Walter Shillington is an avid collector of mechanical watches. His reviews focus on inexpensive but often intriguing Chinese timepieces.
Watch collecting tends to be an expensive hobby. To satisfy my appetite without forcing myself into bankruptcy, I joined a subscription service that sent me a new, deeply discounted timepiece every month.
After a year, I’d increased my collection significantly and decided to cancel my membership with Watch Gang. An J. Brackett Navigli automatic was my final purchase.
The J Brackett Navigli weighs in at 5.16 ounces. It is 13 millimeters thick with a diameter of 43 millimeters.
A brushed stainless-steel case encloses a Seiko Nh35a automatic movement. Water resistance is rated at 5ATM.
This timepiece’s black colored dial is engraved with a relatively conservative pattern and features shiny silver studs at each hour position. Decent quality luminous paint has been dabbed onto the watch’s silver-colored hands, and a tiny cut-out at the three o’clock position allows a view of the date.
This watch’s caseback features a window, through which the movement can be seen. A quality stainless-steel strap is included.
- Brand: J Brackett
- Model: Automatic
- Condition: New
- Place of origin: Designed in the US and manufactured in China
- Gender: Male
- Display: Analog
- Movement: Seiko NH35A automatic with date feature
- Style: Dress
- Features: Date indicator
- Band material: 316L stainless steel with hidden buckle
- Band color: Silver
- Bandwidth: 22 millimeters
- Dial color: Black with silver studs
- Dial window material: Mineral glass
- Case material: 316L Stainless-steel
- Case diameter: 43 millimeters
- Case thickness: 13 millimeters
- Weight: 146 grams (5.16 ounces)
- Water resistance: 5ATM
J. Brackett is a small company that sells variations of two watch models. The Camden is equipped with a Ronda quartz movement, and the Navigli is powered by a Seiko automatic NH35A.
Little is known about this company. J. Brackett is not trademarked, and I have been unable to locate their head office. I assume that they are based in the United States and import their watches from China.
J. Brackett timepieces can be purchased online at their website. They are also available at several web-based stores such as eBay. The cost of a Camden quartz varies between $50 and $140, and their Navigli automatic is priced in the $300 range.
The Navigli exudes an aura of conservative competence, which fits in well with a wide variety of clothing styles.
Its simple dial features an easy to read design and includes a date window large enough to determine the day of the month quickly.
For those of us fascinated by whirling timing wheels, this watch’s movement can be examined through an observation window which pierces the caseback.
I was especially impressed by this timepiece’s strap, which is composed of stainless steel and includes a buckle that is virtually undetectable when fastened. It is one of the most comfortable bands I have come across.
Both the case and strap of this watch are composed of 316L stainless steel, which provides excellent resistance against rust.
The strap is comfortable and well constructed. Its nifty fold-over buckle is unnoticeable when engaged, fitting almost seamlessly into the overall band.
J Brackett fitted a quality Seiko NH35A automatic movement into this watch. It contains 24 jewels and oscillates at 21,600bpm. The movement is hackable, which means that the second hand can be stopped by pulling out the timepiece’s crown. This feature is useful when setting the watch.
With water resistance rated at 5ATM, the Navigli can be worn during light swimming but not while diving or snorkeling.
The Seiko NH35A movement’s accuracy range is within -20~+40 seconds per day under normal conditions. During my test, the Navigli gained an average of 23 seconds per day, and power reserve worked out to 44 hours.
The J Brackett Navigli is a well built and capable automatic. Unfortunately, aside from its high-quality strap, there is nothing about this timepiece that separates it from a myriad of competitors. Most potential purchasers will put it on their shortlist, and then move on to a watch they find more appealing.
Accuracy is an important consideration when purchasing a mechanical watch. The following poll is designed to discover the precision expected by my readers when purchasing a $300 timepiece.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2019 Walter Shillington
Walter Shillington (author) from Windsor, Nova Scotia, Canada on July 03, 2019:
I just slipped the watch on to refresh my memory. Grab one section of the band (above the buckle) between thumb and forefinger, pulling. One side of the buckle will open. Then stick the end of a fingernail between the buckle and the unopened piece of the band above it, levering it open. If your fingernails are too short, pull this section with your thumb and forefinger again.