Customer Review

33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Citizen Blue Angles SS AT YJ0040-59L, August 26, 2010
This review is from: Citizen Men's JY0040-59L "Blue Angels Skyhawk A-T" Stainless Steel Eco-Drive Watch (Watch)
Where was I when they hyped Eco Drive? Not paying attention, that's for sure! I really thought it was something like Seiko's Kinetic or an automatic movement. Man was I stupid for not checking it out much sooner perhaps 20 years ago! My next dress watch will be Eco Drive too.

I investigated all the versions of the A-T models including titanium and the newer cheaper models using C650 calibre sold here and the much more expensive Atesa calibre versions only sold in the Orient as they also receive an Atomic Clock from China when your in the area. You can get them imported from dealers in the Orient. But this one uses the U600 calibre which is a bit more stuff on the dial and it was my choice. Almost went with the titanium version but decided against it in my quest and study about how owners liked them. They do but I didn't like the easier to scratch thing.

I have had this watch for a little over two weeks. I did download and study the manual for 2-3 days before it arrived. It is simple to use once you get the general idea of what happens when the crown is out one click or two clicks and you either press both buttons or one at a time. These commands are similar in each mode which is selected by rotating the crown in 1st position but it does stuff when rotating in the 2d click position too. With a little study you can remember how to stumble through it without a manual just thinking logically about what mode do I need and then setting it there and then using the buttons. You can do the simple stuff without much thinking. The operation is really almost brilliant in it's simplicity especially considering how they kept this very complex watch controlled with so few controls and redundant operation in each mode which seems instinctive once your on track in the process. If you set the right mode and it doesn't do exactly what you want when rotating the crown at the 1st click another pull to the 2d click of the crown and you will probably find it.

I am always amazed at the reviews that knock something they really don't understand simply because they refuse to read the manual much less study it.

That being said don't get confused thinking you have to do the Atomic updates. They are automatic unless you just want to do an on demand at anytime of the day. If you do that set aside 30 minutes or so to review the book. Do the hands reference position check to insure the hands are all aligned properly before you start. Then place it in the mode to receive an update. The manual states it can take anywhere from 2 minutes to 15 to complete the reception update. Took about 5 or 6 for mine when I did it just for funnies in it's initial pre-flight check.

You can easily use both time zones and still have your date pretty much on if you use a time zone for the date that changes while your sleeping. Seems all chronometers I have owned which had second time zones always have the date connected with the secondary zone such as UTC which was most common for me. But when I am home in the Central US I am using Chicago or HOM for my time zone and set HNL or Honolulu for the second. The date will change at 6 AM Central and I have no reason to know the date until sometime after that. However over the years using the UTC date was always okay with me and not inconvenient. The switching of the two time zones is painless 1 click on the crown and push both buttons at the same time close the crown. The hardest thing is just taking the time to run through the list of 44 time zones to select the ones you want to use.

I have actually hidden the watch in the worst places so the signal has to come through many walls overnight, turned the antenna away from the station all to see if I can prevent an automatic update with the Master Clock. Nope! Guess I'm too close to the source as the watch gets a strong signal every night at 2 AM even while wearing it. A simple push of the bottom button while the crown is in will cause the watch to report what happened at the last attempted automatic update. Only time it did not update was the night or two it was in transit freight.

As a pilot for me you can't do better than this series of watches including the regular Skyhawks. Truth is the simplest of watches will work for a pilot but chronometers make it so much nicer. None of my old chronometers had an E6B slide rule besides most were rectangular. I really do like the E6B even though I rarely fly any more. Figuring gas mileage and tips is a kick. Guess I don't know what cheap feels like that one reviewer mentioned since mine works and feels fine.

Since they did away with radium dials good night illumination was more of a wish unless you had a back light or bought one recently with tritium. But those go out in 10 years or so. This guy stays bright all night, hope it's not radium. I have not tried to use the back light for real. It "only" illuminates unevenly, at that, in the two windows. Have yet to have my glasses on while in a very dark condition to check it out so don't know if it is really legible or not.

I don't have a problem catching the crown but I usually have some fingernails and I do use them. I can see the problem if one did not have any help from the nails. If that is a problem for you get the regular Skyhawk with the knurled crown.

You can find heavier, but not by much. Lots are more expensive with more features, well maybe not. However it is certain many are much more expensive and have much less in the feature department. Fact is your not going to find better for what it is and does. You could not give me a Breit or Rolex. These are in fact just better mass produced instruments PERIOD.
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