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Review | Luminox F-117 Nighthawk EVO

Design Details

The screw-down crown is disappointing for a watch with an RRP of £695.00. It is generic with no design or logo but more importantly, whilst it unscrews cleanly and threads back down without an issue, when it is undone for adjustment of the time or date, it feels loose. This may be an isolated example of course, but we suspect it is the norm. Still, there is no difficulty in use, with its deep groves making it easy to grip, and it feels to be firmly attached. It also features a substantial crown guard to keep it that way.

Turning the watch over, the screw-down case back features an engraved (coloured in white) diagram of the F-117 Nighthawk jet and further text around its circumference with reference to the specification of the watch. The diagram is a nice attention to detail and makes the watch feel a little more unique and special.

The rubber strap is basic, with an embossed groove running its length and the Luminox text imprinted deeply in to its surface, at each end. The clasp is double tang, brushed silver stainless steel featuring the Luminox logo and it provides a good range of adjustment and positive security on the wrist.

What we are not so impressed with are the double rubber strap keepers* which feel quite fragile and indeed, we broke one in a very short period of time. We would not expect to have this issue and certainly not on a Swiss Made watch of this value.

Luminox F-117 Nighthawk (6400 Series) Luminox F-117 Nighthawk (6400 Series)

We have not had the opportunity to try the F117 on the bracelet but it does, of course, add considerable weight and we understand that whilst it looks rugged enough, the PVD coating does not wear particularly well in this application.

A real highlight of Luminox watches, of course, are the tritium gas-filled tubes which illuminate the indices and hands. These are guaranteed to last for 25 years and they really do provide excellent luminosity (Lumi means light and Nox refers to dark, in latin). They glow green with the 12 o'clock position highlighted in orange. And as such, these are ideal for a night-time hike or bike ride, when caving or perhaps, completing that covert mission over enemy territory under the cover of darkness.

We have used the F-117 mountain biking, hiking, surfing and kayaking and it has always proved reliable, accurate and easy to read in such testing environments.

Those gas-filled tubes are protected by sapphire crystal (anti-reflective on the inside) which provides exceptional clarity and is, of course, impervious to scratches and scuffs. Indeed, it would take a severe and direct impact to shatter the crystal.

*replacement keepers are available from the Luminox UK distributor at £10.00 for two, or a more appropriate option at a later stage in the strap life perhaps, an entire new rubber strap at £35.00.

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