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the past, present and future of fine timepieces

Pendants & Pockets Watches off the wrist


Larcum Kendall Sails To Our Shores

Access WristWatch Magazine

ProArt Is A High Tech Case Maker Collector Profile:

Jay McInerney

Cover story:

Corum Classic Our Salute To The Admiral



edit note

Retail Really Must Be For Suckers It seems I find myself offended far more often than I used to. It’s not that my clients or readers are being rude, or that I’m simply getting older (but not ‘old’) and grouchier, it’s that I’m really at a loss when every other watch brand sends me a press release about its latest offering and proposes a price that is just dumbfounding! The old adage of bullshit the fans–not the players–comes to mind. Only now, with the simple click of the mouse, everybody is a player. Long gone are the days when savvy buyers had to pay a fee and attend private watch shows where name brands could be bought sans the traditional distribution chain vig. Now anyone can simply do a quick web search on a particular watch, add the word ‘price’ and find brand new watches from this year’s selection at ridiculous discounts. To be sure, there are a few less exposed brands like Patek and Rolex due to popularity and presumed rarity, but most brands can no longer hide the fact that their original retail pricing is completely specious. So what are modern watches really worth? Twenty seconds on the search engine of your choice will elicit discounts in the vast majority of cases anywhere from 25%-65% off the original retail price. That’s not to say the brands are taking on the ‘mark ‘em high and sell ‘em low’ TV formula, it’s just that these watches are being sold en-masse into non-authorized channels that are happy to make a few points over their cost and let volume make up for the miniscule markup. Without the need to pay rent, or in many cases even the wholesale cost of inventory – why not? I’ve previously opined on the check-valve pricing that stipulates luxury watch prices will only go up year on year – regardless of a strong or weak sales cycle, so I won’t harp about that again. Rampant overproduction and an inertial inability to adjust to the current demand, or lack thereof, as well as the unending drive to create something new EVERY year has simply flooded the worldwide market with too many watches. Seems the Swiss have forgotten Business 101 and the whole supply-and-demand thing.


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As a reporter on the topic I find myself in a conundrum; as I compose these issues and feature new watches, I always like to include pricing. The problem is, when I see a brand new watch that the PR agency for the brand tells me retails for, oh let’s say $14,800; I punch a few keys on my computer, find them for 32% off at just over $10,000 (new in box mind you) and wonder what to tell my gentle reader. Some brand leaders might decry “beware of fakes” or “that watch does not come with a factory authorized warranty,” but even the parallel sales channels are gaining legitimacy and selling authentic products, and most are opening up their own service centers to replace the factory warranty. Is the service as good? Maybe, maybe not, but if you just saved close to five large on a $15,000 watch, you can afford to take it to the best watchmaker you know and still be well ahead of the cost of ownership curve. For the moment, I’ll continue to report the ostensible pricing supplied by agencies and brands, but I advise a large dose of sodium chloride as you review the ‘proposed’ prices. Something has got to give as the tension between a fantastical wish price and the mundane market value are on a collision course. On another note I’d like to welcome Mike Thompson to the WristWatch team. I’ve worked with Mike in the past when he was my editor back at iW Magazine, and after a few years travelling our separate paths, we are once again working together to bring you our take on the wide world of watches. Keep Watching:

Gary George Girdvainis

Vanguard Collection Vanguard Collection Vanguard Collection


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edit note

Case Closed Collectors usually voice clear favorites when deciding the case metal and case shape of their favorite watches. Round cases rule at the retail stores of course, with the vast majority of everyday timepiece buyers opting for the traditional 360-degree dial and case combination. And who can blame anyone for a preference that makes reading the time so simple and intuitive? Likewise, steel is the material of choice for an equally large majority of watches sold, primarily due to the metal’s relatively low cost and ease of production. But only a certain subset of these popular round steel timepieces is manufactured carefully enough and with such attention to detail that each example can be safely worn on one’s wrist while submerged well below the surface of an ocean, lake or river. I refer of course to dive watches. Within this issue of WristWatch you’ll read about quite a few of our favorite dive watches while also learning a bit about how one man, Nicolaus Spinner, founder of UTS Watches, personally insures that all his brand’s steel watches pass the deep dive test. And I mean personally: With its small annual production still well within the three-digit range, UTS can boast that each of its finished watches was assembled and tested by Spinner himself. See “Teutonic Tolerance” inside starting on page 110 for additional details about how Spinner’s own case-making expertise has helped make his Munich-based watch company a must-see for divers in search of a new underwater tool. Case metal and shape also plays an important historical role at Richard Mille, which has long been identified with its largesized cases. While the Swiss brand does make the occasional round or rectangular watch, most of its offerings hug the wrist with


Wristwatch | 2016

a generally lightweight and quite identifiable (to watch enthusiasts) modified rectangle known by its French name tonneau, which translates roughly to ‘barrel-shaped.’ At Richard Mille case material is king however, despite the strong supporting role case shape has played in the company’s rise to prominence. The brand is known as a leader in the development of high-tech case materials, rather than for its steel or precious metal cases. Inside this issue, Swiss-based correspondent Nitin Shankar goes inside Richard Mille’s own ProArt case manufacturing factory in Les Breuleux, a village set within the Swiss Jura. See his report, “The Ultimate in Case Manufacturing,” starting on page 58 for details about how Mille manages to astound collectors each year with unusual and cutting-edge case technology. Finally, this edit note marks my premier in these pages (though I have penned a few features within this issue as well). In my new postion as the editor of WristWatch, I continue my two-decades-long adventure reporting on the world of wristwatches. This latest chapter finds me returning to once again work with Isochron Media Group Publisher Gary Girdvainis. I look forward to meeting you on these pages and online at WristWatch and Isochron’s second publication, About Time, to keep you up to date with your passion as a collector of timepieces of all types. Regards,

Michael Thompson Editor-in-Chief WristWatch magazine



features 36

Cover Story Flags are flying again on a nautical icon by Corum.


Forward to the Past: Off-the-cuff appreciation for pocket watches.


Space Age Substrates: ProArt makes the case for Richard Mille material play.


Holy Mother-of-Pearl: Colors and layers bring a new appreciation of the dial by Larcum Kendall.


Captain’s Choice: Patek Philippe’s Nautilus crosses the 40th parallel.


Mill & Drill: UTS ‘Spins’ each case individually.


Macro Mechanics: American tradition continues in Chelsea, Massachusetts.




Departments 12 Boutique 80 Category: Nautical Inspiration


90 Category: Diver Delights 120 Doing Good: Blancpain, JaegerLeCoultre, Sailing Heals

128 Interview: Jay McInerney talks watches.


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130 Winding up: Doettling’s soft safe Maximus

Introducing neomatik from NOMOS Glashßtte: Watches with the automatic movement of the next generation. Incredibly slender, highly precise, outstandingly accurate—and now available with selected retailers. Find out more about the neomatik series and other NOMOS models at,

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PUBLISHING Isochron Media LLC Group Publisher Gary George Girdvainis Editorial

Editorial Director Gary George Girdvainis Editor-in-Chief Michael Thompson Editors/Correspondents North American Editor Roberta Naas Luxury Features Editor Charles Moyer Departments Editor Megan LiVolsi

Worldwide Industry experts: Swiss correspondents Marton Radkai Nitin Shankar Dutch correspondent Ted Diehl North American Contributors Keith Flamer Steven J. Lundin Max Lundin Nicholas Romanov Lundin James Henderson Nancy Olson

Watch Culture Editor Steve Lundin ART Creative Direction Brain Bleach Media

Art Director Silvio Del Monaco Original Photography Cargill Photography (203) 258-0099

Board of Advisors: Al Armstrong, Owner Armstrong Rockwell Roberto Chiappelloni, Owner Manfredi Jewels Pierre Halimi, Watch Industry Member Don Loke, Certified Master Watchmaker Dr. Thomas Mao, Watch Expert Noel B. Poirier, Museum Director National Watch & Clock Museum, Columbia, PA John Reardon, Watch Expert Manuel Yazijian, Master Watchmaker (CMW 21) Advertising Inquiries Jon Messer Phone (516) 659-7500 e-mail: Subscriptions: 25 Gay bower Rd. Monroe, CT 06468 WristWatch Magazine is published six times per year both in print and digitally by Isochron Media LLC, 25 Gay Bower Rd. Monroe, CT, 06468. One year (six issue) subscription $49. Copyright 2016, all rights reserved. Editorial inquiries should be sent to Isochron Media address. All views and opinions expressed within are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect those of Wristwatch Magazine or Isochron Media, LLC. ISSN 2169-5814 “The trademarks, logos, and service marks (collectively the “Trademarks”) displayed in this magazine are registered and unregistered trademarks of Isochron Media Llc its affiliates and others. You can view trademarks owned by Isochron Media LLC on Trademarkia at this link: Nothing contained in this magazine should be construed as granting, by implication, estoppel, or otherwise, any license or right to use any Trademark displayed in this magazine without the written permission of Isochron Media Llc or such third party that may own the trademark displayed in this magazine. Your misuse of the Trademarks displayed on this Web Site, or any other content in this magazine, except as provided herein, is strictly prohibited.”


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CHRONOGR A PH CHRONOM ET ER Precise, Refined, Universal. An elegant Chronograph wristwatch with multiple complications for the discerning timepiece collector. Limited annual production of 250 pieces.


Precise, Refined, Universal. An elegant Chronograph wristwatch with multiple complications for the discerning timepiece• collector. Limited production of•250 pieces. • Newport, Available at Grenon’s of Newport 210 Bellevue Avenueannual RI 02840 (401) 846-0598

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W A L D A N W AT C H E S . C O M

Available at Grenon’s of Newport

WLD_103039_WristWatchAd_8.5x10.875.indd 1

210 Bellevue Avenue

Newport, RI 02840

5/18/15 11:49 AM

(401) 846-0598

5/18/15 11:49 AM


Clear Caliber Carl F. Bucherer Fresh from a very successful Baselworld 2016, where Carl F. Bucherer premiered its in-house caliber CFB A2000 family, made in a new manufacturing facility in Lucerne, the Swiss brand adds the Manero Peripheral with caliber A2050. A classic design, it features central hours and minutes hands with small seconds at 6 o’clock and the date at 3 o’clock. The 40.6mm watch’s back, however, reveals through clear sapphire a distinctly untraditional peripheral rotor spinning around (and allowing full viewing of) distinctive Carl F. Bucherer contemporary movement architecture. This new model will be available in six versions in rose gold or stainless steel, each with matte black or porcelain white dials. The stainless steel models are also available with a steel bracelet and double folding clasp. Prices: $7,200 (steel and leather strap), $7,600 (steel with bracelet) and $18,600 (rose gold case).


