Manufacturer: Badger Watches | Price: $620 USD (£470 GBP, €560 EUR approx)
I recently stated in my review of the Titoni Cosmo that I should start reviewing more dress watches. Well, here we have yet another dress watch, this time by Badger Watches, named the Islander. The first time I seen the Islander from Badger Watches, I liked it, although I couldn’t help but chuckle slightly because of the name Badger. Back in the day, when I used to play a LOT of World of Warcraft, I remember someone from our guild linking the badger song. F**k it, I’ll show you…
Annoying as the video above may be, it sticks in your head. Anyway, I’ve went a bit off-topic there, back to the Islander. I reached out to Leroy, the owner of Badger Watches, and he sent over the Origin Edition for me to take a look at.
- Dimensions: Case Diameter – 38.2mm, Thickness – 10.7mm, Lug to Lug – 47.5mm, Lug Width – 22mm
- Movement: Swiss Sellita SW200-1, Automatic, 28,800vph (4Hz), Hackable, Self Winding, 38hr Power Reserve
- Case Material: Tonneau, Brushed 316L Stainless Steel with Polished Accents
- Strap: Choice of Italian Calf Grain or Suede Leather, Signed Buckle
- Crystal: Flat Sapphire, Underside AR Coating
- Bezel: Fixed, Polished
- Water Resistance: 50m / 5ATM
- Lume: Swiss Super Luminova® BGW9
- Crown: Signed Caseback: Screwed Down (8 Screws), Exhibition Display
- Warranty: 1 Year Where to Buy: Badger Watches
- Options: Azure Blue, Onyx Black, Origin Edition, Sage Green
Case & Crown
The case of the Islander has a diameter of 38.2mm. The lug to lug is 47.5mm and the overall thickness, including the sapphire crystal, I measured in at just 10.7mm. The entire case, bezel and crown are all 316L stainless steel. The finish of the tonneau case is mostly brushed with just a couple of small polished accents around the crown guards. For those wondering what the hell a tonneau case is, well to put it simply, it’s barrel shaped. That’s all you need to know without me copy & pasting like TGV on crack. Those who don’t know who TGV is, trust me, you’re better off not knowing.
The Islander has a water resistance rating of 50m, perfectly fine for a dress watch. This is mainly down to the screwed down caseback. The proportions of the watch, in my opinion, are fantastic for my 7″ wrist. The Islander wears very well on wrist and don’t let the 38mm diameter fool you, as due to the tonneau shape and lug to lug of 47.5mm it wears larger than your typical 38mm watch. The signed crown is pretty good, it looks great and there’s minimal wobble when the crown is pulled out to any position, although I do wish it was a little larger to make it easier to grip. The display caseback is one of my favourite features of the Islander; with it’s circular glass display framing the movement absolutely perfectly.
The suede strap that came fitted to the Origin Edition that I have here, is very, very nice, although I would have opted for the grey option for this colour of dial. Anyway, the signed, matching buckle is also nice, if a bit simple, but I suppose that’s what you want on a dress watch. No matter which Islander you opt for, you do get the choice of four straps.
Dial, Bezel & Lume
The Badger Islander has a polished fixed bezel. The dial itself has very neatly done hour markers and arabics at the 3 & 9 o’clock positions, all of which have an adequate helping of BGW9. The logo on the dial is at first glance not even there, but it is, in small text just above the 12 o’clock position. The hour markers themselves, even if they look applied, they aren’t, they are actually embossed from behind. Nice touch! Oh yeah, top marks to Badger for including the date at the 6 o’clock position, great choice! Although I’d recommend colour matching the date wheel on the darker models. Lastly, I’d remove the “Swiss Movt” text as it just looks tacky in my opinion. If it doesn’t say “Swiss Made” or “Made in Germany”, I wouldn’t bother my arse putting anything down there. Stick with the super clean aesthetic for this watch. #Justmy2Cents
As you can see in the images, the hour and minute hands are nicely done with their tear drop appearance. The seconds hand is nice too given the watches overall aesthetic. The lume is decent for a dress watch but probably just average coming from me, a total lume junkie, that likes to see lume as “always more the better“, no matter what the style of watch it is. I think Badger Watches has missed a trick here on the lume front, as it could have been applied much more evenly and with loads more applications, as the real estate is there and available on the dial. Granted, the watch I have here is a prototype press sample so I can only presume this will be rectified on the production models.
This being the first watch from Badger, I can honestly say that I am overall impressed with the Islander. There are a couple of small changes I’d personally make that I’ve mentioned above, but there is nothing really majorly wrong with the Islander. I suppose it all comes down to personal preference at the end of the day. At the stated retail of just under £500, it is fairly priced, although as with anything else in this world, and of course being the true tight-arsed Scotsman that I am, I’d love to see it slightly cheaper.
The choice of movement is a good one and does help justify the price. I’m a huge fan of the Sellita SW200 and I’ve never had any issues with it. It’s always been a reliable, accurate, high beat go-to movement of choice for me.
Badger Watches – A very nice first watch, great attention to detail and I love the tonneau case and the watches overall design. I’m looking forward to seeing what else you come up with in the future. Sports / Diver watch maybe?