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Newbie advice

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Hi all,

I've always been a watch lover but only recently discovered the world of watch geekery. I've read a lot of posts on your forum, and you guys seem like a decent group of people. Please excuse me if I make any noob mistakes when asking these questions. 

I have a really petite wrist. I love big watches, esp military ones. I'm not crazy about multiple subdials but I love internal rotating bezels (helps me with time management.) I have a job that requires me to wash my hands (sometimes including my watch) frequently. I remove and put on my watch several times a day. 

Previously owned: a Quartz seiko diver, a couple of Quartz Tags (movement needed to be replaced after <5 yrs!), Victorinox Swiss Army Airboss Mach 2 with bracelet (I loved this watch--it was stolen!) I have several vintage swatches. Currently wearing a Wenger chrono, which I'm not crazy about. 

Dream watch: I used to want a Breitling really bad. Now I would love to have a Hamilton Takeoff. I've always wanted a Hamilton. This one remains out of reach for now. 

1. I'm finally in a position to be able to buy a Hamilton. I'm looking at the Pilot Pioneer Aluminum in blue. I've read a lot of concern about the durability of the aluminum, even though anodized. Does anyone know of any that has seen some wear time? I'd really like to know how it holds up. 

2. The watch comes on a NATO. I think that should be okay for washing several times a day. My current watch has a leather strap with buckle. I think it's kinda a pain to buckle and re-buckle. This might be a stupid question, but is it possible to add a deployant to the Hamilton NATO strap? If so, any recommendations?

3. Given my preferences (military, numbers, internal rotating bezel, limited subdials (but I do like date indicators)), are there another models you guys recommend I look at? I'd like to spend under USD1000. 

Thank you guys so much!

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Welcome to :rltrlt: , it's a great place to be!

A problem with many Aluminium cases is wear to the holes where the spring bars are fitted, these will tend to go OVAL with daily use, and even more problems can occur if the wtach is fitted, or has been previously fitted with a bracelet and not a strap.

I can't say whether this is likely to happen with the Hamilton, but it is a factor to think about, you really could do with finding someone who has had one and ask?

NATO straps can usually be reasonably well cleaned with a toothbrush and a mild soap if required, and will come out ok, I've a hand wound Vostok (Russian) Divers with one, ( a plain strap not NATO striped obviously being Russki ),  that must be thirty years old, I cleaned it when I got it about ten years ago, and again a year or two back, looks good as new IMO (never humble! )


Lucj in your quest for knowledge!

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Thanks so much for your response, Mel! That's good to know about the nato, as I have never had one before. 

I've been looking for someone who has this watch but have yet to find anyone!

Is it possible to put a deployant on a nato? From the pics, the Hamilton one looks pretty short (perhaps not even long enough to loop back down.) Is that a silly question?

Edited by Nuprin
Also, to clarify, this Hamilton comes with a NATO made by Hamilton.

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