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Thread: Steinhart Pilot LE

  1. #1

    Steinhart Pilot LE

    Introduction

    I initially ordered this from the steinhart website in the middle of December 2007. I have already owned the Steinhart Nav B Uhr for a couple of months and it had become one of my favourite watches over this time. However historically this model was incorrect and once i saw the Nav B Replica for sale, with its sterile dial and central seconds hand i knew i had to have one. I also knew i had to order quickly, as this was a limited edition with only 55 pieces being produced.

    At this stage Mr Steinhart emailed me to say that delivery would be around a months time and i could have my money back if i wanted and pay him closer to the time. Mr Steinhart continued to send me emails every few weeks to let me know of progress until around 8 weeks later i received my watch. Certainly this standard of customer service was exceptional, i had no uncertainty or concerns about whether it would be delivered and helped the time pass quicker.

    Packaging

    The watch came in a large lacquered wooden box of very high quality. Certainly such a box would not look out of place for a watch several fold higher than the $1800 usd asking price of this watch.


    Within the box which appeared to be leather on the inside was a strap changing tool and screw driver on the left hand side, a very thick and high quality leather strap with rivets on the right and the watch in the centre.
    I felt the strap changing tool and screw driver was a nice touch, although was slightly disappointed with the quality of the tool. Maybe a burgeon tool would have been better. The spare strap on the other hand was simply superb! I have been constantly amazed by the quality of steinhart straps and this is no exception!






    Within the box was an engraved polished plaque with the serial number of the watch, mine being number 29/55. Again a very nice touch.





    The Watch

    The case of the watch is similar to the Steinhart Nav B-Uhr 6497, although is around 1-2 mm thicker. The case is well made and very solid feeling. The case is sandblasted rather than the brushed case of the Nav B-Uhr 6497. Similarly the crown is sandblasted , unlike the shiny stainless steel crown of the Nav B-Uhr crown. Inbetween the lugs at bottom of the case again the watch is signed with the LE number, mine being number 29/55. This is very subtly done so it can not be seen during normal wear. The caseback is again signed with the LE number on it. Again this is a very nice touch and one has the feeling that no cost cutting was made to produce this watch. The standard is incredible.
    The dial is sterile and does not have the makers name on it and has the number's 1-11 with a triangle at number 12.






    A comparison. LE on the left hand side:



    One immediate difference between 2 pieces is that the LE has a modified Unitas 6497 movement with central seconds in contrast to the regular seconds at 9 o'clock. The hands are otherwise the same with blued steel filled with superluminova. The lume of this watch is superb!
    In my first Nav B-Uhr the lume was poor, but Mr Steinhart sent me a new dial with better lume. Here the lume shines all night.

    The central seconds hand is lumed at one end, and retains the blued steel section at the other. The movement has also been modified to hack at 12 O' clock. When the crown is pulled out the central seconds hand continues to move around the face of the dial until it reaches 12 and then it stops. Certainly this is one of the very few watches based on the Unitas movement that hacks, and adds to the quality feeling of this piece.

    The crystal is a saphire crystal on both sides and has AR coating on the inside of the crystal at the front.

    Movement

    Powering this watch is the Unitas 6497 movement with central seconds modification. The movement can be seen through the display glass and one is struck by the beauty of this movement. It is decorated with cotes de geneve and blued screws. It also has a small plaque on the movement with the L.E. number on this, mine being 29/55. Again this is a very nice touch and makes this watch feel very special. The movement has a swan neck regulator and perlage on the plate below this. When i received my first Nav B-Uhr (Right) i thought that the movement was beautiful. This pales in comparison to the beauty of the LE.









    Final thoughts
    This watch has had a lot of thought put into its creation. The attention to detail is outstanding, considering its price point. This watch could easily sell for twice what it is selling and i would not have been dissapointed. The customer service is impeccable and the product is of very high quality. Mr Steinhart should be congratulated for the production of such a fine piece.

    Which do i think is the better buy? the LE or the original Steinhart Nav B-Uhr?

    Well the original at $510 usd is incredible value for money, one would be very hard pressed to buy a better higher quality watch at this price point. Although historically incorrect, i think for someone who is looking at buying a watch of this style, i would thoroughly recommend this.

    The L.E is more a collectors piece and one which i think has great attention to detail and one which i am thrilled to own. I still think it is great value for money considering the excellent workmanship which has gone into this piece and the accesories, but i feel would be directed to a mare narrow market.

    In summary i would recommend either of these watches and dealing with Gunther Steinhart has made the ownership of this piece even more enjoyable.

  2. #2
    Grand Master Dave E's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
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    I'm impressed, that's a very nice looking piece. Congratulations!
    Dave E

    Skating away on the thin ice of a new day

  3. #3
    Grand Master abraxas's Avatar
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    .
    Makes much more sense to have it bead blasted as it matches the original ?grey
    paint?. I would have thought for an LE it would have deserved different hands than
    the basic model.

    A nice watch to have if you can carry 47mm. A tad too big for me.

    Thanks for posting the review.

    john
    Your watch matters

  4. #4
    Administrator swanbourne's Avatar
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    The Unitas centre seconds looks wonderful, just wish I could get hold of some. :(

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

  5. #5
    Thanks for the comments.. I agree john that it would have been nice to use slightly different hands for the LE.. but nevertheless it wasnt a big deal for me.

    Eddie.. i agree and also wish you could get these movements.. as i would buy such a watch from you if you made it.

  6. #6
    Very stylish watch. I think that the center seconds modification makes the Unitas movement very cool. I like the way they put the cut out for the center seconds spring to double use. (The cock for the center seconds is a bit blockish, however.)

    Best wishes,
    Bob

  7. #7
    Master doug darter's Avatar
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    It's a very handsome watch, and there's no doubt, given the movement modification, it's extremely good value for money.

  8. #8
    Grand Master
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    Excellent review of what looks like to be an excellent watch - especially at that price. Thanks.
    /vince ..


  9. #9
    Grand Master magirus's Avatar
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    Nov 2003
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    Great write-up there, and a fantastic watch. Thanks for sharing. :)

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