10 Cheap and Quality Automatic Skeleton Watches

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Currently, it is possible to find automatic skeleton watches to suit all tastes, some even at such economical prices that they could compete with quartz watches, but not all offer the same quality.

However, being a bargain does not necessarily mean it is of poor quality, but it is essential to know which components the best skeleton watches have and who manufactures them to make the right decision.

Therefore, in this post, we will provide some useful tips for choosing, as well as some of the best automatic skeleton watches that can be obtained at a good price.

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ÔťÜ How to find the best automatic skeleton watches?

Skeleton watches are generally very eye-catching, but beyond appearance, they must be functional, especially if they are automatic watches.

To make a good choice, we must consider some important factors. These are the main ones:

Ôץ Origin

Of course, the origin matters; a watch manufactured in Switzerland is not the same as a Chinese watch, although there are exceptions. Not all Chinese watches are cheap junk, nor are all Swiss watches luxury items.

Currently, there are Chinese manufacturers that use quality components such as sapphire crystal and Japanese or even Swiss movements, although the quality is usually reflected in the price.

Ôץ Materials

Almost more important than the origin or the brand that signs the watch are the materials that compose it. Often, the movement makes the difference, but also a sturdy case, a good strap, and a quality crystal.

The best automatic skeleton watches use stainless steel or titanium cases that do not wear out over time and robust and durable straps made of the same material or leather.

The best crystal depends on the intended use of the watch, although in general, those that offer the best visibility are sapphire crystals, as they are anti-reflective, and it is practically impossible to scratch them.

Ôץ The movement

Currently, not only Swiss and German brands manufacture quality automatic mechanisms. Nowadays, there are reliable and much more affordable Japanese and even Chinese movements.

mechanism in skeleton watches
Good examples are the movements manufactured by Japanese brands such as Seiko, Orient, and Miyota, or the Chinese Seagull.

There are also affordable Swiss movements (or less prohibitive) such as Sellita, inspired by the better-known ETA calibers.

Ôץ Reputation and ratings

And most importantly, both for skeleton watches and for any other purchase. Once the decision is made, it is vital to check the opinions of other buyers who have already tried the watch.

A good guide can be the ratings that users give on online stores like Amazon, as they come from verified purchases.

It is also good to check the multiple watch forums on the internet, where users usually share all the characteristics of each model in question.

ÔťÜ The 5 best automatic skeleton watches


Ôץ Swatch Irony Body & Soul

Technical Specifications

MovementSwiss Automatic
CaliberETA 2841
Power Reserve48 hours
Case Diameter37.4 mm
Case Thickness12.5 mm
Weight100 grams
MaterialsStainless Steel
Water Resistance3 ATM (30 meters)

The Swatch Irony Body & Soul is not only one of the cheapest skeleton watches, but it is also possibly one of the most economical Swiss automatic watches currently available.

Mostly known for being the first Swiss brand to manufacture affordable plastic or resin watches on a mass scale, the Swatch Group is also one of the largest watchmaking conglomerates in existence, with brands like Longines, Omega, Tissot, Hamilton, Mido, or Certina, among many others.

They also own the famous Swiss ETA movements, so they can afford to modify and decorate them to make them beat in an eye-catching skeleton watch for less than 200 euros like the Irony.

Specifically, it uses an ETA 2841, an adaptation of the ETA 2824, to which some modifications have been made to reduce costs and show all the gears.

Instead of beating at 28,800 bph like its older brother, the ETA 2841 beats at a speed of 21,600 bph and loses the ability to stop the second hand, although it still retains the possibility of manual winding of the mechanism.

Despite this, it is still a very reliable and accurate Swiss caliber, capable of accumulating up to 48 hours of power reserve and making a smooth and elegant sweep that will undoubtedly catch the eye of anyone who sees it.

Ôץ Fossil Grant Skeleton

Technical Specifications

MovementJapanese Automatic
CaliberMiyota 8N24
Power Reserve42 hours
Case Diameter44 mm
Case Thickness13 mm
Weight77 grams
MaterialsStainless Steel and Leather
Water Resistance5 ATM (50 meters)

Another one of the best automatic skeleton watches in terms of price and features is the Fossil Grant Skeleton, a watch that, despite not being Swiss, is well-made and has a highly regarded Japanese mechanism.

Fossil is one of the best-known brands of American watches, characterized by their fashionable designs and affordable skeleton watches with part of the mechanism visible.

The key to their low costs is that most of their production is done in China, although this does not mean that they are bad, as they maintain high-quality standards and use good components.

This is the case with the Grant Skeleton, whose interior houses a Citizen Miyota 8N24, a Japanese caliber with 21 jewels and a power reserve of 42 hours, highly appreciated by the watch community.

It is also a well-constructed watch on the outside, with a stainless steel case, mineral crystal, and leather strap, which can also withstand water up to 50 meters.

Ôץ Maserati Gentleman

Technical Specifications

MovementAutomatic Mechanical
Case Diameter43 mm
Case Thickness9 mm
MaterialsStainless Steel and Leather
Water Resistance10 ATM (100 meters)

Inspired by the great car brand, the Maserati Gentleman is one of the most striking skeleton watches that we can find for little money.

The polished stainless steel case combined with a Milanese mesh strap make it an elegant watch suitable for dressing up, and the Maserati logo on the dial and crown gives it a sporty touch.

Through its transparent structure, we can see a Chinese caliber, possibly Seagull, one of the best-known and most reputable Chinese movement brands today, which is a guarantee of reliability and precision.

It is also submersible up to 100 meters, something that sets it apart from all other skeleton watches.

Ôץ Rotary Skeleton

Technical Specifications

MovementJapanese Automatic
CaliberMiyota 8N24
Power Reserve42 hours
Case Diameter42 mm
Case Thickness11.4 mm
Weight160 grams
MaterialsStainless Steel
Water Resistance5 ATM (50 meters)

Rotary has several quality skeleton watches in its inventory, some even made in Switzerland, such as this model from the Greenwich collection.

For a price that is usually quite economical, it is possible to get this skeleton watch with a sapphire crystal and a Japanese movement, which is also capable of resisting water up to 50 meters.

Ôץ St├╝hrling Executive 133 Skeleton

Technical Specifications

Power Reserve36 hours
Case Diameter44 mm
Case Thickness12 mm
Weight249 grams
MaterialsStainless Steel Case and Leather Strap
Water Resistance5 ATM (50 meters)

Finally, one of the most affordable skeleton watches that can be found currently: the St├╝hrling Executive 133.

This is a watch made of stainless steel with Krysterna crystal, a type of hardened mineral crystal that makes it very resistant, enough to withstand water up to 50 meters deep.

We are facing a dress watch of good size. Its 44mm diameter makes it look large on the wrist, aided by the absence of a bezel.

It is powered by a Chinese Liaocheng 2650SSZ caliber that enjoys a good reputation despite not being one of the most well-known. It is a 22-jewel movement with 21,600 bph and a 36-hour power reserve.

ÔťÜ The 5 best-selling skeleton watches

These are the skeleton watches that are currently the best-selling. The list is updated daily with the latest releases.

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Last update of links and images on 2024-07-20.

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