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MONTRES DEWITT SA • • +41 22 750 97 97 Rue du Pré-de-la-Fontaine 2 - 1217 Meyrin - Geneva - Switzerland MONTRES DEWITT AMERICA • • +1.305.572.9812 4330 N.E 2nd Avenue - Miami FL 33137 - USA


Into the Blue Panerai Four new blue dials reflect the deep nautical history embraced by Panerai. Offered atop two Luminor models and two Radiomir models, the rich blue sunray dials are being created in boutique-only watches: Luminor 1950 3 Days GMT Automatic Acciaio (PAM0068), Luminor 1950 10 Days GMT Automatic Acciaio (PAM0089), Radiomir 1940 3 Days Acciaio (PAM00690) and Radiomir 1940 10 Days GMT Automatic Oro Rosso (PAM00659). The two Luminor 1950 models differ in diameter (42mm vs. 44mm) as well as in displays, with the larger, more complicated PAM0089 offering a ten days power reserve displayed in a linear fashion on the dial, and an am/ pm indicator. However, the more complex ten-day, rose-gold Radiomir 1940 offering is actually smaller in diameter (45mm) than the 47mm steel manualwind PAM00690. The red gold Radiomir 1940 10 Days GMT is the dressiest of the bunch with a classy blue alligator strap and gold case, but our eyes landed immediately on the steel Radiomir 1940 3 Days model because of its terrific untreated leather Assolutamente strap with contrast stitching and hot-pressed Officine Panerai “OP” logo. Prices begin at $8,600 for the steel Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days and rise to $35,900 for the gold Radiomir 1940 10 Days GMT.


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London Calling Speake Marin Peter Speake-Marin’s success a force among independent watchmakers is a decades-long journey, and much of it centered in London. This year his firm Speak-Marin recalls those years with a special edition chronograph designed for the Fine Watch Room at Harrods in London. The London Chronograph pays tribute to SpeakeMarin’s early years as a watchmaker restoring vintage timepieces that often required work on famed calibers from Valjoux, including the Valjoux 92, which is found inside classic Patek Philippe, Heuer and Rolex (among many others) made in the 1950s and 1960s. This tribute London Chronograph is a 42mm titanium-cased chronograph powered by a vintage Valjoux 92 caliber, beating at 18,000 bph. On top is a multi-level white dial displaying Arabic numbers that alternate with Roman numerals, as seen on the Speake-Marin Gothic Velsheda limited edition. The red 12 has classical connotations and associations with early English pocket and wristwatches. Price: $19,000. Also new from Speake-Marin is this very limited (8-pieces) black dial version of one of the watchmaker’s earlier models called Resilience. Cased in 42mm red gold, the newest Resilience features the firm’s Piccadilly case with three central Speake-Marin signature “Foundation” style hands in colored red gold and a characteristic pleated crown. Resilience is equipped with a Vaucher 3002 automatic movement. Price: $27,200.


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Tony Kanaan Automatic Valjoux Chronograph Limited Edition 1181: 44mm asymmetrical black PVD stainless steel case with screwed down case back, polished ceramic bezel, black steel crown and pushers, antireflective sapphire crystal, water resistant to 100 meters, genuine black leather strap with red contrast stitching and lining, black PVD stainless steel buckle, and Luminox self-powered illumination. Swiss Made. Preferred timepiece of 2013 Indy 500 Champion Race Driver Tony Kanaan. Limited Edition of 310 Pieces Worldwide.

Available at Tourneau and Other Fine Retailers Nationwide.

Shop Online


Month by Month Ulysse Nardin As a reminder, annual calendars are mechanically programmed to display time and dates for a one-year cycle without resetting. They traditionally recognize months composed of 30 and 31 days and therefore only need to be corrected once a year. Ulysse Nardin’s latest annual calendar fulfills these requirements elegantly using its in-house caliber, UN-153, which the firm has developed from the simpler UN-118 by adding only three additional wheels. This movement allows the time and calendar pointers to be moved, very conveniently, in either direction, and also adds a chronograph feature. The 43mm watch’s silicon balance-spring and escapement are provided by Sigatec, which is co-owned by Ulysse Nardin. In steel, the Ulysse Nardin Marine annual calendar collection begins at $11,800. Gold-cased model are priced to $34,600.


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Steel Cushion Piaget Piaget updates its 1970s icon and enters the sub-$10,000 market casual luxury market at the same time with the all-steel Piaget Polo S collection. Its cushion-shaped dial is placed into a 42mm round case and set within a beautifully brushed bezel. Three of the five models are three-hand editions while two Piaget Polo S Chronograph models feature an automatic chronograph movement. The three-hand Piaget Polo S Automatic is equipped with the 1110P movement, based on Piaget’s own 800P caliber, while the Piaget Polo S Chronograph features an 1160P movement, derived from the column-wheel, vertical-clutch 880P chronograph. Both of these movements have been developed specially for the Piaget Polo S and each retains a thin profile (the chronograph version is only 11.2 mm thick.) A recent testing of the brushed and polished steel link bracelet revealed a very high quality, comfortable design---no surprise for this brand. The Piaget Polo S is available with a blue, silvered or slategray dial, while the Piaget Polo S Chronograph is available with a silvered or blue dial. Prices: $9,350 (three-hand) and $12,400 (chronograph.) 2016 | Wristwatch



Yin Yang Arnold & Son Two new Arnold & Son timepieces, this model and the Golden Wheel seen on page 28, further demonstrate how the company employs both its technical expertise and its artisanal arsenal to maintain its buzz among collectors in search of fine time with a stamp of individualism. The Arnold & Son HM Dragon & Phoenix features a mother-of-pearl dial with rich red dragon and Chinese Phoenix (in a yin-yang design) lacquered to resemble the ancient art of Chinese paper cutting. The thin Arnold & Son manual wind movement will last for 90 hours when fully wound in this very limited (five pieces) 40mm rose gold timepiece. A diamond-set version is also available. Price: $25,950.


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WHILE LIGHT ALLOWS US TO SEE, HIS PHOTOGR APHS ALLOW US TO DREAM. A world-class, world-travelling adventure photographer, he captures the beauty of light in darkness. Every photograph reveals moments of awe in perfect detail, inviting all to reconnect with the wonders of the world. He ventures to remote landscapes, guided only by the stars, his imagination and the micro gas lights of his trusted timepiece. For him, every moment is an opportunity to experiment without reservations. To feel the impact of light on life. To be Paul Zizka.


ENGINEER MASTER II SKINDIVER II Revolutionary micro gas lights 5,000Gs shock resistance 4,800 A/ms anti-magnetic Automatic helium release valve Old Northeast Jewelers St. Pete & Tampa, FL | Exquisite Timepieces Naple, FL | Orlando Watch Company Winter Park, FL | Worthmore Jewelers Atlanta, GA Schiffman’s Winston-Salem, NC | New York Jewelers Chicago, IL | Alexanders Jewelers Columbus, OH | Benari Jewelers Exton & Newtown Square, PA Madison Jewelers New York, NY | Bassano Jewelry New York, NY | Shannon Fine Jewelry Houston & The Woodlands, TX | Jewelry Atelier Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA


Kobe Snake Hublot This limited-edition Hublot chronograph is the firm’s third designed to honor NBA legend and Hublot ambassador Kobe Bryant. You may recall the Big Bang UNICO Chronograph Retrograde Kobe “Vino” Bryant in 2015 and the King Power Black Mamba Chronograph in 2013. This new ode to the recently retired basketball star, called Classic Fusion Kobe Bryant HeroVillain, may feature the boldest design of the three with its stylized three-dimensional black mamba snake (a nod to Kobe Bryant’s “Black Mamba” basketball nickname) prominently slithering along the dial. On the clear sapphire back is an “HV” (Hero Villain) logo. This 45mm satin-and-polished ceramiccased watch is powered by Hublot’s caliber HUB1131 with moonphase and skeletonized date displays. The watch is available at Hublot’s Beverly Hills Boutique and is limited to 24 pieces. The sapphire case-back also carries a printed “KOB16” logo, and each piece is engraved with its special edition number. Appropriately, the watch will be available on a black python strap with black stitching.


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Mad Green MB&F This green-tinted example of the MB&F LM1, one of our favorite MB&F designs, honors the Dubaibased Seddiqi Family, an original Friend of founder Max Busser and backer of the new M.A.D. Gallery in Dubai. Busser calls it “a heartfelt micro-mechanical thank you note.” The watch is a limited edition of thirteen pieces made in grade 5 titanium and it marks the first M&F Legacy Machine available using this high-tech aerospace grade alloy. Also unusual is the vivid green of its CVD-treated movement main plate and Arabic-Hindi numerals of the “home time” sub dial. If you need this on your wrist, you’ll first need to board a flight to Dubai as the watch can only be seen at the M.A.D.Gallery there. Price: $84,000.


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A hands-on course by watch specialist Adam Harris October 25-27, 2016, at the NAWCC education facilities, Columbia, PA, and November 12-14, 2016, Santa Paula,CA

How to identify genuine watches • Brands discussed will include: Omega • Hublot • Rolex • Rolex-Tudor • Breitling • Cartier Tag Heuer • Panerai • Bell & Ross • Girard-Perregaux Registration Fee: $1,000 early bird (one month prior to course date) $900 discount NAWCC members (early bird period only) $1,250 regular price For additional information or to register: Contact the Education Department 717.684.8261, ext. 237, or email: • 514 Poplar St., Columbia, PA 17512-2130


Black Weave BUlgari The straps on any of the three new Bvlgari Bvlgari Carbon Gold watches echo the original hemp and leather version on the original Bvlgari Roma watch in 1975. But the retro-cool strap is just one reason to consider this latest edition of a Bulgari favorite. The matte-black carbon resin coating on the 40mm case now features a gold “1884� plate to honor the year Bulgari was founded. Dials are black, brown or blue and the pink gold hour-markers are each tipped by a Superluminova dot. Inside is an ETA automatic movement. The strap, by the way, is entirely in woven leather and is fitted with a pin buckle made of PEEK, an ultra-sturdy and light alloy notably used in the field of aeronautics. Price: $2,800.


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GOVBERG ONTIME Discover the watch collector’s ultimate mobile companion. Download GOVBERG ONTIME for free for iOS and Android devices today!



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Gold Tribute Arnold & Son No one will ever mistake the Arnold & Son Golden Wheel as another maker’s design. Already laying claim to the first-ever true-beat seconds watch combined with a wandering hour function, the latest version of the 44mm Golden Wheel features sapphire discs with black figures, a redesigned outer ring and a black ADLC-treated dial plate in order to further increase contrast and readability. Also new, black arrows on the hour disks now point to the minutes dial-frame located above the hours arc; the true beat seconds indication is now displayed using large dots on the outer ring and read via the central golden hand. The dial plate is now black ADLC. Price: $47,500.


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SU P E R KO N T I K I 1973 LIMITED EDITION More than 50 years of pure adventure, the rebirth of a legend. A diving watch with distinctive design, a unidirectional rotating bezel and a robust case – water-resistant down to 200 m. The polished stainless steel strap with diver’s extension and deployant buckle completes this sporty classic. (954) 279-1220 For a list of authorized dealers go to:


Center Seconds Hysek The Hysek IO Jumping Hours Central Tourbillon features an unusual tiered time display that may indeed be a one of a kind in fine watchmaking. First unveiled in 2015 to many intrigued collectors, the IO Jumping Hours Central Tourbillon is now offered in a cleaner, more contemporary design. Each concentric circle performs a precise function: The outermost disc displays the hours by rotating counter-clockwise. The current hour is displayed in the center of a window at 12, clearly marked in gold. In the middle sits the minutes disc. This turns clockwise, creating a running counter to the hours disc. An arrow pointing from the hour dial links hours and minutes. The eyes of course focus on the in-house Hysek manufacture tourbillon, which can displays the seconds. All in all, the watch offers quite a performance all day long. Price: $200,000


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So much more than luxury!

