The British brand 6B is one we have not written about all that much, but that’s for good reason – they just recently released their second watch. That said, the fellow behind the brand, Carl Evans, is pretty well established within the watch world. At least, when it comes to aftermarket straps, that is. Evans is the driving force behind GasGasBones, and has branched out from nylon and leather straps (and other goods), into the world of watches. His second foray, under the new brand, is the 6B MKII.
As with the MK I that preceded it, the MK II has a lot of Evan’s own work going into it. He of course makes the straps, but he has also expanded his manufacturing skills and capabilities, which I followed with interest via social media. For the MK II, he’s now also able to manufacture the buckle (used on the nylon straps) as well as the springbar holder. I like that he is pushing to expand his skillset (and what he can offer), while building up on what he has already established as strengths.
That leaves us with the watch, then. While Evans himself does not do the assembly (he would rather leave that to the professionals), he did confirm that assembly and final QA is completed in the UK, with components coming in from across Europe.
The 6B MK II claims military inspiration, that is something I have a hard time picking up (then again, I am no expert on military chronographs). That said, this looks like a very cleanly laid out piece, with legibility kept sharp with the contrast of white on the black dial. Evans states that the direct inspiration for the MK II comes from “admiring old mil watches over the years.” Those watches ended up inspiring design cues we now see, with a deliberate focus on creating a simple style that is easy to read.
I think that is a mark that was hit spot on – there really does not look to be anything extraneous, and the finishes look to keep glare down. The handset seems proportional (both to the dial and each other), though I do wonder if they couldn’t be slightly widened. I even like how the brand and model information was included over at 3 o’clock. It is in keeping with the sort of engraving you would see on the back of a British mil-spec watch, and looks completely in place.
The 6B MK II is powered by a Valjoux 7750, so you can rest assured that this should be a rather accurate (and serviceable) chronograph. The 20mm lugs on the stainless steel case (which itself is just a hair under 41mm) should easily house any manner of straps. When it comes to those, you can of course get one custom made to your wrist size by Evans; the package will include one nylon and one leather NATO-style strap, along with a Bergeon 6765s spring bar removal tool.
The whole kit is packed up in a box that has a lot of Evans’ sweat and blood poured into, as he’s doing the work to clean, polish, and assemble the bits and bobs in his workshop. While this could perhaps be considered unnecessary (how many of you have your watch boxes still kicking around?), I rather like it. As with my earlier comments, Evans is playing to his strengths and picking up some new capabilities. Sure, he could have gone the easy route and gotten a Pelican-style case with some die-cut foam inside. Instead, he created this box design that, to my way of thinking, really shows an attention to detail (and creativity to boot).
If you’d like to pick up one of the limited-edition 6B MKII watches (of which there will be 50 made) with the slick presentation box, head on over to the 6B website and get your order in; the watch will run just a hair under $2800 (1795 GBP). While I cannot speak to the workmanship of the watch, I have had Evan’s straps and leather goods in, and they are top notch – so I can only assume that attention to detail and quality carry over to his watches. Definitely let us know if you order one, as I would love to hear some hands-on impressions with the piece. gasgasbones.com/6b-watches
- Brand & Model: 6B MKII
- Price: $2800 (1795 GBP)
- Who we think it might be for: You like your military watches with a bit of a British influence
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: It’s a tossup – but as I’m leaning more and more away from chronographs, I think I’d have to give this one a pass (and really, only for that reason)
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: A simple thing, perhaps widen the hands. Thinking with a wider scope, I’d like to see MK III perhaps take on a simpler pilots watch, perhaps with a GMT complication.
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: The clean and simple design, After that, the nutty watch box Evans came up with!
Tech Specs from 6B
- Movement : Swiss made Valjoux 7750 automatic
- Functions : Chronograph with hack function
- Case : Brushed 316L stainless steel
- Glass : Sapphire crystal
- Water resistance : 50 Mtrs
- Lug width : 20mm
- Straps : One Nylon and one leather NATO style
- Strap removal tool : Bergeon 6765s
- Spring bar holder : Custom made and engraved
- Crown diameter : 7mm ~ None screwdown
- Diameter : 40.90mm ~ 44.60 with crown
- Total outer dimensions : 50.70 x 44.60mm
- Case height : 13.70mm
- Weight of watch head : 90g
- Total weight with packaging : 1616g