Timex X Nigel Cabourn Referee Watch Review

In late June, while wasting my life scrolling on Instagram, I scrolled passed a new Timex watch on END Clothing’s account.  It was hot out, there was another watch flying by in my feed.  I quickly turned my attention towards whatever was next.  The only thing really operating was the reptile brain at this particular moment.

So I flicked by the Timex and about 10-15 posts later, I was like, wait a second.  The dial on that watch was interesting.  What was that again?  Scroll back, keep going, back, back, back.  There it is: END’s post with the watch.  Usually they post exotic Nikes, Stone Island Shirts, and other Hypebeast wares.

Now let me preface this whole tome with one simple fact: Timex isn’t a brand I traditionally devote a lot of time to.  I don’t think I’ve ever owned a Timex watch.  No Ironman, no Weekender, no Digital,  no nothing.  Every time I see an Ironman I think of the first time I went to a Museum in Washington, DC and there was one of Bill Clinton’s watches.  An Ironman.  What things had that Ironman seen?

“I did not have sex with that woman, she only likes men with gold watches.”

So what the hell was this watch:  Timex X Nigel Cabourn referee watch. A quartz, stainless steel watch.  At $175, I decided to try it out. I wanted to review a few other stainless steel watches this summer, but they’re not available. See every steel Royal Oak, Daytona/Sub, and Nautilus.  I had to add a few things to the cart to get free shipping including a Kinto coffee mug that is a sheer pleasure to drink out of. Nigel Cabourn is a British designer known for his vintage and military inspired styles. This is his second collaboration with Timex. (The First)

Holiday Road

I, of course, in my infinite parent wisdom decided to test it for a day/week/3 months on the wrist, out in the wild.  The first stop was one of the gigantic waterparks in Northern Pennsylvania.  For four days.  Four days at a waterpark.  FOUR DAYS.

Awesome driving and holding the camera out of the sunroof shot. Somewhere in PA.

I strapped on the watch on a Saturday morning for the escape from New York City via the Williamsburg Bridge and Holland Tunnel.  The latter of which is so long that it feels like you might never come back up to the surface.  We live here now.  Watch out for the C.H.U.D.
We got to the park about two hours later, after two particularly unimpressive stops at a rest stop and a McDonalds.  The McDonalds had pictures on 1990s F1 races on the wall.  Very strange. Later we were in a pub near the waterpark watching the US Women’s World Cup victory.

How I learned to stop worrying and love the Waterpark

I really wanted to field test this watch so I decided to wear it in the Waterpark.  It was inexpensive enough that it didn’t matter if it got utterly destroyed after being kick by an errant child or smashed into a fiberglass piece of a slide.  I wore it in highly chlorinated, caffeinated, and alcoholinated water-park water with great certainty it’d hold up.  This place has everything including cheap drinks and a serious lack of bathroom proximity.  It performed really well after being drowned under literally hundreds of gallons of water at a time.  Going on flumes with a two year old.  Surviving the odd hit from the magic wand.  If you’ve been there you know what I’m talking about.  At one point a kid ran into me while I was holding my daughter. I fell onto my knees and down onto my wrists.  No damage to the Timex.  Great. Probably permanent damage to my right knee. (I’m fine.)

On the wrist

The watch wears really light.  So light in fact that I both showered with it and left it on while I slept, two things I never normally do.  (Let’s be honest, who “forgets” and showers with two Rolex 6239 Paul Newmans on their wrists….ok, ok, it happened ONCE!) The claret and blue nato strap is one of the better NATO straps I’ve worn.  Its density and flexibility are top notch.  I’ve actually reviewed a few NATO straps recently that were absolute garbage, proof they can be messed up.  They looked awesome, but wore like dog-meat.  The Timex-stamped satin finished buckle and nato hardware work well together with both the case and the strap.  I’m going to be sharing this strap with the rest of my collection.  It’s that good.  

The Watch

  • Tells time via quartz movement
  • MK1 40mm stainless steel case
  • Domed acrylic crystal
  • Cream dial with custom artwork red blocking of 45 min referee’s stopwatch
  • Custom fluted crown
  • Tourbillion complication.
  • Etched, branded caseback
  • S.B. Foot Tanning Co. Leather Strap
  • Additional bi-colour strap
  • Custom Water resistant to 900m
  • Army mending kit packaging 

I really enjoyed wearing this watch.  I’m sad to have to send it back to Timex. Wait, I bought this one, never mind.  Most people aren’t watch people.  Therefore most people don’t ever notice watches.  However, this dial received a lot of attention.  Some people just wanted a closer look.  Others asked what the 75% red diagram was all about.  It’s simply a visual representation of the 45 minutes of a half of a football/soccer match.  This watch has no chronometer functionality so it really is for looks only.  

Notes on the watch’s survival

  • Survived no less than five 5-years-old’s birthday parties, all in bars.
  • Worn to two zoos.  No gorillas shot in our midst.  RIP Harambe.
  • Changed hundreds of diapers.
  • Puked on. (Not mine)
  • Smashed into balcony railing once.  Into subway pole once.
  • Battered while teaching a 5yo to ride a bike.
  • Worn while watching Chernobyl. (watch it) No geiger complication though, Major bummer all around.
  • Weathered myriad trips to Whole Foods. and far too many wrist shots in front of produce and fish.

Closing Statement

I enjoyed wearing a watch I could lose and not have to call an insurance company about afterwards.  It’s simple and and clean.  I really grew to appreciate the satin finishing.  If you’re looking for something new without breaking the bank, check out this limited edition Timex.

Look at the flowers!

BUY IT NOW! End Clothing

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