Behind the Scene: The Field v1 Watch
Redwood watches are for those of you on a journey, exploring the world around you. Those of you who want to live and feel and experience everything there is out there.
INSPIRED BY THE GREAT OUTDOORS
Redwood watches are inspired by, of course, Redwoods. They are the tallest, largest and some of the longest living trees in the world. They evoke the beauty and majesty of nature. If you have ever stood in front of a giant Sequoia, you know the feeling, alone yet at one with nature. When Steinbeck took his camper and drove off to rediscover America, he was awed by the Redwoods.
"The redwoods, once seen, leave a mark or create a vision that stays with you always. [...] From them comes silence and awe." Steinbeck, 1962.
THE REDWOOD STORY
It all started last fall on a hike in the Laurentian Mountains. The autumn mountains were calling us.
On the ascent, questions kept popping up in our heads: “What would our ideal outdoor watch be like?”, “What watch would we want to take along on our adventures?”
It would have to be reliable, solid, simple, comfortable and be reasonably priced.
CREATING THE FIRST REDWOOD WATCH
We knew how to build watches so we knew we could make it happen. We had a clear vision and specific requirements. As soon as we got back home, we started sketching to see where it would take us.
Doing research was inspiring. We looked at old books and magazines, piles of black-and-white photos from our grandparents and did countless Google searches. We found ourselves inevitably drawn to vintage field watches with their functional design and rugged, reliable construction. The epitome of form following function.
Next, we had watch cases, dials and straps made, tweaking along the way until we achieved the design that we dreamed of.
We hope you join us on this adventure and get yourself an amazing watch in the process.
THE REDWOOD DESIGN BRIEF
- Rugged: Built to go anywhere, anytime (even under water), and operate worry-free and hassle-free.
- Functional: Field watch ease-of-use and readability. No unnecessary clutter or unnecessary functions.
- Crazy value: No middlemen. The watches go from us to you directly. No distributors, no retailers. Redwood watches are made of quality materials, but without the inflated prices so you get crazy value.
- Designed in Canada
REDWOOD DESIGN REQUIREMENTS
Ruggedness and Reliability
Although we love vintage field watches, their age and historic value often precludes them from actually being used in tough terrain. We also don’t want to discover we need a rare part in the middle of a camping trip because our vintage watch needs servicing. Modern equivalents are either bloated with lots of functions we don't need or fragile with only the looks of an authentic field watch but not the ruggedness. We need a watch that is as rugged as it looks and that we can rely on wherever we are.
The Redwood watch cases are solid stainless steel (grade 316). SS316 is one of the toughest, most corrosion resistant steels, making the case basically indestructible.
The PVD coating on the black cases is anti-reflective for a stealth look and is also super scratch resistant.
For the heart of the watch, we selected a Japanese quartz movement. In the late 50s, Japan decided to explore the idea of a better, more accurate watch movement to replace the mechanical movements available at the time. After over 10 years of research and trials, the first quartz movement was unveiled and turned the watch world upside down.
The movement we chose is ultra-reliable, ultra-accurate (set the time and forget it), requires zero maintenance, zero adjustment. It is shock-resistant. True worry-free operation with a battery life of 2-3 years. Just pick it up and go.
To ensure the watch is as rugged in wet conditions as on dry land, we went with a 50m water resistance. With the 50m rating, it resists the elements and can even stay on your wrist when you go for a swim. Torrential rain? No problem! Whitewater rafting? Bring it on!
There are a lot of clunky watches with tons of bells and whistle and tiny, hard-to-read numbers on the market. Lots of mostly useless functions. Sure we wanted a watch that looks good, but first and foremost we wanted a watch that works. For us, form always follows function.
The Redwood watches have a comfortable 40mm case size: A perfect fit for most wrists and not so huge as to hinder your freedom of movement.
The dials are clean with no useless extras. Just like vintage field watches. They feature large numbers that are easy and quick to read. No double take when you check the time.
We also applied lume (glow-in-the-dark coating) on the dials and hands to make sure we could tell the time under any conditions, even at the darkest hour of a moonless night, whether you are out camping or heading to the subway after a late nightcap. The pretty unique white dials are actually entirely coated in lume for maximum visibility.
White dial (left) and black dial (right) with glow-in-the dark lume
Let's put it bluntly. The overwhelming majority of watches on the market today are grossly overpriced because of the retail business model and proliferation of middlemen. By skipping this chain of intermediates, we are able to cut the retail price considerably.
You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone with the same watch as you. Normally, that would mean spending a small fortune. But by sharing the same basic case design for all Redwood models, we are able to save a bundle on setup and production costs. This allows us to use excellent materials (found in more expensive watches) while keeping the price down and give you an incredible variety of options.
Designed in Canada
We are proud to call Montreal, Canada home. Redwood watches are inspired by the great outdoors and are ready for any adventure you throw at them. With the Great True North just north of us and the vast and varied terrain of the United States just south of us, we are lucky to have the ultimate testing field right in our backyard.
REDWOOD DESIGN DETAILS
Choose between 2 case options (brushed stainless steel or black). Dials are available in black and white and numerals are available in black and white for a classic look.
All the white dials are entirely coated in lume (glow-in-the dark coating). All the black dials feature numerals and markers coated in lume.
There are 8 strap options:
100% nylon straps available in black, tan and green
The nylon straps are ideal for hardcore outdoors. They are very strong, durable and 100% waterproof. These 1-piece straps are easy and quick to change without tools. An added bonus is that if one spring bar were to fail, the watch would not fall off.
Canvas straps available in black, tan and green
The Redwood canvas straps are made of the same material used for tents until the 60s. They have a great vintage look and feature a leather backing for comfort. While not as waterproof as nylon straps, they can handle getting wet.
Genuine leather straps are available in black and natural brown
Leather is the traditional watch strap material because it is hard-wearing and comfortable. It will take on a unique patina with time as it adapts to the exact shape of your wrist. Leather doesn't like getting wet but otherwise is as happy exploring the city as it is in the woods.
A comfortable 40mm case size and slim 8mm thickness for ease of use
We started making watches in 2015 and had several successful Kickstarter projects. Watches had always fascinated us. Growing up, we have always been in awe when faced with the wide open spaces of the North American outdoors. Our travels across the continent, from the cliffs of Big Sur to the wind-battered St-Lawrence valley, from the Colorado Rockies to the Reefs off Key Largo, but above all, the majestic redwood groves, have inspired us to create the Redwood watches.