As one of only a handful few remaining Swiss “tool watch brands” Fortis actually manages to almost altogether zero in on functional timepieces. Like most traditional Swiss watchmakers, Fortis heavily emphasizes its heritage in both how it talks about its watches as well as what they resemble. This audit is of the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m. watch. It comes in a couple of variants and it isn’t altogether not at all like different watches Fortis produces –however this more current model has its own unmistakable character.
What initially caught my eye about the Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m was the silver-hued dial as well as the healthy conservative look and feel, which I realize appeals to a ton of consumers. Contingent upon what you look like at it, Fortis is one might say to the notable USSR space program what Omega was to NASA. I personally know about much less Fortis-on-cosmonaut stories as I do Omega-on-astronaut stories, however there are some intriguing ones out there.
The assortment I am really investigating here is the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts. The “Steel” part of the model’s name alludes to the bezel tone (and material), while the “a.m.” part of the name alludes to the light-conditioned steel dial tone. Outside of the various strap alternatives, this same watch comes with a steel or black ceramic dial (“Ceramic” versus “Steel”) and the black-dialed “p.m.” rendition (versus the a.m. dial). In this manner, the Classic Cosmonauts with the black dial and bezel would be the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts Ceramic p.m. watch. Anyhow, let’s return to the Steel a.m. model.
Even however I would probably argue that Fortis sells more of the black-dialed “p.m.” renditions, I think the silver-dialed a.m. form is a touch more attractive. It is more unmistakable at the least and still offers great clarity thanks to the high-contrast black hands. One issue that seasoned authorities might have with the Classic Cosmonauts is the lack of unmistakable plan features. While the curation of plan elements on the dial and case of the Classic Cosmonauts watches is successful and handsome, in the abstract, there isn’t a lot here to differentiate this watch from others.
The Classic Cosmonaut’s case for example is basically what a 42mm wide Rolex Daytona case might resemble. From the plan of the bezel, drags, crown guard, and pushers… this case is clearly a homage to the Daytona. The dial isn’t Rolex motivated, yet it is propelled by military/pilot watches of the 1960s through the 1970s. Clean and powerful, there isn’t anything incorrectly at all with Fortis’ particular articulation of how to best deliver the information offered as part of the Swiss ETA Valjoux 7750 automatic chronograph movement. Despite the fact that again, it doesn’t feel like Fortis is attempting to break and new ground here.
If a quest for originality isn’t as important to you, and the assembly of configuration details and features appeal to you in this watch, at that point you’ll have a great deal to anticipate. Fortis makes the best choice and utilizations applied hour markers which are painted with luminant. This is a small element which seems to add a ton of saw value since it upgrades the overall look and feel of the Classic Cosmonauts watch. A smidgen more profundity is given as the sub-dials are simply somewhat recessed. Again, a flat dial (no profundity) would have really made it hard for a timepiece like this to look as nice.
Use of the Valjoux 7750 means that the case can’t be that slender. Notwithstanding great wearing comfort thanks to the more limited drags, the Classic Cosmonaut’s case is nearly 15mm thick. The screw-down pushers and crown probably add to overall durability as well as the case’s 100m of water resistance. Fortis makes utilization of a great sapphire crystal over the dial that regardless of being slightly bended, doesn’t experience the ill effects of any glare (Fortis claims AR-coating on the two sides, which is right for a watch this way). The clear (sans glare) perspective on the dial is a testament to the instrument watch nature of the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m. timepiece.
Another crystal shows a view to the movement through the caseback. This feature has nothing to do with the device watch soul of the Classic Cosmonauts and appears to be straightforwardly related to the understandable modern pattern of flaunting mechanical movements in mechanical watches. A mechanical movement almost always commands a value premium over a quartz watch, which means that proprietors (and the individuals they show their watches as well) appreciate the reassurance of seeing the movement within the case. Fortis utilizes a mostly undecorated form of the 7750, which is somewhat of a shame at this value point. I figure it would have helped the value recommendation of a watch like this to have a decorated movement within it.
What makes me the happiest about the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m. watch is the dial quality. Sure it isn’t groundbreaking in terms of plan, yet it is all around made and straightforward. Fortis is even able to add a touch of cleaned sheen as the dial’s slight sunray wrapping up. The hands are all matte and the orange parts on the chronograph hands assist with neatness. Dial information incorporates all the features of the 7750 movement (4Hz/28,800bph with about 42 hours of intensity hold) being the time, 12-hour chronograph, day of the week, and date. In terms of overall looks, the plan of the Classic Cosmonauts watch is totally retro –yet offered in the accommodation of another watch package.
Personally, I would have favored the black Ceramic bezel to this steel one in terms of material decision. All things considered, I felt that the matching steel tones of the Steel a.m. made for a handsome look –so I picked style over substance in this case. I also picked the steel bracelet alternative that Fortis offers with the Classic Cosmonauts. The three-interface steel bracelet with a cleaned focus connect is another gesture to Rolex (and the Daytona). Being a bracelet fellow I like this decision from a style viewpoint, yet I have to say that the bracelet quality isn’t on par with the case quality.
Fortis depends on providers for these parts, and it is extremely common for the case and bracelet of any offered timepiece to be delivered by separate providers. It isn’t that the bracelet isn’t great, yet it doesn’t feel as very good quality as it ought to at a watch at this cost. On the off chance that you favor bracelets to straps, at that point the Classic Cosmonaut’s bracelet will be comfortable and sans hassle. In the event that you aren’t sure what case-attachment alternative to browse, at that point I would advise you consider the strap choices based on the fact that the bracelet simply doesn’t offer anything special.
I call the Fortis Classic Cosmonauts a decent “dad watch” because it asserts itself as handsome, conservative, solid, mild-mannered, tame, and versatile. Fortis claims the visual plan of this model is based on “the first chronograph being in open space.” Again, I don’t know the historical backdrop of that –and that story alone doesn’t offer watches to a consumer like me. The fact that the dial-style has been attempted and tried over many years has more value to me.
Moving forward, Fortis should zero in on asserting the value recommendation of an item like this a touch more since the circa $3,000 value market is exceptionally competitive. No, you can’t get a brand new Omega or Rolex for this money, however there is a ton out there for this money and less with the same movement and overall componentry. Fortis does a couple of things very well in the Classic Cosmonauts –and those things help make all the difference for this classic and going. Despite the fact that to be really competitive with many of the brands who have been staying traditional, Fortis needs to guarantee that today’s consumers form a personal relationship with their items first, and then the brand. Cost for the reference 401.21.12 Fortis Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m. watch is 3,360 CHF on a strap and 3,630 CHF on a steel bracelet. fortis-watchshop.com
>Model: Classic Cosmonauts Steel a.m. reference 401.21.12 as tested
>Price: 3,630 CHF as tested
>Size: 42mm wide
>Would commentator personally wear it: Yes, as a conservative apparatus watch with a modern size and light-hued dial.
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Someone with a weakness for Russian space exploration history and the way of life to accommodate an easy-to-live-with Swiss games watch from a brand with real apparatus watch history.
>Best characteristic of watch: Fortis gets the dial mostly right, which means that the watch looks and performs well. Comfortable wearability and style along with features that are very familiar.
>Worst characteristic of watch: Fortis was light on adding original stylish elements to the overall plan. Bracelet quality isn’t as great as case and dial quality. For the money the movement might have likely been decorated. Case looks an excess of like a ballooned Rolex Daytona (however some individuals are after that).