The Archimede Pilot 42 Bronze offers a pretty clear value proposition. Archimede is a leading brand in the genre of classic pilot watches, offering very affordable, German-manufactured pieces with quality build, sober design and excellent execution. And with the 42, they offer something completely unique, as no other classically styled bronze pilots exist on the market, at least as far as we can tell.
With that said, even amongst the pilot watch diehards, this watch is still not going to appeal to everyone, simply for the fact that a bronze case is of no interest. Hell, it very well may be a turn-off. The gold luster of the freshly unboxed watch quickly fades as the bronze case oxidizes, and who really likes the idea of green copper oxide residue on their wrist?
To all you naysayers, I won’t argue. Owning a bronze watch certainly comes with its unique quirks. But at the same time, there is so much unique character and intrigue that a watch like the Pilot 42 Bronze offers. Over time the watch will become truly one of a kind, with a patina on the dial and case that no other pilot can mimic, and all the while, you’ll get the enjoyment of wearing a piece that stands up to the aesthetic and quality of nearly any other pilot watch on the market, especially those priced comparably to the 42.
The model we’ve reviewed, the 42H, comes with Swiss ETA 2824-2 movement and sapphire crystal, and is prices at just $700 shipped from Archimede. It’s hard to argue with that.