Chris Aire is an iconic internationally acclaimed brand, sought after by the most discerning watch collectors around the world. Each design showcases true luxury, combining impeccable design, high luxury Swiss movements and technology. Designed exclusively by Chris Aire in Beverly Hills California and made by the most prestigious watch houses in Switzerland. The Chris Aire Parlay Ambidextrous model is produced in limited edition. It encases a Soprod base movement with customized modification split crown and pushers that is ideal for both right and left-handed users. Each watch is offered exclusively in the Chris Aire signature Red Gold collection. From $54.500.00

Chris Aire Beverly Hills 9619 Brighton Way • Beverly Hills, CA 90210 Tel: 310-888-4094

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French Pioneer Franck Dubarry This founder and former owner of Technomarine, which pioneered the ladies sports watch market in the 1990s, has debuted his new eponymous collection of bold and colorful men’s and women’s ‘lifestyle’ watches. The collection includes Révolution Française, which features these Revolution G styles. The details pay homage to French and Argentine decorative paintings of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Stylized flowers, animals, precious stones and cornucopias come together on the dial and bezel. The 43mm by 50mm gold or titanium cases offer options of forged carbon, ceramic or gold bezels. One model offers a diamond bezel. Inside is an automatic ETA movement with GMT function and date. Prices: $7,500 (titanum), $20,900 (rose gold, carbon bezel), $31,900 (rose gold with diamond bezel).


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Customize Your Rolex with Everest EVERESTBANDS.COM 888.643.4942


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Color Splashes Richard Mille This rainbow of colors is the result of the artist carefully painting each individual component, with the result appearing as a splash of hues. Paris-born artist Cyril Kongo used micro spray painting tools and hand-colored each watch in this thirty-piece Richard Mille limited boutique edition RM 68-01 Tourbillon Cyril Kongo. From the dial side each movement bridge can be seen arcing in different directions to mimic the brushstrokes found in the street art murals for which Kongo was initially known. The asymmetric NTPT Carbon case features black ceramic bezels. Price: $685,000.


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Seebataillon GMT Mühle Glashütte’s CEO, Thilo Mühle, participated in The Fulda Challenge—an extreme Winter sports competition that With

challenges a





Canada’s Yukon, for







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to stand upto the extremes of The Fulda Challenge. In cooperation with the soldiers of the ‘Seebataillon’, an extremely functionality,










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For more information please contact: Mühle-Glashütte USA • 727-896-8453 •

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and air.

cover story

By Keith Flamer

Right: Corum Admiral’s Cup, circa 1960. The first square water-resistance watch.

What began as a sailboat inscription has developed into a distinguished nautical collection. 36

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Admiral’s cup chronograph 44

Corum’s Admiral’s Cup Sails Full Speed Ahead


f all the timepieces brandishing the Corum logo, the Admiral’s Cup likely ranks as the best known. The refined nautical watch may not register as bold as the Corum’s Bubble watch, as patriotic as the former Coin watch or as nostalgic as the Heritage or as complicated as the Golden Bridge—but it consolidates all four virtues into one emblematic flagship timepiece. That alone deserves a respectful salute. The Corum Admiral’s Cup is distinguished by its hallmark twelve-sided bezel emblazoned with twelve colorful nautical pennants representing the maritime International Code of Signals. The Admiral’s Cup collection is versatile—defining time, dates, worldtime, intervals, tides and even sailing champions via automatic or complicated movements such as chronographs, tourbillons, and, on several models, a minute-repeater. In recent years, Corum has been a company in transition and keeping an unusually low profile for a brand accustomed to attracting eyeballs and turning heads. Yes the Admiral’s Cup has been

Corum’s steady force—always diversifying itself with new complications, materials and colors while representing the brand’s passion for the sea.


The Admiral’s Cup model dropped anchor in 1960, unfathomably launched as the world’s first water-resistant square timepiece—a sports watch with a sailboat hand-inscribed on its case back. This daring timepiece was inspired by the biennial Admiral’s Cup sailing regatta, the unofficial international championship of offshore yacht racing, launched in 1957 by members of the Royal Ocean Racing Club. The race showcased national teams (England, United States, France, Australia, among others) competing against one another with three yachts each over six legs—three Olympic triangles, a coastal route, and finally two challenging sea races, the Channel Race and the Fastnet. The legendary Admiral’s Cup race correlated to tennis’ patriotic 2016 | Wristwatch


cover story

admiral’s cup legend 42 The automatic flying tourbillon celebrated Corum’s 60th anniversary in 2015.

Davis Cup. The challenging regatta (from which the Admiral’s Cup watch earned its patriotic stripes) was raced off England’s southern coast in unpredictable choppy seas where calculating tides was critical, even life or death. This is where the Admiral’s Cup watch merited its maritime instrument bona fides.

The watches

However, like a sail without wind, this yachting regatta lost momentum and was suspended in 2003. The race itself may have ceased but thankfully the Admiral’s Cup timepiece remains afloat. Admiral’s Cup continues its association with major sailing events, notably accompanying Frenchman Loïck Peyron and Britain’s Ben Ainslie in various races around the world. “[Admiral’s Cup] is the foundation of Corum’s spirit,” says Gustavo Calzadilla, managing director of CWJ Brands, Corum’s new U.S. leadership, based in California. “Sailing has been part of Corum history and today the company still develops new models taking into account its roots,” he explains. “One of these examples is the AC 45 Tide’s watch, which can measure tides coefficient and timing of the next low and high tides plus current strength and tidal process on a mechanical movement.”


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2016 | Wristwatch


cover story

Corum’s admiral’s cup legend 47 worldtimer New in 2016. Available in titanium, optional rose gold bezel and a choice of dials.

What began as a sailboat inscription has developed into a distinguished franchise. Worthy of its title, Admiral’s Cup still ranks as one of the enduring watches in modern history, representing 30% of Corum’s sales.

The latest models

The collection ranges from $2,500 for an Admiral’s Cup automatic 32mm to $200,000 for an AC-ONE 45 Double Tourbillon. Recently, the $7,700 Admiral’s Cup 45mm Chronograph Wood Dial has been the collection’s best-selling timepiece, according to the Corum. Take your pick. Either way, you’re cutting edge. In 2016, Admiral’s Cup presents three in-house movements (an automatic, a flyback chronograph and a 47mm world timer) aboard its Legend series. These include models in a range of maritime tones: steel, steel and rose gold or 47mm lightweight titanium. There’s also an improved 42mm collection with a thinner elegant case. New models (or “stylish vessels”) restore the iconic multicolored nautical flags against 12-sided blue, white or black dials—with transparent casebacks water resistant to fifty meters. Corum offers new Admiral Legend 42 mm automatics (in steel or steel and rose gold) on a blue or white dial. Meanwhile the


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Admiral’s Cup AC-One 45 chronograph wood dial Features an unusual teak dial and is fitted with a “Mad Max” leather strap with kevlar embossed pattern. A black-cased version with carbon bezel and black dial is also available.

2016 | Wristwatch


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Wristwatch | 2016

corum admiral’s cup legend lady Available in 32mm and 38mm models

Admiral Legend 42 Chronograph offers a discreet complication—an automatic movement with hour, minute, small second, chronograph and date displays float on a blue or black dial with sweeping luminescent hands and a 42-hour power reserve. The Admiral Legend Automatic line swims in a sea of tropical colors on flawless white or mother-of-pearl dials decorated with twelve nautical flag motifs—in 38mm (indicating date, hour, minute, seconds) and 32mm (indicating hour and minutes) respectively. These feminine models (in steel or steel and rose gold) boast curved lines and an alabaster display. “It’s a global evolution of the design,” says Calzadilla, referring to the new collection. “It’s like the design in the car industry with the original Fiat 500 and the new version: bigger, more colors but still recognizable,” he adds. Since its inception in 1960, the world has traveled warp-speed through watch styles, trends and technology—space-age geometric watches, digital watches and now smart watches. Collections (and even regattas) have come and gone, but Corum’s Admiral’s Cup line has tacked along through smooth and troubled watch waters. What else would we expect of a watch inspired by sailing? 2016 | Wristwatch


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Wristwatch | 2016

Right: A Corum Admiral’s Cup Tides model from 1992.

The corum ADMIRAL’S CUP AC-ONE 45 Tides Features a tides function exclusively created for Corum.

Rare models

In recent years, Corum has expanded the Admiral’s Cup line in a period of inspired innovation. In 2012, Corum launched an Admiral’s Cup Legend Minute Repeater Acoustica, which marks off time by chords. In 2014, Corum introduced a reimagined Admiral’s Cup AC-One 45 Tides Watch for seafarers. This features a mechanical movement and nautical dial, but without multi-colored flag pennants. In 2015, Corum celebrated the collection’s 60th anniversary, crafting the Admiral’s Cup Legend 42 Flying Tourbillon—a transparent timepiece showcasing the reimagined complicated mechanism through the sapphire dial. Still, Corum was veering a few degrees off course. Consumer red flags would eventually steer the brand toward a necessary course correction.

Steady as she goes

The Admiral’s Cup collection navigated through its share of riptides—the Admiral’s Cup race suspension; removing colored flags from Admiral’s Cup dials; and, three years ago, new corporate ownership. In 2013, Montres Corum was sold to Hong Kong-based Citychamp Watch & Jewellery Group (formerly China Haidian Holdings)—the first high-end Swiss watchmaker to be acquired by a Chinese conglomerate. Under Switzerland CEO Davide Traxler’s leadership, Corum steadied the ship, reorganized the core strategy, and returned to the brand’s roots—unleashing its wilder side, in solidarity with client wishes. This included reviving Corum Bubble with thirty-five new models, an online Bubble fan design contest, and producer/DJ Steve Aoki’s Bubble Limited Edition timepiece. Also Corum launched a round Golden Bridge and hoisted the multicolored flags on the Admiral’s Cup dial once more. 2016 | Wristwatch


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Corum’s ADMIRAL’S CUP Legend 42

A three-tiered re-boot—a revived Bubble, the prestige collection Golden Bridge and the empowered flagship Admiral’s Cup, together have restored Corum’s Identity. With the new team as its color guard, Admiral’s Cup is back on course, full steam ahead. “While the Admiral’s Cup race is certainly not active anymore, the event left a lasting impact on the brand and has given its name to one of Corum’s collections,” says Calzadilla. “And with this name comes a responsibility to maintain the heritage of manufacturing unique and exceptional sailing timepieces. We listen to our markets and customers and therefore decided to return the colored flags on dials again.” Admiral’s Cup customers are fiercely loyal and as versatile as the collection itself—active and craving a special watch with “distinctive, daring designs that are unique, limited and dynamic,” he adds. “Watch lovers choose Corum as we stay true to these principles.” Can the actual Admiral’s Cup yacht race follow Corum’s lead to re-invent itself? We’ll see, but there is an effort among sailors to revive the competition. In the meantime, the skippers can again choose from a wide array of refashioned Corum Admiral’s Cup watches to help them while at the helm.


