closing tag is in template navbar
Time Factors Watches



TZ-UK Fundraiser
Results 1 to 25 of 25

Thread: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

  1. #1
    Master sweets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bristol - UK
    Posts
    4,843

    Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Morning
    I have recently aquired a new (to me) watch after much wrangling for one, and it was suggested elsewhere that I do a comparison between my DeLuca, and its new, poorer cousin from the other side of the ferroviario piste (that's Italian for train tracks). The Lorenz chrono-sub.

    As they are both recent vintage (lates 80s and 90s) bezelled 12-hr chronographs with a decent WR and silvered sub-dials to lend an air of civilised, rather than purely sporting use, it makes perfect sense to compare the two.

    So in the best Harry Hill tradition, there is only one thing for it.


    FIGHT!!!!

    Here we go, 12 rounds of heavyweight horo-boxing will decide the winner.

    Ding-ding, round 1



    Cost and affordability
    DeLucas are around 2k, Lorenz chrono-subs anywhere from 400 to 900, dependent as much on seller as condition and sundries like the bracelet etc. Expect to pay a lot more to service the Zenith too.

    Round 1 to the cheap cousin wearing a slightly spaghetti-stained vest under his double-cuff shirt



    Rarity
    Series one Delucas (like mine) numbered about 550 or so, from most sources. I personally suspect there to be more, somehow. And there are a lot more of the later models too. Rare, but a relatiely fluid market, it seems.

    Despite being more common (and I have no idea how many there are out there), Lorenz's are hard to find.
    I spent 12 months finding mine, and only 2 finding my DeLuca. More common, but hard to pin down.

    Round 2 is hard fought, but ends evenly



    Case
    The DeLuca is about a half mm larger in diameter, and a couple of mm thinner than the Lorenz, due to the El Primeros impressively efficient size. The DeLuca also sports a 22mm lug width over the Lorenz's 20mm. Crown guards are absent from the Deluca, and it has more traditional polished swept down lugs with a chamfered external edge. The Lorenz is more simplistic, and has a brushed top to the lugs, which somehow finish a little indistinctly. The Lorenz sports drilled lugs, which the Zenith is far too sophisticated to use.

    Round 3 goes to the aristocrat with a classsy set of combinations, and its honours even so far.



    Bezel
    Both sport uni-directional 60-click bezels, with the Zenith having a gloss insert to the Lorenz's matte one. The gloss/matte contrast is also displayed in the metal bezel itself. Detail minutes to 15 on the DeLuca, and 20 on the Lorenz. Lume triangle on the Lorenz, and a simple pip on the Zenith. Both are gripped on top edge cuts (like a sub bezel), rounded profile cuts on the Lorenz, whilst square on the Zenith.
    The extra depth of the Lorenz bezel makes it easier to use, and perhaps shades the round, just



    Dial
    Once again, it is matte and gloss differentiating the two, but that's not all. The silver print on the DeLuca is exceptional, especailly the surrounds to the linear indices. The silvered sub-dials are much more textured on the Zenith, and it delivers a powerful uppercut with the Zenith signature trapezoidal date window, and takes the round with ease.

    Once again, honours even so far, this is closer than I thought.



    Hands
    The Lorenz has a very familiar silver set of merceds hands, including a very sub-like chrono-second hand. Sub-dial hands are nicely detailed with silver centres to the black hands. Slightly oddly, the chrono-minute hand is white, and lacks grace. I am not sure why it isn't silver.

    By contrast, the Zenith revives earlier Zenith sword hands, and has that lovely rectangular chrono-minute hand, even though the sub-dial hands are black.

    Another set of forceful blows put the DeLuca in the lead for the first time



    Crystal
    Both use Plexi, the Zenith domed, and the Lorenz more top-hat, and thicker, extending higher over the bezel. The absence of corners on the DeLuca makes the viewable area clearer, and it looks lovely.

    Round 7 to the Zenith, is he beginning to pull away?



