Carpenter Watches has remained relatively quiet over the past few months. The Brooklyn-based microbrand has maintained stock of their Gent and Brooklyn Field models and earlier this year they released a new colorway of the Brooklyn Field. The Carpenter M19 is the latest addition to their lineup and has breathed new life into the brand’s offerings.
If you crave variety when selecting your next watch, Carpenter is one of the best places to look. Their watches come in multiple metal options for the case and an array of dial colors. The Brooklyn Field is the most diverse collection in their lineup, offering the most variety of case and dial colors. The M19 brings a new dark navy dial to the Brooklyn Field collection.
On the Wrist
The Carpenter M19 commands a wrist presence that most other field watches can’t get away with. The elegant curves of the case and lugs are complemented by a wide dial and thick case. The M19 is a modern field watch reminiscent of converted pocket watches. The first time I put on the M19, I was immediately reminded of a friend’s Tissot Heritage 1936. It has a nostalgic look about it but still seems modern.
At 41mm wide, the diameter of the watch is comprised mostly of the dial. A thin fixed bezel outlines the dial but doesn’t distract from it. The dimensions of the M19 are a little deceiving, especially when figuring out how this watch will wear on your wrist. The lug-to-lug distance of 48mm can’t be directly compared to a traditionally shaped watch because of the wire lugs. They almost disappear on your wrist thanks to how thin they are.
There is no denying that the M19 is a thick watch. It is 13.7mm thick, a substantial case thickness for many watches, especially a field watch. However, the almost perfectly circular design of the watch complements the thickness well. It feels more elegant on the wrist than other watches that are thick and angular, such as a Seiko Samurai. I try not to say a watch slides easily under the cuff, but I feel it is warranted here. The thickness of the watch doesn’t hinder it from blending in.
With the dark navy dial, I was concerned the double-domed sapphire crystal would hinder its readability. Double-domed crystals can sometimes throw off the way dark dials look, especially when viewed at an angle. Thankfully, that isn’t the case here unless you’re trying to look at it from the side of your wrist. The dial’s color is also dark enough that it looks black most of the time and pleasantly surprises you when you get a good glimpse of the navy showing through.
Gilt dials, or those with gold-tone accents, seem to be all the rage heading into 2020. The trend (which seems to have been kicked into high gear with the Tudor Black Bay 58) is making its way to many microbrand releases. The M19 takes the gilt dial and adds a touch of flair by putting it on top of the dark navy dial. The gold numerals, markers, and lume complement the navy perfectly. While vintage lume, or fauxtina, can degrade the look of a watch, it works well with the M19. Good old-fashioned color coordination wins here.
Of the two dial configurations often seen on field watches (military time scale or minute scale), the M19 uses the latter. The minute track flanking the hour markers blends into the dial for the most part, but still is readable when needed.
When I reviewed the Carpenter G2, I complimented the brand on the use of the circular date window and the same rings true here, perhaps even more so. The date window is a gold beveled aperture that falls in line with the color used on the numerals and markers. Aside from the hands, there are no sharp edges on the M19 and it adds to the elegance of the watch.
Of the entire range of the Carpenter Brooklyn Field line, the M19 is my personal favorite. I don’t see a ton of navy or dark blue dial field watches, and this fits the bill beautifully.
Case & Movement
The case of the Carpenter M19 is fully polished. This watch can easily fit into the dressy tool watch category especially given black or brown leather straps that Carpenter offers. I found the polishing to be consistent and even without any blemishes. When the watch is in the sunlight, the combination of the dark navy dial and the polished case looks stunning. This is a watch that looks the best when it’s outside, fitting right into its field watch aesthetic.
The signed crown is a great size, not too small and not too big. I have no problems winding the watch and setting the time. The lack of crown guards also made the crown easy to pop out.
Previously, I mentioned the thin wire lugs. A few people asked me before the review if the lugs were fixed, allowing either no strap changes or just pass-through straps. Thankfully, Carpenter chose a standard 20mm springbar configuration for the M19. Any 20mm strap will fit the M19.
An exhibition caseback is fitted to the M19. The caseback allows you to see the Miyota 821A movement. This is where my one gripe with the watch lies. The 821A is reliable and tough but I wouldn’t have minded the movement being upgraded to Miyota’s 9000 series. The higher beat rate, smoother winding, and modern components would have been welcome. With that said, I am happy Carpenter chose the 821A (over the 8215) as it is decorated and much more pleasing to the eye.
When choosing a field watch or a dressy tool watch, the options are almost limitless. Offerings from the larger brands like the Hamilton Khaki Field and Seiko Alpinist are two options on either end of the price segment occupied by the Carpenter M19. It is certainly going to stand out from the army of Khaki Fields and is just as versatile, especially considering the dial and case options available.
The name says it all when it comes to this watch, the Brooklyn Field. This is a watch designed to accommodate both the city boy as well as the wearer who is looking to get outside a metropolis and explore the outdoors. The M19 perfectly encapsulates that, offering a legible dial with modern looks and a case design that can be dressed up easily. If that fits you (or even if it doesn’t), the M19 is worth some time on your wrist.
Check out more Carpenter Watches reviews from The Watch Clicker
Check out the Carpenter Watches website
|Lug-to-lug Height||48mm||Lug Width||20mm|
|Crystal||Double Domed Sapphire||Strap||Leather Strap|
|Water Resistance||50 meters||Lume||Super-LumiNova® C3 Vintage Gilt|