Wristwatch | 2016

above: corum Admiral’s Cup Legend 46 Minute Repeater Acoustica LEFT: From 2010, the corum Admiral’s Cup Deep Hull 48

2016 | Wristwatch


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Baume & Mercier

Devoid of excess on the opaline dial, Baume & Mercier’s Clifton pocket watch reveals its true mettle via the see-through back and the slide ‘trigger’ on the side. Modestly sized at 50mm x 14.4 mm, the Clifton case is crafted in rose gold with a sapphire back revealing a nicely dressed five-minute repeater movement, designed by Baume and built by Dubois Depraz. Actuated and powered with a slide of the lever on the lower right, the Clifton repeater will audibly chime the time on two gongs to within five minutes on demand. Interior bridges have been hewn and relieved of excess metal creating a framework above the mainplate casting a metallurgical web of engineering artistry. As nicely finished as this movement is, it is a unfortunate not to be able to view the gongs, racks, and hammers of the repeater mechanism which are out of necessity situated under the dial side of the movement leaving them hidden from view. The components that are visible on this slow beat (18,000 bph) movement are well executed and have seen the private attention of skilled decorateurs. Only 30 of these golden chiming timers will be made and are available for $54,900.




Retro rages on – but are you willing to take a leap into the past?


t this point in timekeeping there is no doubt that nostalgic designs have taken hold. Dials & cases from the past are reborn in modern proportions, as well are the historic color combinations, shapes, and even strap styles from various points along the 100-year (or so) timeline of the wrist-worn watch. For the earliest portable timekeepers, design patrimony grew out of functional necessity. First in the larger format of the pocket watch, and then later as a host of new possibilities emerged as the timepiece migrated from the pocket to the wrist. One look at today’s trends in watches makes it clear that these once-useful complications and additional information has become the latent lackey of “style”.


Wristwatch | 2016

Today, the anachronistic pocket watch is an horological sideshow; the modern editions that follow on these pages simply would not exist at all had they not snuck back in to our consideration on the coattails of the mechanical wristwatch renaissance. And even if they do represent only a miniscule portion of the overall market, they retain an air of nobility and perform a service beyond the time and complications within their cases; they remind us few happy watch nuts of what came before our battery operated lives - in an era where remarkable ingenuity required only rudimentary tools and basic materials to create the mechanical magic of the era. Modern pocket timepieces run the gamut from traditional homage types to modern and innovative designs.

Bell & Ross

Bell & Ross offers two affordable variations of the steel pocket watch that keeps it simple. Both versions share a 49mm stainless steel case housing the manual-winding ETA 6497 movement. As its name implies, the PW1 Heritage version evokes a classic feel with taupe lume on the retro-font numerals and slender Feuille (leaf) hands. The case is in grey PVD over steel and is finished in a bead-blasted satin with a barleycorn relief pattern on the back. Within the same family is the PW1 Steel that differentiates itself with a high-polish case and black sunray dial. Prices are $3,500 and $3,000 respectively and are a good choice for the mid-level collector. Collectors a bit higher up on the pocket watch chain will appreciate the subtle elegance of Argentium Sterling Silver in Bell & Ross’ collection of five-minute repeaters. Both the 49mm sunray finished ruthenium dial ($39,000) and the 52mm transparent dial ($43,000) house a Dubois Depraz five-minute repeater movement within the tarnish-resistant Argentium Silver cases.

2016 | Wristwatch


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Marching to his own beat, Roland Murphy leads RGM with a tempered boutique-type approach to making high quality watches here in the USA. Happily back-ordered for most of the production, RGM has continued to diversify his offerings in a measured tempo that allows RGM to diversify its product line without saturating the market with any one particular type. Recently RGM took a step back in time and added their own off-the-wrist watch to the variety. Note that I did not call it a ‘pocket’ watch. This new piece unique houses RGM’s own Pennsylvania Tourbillon movement and encompasses many custom-made options and nearly every component of this watch was modified or produced especially for this singular creation that was designed to be worn around the neck as a pendant. The case is made from 18k rose gold with yellow gold bezels and is a striking embodiment of the most delicate of watch making complications, the tourbillon. RGM offers old world crafts such has hand cut Engine-Turning to Grand Feu glass enamel dials and every RGM case is cut from solid material, either Stainless steel, Titanium, Gold, or Platinum and is never plated or coated. Roland makes watches that are designed to last a lifetime and beyond so plating is simply not an option he wants to explore. Pricing can vary from as little as $4000 to well over $100,000 for a custom commission depending on the customer’s own desires.


Wristwatch | 2016

Gangi: ScaccoMatto GMT3. Checkmate. The watch imagined by Pasquale Gangi got its name since it is directly inspired from the world of finance for its time zones and of from the game of chess. It was born from a meeting between the young Queen of world wide chess, Alexandra Kosteniuk, who was looking for an original present for a Russian personality, and the Italian creator Pasquale Gangi. The result was the ScaccoMatto GMT3, which is a pocket watch with 3 Time Zones that also incorporates a system of timing of games of chess. Based on a manual wind mechanical movement with double barrels the patented GMT3 enjoys a 120 hour power reserve and was conceived, developed and produced according to the criteria of the high Swiss watch making, yet evokes a charged impression with its disruptive approach to design. Each piece is signed Gangi and Alexandra Kosteniuk. Learn more about this and other outside the box pocket watches at

2016 | Wristwatch


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Offered in either rose or white gold, Panerai’s pocket watch takes advantage of the firm’s in-house caliber P3000 three-day power reserve movement. Manually-wound, this movement takes on a completely new look in the pocket watch execution. What was originally a rock-solid looking machine with two large bridges covering most of what lies beneath has become a trestlework of thin metal rails just large enough to accomplish their proscribed function while allowing a deeper view into the inner workings. At 50mm, the Radiomir ‘softened square case converts nicely to the pocket watch platform with details like the inset crown, curved bow, and simple elegance of the design that will appeal to both the ardent Paneristi and just about anyone who loves fine timepieces. Adding one to your own collection will call for an investment of $78,100 for the rose gold version and $82,800 for a white gold case.


Wristwatch | 2016

Patek Philippe

Even today the revered house of Patek Philippe continues to offer several pocket watch options as part of its regular production. Simple and elegant, these examples evoke the less complicated side of fine timekeeping while paying respect to the classical roots of the gentleman’s watch. At a modest 44mm diameter, the Patek Philippe 972 retains the same proportions as a modern full-size wristwatch and features the Lepine layout for non-hunter cases where the sub-seconds hand is in line with the winding stem. Also on the dial is a power reserve display indicating how much of the 36 hours of running time remains in the mainspring on the Caliber 17”’ LEP PS IRM movement. Beating at the traditional & stately pace of 18,000 bph, this caliber recalls the historical precedents of fine watchmaking by integrating a screwed balance and a Breguet-style overcoil on the hair (balance) spring. This pocket watch is impeccably finished inside and out and retails for just over $40,000.

2016 | Wristwatch


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Echoing the Hermès theme for 2016, “Nature at full gallop”, the scenes presented on the cover of these three models are drawn from the silk scarf La promenade de Platon created by the artist Annie Faivre. This unusual ensemble unites the exquisite watchmaking métiers of grand feu enamel, interwoven microsculpture and engraving to depict views from the gardens of Academus within the asymmetrical Arceau case. Measuring 48 mm and crafted in white gold, the Arceau is paired with an alligator cord strap – also made by Hermès. Each one-of-a-kind Promenade de Platon is driven by a Hermès H1837 movement crafted in Switzerland and visible through the sapphire back. This mechanical caliber is finished to the highest standards and is a bit unusual for a pocket watch inasmuch as it is an automatic winding movement with a fully functional and beautifully decorated winding rotor sitting atop the mechanical movement. Hundreds of hours of expert artisanal work on both the dials and movement bring these fabulous fillys to a price of just over $236,000 each.


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Introduced in 2010, Bovet’s Amadeo convertible case system allows the timepiece to be transformed into a reversible (twin dials) wristwatch, table clock, pocket or even a pendant watch – without the use of any tools. Like the entire Virtuoso collection’s, the IV and VII pictured here each present two distinct faces and display disparate details on both. The Amadeo Fleurier Tourbillon Virtuoso IV is characterized by a pair of three-dimensional sculptures that have been produced entirely by Bovet’s own artisans. Placed on either side of the dial, these petite ponies mirror each other while appearing to support the dial. Four different symbolic themes are available, giving collectors the choice between elephants, horses, angels or doves. With enough energy stored in the extra-long mainspring to run the tourbillon escapement autonomously for five days, the Amadeo IV displays an instantaneous jumping hour display on one dial, while the reverse elicits the time in the traditional hour and minute hand format where it is joined by a power reserve indicator. Created in very limited releases, each version of the Amadeo IV will call for a substantial $288,800 investment. Using the same Amadeo convertible platform, Bovet’s VirtusosoVII incorporates a new format for a perpetual calendar with the hours and minutes on a central dial ringed by a retrograde date ring slightly submerged below the plane of the dial. On the periphery, the day of the week, month, and leap-year indicators are cleverly printed in white or black (depending on the color of the dial) directly on to sapphire discs allowing a better view of the mechanism underneath while seeming to disappear. The reverse dial gives prominence to the impeccably decorated movement and highlights the seconds hand which is on the same axis (but counter rotates) on both sides of the movement. Finally, a power reserve indicator displays the state of the mainspring that provides a maximum of five days autonomy. Available in red or white gold, with either a white or black lacquer dial. Prices range from $72,500-$122,900.

2016 | Wristwatch


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Roger Dubuis

To mark its 20th anniversary, Roger Dubuis has launched a unique restoration project entirely dedicated to its Hommage collection: Millésime. As the name implies, it will mark each year with a special “vintage” in the form of a singular creation. Each will embody a wealth of restoration work on some of the most exquisite watch movements from the 19th Century that will be restored using historic crafts and upgraded to meet 21st century Poinçon de Genève specifications. Each reborn caliber will incorporate a perpetual calendar - either alone or joined by one or more sophisticated horological complications. The movement restored and upgraded/updated in the Roger Dubuis RD 181 was originally fabricated in the 1800s by the esteemed house of Jaeger LeCoultre – one of only two manufacturers that Roger Dubuis will cultivate for the Millesime collection, Audemars Piguet being the other. Now restored and reborn, the amazing caliber RD 181 is once again functioning as designed with a dual retrograde perpetual calendar, an on-demand minute repeater, and on top of all that a 60-minute single button chronograph. A singular piece of this caliber demands a singular price at $892,500. Five hundred and ninety components; 113 jewels, 5 differential systems and 4 flying tourbillon escapements do little more than mark the time on the Roger Dubuis Spider Pocket Watch. No celestial equations or moon-phases, no perp calendars, chronographs or minute repeater to sound the time - just the simple display of time (and a power reserve indicator.) Dubuis’ Spider and the caliber RD 101 within take the multi-tourbillon complicated for the sake of it to the next level. Although there is little extra information needing your attention on the dial, four twirling tourbs will be enough for the affluent collector to be enthralled and will mesmerize those lucky few able to own one for the substantial investment of $468,500.