    Functionality
    Theoretically identical, both being 12-hr chronos with elapsed time bezels, tachymetre and date.
    2 different approaches on the tachy scale. DeLuca wears his on the dial, leaving room for a polished chapter ring, and the Lorenz uses the chapter ring for the tachy. Both are printed in silver.
    But the Lorenz has the 24-hr dial, and it hacks, which the El Primero does neither. Add on the lemania-readability of the Lorenz, and a sneaky set of body blows give the round to the Lorenz.

    Its 4 1/2, 3 1/2 to the Zenith, too close to call.

    Movement
    Tough to compare this. El Primero vs Lemania 5100. Its Ferrari vs Cobra. Beauty, style, elegance and complexity vs raw performance in a good-looking shell. Two of the watch worlds heaviest contenders having a good slug-fest in the centre of the ring, and they both score freely.

    I can't decide, so it's a drawn round, 5-4 to the banker from Milan

    Water Resistance
    Easy. Lorenz wins 200m to 100m

    And incredibly, the Tuscan olive farmer plants his hobnailed boots, swings aways and draws level again.



    Bracelet
    I have to admit, I have never handled the Lorenz bracelet to go on the chrono-sub. But I don't need to. The Milaneses finely manufactured moccasins run rings round the opposition. The DeLuca's 22mm to 16mm tapered masterpiece beats anything, no contest.



    And we're onto the last of our 12 rounds, with the DeLuca a single round ahead.

    Only a knockout can win it for the Lorenz. But the last round is......

    Desirability
    And it's the Zenith that rises from his corner, and lands a perfect left-right combination that sends the pretender sprawling to the canvas. Hardly anyone has heard of Lorenz, and the DeLuca is one of those iconic watches in the pantheon.

    The Zenith DeLuca Series one raises his fists and retains the Italian title for sporting gentlemans' chronographs.

    I know, I know, completely subjective and somewhat puerile. But I hope to illustrate something. And that is that there are some really nice watches out there that don't have the "image" of some more illustrious cousins, but are certainly worthy of attention. The Lorenz may lose on desirability, but it shouldn't be that one-sided, it deserves some credit, even if the design stands on the shoulders of others.

    I like the DeLuca very much. It is an exquisite piece. But somehow I end up wearing the Lorenz more.
    Go figure.

    Dave

  2. #2

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Another brilliant rassegna/lotta*. Surprised at the outcome, tho ;)

    :thumbup:

    But when are we introducing horo-boxing as an Olympic sport?

    *review / fight.

  3. #3
    Grand Master Daddelvirks's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Leiden- Netherlands
    Posts
    30,932
    Blog Entries
    1

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Cheers Dave!
    That a very good in well informed comparison, that made nice reading.
    I didn't know about the Lorenz at all.
    They are both great pieces in their own right I guess :)

    Daddel.
    Got a new watch, divers watch it is, had to drown the bastard to get it!

  4. #4
    Master Sharky's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Bristol
    Posts
    8,032

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Great post Dave, fascinating reading thanks!

    Mark

  5. #5

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Great comparo. I'd be very happy with either on my wrist. Great looking chronos.

  6. #6
    Grand Master abraxas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    London
    Posts
    32,738

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    .
    Thanks for posting. Very enjoyable. There was no contest really. :D

    john
    The great thing about capitalism: the customer chooses the winners and losers.

  7. #7
    Master numberjack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Glasgow
    Posts
    2,323
    Blog Entries
    1

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Good post mate. Thought the Zenith would have won by a couple of more rounds though.

  8. #8
    Master Marios's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Cyprus
    Posts
    4,521

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    The Lorenz is new to me, but looks very nice. Nice write-up too :thumbleft:

  9. #9

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    A great bout and deservedly close - the movement of the Lorenz swings it for me but two great watches without a doubt; nice examples of both and an excellent read,

    Cheers,
    Andy

  10. #10
    Master EdRonax's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Carrickfergus, by the sea.
    Posts
    4,752

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Excellent write up and a great comparison, thanks.

  11. #11
    Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Dundee, Scotland
    Posts
    1,337

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Thanks Dave. That was a thoroughly enjoyable read. I'm always going to be biased towards the Zenith but that Lorenz is really nice too.

    Dave

  12. #12
    Administrator swanbourne's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Sheffield, England
    Posts
    47,091

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Very interesting but I'm surprised you rate the Zenith bracelet, the bracelet on my De Luca fell apart and can't be repaired. I thought it was flimsy.

