Rip Curl Watches Review – Styled for Surfing

Rip Curl Watches Review


rip curl watches review - 50th anniversary watchEveryone has a different need when it comes to buying a wristwatch.

Some people just want the time.  Others want elaborate features.  Others want a stylish fashion accessory.  And still others want a useful sports watch.

Rip Curl watches offer the latter; the company was founded 50 years ago by a pair of Australian surfers who still own the company.  The company has become quite successful, and Rip Curl watches are now regarded, along with Quiksilver and Billabong, as one of the “big three” companies in the surf equipment industry.

While the company is not primarily a watch brand, they do offer quite a variety of timepieces in a fairly broad price range.

While they’re not watches you’d likely want to wear to a corporate meeting, Rip Curl watches do offer decent styling and features as sports watches to.  They’re also fairly rugged, and will likely take a good beating in the outdoors.

Read on for the full Rip Curl watches review.


Build Quality
Styling and Features
Care and Maintenance
Where to Buy

Click here to shop for Rip Curl Watches at Amazon (new window)

Rip Curl Watches Build Quality

The build quality is more than adequate, as these watches are primarily designed for sports use.  Most models (with one notable exception) feature hardened ABS plastic cases and rubber straps, though they do offer better-than-average water resistance, with most models rated at 100 meters.

These are watches that the manufacturer understands are going to get wet in use, and they will more than stand up to that.

Watches Movements

Movements in nearly all of this brand’s watches are quartz electronic.  Many of them say “Swiss parts,” which suggests that while the parts are sourced from Switzerland, the watches are actually manufactured elsewhere.  That usually means China.

Their 50th Anniversary Watch is different, however.  This model explicitly states that it has a Japanese automatic movement.


rip curl gps watchYou’re not going to find a lot of innovation in this brand, at least in the traditional sense, which usually means mechanical complications.  There you’ll find none, but these are quartz-based sports watches, and they do offer some interesting features in that regard.

Their GPS watches offer global positioning system support, and they also work with an Apple app that allows you to keep track of tides, as well as logging all manner of statistics regarding your surfing adventures.

Other models also offer tide tracking, without the GPS features.

Styling and Features

Styling of Rip Curl watches is fairly typical of quartz-based sports watches.  Most models are all black, with hardened ABS cases and black rubber straps.

A few other models, still molded from ABS, feature bold solid colors.

They offer some 40 models for men and nearly 30 models for women.  Complications will include tides, chronographs, date and day of the week.  Other models are time-only, particularly those at the lower end of the price range.

The 50th Anniversary watch is a completely different model, however, with a stainless steel case, an automatic mechanical movement, and a calendar complication and tachymeter.

Care and Maintenance

Care and maintenance of Rip Curl watches is pretty simple and straightforward.  As nearly all of their models are powered by quartz electronic movements, the only maintenance necessary will be to replace the battery every few yers.

You can send the watch back to the company for this service, which they provide for a reasonable fee.  Along with battery replacement, they will also test water resistance and replace the watertight seal.

Rip Curl Watches Warranty

Most watches come with a basic warranty that simply warrants the entire watch against defects in materials or manufacturing for a set period of time.

It’s a bit different with this brand; they warrant different components separately.  The movement comes with a five year warranty, which is substantially better than average.

The water resistance is warranted for two years from the date of purchase, and this is about the industry average.

Replacement batteries are warranted for one year from the date of purchase.  Most batteries should last far longer than that.

With proper care, your Rip Curl watches should run well for years to come.


rip curl aurora watchAs designer watches go, the prices for this brand are particularly reasonable.  They’re even fairly affordable as sports watches go.

Models for men are priced from about $89 to $299, though the 50th Anniversary model is $499.  Women’s models range from about $69 to a high of $299.

In an industry where prices often reach the thousands of dollars and occasionally can reach the tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, these prices are quite reasonable.

Where to Buy

You can purchase Rip Curl watches at a variety of retailers, both online and off.  While you’re not all that likely to find them in watch shops or jewelry stores, you probably will see them for sale at shops that sell sporting goods or surfing equipment.

You can also purchase the brand at a number of online retailers, including Amazon.  Online sellers can often provide lower pricing than brick and mortar stores.

The company’s official Website also has their watches for sale, along with other surf accessories.

Keep in mind that not all retailers will have the complete product line in stock, though most will probably have a representative sample.

Rip Curl Watches Summary

Obviously, buying a sports watch isn’t necessarily going to be at the top of the list for someone who just wants to tell the time.  If you’re looking for a fashion statement, precious metals, elaborate mechanical complications or diamonds, this brand won’t be the one for you.

On the other hand, if you’re a sports fan in general, or a surfing aficionado in particular, you may very well find Rip Curl watches to suit your needs and your tastes.

The watches are a bit austere in styling and they do favor black as their primary color, but they are rugged, and offer a good selection of features and styles.

If you absolutely want a surfing watch, their GPS models will give you just about all of the tools that you could possibly want to enhance your surfing experience.

Their warranty is better than most, and the pricing is, on the whole, quite affordable.

If your taste runs to sports watches, Rip curl watches may make a good choice for you.

Click here to shop for Rip Curl watches at Amazon. (new window)