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Rudis Sylva

Created to mark the brand's tenth anniversary, the Rudis Sylva pocket watch released this year is nothing short of amazing. This timepiece goes beyond even exceptional norms in finishing to create a panoply of exquisitely applied decoration to every component of this rare keeper of time. Equipped with the patented Harmonious Oscillator (which is without a doubt one of the most astounding escapements ever created in mechanical watchmaking), the art of engineering comes to life in this rose gold signature piece. Surrounded by a miniature amphitheatre of exquisitely finished precious metal, the interlocked twin balances perform a synchronized ballet as they rotate on a shared tableau while their hairsprings ‘breathe’ in a counterpointed rhythm. Only ten of these pocket masterpieces will be made and even at Chf 280,000, each one is already a highly sought-after piece among the affluent collector community.

2016 | Wristwatch


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Urwerk’s UR-1001 Zeit Device Uber Complication leaves classicism and tradition behind in favor of an ultra modern take on timekeeping. In the truest ethos of its nature, the UR-1001 actually quantifies the span of an era in its entirety - from fleeting seconds to the entire millennia. Carved from solid metal & titanium, the UR-1001 displays the passage of time in seconds, minutes and hours and adds to that indications for day/night, date, month, years, 100-year cycles and unbelievably even 1,000 years! It also has a separate gauge to mark the time until the next “oil change�, or more accurately the scheduled service interval. In the fashion of its predecessors, The Zeit Device uses rotating cones to mark the hours, although in this version the revolving hour satellites are paired with an instantaneous retrograde minute pointer. Modern materials like Arcap corrosion-resistant alloys within and AlTiN (Aluminum,Titanium, Nitrogen) coatings without are a perfect match to the Urwerk futuristic designs from founders Martin Frei and Felix Baumgartner.


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Richard Mille

If you could ask any of the great watchmakers of the 1800s to use the best current technology and materials to make an amazing modern mechanical pocket watch, you might end up with something like the Richard Mille RM020. Combining the old school metiers of anglage, lapping and burnishing with modern shapes and materials, the RM020 juxtaposes two eras in watch making. Ten days of torque are supplied by a traditional pair of mainsprings that are housed in capsules carved and finished in a rocket-ready space-age finish. These mainsprings power a gear train mounted on a carbon nanofiber mainplate, yet are controlled by a traditional tourbillion escapement with an inertial screw balance. Engineered buttresses replace bridges, and sapphire crystals work as both protector and display platforms. The gear train is mounted on a carbon nanofiber main plate, while a traditional screw-balance tourbillion whirls within.

2016 | Wristwatch



M a n u fac t u r e


By Nitin Shankar


RM 50 27-01

CASE MANUFACTURING Richard Mille’s ProArt watch case manufacturing plant is unlike any other in the world.


visit to the Richard Mille ProArt watch case manufacturing plant is the best way of understanding what it takes to create a top-end luxury brand. On the face of it, the ultra-modern plant, located in Les Breuleux, a village amidst the beauty and solitude of the Swiss Jura landscape, conforms to Swiss manufacturing standards where everything is excessively clean and well organized. After a plant tour, I understood the rationale for a Richard Mille factory engaged in producing watch cases, bridges and other components in small quantities – a facility unlike any other in Switzerland.


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The Richard Mille production organization, which includes the ProArt plant, consists of a hub of suppliers, often held together by co-ownerships. Other companies in this ‘designated supplier’ group are Horometrie SA, Valgine SA and Audemars Piguet Renaud & Papi SA (APR&P). Each of these entities has special skills in a specific area of the production process. While ProArt crafts all Richard Mille cases, APR&P supplies the complications and Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier supplies automatic movements. However this is in flux at the moment as Richard Mille has introduced a few in-house designed automatic calibers the last two years, and have started producing some parts for these new calibers in-house. When I first visited the APR&P assembly line ten years ago, I picked up a Richard Mille RM 001 manual winding Tourbillon. For

The Pro Art facility, located in Les Breuleux

its size, it was extremely light. The concave curving case back fits the anatomy of the wrist perfectly and was visually exciting and extremely comfortable to wear. Ever since then I have been fascinated by the Richard Mille approach in creating holistic relationships that unite the interior and exterior of the watch. “Casing sounds simple but the reality is that it is a time-consuming and delicate job requiring very complex machining,” explains Theodore Diehl, my guide and the company spokesman at Richard Mille. He showed me samples of watch cases in various stages of completion during my visit. “Richard has a fabulous sports car collection and is himself an avid amateur racer,” Diehl continued. “He draws his inspiration for

exotic and/or lightweight raw materials from the world of Formula 1 racing cars, sailing and aviation as inspiration.” Looking through the case samples, I noticed that they had one thing in common: they were indeed all very light for their sizes.


“Let me take you on a plant tour,” Diehl suggested. I willingly obliged. We walked through the machining section where parts were being processed on state-of-the art CNC machines. This plant has to cope with a number of challenges. For one thing, Richard Mille watch cases are extremely difficult to produce due to the large number of curves and angles they encompass. 2016 | Wristwatch



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Left Top: RM factory Left Bottom: Valgine manufacture Bottom: Watchmaker at work (courtesy

For another, a large variety of models are produced in very small batches. Finally, many models use exotic materials, which require special machining techniques.

park at ProArt

For efficient control over the processes involved, Richard Mille has invested heavily in cutting-edge technologies. Flexible manufacturing cells process a variety of different parts in the same batch. A multiple-axis CNC grinding center finishes cases to a precision of a few microns. Sometimes an operator supervises two or more automated workstations. On the other hand, there were many operators engaged in traditional manual brushing and polishing operations. Fortunately, these


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skills are available locally since the habitants of Les Breuleux have been making watch cases for centuries. The plant is living proof of Richard Mille’s philosophy of combining the best in technical innovation with the tradition and heritage of skilled hand finishing as practiced in Les Breuleux for more than 150 years


“Technology greatly affects the choices we make,” says Julian Boillat, Technical Director at Richard Mille. “I would even go so far to say that technology is one of the core aspects that shape the decision making aspects of Richard’s aesthetics.” The iconic Richard Mille ‘tonneau’ or barrel-shaped patterned

In support of

Time for life—with limited edition timepieces in support of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières. Each watch raises 100 USD, GBP, or EUR for the Nobel Peace Prize winning humanitarian organization. And still, these handcrafted mechanical watches with the red 12 cost the same as the classic models from NOMOS Glashütte. Help now, wear forever. Funds raised are donated to Médecins Sans Frontières USA, UK, or Germany, depending on the specific model purchased. For MSF UK, the registered charity no. is 1026588.  Available at selected retailers in the three participating countries, as well as online. Find your nearest NOMOS retailer at or order online at

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The case of this Richard Mille RM 032 Automatic Chronograph Divers Watch consists of three curved parts, requires a total of 830 machining operations making it one of the most difficult round cases to manufacture.

watch cases are extremely difficult to manufacture. For example, the curved front and back bezel must match the case-band without even the slightest bit of tension to make sure that the sapphire glass will not be affected. In addition, because of the curves in both bezels and the case-band, much more material needs to be milled in order to achieve perfect results. Apart from design, there is the constant search for new lightweight materials used in many of the sports timepieces as well as innovative concepts for the round and rectangular watch cases. Titanium is a preferred material for watch cases because it is as strong as the high-grade steel alloys, but much less dense. Most Richard Mille cases use titanium grade 5, an alloy with excellent properties combining strength with resistance to extreme temperatures and corrosion.

830 machining operations making it one of the most difficult round cases to manufacture. The turning diver’s bezel is not sprung into place as it is the norm today, but attached to the case with more than thirty miniature and specially manufactured torque screws

The Richard Mille RM 032 Automatic Chronograph Diver’s

When Rafael Nadal plays one of his tennis matches, he wears a watch from the ultra-lightweight 27 series like the Richard Mille RM 027, 27-01 or 27-02 on his right wrist. Each is specially designed for him.

This watch is a good example of the complexity of case manufacturing. The case, consisting of three curved parts, requires a total of


Wristwatch | 2016

Richard Mille RM 032 Automatic Chronograph Diver’s Watch (above)

After a further 11-hour machining, each case has to pass a full day of quality control, including numerous water resistant tests to guarantee that this fly-back chronograph is water-tight to a depth of 300 meters. I had to admire the finish on a RM 032 back bezel sample. Since each case is hand brushed and polished, one can safely state that each piece is truly unique.

carbon nanofiber







24 18

6 GMT 12

Leveraging decades of precision micro-machining expertise from the American aerospace industry and the savoir-faire of Swiss watchmaking - this is Niall. Built to honor the builders working tirelessly to create a better future. Who display their values with pride. Doing things the right way for the right reasons. Taking initiative. Leading with style and earning respect by what they do every day. Honoring those that are all in.

USA Made. Swiss Movement.

Kansas City, USA | +1 (816) 301-7987 | Explore Niall at your local retailer.

Niall GMT 40mm Panda dial. Eterna Cal. 3903a 65 hour power reserve. Corning® Gorilla® Glass. Limited edition. $5,500.


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Nadal’s matches can sometimes last for hours. The idea here was to bring a tourbillon watch into the arena that can withstand shocks while remaining comfortable and ridiculously lightweight. For instance, the RM 27-01, released a few years ago, weighed in at a truly featherweight 14 grams without the bracelet - and that’s with the movement installed of course. To ensure extreme lightness and rigidity, the RM 27-01 back bezel and case band are an integrated construction. There is an anecdote related to how Richard Mille found his first lightweight material for the RM 006 case, made in 2005, that marked the start of the ‘lightweight theme’ at RM. In 2005, Richard Mille and his research team needed an extremely lightweight baseplate and a material called carbon nanofiber met their requirement. They were only able to obtain it from a military supplier to the U. S. Air Force. This material was used in parts for the F-117 Stealth Fighter because it allows radar waves to pass through, therefore aiding the plane’s stealth functions. Carbon nanofiber is created by molding carbon nanotubes in a black polymer matrix at 2,000°C under 750 bars of pressure. The resulting carbon nanofiber is extremely durable (two hundred times stronger than steel) and very light. This material is capable of absorbing far stronger impacts than traditional carbon fiber due to their structure with its excellent surface-volume ratio. For the RM 27-02 Tourbillon Rafael Nadal, the Richard Mille team crossed new boundaries in terms of case design and materials. In their quest for a lightweight material of extremely high rigidity, the Richard Mille team chanced upon a scrap piece of the mast of the Alinghi, the boat that won the America’s Cup. “We had this piece that we tried to saw manually but it was impossible to cut as it was blunting our tools,” says Alain Varrin, plant manager. North Thin Ply Technology had developed this material, known as NTPT carbon. Its surface displays extremely regular wood-like undulations when milled, since it is composed of multiple layers of parallel filaments obtained by dividing carbon fibers. These layers, with a maximum thickness of 30 microns, are impregnated with resin then woven on a special machine that modifies the direction of the weft by 45° between layers. “We use 800 layers to make up the thickness of the case, which allows incredible rigidity,” says Boillat. Heated to 120°C at a pressure of 6 bars, the NTPT is then ready to be processed on on CNC machines at the ProArt case factory. The central case band for the RM 27-02 Rafael Nadal shows how form and function can be combined to create a sculpture where the relief of the internal space draws us into a maze of geometries and planes. “The material is diabolically rigid,” says Boillat. When compared to other composite materials, NTPT carbon improves the rate


Wristwatch | 2016

Top: Rafael Nadal playing with his RM 027 on his right wrist Middle: RM 27-01 Manual Winding Tourbillon Rafael Nadal Bottom: RM 27-02 Tourbillon Rafael Nadal



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M a n u fac t u r e

RM 26-02 Evil Eye

of occurrence of breaking stresses by 25% and of micro-cracks by 200%. “We did 5,000 G-force shock and other tests. It passed all on the first try,” adds Boillat. “Mr. Mille even threw a case on the marble floor several times and it had no effect.” It is fitting that Richard Mille selected one of the lightest and toughest ceramic composites for his contemporary talisman – the RM 26-02 Evil Eye. Every culture from early history has sought some form of mascot to protect against the Evil Eye. Richard Mille has seized this imagery as inspiration for an extraordinary design with a hi-tech case.

