We all know that Tissot is awesome when it comes to affordably priced sports watches like the T Touch, V8, Quickster, T Race, and the PRC 200 lines. Of course, this ultra-successful brand isn’t one dimensional, and carries a myriad of classically styled watches from the Heritage, and T Classic collections. Today, we will be looking at a true work of horological art hailing from the T Classic series.
The official name of the watch is the Tissot T Classic Chemin de Tourelles Squelette - reference number T099.405.16.418.00. The name is taken from the street in Switzerland where Tissot’s factory was built in 1907, and remains to this day. The word ‘Squelette’ is French for Skeleton, because the movement is clearly seen from the dial side and exhibition case back. Both sides of the watch are protected by a scratch resistant sapphire crystal.
The movement powering this model is the ETA 6497-1, which is a mechanical manual wound movement. Power reserve on the T Classic Chemin de Tourelles is limited to about 2 days, so winding this watch daily is recommended. The movement is decorated with perlage, which gives some light play and depth to this timepiece. What I found interesting but beautiful at the same time was the oversized balance wheel, which vibrates at 18,800 VpH. The 6497-1 boasts 17 jewels, and an Incabloc shock resistant system. This ETA caliber can also be found in brands ranging from Glycine, Swiss Army, and even as prestigious as Panerai. The dial has beveled, sword shaped blued steel hands and hour markers, which add a pop of color, and makes it very legible as well. At the 9 o’clock position is a small seconds counter, which showcases the sweeping motion of the seconds hand.
The case of this watch is fashioned from stainless steel, which has been satin finished. The case measures 42mm for the diameter, and 11mm for the case height. This is a great size for a dressy watch – not too thick, and big enough to offer good wrist presence. The main crown is ridged allowing for easy winding of this timepiece. The black alligator leather strap is secured using a triple deployant safety clasp also made from stainless steel. The clasp is very easily adjustable to fit wrists of almost any size. The Tissot T Classic Chemin de Tourelles Squelette has a water resistance rating of 50 meters, or 165 feet.