The Timex Marlin has landed at WatchGecko HQ, we give you some replacement straps suggestions and chat about our first impressions...
If you're active in the online watch community you'll have more than likely seen the newest watch that keeps cropping up. Timex has recently re-issued their infamous, classic Marlin dress watch from the 1960's. As a fan of vintage watches, I was eagerly waiting for this little 34mm gem to arrive. As I'm sure you imagine I have plenty to say about this re-issue, but for the time being let's go over my first impression of the watch and suggest some straps for you.
The first thing you'll notice after unpacking the outer package and opening the black on black Timex branded box is that it's not just the watch that brought vintage aesthetics with it. The interior of the Marlin box is typically old school with an off-white soft fabric cushion combined with classic Timex branding commonly found in (you guessed it) a Timex box from the 60s.
Now, onto the main attraction. The first thing I noticed when unboxing the Marlin, was the unmissable silver sunburst dial. It's extremely hard not to appreciate this sunburst dial which just makes me think of all the original examples I've seen in the past year and imagine this is how they looked when passed over the counter to the new owner. The domed acrylic crystal not only compliments the vintage feeling of the watch but also makes that dial pop even more. On the topic of the domed crystal, it's hard to ignore its size! After only a few winds the little manual wind movement is ticking away and those deep black hands are off.
I wasn't sure I'd be a fan of those black hands and indices as all the images I'd seen previously didn't quite work for me. However, after handling the watch in person, I'm pleased to report and concerns of the black and silver combo are long gone. As always with sub 36mm watches, the initial 34mm size of the Marlin on my 7 1/4 inch wrist came as a surprise Coming from the near perfect size of my Rolex Sub, it took myself some time to get comfortable with seeing something a little more conservative strapped to my wrist. On the topic of size, let's talk about the thickness (or lack of thickness).
This re-issue is thin. The watch comes in at 10.2mm with the crystal adding about 50% of the watches thickness at 5mm. With the watch case being so small and movement being a similar story, this leads me to my first concern of the watch. Although this is a re-issue and is a new watch, it still has the feeling of a vintage watch. It's a delicate little thing and should be treated as so. Now, of course this watch is designed to be thin. I can't imagine Timex imagined many customers to be wearing this watch everyday from office to gym, but as more of an evening time/dress watch occasion piece.
Naturally, after wearing the Marlin for about half an hour or so, I started thinking about our own straps and which I can switch the strap for to make this watch even more attractive. As I've just mentioned, the Marlin is a thin little watch and finding a replacement watch strap which compliments it is as important as the situation you wear it in. Many of our straps would look great on this watch on the face of it, however, the thickness of the watch really determines which straps work and tie in nicely, or are too thick and overpower it. With this in mind, let's do some online shopping and get some suggestions together.
Play it safe with leather
Leather straps are one of the most popular types of replacement straps we offer. Not only are they extremely comfortable, stylish, timeless with their classic looks but if looked after they can be enjoyed for many years over many different types of watches. From divers to pilots, to dress and right back to tool watches with chronographs, leather straps are the default when it comes to getting a new replacement strap. For the Marlin when it comes to leather straps I'd recommend sticking with our more dressy options. Luckily we have many straps which compliment the thin size of the Marlin.
Traditional and classic- Italian Exotic Dress
There is a reason Timex decided to go for a classic animal print leather strap. When you think of classic dress watches you more than likely imagine the watch strapped to a similar strap. With our Italian Exotic Dress strap, you can achieve a similar classic look but with more options! If you want to stick with the black printed look we offer the strap in Black Lizard in 18mm which is a nice option to go for. Alternatively, we offer a Brown Lizard print option which would be my personal pick. It's a nice Dark Brown which means in dark light it looks almost black, but in others, the brown is very prominent and is more of a smart casual look.
Finally, there is the Ostrich print. This strap is for the watch geeks amongst us who want the Marlin to really jump out at you when you glance down at the time. All of these options are genuine Italian leather and also come with high-quality Nubuck lining which has Cuir Veritable in italics. The words reflect your strap's manufactured by one of France's top strap-makers. On the underside of the tip, you'll find a similarly embossed Geckota logo. It's there to reassure you that this is a genuine Geckota product – with everything this means for quality and service.
Keeping it casual - Contoured Handmade Italian Leather
My next suggestion is if you want to make your new Marlin a little more casual. Timex built their brand on being durable little watches which are affordable for the majority of consumers. Swapped out the original strap for one of our Contoured Italian Leather straps and the look plays into their brand history nicely. This strap uses high-quality Italian pull up leather and uses neatly stitched waxed thread. We've fitted the Contoured Italian with a premium buckle made from solid polished stainless steel and has been designed so the leather strap fits neatly into it the recessed shape, making it a comfortable wear. The benefits of the strap doesn't end there as the tongue of the buckle is also solid, so the reassurance that it is strong and secure.
We offer this strap in six colour variations, all offering something different. I love this strap to pair with most vintage watches we get through the door at WatchGecko, my personal favourite being the Chocolate Brown or the Black option.
A refreshing look for a classic
Some of you out there may find leather straps a bit of a safe bet with this watch. As previously mentioned, there isn't a lot of straps that work with a small dress watch, however, I've got a few up my sleeve which if you're in the market for something different, these might be right up your street...
A slice of history - Combat NATO
It doesn't come as much of a surprise for many of us when I say that NATO straps have a long line of historical importance. What started life in some form as a 16mm piece of tropicalised webbing became the standard UK military strap for over 25 years. As the Marlin is all about history, a G10 NATO strap is a great option not only for those among us who find themselves constantly changing watch straps 24/7, but also if you want to take your little Marlin to the next historical. Our straps are not only extremely high quality with stitched in hardware and buckle, heat sealed edges and holes to avoid fraying but also they're extremely affordable.
I went for the Combat Green/Black option. I think it really compliments the watch well, picking up on the black details found on the dial.