C5 Tactical Solar USA - Product Details and Operation Guide

C5 Tactical Solar USA - Product Details and Operation Guide

I) Product Summary

The Vaer C5 Tactical Field Solar Watch is a solar-powered 10ATM tactical field watch, powered by an Epson VS42 movement and assembled in the United States of America. Blending the sophistication and refinement of a military field watch with the outdoor specifications and perpetual timekeeping of a true tool watch, the C5 Tactical Field Solar is designed as the ideal “everyday wearer”.

First launched in the summer of 2023, the C5 is built on the same core platform as our other field watches (sapphire crystal, 10ATM, USA-assembled) but with the added benefit of a solar-powered movement that is very difficult to find in the modern watch market. Like our other models, we had three key goals in mind in designing the C5 Tactical:

  1. A Sub-$350 Price Point
  2. 10ATM + Waterproof Warranty
  3. Full USA Assembly and Testing

 In our opinion, these three factors make the C5 collection a very distinctive option in the highly competitive sub-$500 field watch category, placing it firmly in the middle of the market between mass-produced Chinese-made watches (from Timex, Fossil, MVMT, and Asia-based microbrands) and far more expensive "luxury" options (from brands like Tudor, Tag Heuer, Oris, Sinn, Shinola, etc.).

The C5’s USA assembly gives it a far more distinctive and personalized craft quality than its Asian mass-market competitors, while still representing significant value over more expensive options that typically lack functional outdoor features like perpetual timekeeping or a waterproof warranty.

In simple terms, it has everything you’d want in an everyday field watch, and nothing you don’t. USA assembly gives it a strong sense of character and identity, but it also has the price point and feature set you'd want for a watch that you can wear for years (in the most extreme outdoor conditions).

II) Value Proposition

The C5 is powered by the Japanese VS42 movement, which is unrivaled in terms of performance in its segment. While other watches with these movements exist at a similar price point, very few offer USA assembly, and none offer such strong water resistance capabilities or guarantees.

In addition to its impressive water resistance and top-performing movement, the C5 boasts one of the best-executed PVD stainless steel cases available for under $500. The 40mm case features attractive curvature and refined finishing details throughout, including highlight chamfering on the lugs and bezel. Like all Vaer watches, the C5 uses an AR-coated scratch-resistant sapphire crystal to protect the dial.

To further enhance the functionality and value of the watch, every C5 comes standard with two interchangeable 20mm straps. Our standard C5 strap is a comfortable and waterproof FKM rubber quick-release strap, complemented by a range of secondary strap options, including our USA-Made Horween leather strap, our premium PVD stainless steel bracelet, and several rugged and affordable nylon options.

III) Care and Handling

The Vaer C5 is a durable, dependable, and highly accurate solar watch designed to last for decades with proper care. We’ve written this guide to explain the basics of the watch and how to maximize its longevity.

How Do I Charge My Solar Watch?

Solar watches recharge fastest in natural light. When placed in a sunny window, the watch will reach a full charge in 6 hours, which will then last for 6 months if left in total darkness. However, this type of planned charging is largely unnecessary. If worn daily, the watch will absorb enough ambient light to maintain a charge perpetually. Incandescent, fluorescent, LED, and even candlelight can all be used to power the C5, with the strongest and brightest light sources providing the fastest charge. If left in complete darkness for over 6 months, we recommend placing the watch in a sunny window for a few hours to achieve a significant charge prior to resuming daily wear.

How Long Will This Watch Last?

One of the biggest advantages of solar-powered watches is their longevity. While they do eventually require replacement batteries, a solar watch battery will last 2-4 times longer than a standard quartz battery, typically between 8 to 10 years. Even though they are perpetually recharged, the inherent nature of cells means that at some point they will almost certainly suffer from corrosion and degradation. Fortunately, like other quartz watches, the C5’s batteries can be easily replaced at a marginally higher cost than batteries in most other wristwatches - typically between $10 and $20.

Installing Vaer Quick Release Straps

The Vaer C5 watch comes standard with a pre-installed quick-release strap. As our most comfortable and adaptable strap, we believe it is a great introduction to our strap lineup. To remove the standard strap, pull in the small metal knob to disengage the spring bar. To attach a quick-release strap, position the end of the bar into the notch on the watch lugs and pull in the metal knob on the other end. Align the loose end of the bar into the second notch, and release the tension of the spring to lock the strap into place. Make sure the strap piece with the buckle is attached to the top of the watch case.

Integrating Vaer Single Pass Straps

While this watch ships standard with our easily interchangeable quick-release straps, it can also be worn with our nylon single-pass straps (a design sometimes referred to as a NATO strap). Unlike a traditional watch strap, which is made of two pieces and attached to the watch with removable spring bars, our nylon single-pass straps are made of a single piece that can be removed or installed in seconds. All single-pass straps are sold with a glass vial containing heavy-duty 20mm spring bars and a stainless steel spring bar tool.

Installing the Vaer Single Pass Strap

If you’ve opted to purchase an optional single-pass strap with your watch or already own a 20mm nylon strap, you will need to remove the standard quick-release straps and install spring bars between the lugs of your watch. Once the bars are in place, simply feed the tail end of the single-pass strap through each of the two spring bars starting from the top of the watch. Depending on the size of your wrist, you may have extra length of nylon extending beyond the last keeper loop. Simply fold back the tag end of the strap through the keeper. To secure the extra length, feed the strap back toward the buckle until it is tightly secured.

Using Your Watch in the Water

This watch is perfectly suited for underwater activity. The case back and crown use a threaded screw-down design to maintain an airtight seal. We recommend rinsing the straps and watch case in freshwater after ocean use to remove any build-up of salt. Though our leather is water-resistant, we do not recommend submersion in water - switch to your included ocean-ready strap for this type of activity.

IMPORTANT! Do not expose your watch to water or steam if the crown is not secure. Our waterproof warranty does not cover flooding from misuse if the crown is unlocked.

Operating the Watch's Movement

In order to set the time on the watch, unscrew the crown counterclockwise. Once the crown is disengaged from the threading, pull out until you feel a gentle click (Position 1).

Changing the Date

To access Position 2, pull the crown out to the first “click” to access the date setting. If your watch has a date window, you can rotate the crown counter-clockwise to change the date. If your watch does not have a date window, this setting can be ignored.

Setting the Time

To access Position 3, pull the crown out to the second “click”. From this position, you can rotate the crown clockwise to change the time. Once the time and date are set, and the watch is properly wound, push the crown in, and screw it back into the locked position.

IMPORTANT! Only advance the date when the time is after 2 AM and before 10 PM. Advancing the date wheel close to midnight can damage the movement.

The gasket-sealed crown ensures water resistance, and it must be screwed and sealed during water exposure to maintain warranty.

Additional Resources

Click here to view all product manuals.
Click here to access our company FAQ.

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