RM 26-02 Evil Eye

The case for the Richard Mille 26-2 Evil Eye is made from TZPN, composed of Zirconium compound (95%) stabilized with Yttrium. This ultra-tough black ceramic material combines low density (6g per cm3) with a very low coefficient of thermal conductivity. TZP-N allows for a perfect finish with micro-blasting and hand polishing. It is extremely resistant to scratches. A long and difficult machining and grinding process using diamond tools is necessary to create the complex forms of the bezel and caseback, which are given a matte surface finish. This black case provides


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an ideal frame for the Evil Eye. Of course, then there’s the painstaking micro-lacquer work carried out by hand on the flames.


The case for the RM 26-2 shows how far the Richard Mille team will go in the search for ever lighter materials. While a Richard Mille watch case’s signature lies in its mechanical complexity, visual design and ergonomic fit, the connoisseur can also appreciate the lightweight materials and handcrafted finishing. Considering that Richard Mille introduced 14 new models in 2014 alone, the fact is that the development of such complex cases made from high-tech materials and in small volumes is only possible through in-house production. No less than sixty employees – CNC programmers, machine operators, polishers, inspectors – work in this facility adopting innovative technologies, a requirement for working on innovative materials such as grade 5 titanium, NTPT carbon, carbon nanotubes, ceramic TZP-N. It is clear that ProArt’s team, inspired by Richard Mille, has already and will continue to innovate in new concepts and develop new materials that will help push the limit of what is possible in making high-end watch cases.

L . K e n d a ll

K7 Above

L. Kendall offers distinctive dials with an ode to British marine chronometers.


Wristwatch | 2016

By Michael Thompson

Nautical Namesake


atch distributor and veteran watch retailer Ray Grenon is well acquainted with the names of horological geniuses. While walking the halls of Baselworld earlier this year Grenon spotted the name L. Kendall, a historically important 18th century British watchmaker, atop a two-story stand in Hall 1. “I recognized the name L. Kendall from the history of marine chronometers,” he explains. The booth itself had a nautical theme. “The watches were on top of these acrylic displays that looked almost like waves. The pieces looked spectacular and the large, multi-level dials made of mother-of-pearl and the detailed casework really helped them catch your eye. I was hooked right away.” Grenon, who owns Grenon’s of Newport in Newport, Rhode Island, and who distributes several watch brands in North America

(Speake-Marin, Alexander Shorokhoff, Zannetti, Azimuth and Schaumburg), investigated L. Kendall and its new watch collection. He quickly decided to add the brand to his roster at the About Time Luxury Group, his distribution company. The Swiss watch company is named after Larcum Kendall who in 1765 was appointed to the Board of Longitude as a watchmaking expert and then commissioned to make a marine chronometer, later known as the K1. Kendall completed that watch in 1769 and immediately placed the watch in the able hands of Captain James Cook, who took it on his famous second voyage on HMS Resolution. Captain Cook had such faith in the K1’s accuracy he again requested the Kendall timepiece on his third and final voyage that mapped the South Sea Islands for the first time. The K1 is now displayed at the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich, London.


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L . K e n d a ll

Naming tradition

To establish its first wristwatch collection, the modern L. Kendall continues the watchmaker’s tradition of naming timepieces with Kendall’s surname initial K. Larcum himself only made three marine chronometers, K1, K2 and K3, the latter of which was instrumental during Captain George Vancouver’s travels in the Pacific and along the coast of what is now Canada. L. Kendall’s initial collections include K4, K5, K6 and K7, four nautically themed automatic models made in 300-piece limited editions. Each features a 46mm steel case and mother-of-pearl dials of varying hues, and each model stresses its own date and timekeeping functions and displays. One model, for instance, offers a chronograph and second timezone (K4) while another (K6) features a large date. The remaining collections include a model with a date display with a 24-hour counter (K7) and a design emphasizing tradition-


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L . K e n d a ll

ally separated hours and minute subdials (K5). L. Kendall uses top-grade ETA movements that have been specially configured by Dubois Depraz or Alfred Rochat & Fils (Arola). The K4 has been the brand’s first breakout hit, according to Grenon. “It’s quite popular because of the gorgeous blue mother-of-pearl dial with the cobalt blue subdials. It’s very striking. It also features a more intricate case design.” Inside the K4 is an ETA Valjoux 7750 modified by Arola to L. Kendall’s specifications, which in part means a date subdial on the front and a .925 silver rotor on the back decorated with a sextant design. A stylized image of the North Star appears on the crystal caseback as well as on the dial. The nautical theme is abundant throughout the collection, most directly by the hands, which are exclusive to the brand. The long seconds hand in particular recalls the company’s seafaring past


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L . K e n d a ll

as the hand’s counterweight features a miniature sextant shape. The large crown resembles a boat winch. Even the watchstraps echo the nautical theme. Available in a host of colors, straps of calf leather or suede feature a sextant-shaped buckle and an (optional) anchor badge.

Sapphire back

A full-sized sapphire caseback crystal on each watch is another of the collection’s many unusual stylistic cues. As Grenon points out, that sapphire does more than simply look good. “At first this seems rather unusual, but if you look at many people’s watches most of the scratches appear on the caseback from throwing the watch down on a table or dresser,” he adds. “With the sapphire crystal covering the steel portion of the casebacks, the back still looks pristine and it perfectly preserves all of the engrav-


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ing there, including the watch’s limited edition number.” All L. Kendall watches are designed by Italo Fontana, the mastermind behind U-Boat’s distinctive collections, while the brand itself was developed by Mounir Moufarrige, who is credited for helping to revive Alfred Dunhill and Goyard, and other brands, and who, while at Chloe, hired Stella McCartney. L. Kendall collections are priced starting at $3,900 (for K7) with the aforementioned K4 chronograph at the top of the firm’s range, priced at $7,900. “When people look at the watches and feel them in their hands we ask them to guess what the price is,” Grenon says. “They are always surprised that they are priced much lower than one would think. Also, each model is limited to only 300 pieces so the exclusivity makes them attractive as well.” For a closer look at L. Kendall, see or


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P a t e k P h i l i pp e

Launched in 1976, Philippe Stern’s Nautilus 3700/1 joined the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak in confirming a new echelon of sport elegance timepieces in steel. Like its 1970’s competitive contemporary, the Nautilus design looks as perfect and current today as it did 40 years ago.  




Philippe Stern’s 1977 Design Stands The Test Of Time


t’s the mid 1970s and the upstart and ultra-accurate quartz watch had already taken over the market. But, it was just starting to lose its initial cachet as prices began to plummet. Mass produced in the millions, quartz watches put Japanese manufacturers in an all-out race to the bottom to see who could make the greatest number of the least expensive watches. As this massive wave of goods engulfed the market, most Swiss brands stood reeling at the staggering losses in sales and market share. Few Swiss luxury brands were able to ride the wave and survive intact, but it is during this very tumultuous period that Patek Philippe searched for a way forward without abandoning its own roots. As a standard-bearer for fine Swiss watches the company had a history that it felt should be honored. It was clear the brand also had to evolve. Putting this task to CEO-in-waiting Philippe Stern, Patek Philippe’s challenge was for Stern to envision a watch that would reflect the current generation’s evolving sense of style through the rose prism of a luxury brand. By no means an easy proposition in an environment saturated with ‘affordable’ quartz options, Patek Philippe nonetheless added a new dimension to what luxury might look like. Like Audemars Piguet with the famous Genta-designed Royal


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Oak, Philippe Stern had to put aside the dogma of the day that a luxury watch must be crafted in 18-karat gold and made as thin and elegant as possible. Being a sportsman and a regatta sailor, he used his own lifestyle as inspiration to design a timepiece imbued with a casual elegance : the Patek Philippe Nautilus. Launched in 1976 with the slogan: “One of the world’s most expensive watches is made of steel,” its water resistance was proofed to 120 meters – which was also an unusual achievement at the time. The Nautilus’ porthole design and unusually robust construction placed the watch in the nascent design school that combined luxury and sport in a look that could be worn as easily with jeans or a suit. The success of what was originally considered to be a journeyman’s’project quickly became a masterpiece and paved the way for Stern to take the helm as CEO of Patek Philippe only a year later. Since its inception the Nautilus collection has diversified; the first ladies’ edition came out in 1980, and as the return of the mechanical watch industry gained traction the Nautilus case has incorporated a variety complications to the platform. Handsome in all steel, the Nautilus can take on a more luxuriant look and adapts well to both two-tone and solid gold.

Patek Philippe’s Ref. 5980 Nautilus Chronograph uses a singular subdial for both minute and hour timing and is available in all steel, two-tone, or 18-karat gold.

In the Ref. 5990 version the Nautilus uses another of the brand’s in-house specialty movements to combine a dual time zone (with day/ night indicators for local and home time) with a chronograph and date.

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N a u t i c a l In s p i r e d

New World Watch

Celebrating an era when pirates and cyclones gave pause to intrepid explorers, Ernst Benz offers the 18th Degree. Break out your compass and chart your course to the new world with the dial of the new 18th degree. A 17th century vintage map design in parchment (color) or deep black highlight the 18th parallel north of the equator and the discovery of the western world. Distressed numerals add a subtle historical feel under the domed sapphire crystal and are a perfect fit for the theme. Both a black PVD and a brushed stainless steel case are offered in two sizes; 44mm and 47mm. Under the dial beats an ETA Swiss automatic caliber 2836 - visible via the see through glass back and protected to a nominal 5atm water resistance, so don’t fall overboard if you can help it. This nautical inspired creation is Swiss Made and priced reasonably with a range from $3,025-$4,725 - depending on the case size and composition.

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Ernst B

t Benz

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N a u t i c a l In s p i r e d

Vineyard Time Original Island Art

You know you’re on to something when a brand as renowned as the venerable Piaget decides to emulate (copy?) not only your technique, but even the actual era inspired art of one of your original dials. So if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Vineyard Time should bask in the adulation. To be clear, no whales, walrus, or any other animal are harmed or suffer as Vineyard Time uses only recovered and re-tasked antique Ivory, or, if you prefer, an Eco-Ivory composite option that imitates the look and grain of the real deal. In fact, Vineyard Time has been crafting and selling nautically inspired wristwatches and accessories (check out their cufflinks) on Martha’s Vineyard for almost a decade in an eco-friendly and custodial manner. In the latest rendition, VT’s master scrimshanders have added a new dimension by gently inking the stippled scrimshaw with subtle shades of color that create an amazing effect on these one-of-a-kind dials. Variations of the maritime dials are available in an automatic mechanical (Miyota) powered mechanical 44 mm case, or a smaller 36mm Swiss quartz version. Both are available in polished steel, or a heavy 50 micron gold plate edition with prices ranging from $1,500-$3,500, Not a bad price when you realize that each dial takes more than 50 hours to create - and to emphasize the point, Piaget is asking no less than $55,000 for their own copy of this original.


