Bernhardt Binnacle Anchor is the latest in Bernhardt’s Binnacle lineup and an absolute stellar value piece with a classic explorer style. Bernhardt released this watch in mid-2010 and it has since become an extremely popular model in his collection. The Binnacle Anchor clearly takes style cues from the Rolex Explorer classic 3, 6, 9 and no date features. This is a modern update of the Explorer. Be sure to check it out at Bernhardt’s website, for $199 it’s a best buy. http://www.bernhardtwatch.com/binnacle.html.
Case and Crystal
The stainless steel case diameter is approximately 40mm excluding the crown. Lug to lug length is 50mm and the lug width is 20mm. The case has deeply polished sides and crown. The crown sports the typical “B” for Bernhardt and is a treat to wind. The case’s bezel is a smooth bezel at a slight angle and is polished stainless steel. The lack of crown guards adds to the sleek appeal of the case lines and produces a very smooth continuous feel to the case edges.
One of the main features of the watch is the built in end link. The end link is built directly into the case and is non-removable. This produces a clean finished look when the bracelet or the included leather strap is attached.
The crystal is a flat, non-AR sapphire crystal. It does the job very well and is clear and like all sapphire crystal will not scratch under normal wear.
Dial and Hands
The dial is a deep black with slight sunburst metallic pattern. It’s a great piece and very different than a standard deep black dial. There are over-sized applied markers at “12” “3” “6” and “9.” All the hour markers get an over-sized applied shaped stick marker. All the applied markers are lumed and glow very well at night, although they do lose their intensity rather quickly. The hour and minute hands are straight sticks with lume in the middle – classic. The second hand is straight polished silver with an anchor on the end — a very nice touch and something I always stare at when looking at this watch. The dial text is classic and clean with only “Bernhardt” at the top and “Binnacle Anchor” at the bottom. My only complaint with the dial is that the hour marker for 11 and 1 tend to meld with the “12” making the whole 11 – 1 area look like “1121” instead of hour marker, “12”, hour marker.
As you’ve read in other Bernahrdt reviews, the bracelet is a major factor in catapulting this piece out of the ordinary and into the extraordinary. The bracelet is the most comfortable bracelet I’ve ever worn. It’s has thick, solid ,screw links with a machined clasp with flip lock. It’s in the oyster style, with the middle part of the link and sides of the links polished with the other bits brushed. This is in keeping with the overall style of the watch as a sport/dress watch. The bracelet has a straight end link to allow it to interface with the built in end links of the case. This could have been catastrophic for this watch, but Bernhardt has pulled it off. The bracelet fits snugly in place and looks amazing with the built in end links of the case.
The Binnacle Anchor also comes with a croc-pattern calf leather black strap with contrast stitching. The leather used feel slightly plasticy, but does break in over time. The contrast stitching keeps the sport feel of the watch. The buckle is a tang style buckle with “Bernhardt” etched across it. At $199, I’m surprised this watch comes with BOTH the stainless steel bracelet and the leather strap, but it’s a knock out combination making this watch easily one of the most versatile in my collection.
Movement and Accuracy
The Binnacle Anchor uses a Miyota 8215 workhorse. It’s hand windable and non-hacking. It has proven, in this watch and others I own, to be a dependable movement. It gains about 10 seconds a day. The winding is smooth and solid. The rotor only winds in the counter clockwise direction; it spins freely when rotating clockwise. The power reserve is about 40 hours on this model and it really does get the whole 40 hours. Overall a solid movement used in many affordable watches with great success, as it is here.
Buy one, you will love it!
- 40mm (excluding signed screw down crown)
- water resistance to 200 meters
- 316-L stainless steel
- sapphire crystal
- stainless bracelet with screws
- genuine 20mm leather strap with white stitching
- Miyota 8215 automatic movement
- built-in end piece for perfect fit
- 2 year warranty
- wood display box