VAER C3 Korean USA Quartz Full Review

About VAER

I won’t go into detail but you can read the full details here. VAER was founded by two friends and long time surfers, Ryan Torres and Reagan Cook.

We started Vaer because we couldn’t afford the watches we liked, and didn’t like any of the watches we could afford. We used our life savings to bring our vision of the perfect everyday watch to life.

The company was founded in 2017 with their life savings and help from friends and family. Helped also by a very successful Kickstarter campaign in 2019, people obviously loved their vision and focus for sustainability.

The model – C3 | Korean Field USA Quartz 36mm

“Our goal was to create a respectful and accurate homage to the under-appreciated military watches of the Korean War.”

– Ryan Torres & Reagan Cook, Vaer Co-Founders

I bought the watch with my own money after a lot of research, as I particularly liked the dial of this version. It gave a modern take on vintage field watches and the right size for my 6.25″ wrist.

Specs

  • Diameter – 36mm
  • Lug Width – 20mm
  • Lug to Lug – 42mm
  • Thickness – 8.4mm
  • Case Material – 316L Stainless Steel
  • Sapphire Crystal – Single Domed
  • Movement – Ameriquartz 6130 HT
  • Water Resistance – 10ATM (100m)
  • Lume – SuperLuminova C1
  • Price $209-$289 depending on strap options

Finishing

The overall finish on the watch is very good for the price point. The majority of the case is smoothly brushed with some polishing to the chamfer on the top edges of the lugs that really give the case appeal. This is one of the reasons I went for this over a Hamilton Khaki Field Quartz, that has a more military style sandblasted finish.

Crystal

The crystal is a blue AR coated single domed Sapphire. That means it has a domed top with a flat underside that gives an old school distortion when tipping it away. It does not really have a bevel to the edges so integrates very well with the bezel. The AR coating stems off the majority of reflections keeping the dial legible even when outdoors.

Case

As mentioned above the case finishing is done very well with the smooth brushed finish and complimenting polished edges. When purchasing it one of the concerns was the thickness. While not wanting something bulky I wanted a case that didn’t feel too flat on wrist either. I was pleasantly surprised as the case shape has a nice slab bulk with a slight curve to the sides. The bezel and domed crystal is also not raised too much, making the watch look more substantial but retaining enough slimness to fit under your shirt sleeve. The lugs also curve down nicely to conform to your wrist. It’s all about balance and is executed very well!

The crown and caseback both screw down confirming that 100m water resistance. The crown is signed with the VAER logo with no crown guards. This makes it easy to unscrew and set the time, I have no issues screwing it back in either unlike some watches I have experienced. The caseback is different to most other models in the range and was another reason for my choice, see quote below;

As a subtle reference to the watch’s historical connection to the Korean War, the caseback on this model features a unique engraving. Replacing the Vaer logo at the center is an etching of the Korean Peninsula which serves as a reminder of the sacrifice and commitment of thousands of allied soldiers who served in the conflict, and the countless casualties resulting from the war. Encircling the engraving are the watch’s technical specifications, stylized to match the lettering of the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C..

Bracelet and Strap

The watch comes as standard with a very comfortable Silicone strap, perfect for those days in the pool or the sea. It also comes as standard with a choice of a second Nylon strap in either black or khaki. For a little bit more you can choose a stainless steel solid link oyster style bracelet, or more again a very nice lined Horween leather strap. To add to this all straps have a quick release mechanism making them easy to swap. I went with the stainless as I have a lot of 20mm straps in my watch drawer!

The bracelet is easy to size with push pins. It has a milled clasp with the VAER logo, plus solid links and solid end links. It is comfortable and has no real rattle except a little on the clasp. The finish is brushed and matches the watch flawlessly so they integrate very well with each other.

My one little issue with the bracelet is although the endlinks fit well there is a small gap at the top between the case and the right hand side. It maybe isolated to mine and doesn’t really bother me, it does not effect anything. On the plus side I just happened to try the bracelet on a couple of other watches in my collection and it fits them as well. This is great as it opens up other options and I will probably buy a second bracelet from VAER in the future as a spare.

I have gone with a leather strap I had from another watch and think the stitching really compliments the colours on the dial well!

Dial & Movement

The dial again harks back to those military watches from the era, it is clear and legible all the time, one thing that was important in the field! The syringe style hands are also easy to read although I think the hour hand could have been a touch shorter. I know other reviews have remarked on this but I have not really confused the hour and minute hands. The seconds hand hits most of the markers but does drift a bit past 6 o’clock, not a concern to me but may bother you. The lume is bright after a quick charge and seems to hold well although I have not tested it properly, I personally do not use lume much. A nice touch is the VAER logo is also lumed!

The Quartz movement is an American built Ameriquartz 6130. I have found it to be extremely accurate and unlike a lot of quartz is relatively quiet unless you hold it up to your ear.

The C3 Korean Field is powered by our best-selling FTS Ameriquartz 6130 HT quartz movement, which offers both higher torque and longer battery life than the comparable Swiss quartz Ronda 713 movement.

Conclusion

As an everyday watch there isn’t really much more you would need. You can dress it up or down, wear it to work, the beach, pretty much anywhere! For me personally it is the perfect size, it’s comfortable and I know it could take a proper beating without me worrying about it. Everything about it feels well thought out and tested thoroughly, a testament to Ryan and Reagan’s commitment to their goals! It is a watch I know I will keep unlike others in my collection and has become my go to everyday watch. This is my first VAER but certainly won’t be my last. well done guys!

The C3 Korean is currently on Pre-Order, please sign up to their newsletter to be notified of stock updates, news and upcoming models !

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