The Redux COURG takes its cues from vintage pilot instrumentation/watches. Elbert had successfully integrated all these factors into a titanium case with just the perfect balance of size, legibility, and minimalism – that it quickly became one of the most funded watch campaigns in Kickstarter. Definitely one of my go-to tool watches – I grab this just as often as I grab the Rolex.
What’s in a name
As the campaign stated:
COURG is a way point, which is a navigational tool used by pilots to chart their flight across the globe. Way points are composed of 5-letters and made to be spoken as a word so pilots can quickly transmit their location via radio. This particular way point stands just outside Washington, DC and as you probably guessed — is pronounced COURAGE.
Right off the gate – the options on this project were already staggering. Users had FOUR dial variants to choose from. I was torn between the Bauhaus or Type-A, but the latter prevailed because of how timeless and balanced it looked to me. It also didn’t get on the whole oversized watch bandwagon which worked out for the best – as it fit my wrist perfectly. 1 Come to think of it, it’s the first time that a Nato strap looked decent on my wrist
If there’s one word to describe this thing, it would be balance. Everything about this watch is perfectly balanced in relation to the other. The overall size of it in relation to the Nato hardware, the thickness of the bezel, the legibilty of the text layout – I couldn’t complain on any one of the design choices Elbert made here. Even the strategically contrasting lume colors were a nice touch.
This was also one of the few projects that had constantly adjusted to user feedback as the campaign period went along. By the end of it all, practically every aspect of it had been improved and/or refined. Take the straps for example, apart from the option for leather straps, the stock nylon nato strap hardware itself was upgraded to titanium – and had it’s own unique personality.
If that wasn’t enough, they started offering the choices on the grades of Titanium (2 or 5) – which would only affect delivery dates for those who chose the better grade. Backers also got to design the caseback. They also added a fifth dial face, as well as a no-date option – which was perfect for me since I always preferred simpler 2 Thus, more balanced dateless dials.
One of the stretch goals reached resulted in each watch being shipped with a waxed canvas watch roll – which was of better quality than the usual stuff being sold.
Not that the watch was without issues, of course there were. But none of them were deal-breakers 3 Unless they weren’t intended to be like that – in that case I may have gotten a faulty unit on an otherwise great deal, but worth mentioning nonetheless.
First was the bezel marker had been upgraded to a triangle, at the expense of losing the actual bead it used to have. Now it was just an applied lume which is much easier to wear (or scratch) off. I get the reason the triangle was used (for more accurate indexing) but the great thing about the bead was that it had it’s own “housing” for lack of a better term. It’s like the difference between something inlayed vs something painted on. The former is always ideal, but we got the latter.
Another was the tolerances of the machining weren’t as tight as I had hoped. The bezel (which was supposed to be mono-directional) had a bit of play when set to any position when normally it should immediately lock into place and never go back. With this, you have to kinda set it to one click past your intended mark, so it stops on the final position when you turn it back a bit. The crown, like the bezel has quite a bit of play when unscrewed – so it takes more effort to screw it back down because you have to make sure it’s angled right – not to mention you feel it’s going to break off at any moment.
If Elbert was able to address these issues, 4 The tolerances at the very least, I can live with the markers it would’ve been a perfect watch, IMHO.
- Case material: Titanium grade 2 / grade 5
- Case back: Titanium, deep corrosion case screw back.
- Bezel: Uni-directional Titanium, luminous triangle
- Flat Sapphire crystal, 2mm, inner anti-reflective coating
- Movement: Seiko SII NH35A
- Date: Window, 4PM
- Case: Width (w/o crown) / 39mm
- Height / 13.7 mm
- Lug-to-lug 46.6 mm
- Lug-to-lug (strap) 20 mm
- Lug width 3.4 mm
- Print dial.
- Super luminova BGW9
- Hands: Super luminova BGW9 x C3
- Water resistant: 15 ATM / 150M (UPGRADED to 20 ATM)
- Crown position: 4PM
- Stem protection: Screw down crown tube + crown guard
- Crown logo: Etched
- Drilled lugs
- Weight: 1.8 oz. (51 grams, ~20% lighter than steel equivalent) Brass movement retainer
- Strap: Black Ballistic nylon mil-strap, PVD hardware
You can get your own COURG at the Redux webstore
Notes [ + ]
|1.||⇡||Come to think of it, it’s the first time that a Nato strap looked decent on my wrist|
|2.||⇡||Thus, more balanced|
|3.||⇡||Unless they weren’t intended to be like that – in that case I may have gotten a faulty unit|
|4.||⇡||The tolerances at the very least, I can live with the markers|