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The Face Of Wabi Sabi

Rather than striving for sterile perfection, Zanetti’s jade dials are engraved and painted by hand in a way that celebrates the imperfection of the natural material. Dappled with inclusions, two variations of jade host the diamond arms of a compass rose over a background of latitudinal and longitudinal arcs reminiscent of a weathered ocean chart. Inside the simple but substantial 47mm steel case beats a beautifully dressed ETA 2824 Swiss Made automatic movement with a hand engraved rotor and bridges decorated with circular perlage and Geneva wave finishes. Add one or both to your seafaring collection for $7,500 for the all steel and $10,500 for the diamond bezel version. All are available at Grenon’s of Newport as well as several other domestic retailers.

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Towson N a u t i c a l In s p i r e d

Chesapeake Charmer

With a shape that demands your attention and a winch for a crown, Towson’s Pride II is definitely not your typical timepiece. Inspired by the re-constructed Pride Of Baltimore topsail schooner, the pride II recalls the unique history of the speedy “Baltimore Clipper” topsail schooners from the early 1800’s. An engraved profile of the Pride Of Baltimore II on the back exhibits the sleek lines and massive sail area that helped the Baltimore Schooners outrun anything on the bay during their heyday. As with all Towson watches, the Pride II is impeccably built with full attention to details. Inside is a high-grade ETA 2892A2 adjusted to five positions and even with the unusually difficult to manufacture shape the Pride II is still rated to 5atm water resistance and reasonably priced at $3,850.


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Ulysse Nardin All Hands Off Deck

Combining a design ethos with mechanical possibilities, Ulysse Nardin may have created the ultimate accessory for the well to do yachtsmen. At first glance, Ulysse Nardin’s Grand Deck just looks nautical cool. Nanowires thinner than a human hair (and stronger than steel) move a retrograde minutes display reminiscent of the boom on a yacht’s mainsail in an arc across the dial, while capstanlike winches reel in the fine threads on either side of the armature. The initial impression is obviously backed by engineering veritas with twin mainspring barrels supplying energy to both a tourbillon timekeeping system, and the display systems in parallel. This lets the tourbillon escapement accurately track time without being influenced by the hourly power drain of the (relatively) heavy boom. It also allows for the controlled return speed of the retrograde system, which takes about 3.5 seconds to return to zero in an elegant and inertial controlled dance across the dial - as opposed to the sudden ‘snap’ of most retrograde displays. Showing patrimony to minute repeater level engineering and technique, the Grand Deck is another amazing offering from the ‘anchor’ in luxury watches.

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Omega N a u t i c a l In s p i r e d

Water & Earth

Omega’s Aqua Terra “Good Planet” edition dispenses the

teak pattern dial in favor of a clean white lacquered dial to counterpoint the ocean blue accents. Available in either a 43mm GMT or a simpler 38.5 mm 3-hand with date, both versions house evolutions of the Daniels Co-Axial escapement now certified with the new “Master Co-Axial Chronometer” certification, and both are water resistant to 15atm. Fans of solid metal bracelets will appreciate the smooth flow of the brushed and polished finish on the lightweight grade 5 titanium, but the coated nylon fabric strap in blue pairs exceptionally well in this example although the proposed retail price of almost $11,000 for the GMT and over $7,700 for the 3-hand may scare off some collectors.


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Frederique Constant Live Your Passion

In 2009, Frederique Constant began a partnership with the Riva Historical Society. The goal of this charitable group is to help the owners conserve these vintage vessels in the best possible way. Frederique Constant commemorates the classic runabouts with an annual release of a nautically inspired limited edition watch of the same name. Both versions of the Runabout watches feature a 43-mm case, in either stainless steel, or plated in rose gold. The sapphire crystal back is engraved with the flag of the Riva Historical Society and allows a view of the in-house FC-303 caliber. This self-winding movement beats at 28 800 with a 42-hour power reserve. Surprisingly, the water resistance in this robust case only achieves a nominal 3atm rating. Each of the 2,888 pieces is delivered in a gift box that includes a miniature wooden powerboat that pays homage to the original runabouts of the 1920s. $1,550 in Steel and $1,895 in Rose gold plate.

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N a u t i c a l In s p i r e d

Ulysse Nardin Bathing Beauty

Ulysse Nardin’s new Diver Black Sea brings a bold combination of ceramic, rubber and steel together in a somewhat playful take on a waterborne luxury watch, although purists might argue that the new release is not technically a “diver” – and they would be correct. Without a uni-directional bezel marked with a starting point, five minute increments, and the first 15 minutes also marked individually on the bezel, the new Ulysse Nardin Diver Black Sea may not be SCUBA certified, but with the wave décor on the dial there is no doubt that its aqua inspired. So even if you won’t want to SCUBA with the Black Sea, the tough build is ready to handle any of your cliff & skin diving with a water resistance rating of 20atm. Inside is a modified ETA 2892-A2 dubbed the Caliber UN-26 with a Power reserve and sub-second with date. Regardless of what the Black Sea may be missing, the contrast of color and materials that are used will make a splash. Ulysse Nardin proposes an official retail price as $14,800 for each of the blue, black, white, and yellow version.


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Perrelet Full Speed Ahead

A turbine on the dial reminiscent of a spinning propeller blade and a compass chapter ring leave little doubt as to the maritime inspiration for the Perrelet Turbine Yacht. Titanium blades (non functional but well engineered nonetheless) alternately block, and then allow a view of the vertical teak pattern below. Powered by a Swiss Made Automatic movement, each of the Four variations on the theme are priced right around $7,000 retail.

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What Watch Would Captain Nemo Wear? The Ressence Type 5.

There is no shortage of dive watches in the world today. It is, pardon the pun, an over-saturated market space. A dive watch, by its very nature, is meant to be utilitarian. So utilitarian it is often referred to as a tool watch. And by and large, you know a dive watch when you see one. Block, sometimes blue, sometimes a more daring dial color. Moreover, the size and shape, again, are fairly uniform. So it is always a pleasure to see something completely different, designed by someone who clearly thinks outside of the watch box. The Type 5 is in many ways a radical departure from the typical approach and execution of dive watch design. One of the most crucial aspects of a dive watch is its legibility under water. Most dive watches depend on heavy applications of lume. Moreover, owing to the way that they are designed and constructed, a typical dive watch can only be read correctly under water by viewing it straight on. If not, the refraction of the light creates a mirror effect creating a less-than ideal condition for knowing the actual elapsed time at perhaps the most crucial time. vEvery problem has a solution and Benoît Mintiens and his team took a very different approach to solving the “mirror” problem. The display of the Ressence TYPE 5 is facilitated by what is known as the ROCS 5 module. This is the “Ressence Orbital Convex System”. The module, combined with the main and sub discs creates a 3 dimensional dial that is constantly in motion. Ressence utilized oil to fill the top portion of the watch which contains the dial and the ROCS 5 module. The use of 37.5 ml of oil provides ideal legibility at any angle the watch dial is viewed at. The entirety of the ROCS 5 module is immersed in oil, including the dial. We are just getting our toes wet with this amazing watch. This is just one of the very, very amazing technical features found in this amazing dive watch, and we will be going into much greater detail in a follow-up piece in a future issue. Stay tuned!


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STROM Nethuns II Mad Max Machine

If you ever wondered what a steampunk dive watch would look like – look no further. Rivet-like effects and rough finishes on the case paired with the Art Deco hands impart a retro modern effect embodying the design of a steampowered future. Obviously design-driven, Strom’s Nethuns II are each hand-finished and individually numbered and are authentic and functional diving instruments. Its unique construction is based on a sculpted additional outer case fitted over an inner watertight case. In this format, the hermetic inner case houses the movement while the outer allows for the artistic dimension. An oversized screw-locked crown at 9 o’clock serves to adjust an inner diving bezel. In North America, these ‘Beyond Thunderdome’ timepieces are exclusively available at Exquisite watches in Florida and retail for $10,500.


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Geoffrey Roth Diver HHS/D “Silent Circle” For The Silent World

Having made a niche for himself over the last 15-plus years, Geoffrey Roth’s own watch designs have subtle but consistent design cues that make them easy to pick out of the crowd. Over the years Roth has brought more and more of the manufacturing in-house and today makes almost every component other than the movement itself. Just to be clear, Roth has not officially named his amazing new diver’s type the “Silent Circle”, that’s my nickname for his new patent pending bezel. Having been out of touch with the man and the brand for several years, serendipity brought us together at this year’s Basel fair. It was here that Geoffrey showed me a brand new prototype (pictured here) of his new diver. I was curious as to why he had moved into the crowded field of diver’s watches and he allowed me a moment to inspect his new baby. Like most watch guys, the first thing I do with a diver’s watch is rotate the uni-directional bezel and critique the backlash, sound, feel, play, and click count on this critical dive watch component. To my complete surprise, Roth had invented a bezel that eliminated all of the aforementioned points as it rotates easily in one direction only, but does so in complete silence. No clicks or steps to be felt, no play, no backlash, no grinding, - nothing but a butter smooth motion that stops exactly on the spot you want; VERY cool. The 46mm diameter case is a hefty 17.25 mm thick and will be available in either 316L stainless or marine bronze. The steel case is available in polished or an AlTiN coated version and can be plated to match or counterpoint the lugs. Any combination of case, lug, or bezel materials and coatings will be available with the caveat that the lugs will always be stainless - but can be coated. On top is an extra-thick 3.5mm domed sapphire crystal; Roth is targeting an unbelievable rating of 1000 atm rating for the final version, although the prototype pictured here has already been vetted to an amazing 250 atm ( 2,500 meters)! The dial is marine bronze with nautilus engraving and SuperLuminova markers. The hands are either blued steel, polished, or 5N rose-gold-plated with SuperLuminova. Inside beats the ETA Hi- Line version of the 2892. The maker has asked me to be clear that the watch pictured here is a pre-production prototype and will be available this fall in the $7,500 range.

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Oris Aquis

No Nonsense Nautical Oris’s designers looked at how they could make a diver’s watch as legible and therefore as safe as possible when at depth. They turned to research by John Adolfson and Thomas Berghage, who reported in their medical volume Perception and Performance Under Water that the most visible colors underwater are yellow and orange. Pictured here with orange lume, the new Aquis has the minute scale printed directly on the inside of the sapphire crystal and a scratchproof ceramic insert in the bezel. At a wearable 43mm and built with a stainless steel case around a Swiss made Sellita SW 200 base (Oris Cal. 733), the Aquis is within reach of most collectors and makes for a sensible choice in a 300-meter rated Swiss watch with a suggested retail of $1,750.

Oris Aquis El Hierro Watch with a cause

Named after El Hierro at the south-western corner of the Canary Islands, the Aquis El Hierro Limited Edition watch is supporting a research scholarship plan run by the Spanish Institute of Oceanography (IEO) at the Faculty of Marine Sciences at the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. All build qualities are the same as the standard series, with the exception of the color and finish which are exclusive to this 2,000-piece limited series priced around $1,950.


