Farer Watches - Lander Review
Farer Lander GMT Review
Microbrands represent an interesting sub-section of the watch world these days. They offer watches, that in many ways, are equal to the major Swiss makers in their quality and offerings, but lack that “buzz-word” quality or “wrist-frosting” attribute that someone like Omega or Rolex has. Farer is a micro brand based in London. They typically design their watches with a nod towards vintage stylings and with very unique and diverse color-ways. I’ve had the opportunity to handle a couple of their watches and I have to say that I am very impressed by the work they’re putting out. Before we get into a review let’s go over some specs:
- Case Width: 39.5mm
- Lug to Lug: 45.5mm
- Case Height: 11mm
- Strap Lug: 20mm
- Weight: 2.3oz on strap
The Lander is a comfy watch to wear. It comes in SUPER thin at 11mm and sits pretty unobtrusively on your wrist. The more I get into watches, the more I am starting to trend downward in case size. However, with a 7.25” wrist I do have my limits on case size that I can wear. One of the big factors that contributes to how a watch will look on your wrist is the lug to lug measurement. This watch is about 45mm lug to lug, giving the Lander a really attractive wrist presence, all the while remaining comfortable to wear.
An interesting trend that I am seeing with micro brands is they tend to focus on certain aspects of the watch. Farer uses relatively simplistic steel cases and focuses the details on the dial. The case is polished, with nice straight lugs. One of Farer’s trademarks is their solid bronze, signed crown. I really like this detail. Some people see it as gimmicky, but I think it’s cool. The crown is appropriately sized and textured to make winding and manipulating it easy. If I could make one gripe about it, it would be that the bronze, like copper, can turn your skin green. So you may find a little green dot where the crown touches the back of your hand. Not a big deal to me.
The movement is an ETA 2893-2 Top Grade. This is ETA’s GMT movement, and it’s what I call a “calling GMT,” meaning that you are able to freely adjust the GMT hand after setting the local time. This is in contrast to a “flying GMT” where you adjust the local time. Basically with a “calling GMT” you can adjust the second time zone quickly, in order for you to keep an eye on a different part of the world if you need to deal with someone there. The “flying GMT” is where the second time zone stays true to home, and you’re able to adjust the local time when you walk off a plane. I have found this movement to be very reliable and it has been proven reliable in many watches over the years. The watch arrived to me running a little fast, but that’s typical with a brand new ETA watch, it should settle out over the next few weeks.
A brief note, the case-back of the watch is a display back showing a really nicely decorated movement. It’s a very special touch, and brings a lot of value to the piece, especially when you consider the bespoke rotor and nice decorations.
Dial, Bezel, and Crystal:
So this is where the Lander (or any of Farer’s watches) really start to shine. The Lander has a sunburst sea green bezel that is stepped down in the middle. It creates a ton of dimension when you look at the dial. Printed on the dial are all the arabic numerals at the hour marks. On the far edges of the dial there are 24-hr marks for the GMT hand to point at. Lastly, at the far edges on the chapter ring, there are minute marks. This watch is capable of relaying an enormous amount of information in a quick glance. The 3 o’clock marker is redacted in favor of a very tasteful circular date window. The date is black font on a white field making it super legible. This plays right into the vintage styling of the Lander.
The hands on the Lander are super cool. Two syringe hands for the hour and minute with a long arrow-head styled orange second hand. An orange GMT hand reaches out perfectly to the GMT scale on the edge of the dial.
The lume pattern is also worth noting. The hands are generously lit with blue lume. The Arabic numerals are outlined with green lume, as well as small pips in between those marks. To be perfectly honest, it’s not the brightest when you charge it up, but it does function perfectly well in the dark.
Lastly, the crystal is a really beautifully domed sapphire crystal. Honestly, it reminds me of the crystal on my Omega Speedmaster Sapphire Sandwich. The crystal is anti-reflective coated, although it does catch a nice amount of reflections when you look at it. The display back is also sapphire.
The strap is a pretty simplistic padded leather strap with one major exception. Farer incorporates these quick release spring bars on their straps, so that’s pretty cool. I think the best way to describe it is that the OEM strap is “adequate,” but I wouldn’t say that it’s worth noting, or really keeping on the watch if you find something else you like.
As you can tell, I really dig the Lander. I think that Farer did an excellent job creating a GMT watch that uses exceptional materials, at a quality level that is equal to some of the major Wwiss brands. If you read the threads online about Farer watches you’re likely going to run into some bellyaching about price. These GMT watches are about $1500 direct from Farer. My rebuttal to their issues is simply that there aren’t many other Swiss made, top grade ETA using, GMT watches available on the market at this price point. They are usually much more. To summarize, the Farer GMT series of watches, in particular the Lander, offer a really great value for the quality. I challenge you to find a better made GMT at a lower price… If it’s out there, I’d really like to know.