Techné is a brand we’ve been following since we first started worn&wound. Specializing in great looking pilot and aviator watches with even more outstanding prices, they are one of the few brands out there they is as committed to design as they are to quality and value. They also take a no fuss, transparent approach to what they make.Utilizing Asian made movements and cases, they keep their costs down, but not at the expense of quality. They also are willing to try things that many other brands seem scared of, such as using SeaGull ST1901 mechanical chronographs and interesting quartz movements to provide variety without high prices.
Their newest watches, the Harrier series, stay true to the philosophies of the brand while pursuing a more modern aesthetic. Though the older Techné models are clearly present in the new Harriers, one can see how the aesthetic has evolved and become both bolder and cleaner for a more aggressive and contemporary look. Once again, Techné has utilized a couple of different movements to give customers some interesting options, while maintaining a great price point that includes sapphire crystals.
For review we had the reference 363, which is a 3-hand model with date that is powered by the Miyota 9015 automatic movement, starting at $465. We also had a the less expensive, but featured-packed, reference 392, which has a Miyota GP11 Quartz with 24-hr dial, retrograde dual-time zone and oversized date, starting at $260.
Case: Brushed Steel or PVD
Movement: Miyota 9015 / Miyota GP11
Water Res.: 50m
Dimensions: 41 x 51mm
Thickness: 11.1 mm
Lug Width: 20 mm
Crown: 6 x 3 mm screw down
Warranty: 1 year
The steel case of the Harrier has a classic and straightforward design with just enough unique details to have a personality of its own. Measuring 41 x 51 x 11.1 mm, the case is a healthy medium size with a fairly thin profile. From above the case has a standard shape consisting of a circular center with slabs sides and angular lugs. The lugs are perhaps the most interesting aspect of the case. From the top, they look like triangular, attaching to the case at a wide point and tapering to the end. They have a sleekness that lends the Harrier an overall more modern and stealth feeling than previous Techné watches.
From the side, they are actually quite strange. The start with a slight slope away from the case then cut sharply into a flat plane angled down. The tip of the lugs then swoops underneath with a circular shape that is altogether unexpected. Overhead, it has a very fluid form, but from the side it feels more utilitarian and tool like, as though it were stripped out of another piece of equipment. One strange aspect is that the round area feels like a natural rotation point for the straps, but they actually connect further back.
The bezel is relatively thick, giving the watch a beefiness that suits the overall bold design. This also helps temper the size of the watch. At 3 there is a small screw-down crown that measures about 6 x 3mm. It’s perhaps a touch small for the case, but is still easily graspable, and doesn’t look out of place. On the flat side is an etching of what appears to be an old-school diving helmet. The case back of the ref 363 features a display window to show the Miyota 9015 automatic movement inside, while the 392 is a simple steel plate. Both feature various details about the watches and nothing particularly superfluous.
Overall, the cases are very well constructed with good tolerances and decent, though not cumbersome, weight. Both models feature fairly simple finishing. The 392 has an even brushing throughout that gives it a no fuss look. The 363 has a matte black PVD that is even, dense and well applied. One thing I’ve always liked about PVD Techné watches is the black of the dial and the black of the case tend to perfectly match, giving the watch more seamless look. This is of course the case with the 363 model. Both models are available in either steel or PVD.
Dial: ref 363
Staying true to Techné’s branding, the Harrier ref 363 is a spot on aviator. With big, bold, clean numerals and indexes, the watch puts legibility at the forefront. Aviator watches, being a fairly popular trend of the last several years, often are very similar to almost identical. While the aviator design vocabulary is clear in the Harrier watches, I do think that Techné added enough little differences to make it a unique watch.
The dial surface is dense matte black, as I mentioned before, which makes all of the markings stand out very clearly. Unlike many other aviators, the dial actually has multiple levels, which makes it more visually interesting. The center of dial is dropped down a step. Visually, it makes me think of the interior indexes of “navigator” style flieger watches (such as the Steinhart we reviewed) though it contains no index. That being said, it is used to house any text that is on the dial, which helps organize the layout.
The main index consists of large lumed rectangles with smaller white hash marks for the individual minutes/seconds. Two details that I really like about this index is the fine white line around the very edge of the dial, which gives the design a finished feeling, and the two dots at 12. On either side of the rectangle at 12 are white lumed dots that refer to classic pilot/military dial design. The two dots provide an immediate visual cue for orienting the watch.
Amending the main index are large 6, 9 and 12 numerals, which are telltale design elements of an aviator watch. These numerals are clearly the visual centerpiece of the design, and as such were executed very nicely. They numerals are very large, but not ridiculous, enabling at-a-glance readability. These numerals are also lumed, so they stay legible in low light.