inner top part of the display box is the brand and logo printed in silver.

For this purchase, the standard price is RM1,961 but I was able to get it for RM1,400. Unfortunately, I did not get any free gift with this purchase .



The Wearing Experience

This watch is designed as a tank to take punishment. Issues regarding size and weight should be expected and not be seen as problems that require solving.



Despite the colossal size of the watch, the thick black PVD bezel and smaller diameter sapphire crystal makes the watch very proportional that belies its actual size. Nevertheless, those with smaller wrist will find it awkward wearing this watch. Even with my wrist circumference of 7.25 inches, I barely able to pull it off.

This watch is definitely for casual wear or while on active pursuits. It is difficult to wear for formal functions as the size makes it hard to slip under cuffs. It is also hefty but in a gratifying way.

Below is a short video of the watch on my wrist.




Manual

Below is the manual for the watch. The English section starts from page 19 onward.






Photo Gallery





Orient M-Force Delta or Beast II











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