Saturday, March 19, 2016

MEET THE WATCH: Swiss Army Metallic Green & Titanium Limited Edition Ground Forces Automatic Watch

Coincidentally, I am publishing this a little after St. Patrick's Day, which is the "holiday" in America with green beer, sassy red heads and dudes in leprechaun suits. Nobody would dare to pinch me while I am wearing this flashy green Limited Edition Ground Forces Automatic watch probably from 2005.


So, how green is this dial? It reminds me of metallic green foil wrapping paper that people used to use during Christmas holidays. It is as green as a grasshopper sitting on a frog on lime jello in a field of clover. That is VERY green. The watch looks great with its OEM titanium deployment band or on a Crown & Buckle Sheffield strap.

Rare Green Swiss Army Limited Edition Ground Forces Automatic on a Crown & Buckle Sheffield strap
The splashes of red and white make the dial a nice place to spend some time looking. Instead of tick mark indices, this model uses staggered numbers from 1 to 60. There is no guessing what minute of the hour it is. A military scale is also displayed within the large numerals' inner sanctum.

The case design is reminiscent of Swiss Army's Dive Master 500 watches that incorporate a crown guard right into the case. This bulk gives the watch a stocky bull dog look. A screw down crown is included for extra protection from the elements, though the Ground Forces watches are only rated for 100 meters water resistance. This is no Navy Seal watch.

  

This is probably the only Swiss Army model that has this exact metallic "fly green" sunburst dial. I have searched the Internet to find other Swiss Army models that uses this eye-popping color and did not find a single example.  I did find a few runner-ups though.

Many green Swiss Army watches are more olive in color
At first, I did not realize that it was a limited edition automatic (self-winding) model with a low production number.  I was familiar with quartz versions of Swiss Army's Ground Forces watches, but not this one. The reason is because you might never see one in the world or for sale. There was not much information or photographic evidence to be gleaned from the Internet either.

The sunburst dial can clearly be seen. The sun makes this dial intense with color.
I also own the rugged and hefty Ground Forces Quartz Chronograph that looks as tough as a tank. It even has "tread" on the pushers. These Ground Forces watches have titanium cases and bands making them light and strong. The bezels can take some abuse and both of mine show battle scars. Notice the split seconds chronograph. The chronograph version has 6 hands!

A quartz Swiss Army Ground Forces Chronograph with split seconds
By the numbers, this watch is the third rarest Swiss Army watch that I own with only 200 ever made.

The titanium band is light with a dark center
The chronograph is even chunkier
To increase the rarity even more, I have #2 of 200. While some people say that #2 is actually the first loser, this is not a race. Instead, it is generally accepted that lower numbers are better than higher numbers. I personally don't see much validity in this if all the watches are the same, but us watch collectors have to brag where we can.

The decorated ETA 2824-2 movement. The limited number is hard to read, but is says #2


I am so glad that I gave this one a second look, and had the luck of the Irish obtaining it.

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