    Eddie
    Whole chunks of my life come under the heading "it seemed like a good idea at the time".

  13. #13
    Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Lancaster
    Posts
    1,809

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    As an owner of a Zenith Rainbow el-primero :D there was never any doubt about the outcome....however, at half the cost just might be worth looing for the 'pretender' to wear as an everday option :idea: .
    Great read though, you need to be on Fleet St.
    Regards Martyn.

  14. #14
    Master
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Location
    Ottawa, Canada
    Posts
    2,006

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Love the De Luca...great post, thanks

  15. #15
    Master sweets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bristol - UK
    Posts
    4,843

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Thanks for the comments gents, most appreciated.

    The bracelet is wonderful, not for its bombproof construction (which seems solid enough to me), but mostly for the finish and design.

    I think a watch like this really looks at its most elegant on a tapered strap (or bracelet), and 22mm to 16mm is more taper than just about anyone dares to manufacture now. I have no idea why that is.

    It is pretty run-of-the-mill construction by modern standards, the links are solid (apart from end-links), it has a flip-lock clasp for security, and a dive extension. But it looks great. I shall try and take some more photos.

    Incidentally, my Lorenz was a little under a quarter of what the Zenith cost me, so it is even more of a bargain.

  16. #16
    Master gunner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Kent
    Posts
    3,324

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Quote Originally Posted by sweets
    The bracelet is wonderful, not for its bombproof construction (which seems solid enough to me), but mostly for the finish and design.

    I think a watch like this really looks at its most elegant on a tapered strap (or bracelet), and 22mm to 16mm is more taper than just about anyone dares to manufacture now. I have no idea why that is.

    It is pretty run-of-the-mill construction by modern standards, the links are solid (apart from end-links), it has a flip-lock clasp for security, and a dive extension. But it looks great. I shall try and take some more photos.
    I find that the de luca bracelet feels wonderfully 'soft' as well - as comfortable as just about any leather strap.

    Nice review too.

  17. #17
    Master gunner's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Kent
    Posts
    3,324

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Quote Originally Posted by sweets
    Bezel
    Both sport uni-directional 60-click bezels, with the Zenith having a gloss insert to the Lorenz's matte one.
    Dave
    Worth noting that a number of mkIs (mine included) have a matte bezel.

  18. #18
    Master sweets's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bristol - UK
    Posts
    4,843

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    I guess "gloss" might have been overstating it a little. It is more a sort of satin. It clearly has more reflective qualities than the Lorenz, and in the case of this and the dial it lends a much deeper black to the colour, which looks great.

    I know what you mean about the bracelet comfort, it is very good. I am sure the taper has more than a little to do with this.

    Dave

  19. #19
    Grand Master learningtofly's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Everywhere & nowhere, baby
    Posts
    31,757

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Briiliant :lol:

  20. #20
    Master
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Essex / Herts
    Posts
    1,646

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Nice read, thanks :thumbright:

  21. #21
    Journeyman
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Croatia
    Posts
    122

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    I enjoyed reading your review. Somehow I "just" knew Zenith will win the fight in the end. A bit like Rocky Balboa :blackeye:

  22. #22

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Cheers Dave, great read :)

  23. #23
    Journeyman
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Noo Yawk
    Posts
    124

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    really enjoyable write up - thanks for that. Of course, no Lemania approaches El Primero in my book, but I am aware that others (poor deranged lot that they are) think the opposite :wink:

  24. #24
    Grand Master Andyg's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Wiltshire
    Posts
    24,446

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    What a great write up. Excellent, however for me the DeLuca would win every day - I would put it ahead of a daytona :D

    Tyson (in his prime) vs anyone else

    Andy

    Whoever does not know how to hit the nail on the head should be asked not to hit it at all.
    Friedrich Nietzsche


  25. #25

    Re: Zenith DeLuca / Lorenz Chrono-sub Comparison - of sorts

    Both nice....similar to this Fiver ebay job...... :drunken:



    The Zenith for me btw 8)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Do Not Sell My Personal Information