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Review: Hamilton’s Boulton Watch Is a 1940s Era Reissue Fit For Indiana Jones

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Found in 1892, the Hamilton Watch Company has a history that’s closely intertwined with military service, having been responsible for some of the most iconic field watches ever made. In addition to its military service, Hamilton is also well-known for its timepieces being heavily featured in film and television — more than 500 of them in fact — from the Ventura Quartz watch from the Men In Black film franchise to the Khaki Field Murph Auto in Interstellar to the  Khaki Field Auto worn by Captain America in 2012’s The Avengers to the Khaki Navy BeLOWZERO Auto Titanium from Tenet to the Khaki Field Auto Chrono worn by Jack Ryan, just to name a few of its latest silver screen appearances. For Hamilton’s latest movie watch, the Swiss outfit has joined forces with the production of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny in order to deliver a special edition vintage reissue of its Boulton  Quartz watch — a classically-styled reissue that we recently put through its paces for this hands-on review of the Hamilton Boulton Quartz watch. 

At A Glance

Hamilton Boulton Quartz Specs

Case Size: 27mm x 31.6mm
Lug to Lug: 31.6mm
Case Thickness: 7.8mm
Lug Width: 18mm
Case Material: Yellow PVD-Coated Stainless Steel
Water Resistance: 30m
Movement Type: Quartz
Movement: Hamilton Calibre H-50
Crystal: Domed Mineral Glass
Strap: Faux Alligator Leather

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An Early Look

Attending The Premier To Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destinyi

In addition to getting the chance to test out this new movie watch, we were also given the exclusive opportunity to attend the premier of the film, see it on screen, and mingle with some of the fifth installment’s cast. Below we’ve also included some photography that HICONSUMPTION captured at the film’s premier at the El Capitan Theatre on Hollywood Blvd.

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Getting Hands-On

First Impressions Of The Hamilton Boulton

Interestingly, despite four previous installments in the Indiana Jones series, the franchise’s titular character has never previously dawned a wristwatch. So, for Dr. Jones’ first on-screen timepiece, the Dial Of Destiny’s production took strides to make sure they nailed it with the character’s inaugural watch. This led to a partnership with Hamilton which ultimately landed on a lightly redesigned version of its Boulton. First introduced in 1941, the Boulton was one of Hamilton’s most popular watches for over a decade. In the 1980s, the watch would be revived once again. The latest iteration of this watch gains a few subtle tweaks in an effort to give it an appearance that jives with Indiana Jones’ style. 

Sporting a light Art Deco influence, this rectangular-cased timepiece boasts a yellow gold PVD-coated case housing a quartz movement and an objectively elegant dial with matching yellow PVD’d hands and numerals. This more upscale aesthetic has been complemented via an old-school-looking alligator leather strap that gives the watch a more rugged and adventurous feel that perfectly encapsulates Indie’s style. Slightly larger case proportions also afford this otherwise vintage-inspired watch a slightly more modern flavor. Like a great many Swiss watches, what really makes the Hamilton Boulton shines is its myriad of more subtle, understated details. 

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PVD-Coated Cushion

The Hamilton Boulton’s Case

The Hamilton Boulton is part of the brand’s throwback-inspired American Classic Collection. Deviating from the original 1941 reference’s 23mm x 37mm sizing, the new version of the Boulton is constructed around a cushion case that measures 27mm in diameter by 31.6mm lug to lug. Splitting the difference between sharper tank-style cases and rounded rectangular tonneau-style housings, the watch also features a 16mm lug width. These revised dimensions have been brought to life in a stainless steel construction that’s been finished in a yellow PVD coating. The back of rear side of the case has been capped off with a polished steel case back with a laser-marked Hamilton “H.” Water resistant down to 30 meters, this new version of this more-than-80-year-old horological design maintains the 1941 model’s original split, knurled crown design, as well. 

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Antique Reissue

The Hamilton Boulton’s Dial

Sitting beneath a domed mineral glass cover, the Hamilton Boulton’s dial is an elegant affair that features a rich slightly-off white base that’s been complemented via vintage-inspired Arabic gold numerals at every hour with the exception of 6. The dial centers around matching gold Lance Alpha-style minute and hour hands — directly above which is a vintage Hamilton logo while directly below is a sub-dial at 6 o’clock with a sweeping seconds hand. Surrounding both the main dial and sub-dial are also segmented railroad-style perimeter markers. While there are some very minor deviations, the dial on this new film-used version of the Boulton is nearly identical to its original 1941 predecessor. 

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A Swiss Ticker

The Hamilton Boulton’s Movement

At the heart of the Hamilton Boulton is a Swiss quartz movement — more specifically Hamilton’s H-50 caliber. The use of a Swiss-made movement is a major part of what makes this watch so special, as it combines Swiss quartz precision with classic — dare we say antique — American style. Additionally, the use of this compact quartz movement has also allowed Hamilton to deliver the watch’s case with an impressively slim 7.8mm thickness. What’s more, Hamilton is also poised to soon released a mechanical version of the Boulton, as well. 

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Faux Alligator Excellence

The Hamilton Boulton’s Strap

The Hamilton Boulton features an 18mm strap crafted from faux brown alligator leather — a material that was particularly popular upon the original Boulton’s release in the 1940s. A slightly lighter shade of brown for the strap’s stitching provides a bit of contrast. The same goes for the straps hardware, which, like the case, hand-set, and numerals, have been yellow PVD-coated — an admittedly subtle detail that genuinely helps to tie the entire watch together, giving it an even more cohesive overall design. 

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Reaching A Conclusion

Final Thoughts On The Hamilton Boulton Watch

The Hamilton Boulton is an objectively interesting watch on several levels. In addition to being a reissue of a popular 1940s reference and marking the first watch worn on-screen by Indiana Jones, this cushion-cased model makes for a fantastic choice for a dress watch, or as an everyday time piece for those with an appreciation for more old-school aesthetics. And, as great as it looks right out of the box, the Boulton is sure to only increase in character as it forms a patina over time with regular use. So, while it might not be for everyone, the Hamilton Boulton Quartz undeniably has its place in the modern horological pantheon. 

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Photo: Hamilton


Hamilton Boulton Quartz

A modern reissue of a popular 1490s era watch that’s been recreated as the first-ever timepiece worn on-screen by Indiana Jones. Crafted around a yellow PVD-coated case mated to a faux alligator leather strap, this classically-styled reference merges antique American style with modern Swiss quart precision.

  • Makes for great — and super unique — dress watch
  • Has yellow PVD-coated case, hands, numerals, & strap hardware
  • Dial is a near-carbon copy of 1941 original
  • Powered by Swiss-made quartz movement
  • No exhibition case back
  • Lacks versatility
  • Case not actually made from gold