Off the beaten path, there lies a historic brand established back in the 1960s that has demonstrated excellence in the design and manufacturing of robust tool watches. French watch company Le Jour, meaning “the day” in French, distributed and retailed Swiss-made timepieces in Europe and the United States under their name since the ‘60s. One of their most notable partners was the renowned Swiss watch manufacturer Heuer, this resulted in the birth of many stunning Le Jour-branded chronographs fitted with reliable Valjoux movements which became highly sought after by vintage watch collectors today.
|Le Jour Hammerhead Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002
Up until the 1980s, French watch manufacturer YEMA distributed watches to the U.S. market under the Le Jour brand, providing exceptionally well-made watches that were adored by those seeking a serious timepiece. Other than their outstanding chronographs, Le Jour showcased their watchmaking capabilities with the release of the Le Jour ‘Superman’ in the mid ‘60s, a 300m professional dive watch that was later adopted by the French military. Although Le Jour fell victim to the quartz crisis and perished alongside many great watch brands, they were revived in recent years with impressive vintage-inspired offerings that just look simply gorgeous - what a way to restore the brand back to its former glory.
Built on the foundation of Le Jour’s technical knowledge of dive watch production, the Hammerhead collection of watches are a family of Swiss-made dive watches with solid specifications and a charming retro persona. With the popularity of the Hammerhead, the Le Jour team has crafted a wonderful new GMT variant of the Hammerhead with enhanced refinement and an attractive dial design.
Distinctive applied marker w/ sloped minute rehaut
Right off the bat, the classic vintage-inspired cushion case of the Le Jour Hammerhead GMT Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002 embodies the sporty character of their 70s sports chronograph’s cushion case, an attractive design that certainly aged beautifully throughout the past few decades. Constructed out of corrosion resistant 316L stainless steel, the case flaunts a satin brushed finish with a thick polished bevelled edge, neatly dividing the brushed surfaces on the top and the side of the case. This well-executed mix of finishes delivers a sumptuous appearance synonymous with watches of a higher price point.
Dimensions of the Le Jour Hammerhead GMT Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002 carries excellent wearability with a 42mm diameter, a compact lug to lug distance of 48mm and a case height of 14mm. These tasteful dimensions translate into a versatile size fitting a wide range of wrist sizes while boasting a strong wrist presence of a diver. At the 3 o’clock position, the screw-down signed crown grants this piece with a capable water resistance of 200m. With a “no crown guard” design, this further elevates the overall retro outlook. The watch comes supplied with a 20mm brushed stainless steel bracelet, secured confidently on the wrist with a push button deployant clasp.
Retro cushion case with impeccable finishing
The Le Jour Hammerhead GMT Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002 sports a premium blue bi-directional rotating ceramic bezel that will not fail to disappoint. Featuring engraved Swiss C3 Superluminova-filled markers, reading the bezel in dark lighting conditions is a breeze as it glows vividly in the dark.
Similarly, the broad cathedral-style handsets, GMT hand and large raised indices on the dial are generously applied with the same C3 Superluminova lume. Night time legibility is definitely one of the strong suits of this piece. One of the most exciting aspects can be found on the dial itself, displaying a beautiful deep blue canvas-textured dial, a treat to see whenever you gaze down on your wrist. On top of that, the dial is protected with a scratch-resistant domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment.
Swiss Super-Luminova that glows green in the dark
Powered by the ever-reliable Sellita SW-330 Swiss automatic GMT movement, the Le Jour Hammerhead GMT Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002 holds a healthy power reserve of 42 hours with a 4 Hz beat rate of 28,800 beats per hour. This 25 jewel movement has been reputed to be a tried-and-tested movement utilized by many leading watch brands. At the back of the watch, the stainless steel screw-in caseback holds the movement in place, showcasing a magnificent stamped motif of a hammerhead shark that represents the powerful underwater capabilities of the timepiece.
Overall, the Le Jour Hammerhead GMT Blue Ref. LJ-HH-GMT-002 brings outstanding value as a GMT dive-style offering that flaunts a design that holds so much character. Packing all the right specifications, this is definitely a splendid choice for one who seeks a unique vintage-inspired design loaded with modern robust materials.