To begin with, the Hong Kong Watch & Clock Fair of 2012 (feature article here) told us about a prevalent lack of distinctive and creative new designs when it came to most Asian manufacturers. In other words, we learned that the absolute majority of such companies aim to cater to the demand of an already highly successful market segment, in which they wish to compete with cheaper prices and greater accessibility. This, one could say, results in copying proven (and famous) designs, and while that certainly is true to some extent, things are not all that simple. To learn more about this complex issue I would suggest reading our article about the show from two years ago – but for now we will say that balancing on the verge of unproven creativity and blatant copying is not easy... and yet, there has been progress.
A lot of that hand-done decoration is part of the new in-house made caliber RD104's qualifications to bear the Seal of Geneva (Poincon de Geneve). A few years ago, the people behind the Seal of Geneva vastly upped the requirements for movements to bear the Seal. In addition to a movement needing to be produced within the Canton of Geneva and to have certain measures of performance, it needs to contain a lot of hand-finishing. That means most of the individual movement parts must be polished by hand. The RD104 movement contains 434 parts, which helps explain why so many hours are dedicated to finishing alone. The movement also operates at 3Hz and has 60 hours of power reserve. The micro-rotors are rose-gold toned but are actually produced from platinum.
If you are looking for a watch these days, your options are virtually limitless. If you want that watch to be made in the United States, then things narrow down a bit more. If you are looking for said watch to have a mechanical movement finished and assembled here in the States, and then placed under a dial and into a case made here in the States as well, things really narrow down quite a bit for you. As a matter of fact, your options can be counted on one hand. Today, we are going to cover one of them, the Weiss Special Issue Field Watch.
Consumers are used to traditional programming sponsorship and advertiser promotion. I suspect that Ones To Watch will be surrounded by Cartier advertising, but Cartier will not play a role in the series itself. CNN has announced that Cartier advertising will include both television commercials and digital media. Large brands like Cartier are in a position to invest in such media, but it really raises the bar for smaller brands wishing to compete in today's global market, where traditional advertising in print publications has limited appeal. Digital media offers a much more diverse and complicated set of value propositions, and only a few brand such as Cartier can afford to work with major advertising agencies to facilitate such relationships.
This fifth chapter is not unlike any other before it: being easy to understand while sharing in-depth information are both of great priority. It provides a detailed look at the versatile work of Kari. We mentioned this balance between readability and finer details before, but we have not talked about the person responsible for consistently achieving this fine balance throughout the book: the author, Theodore Diehl.
For the watch called Time Savior, Mr. Jones Watches worked with New York-based artist Kirsten Ulve who expressed being influenced by the "kitsch Jesus" aesthetic. Here the character of Jesus Christ finds integration into pop culture in a number of non-ordinary ways. The cartoon style crucified Jesus on the Time Savior dial is meant to suggest the theme of "when would Jesus do?" each time the wearer looks at the watch.
Given that you have the cash to buy one of these, the theme of the brand is very romantic. These enterprising business people want to use luxury dollars to help rid Africa of guns (by buying them from locals). The actually philanthropic process uses a series of agencies as Fonderie 47 itself isn't set up to have a placement in Africa to buy and ultimately destroy guns, but they seem pretty accountable. This of course is the main conversational part of the pitch, which then goes into the horological element of the discussion. Regardless of how effective the real outcome of removing guns is, the watches themselves are hard to debate. I look forward to being able to show hands-on pictures soon. I wasn't able to take them during my meeting with Fonderie 47 given that the watch was still an unfinished prototype.
To finish the trio of models is the revival of the Panerai Mare Nostrum chronograph. This reissue of the chronograph that Panerai created for the officers of the Italian navy during the second World War is done in titanium, again to help wearability of the imposing 52mm case. The Panerai Mare Nostrum comes with the OP.XXV manual wound movement which gives it 55 hours power reserve. This model follows in the long line of Panerai's modern tradition of reissuing important historical models with modern materials and design cues. While not for everyone, despite its imposing size, the Panerai Mare Nostrum, like the famed Egiziano, is likely to be a Panaresti favorite due to its collectible nature. It is also limited to 150 pieces and we believe its price will be around ,000.
Welcome back to an original aBlogtoWatch feature, "My First Grail Watch." In this series, we ask prominent people in the watch industry about the first timepiece that they lusted after. Today, we're speaking with Chris Vail, the guy behind the Kickstarter darling, Lew & Huey.
Not long ago, I received the news that the major watch enthusiast forum Watchuseek.com was sold. This was big news, and I immediately wanted to speak with Watchuseek founder and admin extraordinaire Ernie Romers, who in a few weeks, would no longer have any association with his former creation and in some ways his "child." I've always considered Ernie to be "one of the good guys" in the watch industry. I first met him several years ago - probably at Baselworld in Switzerland - and was struck by his humility and gentle nature. This wasn't who many might consider to have fit the role of the person in charge of the largest and most dynamic watch lover community on the internet. Then again, after you think about it, Romers' personality fit the role perfectly. Patient and a natural diplomat, who else would be better suited to managing the complicated issues and personalities that exist not only when sitting between watch brands and consumers, but also between passionate watch lovers who inevitably end up in squabbles that require some type of moderation?
Another interesting feature is the "manual perpetual calendar," which required the owner to engage a lever protruding through the band once every four years, allowing the perpetual calendar mechanism to adjust for the correct day. The Breguet No. 4111 also offered half-quarter repeating, in case the beautifully engraved, guilloché engine-turned silver dial was not legible in the dark.
The Montegrappa Chaos watch (hands-on here) clearly is not made for everyone. So much so, that it only received 3 reviews – about 560 less than the Zenith Defy; but don't let that fool you, there is some sound advice to be had. It takes a special kind of person to appreciate this watch, and it happens we found one - so let us follow up with an excerpt of the Montegrappa Chaos watch review by Ted Gallion about his recent purchase of the Chaos:
While Vacheron Constantin produces their watch movements in-house, many of the varied crafts and artistic decorations found in their most exclusive models are the result of talented third-party contractors, who perform specialized artistic projects for the world's top Swiss watchmakers.
The bracelet can be freely adjusted without the use of a dedicated tool; all it takes is a tweezer or a knife to lift up the latch and move the clasp around. Speaking of which, while the clasp is secured by its double-latch system, it takes a bit of practice to be able to put it on quickly – especially, when the length of the bracelet is set to be "just right", offering a tighter fit with less excessive length. With that said, once the watch is on, it is comfortable to wear, while its slim profile renders it a superb option for formal wear.
There is no “hard sell” or solicitation at “It’s About TIME.” While we welcome follow-up inquiries, none of the timepieces on display are for sale at the events themselves. “It’s About TIME” is staged for goodwill purposes exclusively. The depth of interaction with our guests provides opportunities, impressions, and memories beyond valuation.
The inner workings will be engineered by Hewlett-Packard, and Gilt says the technology will allow the watch to synchronize with cell phones running iOS or Android. Their intention is to enable the watch to display, beyond the time and date, some updates for weather, sports and stocks. As a true smartwatch should, it will also show email and social media notifications and text messages, plus it will inform about battery status as well as calendar reminders.
While we discuss this in much greater detail in our facility visit article, TAG Heuer's primary plan with the new manufacture in Chevenez was to build its also new and fully in-house designed and manufactured movement, the CH80 (previously known as the Caliber 1969). As is the case with the absolute majority of newly developed in-house movements, they add exclusivity (at a cost of substantial price increase, of course), not only to the collection they are used for, but also for the company itself.
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Bracelet: Black alligator strap with 18kt white gold 3 blade folding buckle