Best of 2016: Watches

A look back at the best stories our watch writers tackled over the course of 2016 — from Instagram’s horological Batman to the Citizen factory to a bizarre vintage Rolex.

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365 days is a lot of time to seek out stories on adventure, gear, and everything in between. Here’s a look back at the best stories our watch writers tackled over the course of 2016 — from Instagram’s horological Batman to the Citizen factory to a bizarre vintage Rolex.

Quote of the Year


Why Watches Are Great Gifts


“It’s tempting mawkishness to say so, but the point is there’s little to compete with a watch, complete with its future-proofed mechanical inner workings, as a gift to show someone just how glad you are they’re alive.”

– Robin Swithinbank

The Stories


Reports, Photo Essays, Reviews and More


How to Spot a Knockoff Watch, as Explained by Instagram’s Horological Batman

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Using knowledge gained from online forums, @fakewatchbusta is shaming those audacious enough to brag about their fake timepiece. – Andrew Connor

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Inside the Citizen Watch Factory

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The people and machinery behind the world’s largest watchmaker — and the world’s thinnest watch. – Eric Yang

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Why a Mechanical Watch Is the Perfect Gift

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A Rolex, given 70 years ago under dire circumstances, proves that watches can change the way we think about life. – Robin Swithinbank

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The Rewarding (and Financially Perilous) World of Kickstarter Watches

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Kickstarter is a place for young watchmakers with innovative ideas. It’s also a place for fraud and low-quality watches. – Andrew Connor

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Why Is There a Domino’s Logo on This Rolex?

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Antiquorum


How did one of the world’s foremost watchmakers end up producing a watch for the official pizza of high-school pizza parties? – Andrew Connor

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GP100: The Best Watches of 2016

Our picks for the finest watches launched in 2016. See the Winners

A Guide to the American Watch Renaissance

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A “Made in the USA” watch, by FTC standards, is almost an impossibility today. But American watches are still more exciting than ever. – Chris Wright

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What Makes a Watch ‘American-Made’?

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America is no longer the watchmaking powerhouse it used to be. But can small US brands revitalize the dead industry? – Andrew Connor

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An Endorsement for the Groom Watch

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Buying a groom-to-be a new watch is a great new wedding tradition. And if you’re not sure what to get, consider one of these. – Andrew Connor

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The Father and Son Team Behind New York’s Most Prolific Watch Repair Shop

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Talking to Larry and Steve Kivel, second- and third-generation watch repairmen whose tiny stall in Grand Central Station has turned into a New York icon. – Chris Wright

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Seiko 5 vs. Swatch Sistem51: Which Is Better for the Budding Enthusiast?

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Henry Phillips


The Seiko 5 has been an enthusiast favorite for 53 years. Can a newcomer from Switzerland dethrone it? – Andrew Connor

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