Vostok Russian Military Watches
The words “Russian Military” aren’t typically associated with wristwatches. Usually, images of uniformed men marching past the Kremlin come to mind. Vostok, the official supplier of watches to the Soviet (now Russian) Defense ministry, actually makes quality watches at a very affordable price. This company was founded in 1942 when a Moscow based plant moved to a small town called Chistopol due to the German invasion. After the war, they began making watches. Coming from a defense industry background, Vostok’s watches are rugged but stylish. They are simple, mechanical pieces. Here is a selection of five different Vostok Watches:
Vostok Amphibian 420270/ 2416b Russian Military Divers Watch
The Amphibian is an all-stainless steel design with a black dial face. The word “Amphibian” in cyrillic is imprinted on its dial face. It’s water resistant down to 600 feet, true to its name. The rotating bezel is accented with red from the 8 o’clock to the 12 o’clock position. Unlike the other four Vostok watches, the Amphibian is automatic and thus, does not need to be hand wound. If it does need winding, however, it can simply be wound up again with a winding stem. Also, the watch is built with shock resistance but I would still be gentle to it.
Vostok Komandirskie Military Russian Watch Commander of Tank Ministry
Following a different military theme, the Komandirskie is silver colored with a black dial face. The case is smaller and rounder than the Amphibian, and it has a leather not metal strap. Also, this watch does not have a rotating bezel. It’s secured by a leather wrist band. On the dial face, there is a tank (a t-34 I believe) above the hands, and the 12 o’clock number is replaced by a large, red 5-pointed star. The design sits on a jet black dial face background. As with all other of the Vostok watches, it is mechanically wound and shock resistant. It is similar in overall look and feel to the Vostok Amphibian.
Vostok Komandirskie Military Russian Watch U-boot Submarine
The U-Boot watch is a big watch with a big, unique design printed on the center of the dial face. The dial face is dominated by a mural of a submarine. The bottom half of the depiction is an ocean surface with an anchor design at the 6 o’clock position. The top half is dominated by a submarine with a red star imprinted on its conning tower. This all sits on a black background contained in a stainless steel case. The watch is secured to the wrist by a leather wristband. The seal of the Russian Defense Ministry is printed on the back of the watch as well.
Vostok Komandirskie 539792 / 2414a Military Russian Special Forces Watch
Compared to the other watches on this list, the Special Forces Watch is slimmer and more stylish. It looks a little less militaristic while still retaining a similar design. In place of the 12 o’clock position, there is a Russian coat of arms. Above the 6 o’clock position is a classic red star. This is encased in a darker, gold colored case rather than the stainless steel or sleek black look of the other watches. Also, the left and right sides of the case are flared outwards, adding texture to the piece. The Special Forces Watch is a classic looking watch which works as a great conversation starter and will probably turn heads as well.
Vostok Komandirskie Military Russian Watch Paratrooper VDV 2414 / 811818
Out of the Vostok watches reviewed here, this one has by far my favorite design on the dial face. The color scheme is a blue that morphs into a teal halfway down the watch face. A vibrant red and white star occupies the 12 o’clock position. Below it is a large deployed parachute flanked by two transport aircraft. While the design of each Vostok watch is fairly unique, this one stands out to me. The combination of the color scheme plus the symmetrically designed paratrooper theme is easy on the eyes. As with the other Vostok watches, the Paratrooper VDV is shock resistant, required mechanical winding every 36 hours and comes with a thin leather band.