Lum-tec Combat B33
Lum-tec Combat B33 Specifications:
- Complete assembly in Ohio
- 43mm width excluding crown
- 22mm lug width
- 13mm thick
- 316L stainless steel. Bead blasted finish
- Gunmetal PVD titanium Carbide hard coating
- High-tech Viton® gaskets
- MDV® Luminous technology. Old radium tone.
- Precision screw down crown with double diamond sealing system
- Curved sapphire crystal with clear anti-reflective coating
- GMT hand allows you to independently set a second time zone
- Threaded stainless steel caseback
- 200 meters/656 ft. water resistance
- 2 straps included: black nylon and old world style brown leather with matching hardware
- Extra spring bars included for fitting other straps
- All Swiss made R515.24 Quartz movement
- Two year limited warranty
- Limited numbered series of 150
- Free lifetime battery replacement service
- Free lifetime pressure testing and seal lubrication/cleaning
Price $495 USD
When I look down at the Lum-tec Combat B33, the first thing that pops into my mind is, utilitarian. That would be slightly incorrect though, as utilitarian basically means designed to be useful or practical, rather than attractive. I would never say the Combat series is unattractive. So, then I thought, well, its, its, ….a word I hate to use. Tactical. That word has just been thrown around so much for countless products, that it has almost lost all meaning, or should I say, the meaning has been highly misconstrued. Obviously with a model name such as the Combat, this mainstay in the Lum-tec lineup draws off of military and field style watches.
Watchreport is no stranger to the Combat series as various staff have reviewed past models. One of their latest offerings in this series is the B33, a combination of traditional hands and markers with a separate GMT hand. There are two other variations that were recently released, the B32 and the B34, but I’m going to concentrate on the B33, as that is the one I have in hand.
The Lum-tec B33 comes in at $495, a respectable price considering it houses a Swiss Made quartz and the fact they are hand assembled in Ohio. This is something I think many overlook when buying a model from the brand. Not only that, but especially if you are located in the US, you can call and talk directly to the manager or owner, and if you have a watch that needs repair, you are sending back in the US as opposed to overseas. I know some people scoff at their prices, but I feel they are justified in what the offer. In this case, your $495 will get you a 43mm case with a bead blasted, gunmetal PVD titanium carbide coating. Damn, that is a mouthful. Lets just say it has that matte grey titanium look and has a scratch resistant coating. The dial on all these new versions are black with the vintage color lume paint on the hands and markers.
The arrow GMT hand works with the center 24 hour track and yes, it can be set independently. While this is more of a field style watch, the Combat B33 is water resistant to 200 meters and has a screw down crown. I fitted it with a Hirsch rubber strap and took it in the pool to test it out, and of course, it held up just fine. Why did I take it into the pool? Well, it had arrived the day before and I knew I would be going to a pool party, so figured why not.
Speaking of straps, the Lum-tec B33 ships with two, a nylon nato and a leather nato. Now, this is no slight against these straps at all, I am just not a fan of nato straps. Never have been. And because of that, it made me wish Lum-tec included one of their molded rubber straps in the package. Most people will be very content with the included straps, as they are of good quality. If not, a leather or rubber strap of your own in 22mm will work just fine. And if you want to outfit it with a bracelet, you can purchase one specifically for this model on the Lum-tec website.
Lum-tec B33 Case back
Of course, I can not review a Lum-tec without discussing the lume, one of the things the brand is known for. I was worried because of the vintage lume colored paint, or as LT calls it, old radium, it would not produce the bright, powerful glow that I am accustom too. I was wrong. Dead Wrong. I even mention in the video that I didn’t feel it would be that good. Again, I was wrong. See photo below. Something I initially did not pay attention to, was how the lume on the GMT and second hand is a different color, allowing you to easily differentiate in the dark.
The Lum-tec B33 GMT definitely has a lot to offer. Yes, it is a quartz, but my opinion their is nothing wrong with quartz watches. And if for some reason, you just can not get past that, they will be offering automatic in this style down the road and currently have other automatic Combat series available on the website. This is not an all around watch, this is your weekend watch, your hiking/camping/rafting watch. The one you can give some abuse but will still look great. If you travel often, or just like to also have military time, than this model will be a big bonus. If you don’t need a GMT feature, they have a standard 3 hand model as well. I always try and pick apart any way watch I’m sent for review. Finishing, fine details, materials used, and of course price. This is one I personally can not find any faults with. A great looking, rugged and dependable watch.