The brown leather strap measures 22mm at the lugs and tapers to 18mm towards the belt style buckle. I was a little disappointed that it didn’t have 24mm lugs, as I feel it would have balanced the case better. Overall the strap is very well made, but I feel it is a little bit short, especially for a watch that is so large.
The way the watch sits on my 7.5 inch wrist, in my opinion, is too large for me to pull off personally, which makes me wonder why the strap is not made to fit 8 inch wrists or larger, as the Heritage Pilot would definitely look better on larger wrists. With that said, depending on your job or shirts you wear, it is thin enough to fit under most shirt cuffs. Though I don’t know if you want to be wearing this big guy in the office.
The “old radium” superluminova is applied generously and it looks to be done very evenly. It glows a nice bright green, very similar to C3 superluminova. What I like here is that not only are the hands and numbers lumed, but also the Alpina name and triangle logo too. It even has lume dots for the 24 hour time register. I like when companies apply lume to other parts of the dial besides the important ones. It does not help you see the time in the dark any better, but it does give it that “cool” factor.
There is no doubt that Alpina has created a stand out model with the Heritage Pilot. It combines classic pilot watch elements using modern materials and movements. The case is well machined and wonderfully finished, and this dial variant gives it that military/air force feel. The old radium colored hands and markers work well with the dial and when combined with the leather strap and buckle, it gives the watch that needed vintage flair. The sapphire crystal is super clear with no distortion or cloudiness, which is what you should expect from a watch at this price point. Of course the main highlight is the hinged case back and viewable mechanical movement. This is definitely the type of watch you want to take off and show to your friends and colleagues. Whether they appreciate it as much as you do, well, who knows, but you will have fun showing it off.
My one and only criticism would be the width and length of the leather strap. For such a large watch, I feel it should have 24mm lugs, and the strap should be long enough to fit at least a 8.5 inch wrist, if not larger, as I definitely believe this watch is meant for people with large wrists.
And lets not forget it is a limited edition of 1883. Now, admittedly, that is not a very small number when it comes to limited editions and watches, but they will not be producing these as an ongoing model, so when they are gone, they are gone. Overall, it is a great looking model from Alpina and most likely very different from what you have in your collection.
Would you recommend this to a friend? Yes.
Would you purchase for yourself? NO, only because it is too large for me.
Thank you to Alpina for providing this model for review.