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“Great” Cause Proud partner of the Australian Marine Conservation Society, Oris marks the Society’s 50th anniversary with a new limited edition celebrating the Great Barrier Reef. In honor of the anniversary and to highlight the cause as well as the longstanding relationship between Oris and the AMCS, Oris presented Barrier Reef Limited Edition II #50 (of 2,000) to AMCS Director Darren Kindleysides during a recent event in Queensland. All business, the new Barrier Reef LE II, adds a touch of safety yellow to contrast a steel blue plateau dial that hosts both day and date displays without interfering with at-aglance time. Large at 46mm, this instrument watch is rated to resist water to 300 meters. Suggested retail price is $2,300 on natural rubber or $2,500 on the stainless steel bracelet.

Oris Carl Brashear Limited Edition Honoring American Service

Oris commemorates the extraordinary life of Carl Brashear and has honored his memory with a beautiful bronze version of the Oris Divers Sixty-Five. Breaking barriers of both race and handicap, in 1968 Carl Brashear became the first U.S. Navy amputee diver after rehabilitating from a service diving injury in 1966 to salvage nothing less than a hydrogen bomb. Later, in spite of his challenges, he also became the first black U.S. Navy Certified Master Diver in 1970. His extraordinary story was the inspiration for the 2000 film “Men of Honor.” The watch Oris chose to celebrate Brashear’s life and character is the first Oris watch to be made in bronze, a naturally aging material used in deepsea diving helmets of the 1950s. It takes its aesthetic from the Oris Divers Sixty-Five, but is slightly larger at a 42mm diameter. The bronze case & bezel start out with a bright polished finish and will darken as they age, allowing each of the limited run of 2,000 pieces to develop its own unique patina over time. The stainless steel caseback shows Brashear’s helmet and his personal ideology;” its not a sin to get knocked down, it’s a sin to stay down.” Retail price for the Oris homage is $2,900. You can also donate directly to the Carl Brashear Foundation at

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Zodiac Super Seawolf 68Limited Edition

Commemorating Zodiac’s diving past, the Super Sea Wolf is back in bronze. The 82-piece Super Sea Wolf 68 “Marine Bronze” limited edition features a 100atm-rated bronze case that gives ties perfectly to the nautical environment. On top of the 50mm x 44mm ovoid case sits a bronze unidirectional bezel with a push-down safety system that only allows rotation when depressed and rotated simultaneously – and of-course only in one direction. Inside the 100atm rated diver, a COSC certified STP 1-11 Swiss made automatic movement. This bronze limited edition is supplied with both a dark brown matte leather strap and an olive green fabric strap with a Velcro closure. Retail price is $2,095 at

Zodiac Sea Dragon Limited Edition Chronographs Signs Point To Retro

For 2016, the Sea Dragon platform continues its evolution by taking its story to the speed-enthused adventurers of water and land. Timing-inspired retro functionality brings us to a point of sporty expressions with a lightweight racing-inspired metal cuff and leather strap options. Limited to only 82 pieces each, this year’s Sea Dragon Chronos are sure to be a collector’s favorite. Both limited edition chronograph models house a COSC-certified Valjoux 7750 automatic chronograph movement and are 50mm x 42mm with a polished and brushed finish case. Each also carries an individuallynumbered rotor to commemorate each piece’s exclusivity. Retail is $3,495 for the steel cuff version and $2,695 for the genuine leather strap.


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Edox Chronoffshore Speed Thrills

Celebrating speed on the water, Edox’s new Chronoffshore Chronograph partners with Norwegian Class-1 powerboat champion Virik Nilsen to promote its newest water watch. Available in two versions, with your choice of either quartz ($1,795) or automatic mechanical ($3,825), the 45mm chrono-diver is rated to an impressive 500 meters. On the solid back is an engraving of the surface cutting propeller used on high performance speedboats of all sort.

Edox Sharkman Limited Edition

Limited to 388 pieces the Sharkman’s blue case and dial echo the submarine environment of the world’s most beautiful waters. Capped by a black ceramic uni-directional bezel, the 45mm case houses a Swiss quartz movement and is rated to 500 meters. Supplied on a woven strap with green stitching as well as an extra all rubber black strap, the Edox Sharkman is a stylish diver’s option even if it never gets wet. $1,925 at

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Omega Deep Black

Scratch Proof With A Splash Of Contrast Creating firsts is nothing new for Omega and here again they have achieved a first with an all-ceramic case water resistant to 600 meters. As you would expect the attention to detail on all four variations is superb and even the caseback will now always be oriented correctly thanks to Omega’s patented Naiad Lock ceramic locking system. Omega’s Deep Black is available in four variations on the theme, each housing the Master Certified Omega Caliber 8906 automatic with GMT visible through the sapphire glass back. Rubber inserts match the accent color on the blue and red editions and sit within the 15-minute slot on the ceramic bezels. Held in place by an anti-bacterially treated rubber strap with a weave pattern, the 45.5mm case receives the strap between the lugs with an uncanny precision. Perfection does not come cheap as Omega is presenting this watch with a $12,000 retail price for the black, red, and blue editions, and a whopping $15,575 for the Sedna gold edition supplied on a water resistant leather strap.


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Best-Dressed Diver Sophisticated and modern, BVLGARI’s new dive watch evolves the Diagono design into the water sport realm. Several variations of this luxury sport style are equipped with the in-house automatic mechanical Solotempo BVL 191 caliber and feature all the indispensable attributes of a diver’s watch including an easily manipulated uni-directional bezel, water resistance to 300 meters, and luminous markers and hands. BVLGARI’s caliber BVL 191 is well finished and also features an instantaneous date change as well as a stop-second or ‘hack’ feature. All are fitted with a 41 mm stainless steel or two-tone case and come with either a blue rubber strap or a steel-link bracelet. Prices range from $6,550 for the stainless on rubber strap, $7,100 for the steel on steel, and $11,800 for the rose gold two-tone with two-tone bracelet.

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Muhle GlashĂźtte Nautische Instrument Seebataillon GMT

Muhle Glashutte Nautische Instrument Rasmus 2000

German engineering and a rock solid 45 mm titanium case

This entry from MGNI chooses steel over titanium and uses

Technicalities Aside

Anti-Magnetic Pepsi

house an ETA 2893-2 with a GMT function on a 24 hour inner

a soft iron inner case for added protection from the effects

scale. With a dual directional bezel the Seebataillon may not

of external magnetism. Inside the 45 mm case beats the

technically qualify as a true diver’s watch, but rated to 30atm

automatic Selitta SW 200-1, automatic with stop-seconds hack

with a 2.5 mm domed crystal you might be willing to use the

feature and a quick manual date change. Rated to 200 atm this

countdown style bezel and dive anyway. Price: $3,999

professional level diving tool has a thick 3.5 mm domed crystal over intensely luminous markers and hands. Price: $3,899 on rubber, $4,099 on bracelet.


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Eterna Caliber 3916

The Super KonTiki’s automatic flyback chronograph movement, the Calibre 3916A, is an extension of the popular Eterna 39 series. Beating at 28,800 vph, the movement has a better-than-usual 60-hour power reserve and is nicely finished with rhodium plating as well as a micro bead blasting finish on the oscillating weight.

Eterna Super Kontiki Chronograph Historic Series Sets Sail Again

Most watch nuts already know that the KonTiki collection is named after the famous raft and ocean expedition crossing the Pacific in 1947 and helmed by the Norwegian explorer Thor Heyerdahl. Among his sparse supply of modern equipment were a hand-cranked radio (for weather reports) and six Eterna timepieces for guiding his crew across the open ocean. Inspired by his bold foray and to celebrate the watches he chose, commemorating the event, Eterna created the KonTiki line of robust timepieces. What sets the new Super KonTiki Chronograph apart from all other pieces in the KonTiki collection is the Eterna flyback chronograph movement Calibre 39(16A). Unlike a normal chronograph, the flyback function allows the chronograph to be reset to zero and immediately started again. The Super KonTiki Chronograph combines rugged styling, excellent precision and a timeless style and is offered in two limited editions – one on a sporty rubber strap ($4,700) and another on an elegant stainless steel Milanese bracelet ($4,900).

Eterna Lady Kontiki Diver Women’s Water Watch

After 23 years, Eterna is finally launching a new KonTiki for ladies and really hit the mark with this watch. With its distinctive 38mm case rated water resistant up to 200m and the ceramic uni-directional rotating bezel, there is little doubt as to the inspiration for this watch. The Lady KonTiki Diver lives up to the standards of its predecessor and adds a touch of class with diamond markers on the dial. Mechanically motivated, Inside the 38mm stainless steel case beats a Swiss automatic movement Sellita SW 200-1. Retail prices are $1,700 for the white and $1,800 for the rose gold PVD version.

2016 | Wristwatch



Breitling Avenger Seawolf Blacksteel Striking In Safety Yellow

Yellow & black create a strong contrast and Breitling puts this counterpoint of color into a rugged 1,000-meter-rated 45mm case. Coated in a carbon based plating (possibly DLC), the Blacksteel integrates an automatic helium release – or decompression valve – and a thick cambered sapphire crystal to help achieve the 1,000-meter rating. Beating at 28,800 beats per hour, the in-house Breitling Caliber 17 automatic movement is also a COSC-certified chronometer. Retail price is $4,950 and the Avenger Seawolf Blacksteel is available on an ocean, racer, or diver rubber strap, or on a military or rubber military option.

Breitling Superocean 44 Special Monochrome Mariner

Like the Avenger pictured above the Superocean is powered by the COSC-rated Breitling Caliber 17, this time in a slightly smaller 44mm black steel case. A ceramic uni-directional bezel surrounds large block markers and wide hands that are easy to read at a glance and coated with Superluminova. Dive as deep as you like with this watch as its also rated to 100 atm (1,000 meters) thanks in part to the dual gasket screw lock crown. The engraving on the back of the case says it all; a hard hat diving helmet integrated in the Breitling wings logo leaves little question as to why this watch was designed. Superocean 44 Special retails for $4,980 at


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TAG Heuer Aquaracer 300M Ceramic Maturing Design

Robust and water-resistant to 300 meters, this watch features a twelve-sided ceramic uni-directional bezel, a screw-down crown, and large luminous indications on the indexes and hands for improved visibility. Slightly larger than its predecessor at 43 mm (previously 41) the 300M houses the TAG Heuer Calibre 5 automatic mechanical movement beating at 28,800 with a 40 hour power reserve. The polished and brushed finish strap also features a divers integrated diver’s extension for fitting over a wetsuit. Retail price $2,650

TAG Heuer

Aquaracer Lady 300m Ceramic In 2016, TAG Heuer launched its first collection of watches made entirely from ceramic with several new versions of the famous Aquaracer Lady. Options in all white or jet black with rose gold bezel & markers. At 35mm the new editions are slightly larger than the previous 27 mm or 32mm versions. Rated to 300 meters and lighter than steel, the high-tech ceramic case and bezel are incredibly hard, yet soft to the touch and hypo allergenic. So too are they almost scratch proof and will keep their color without fading - almost indefinitely. TAG has chosen a quartz option for the ladies and also offers a version with a thin row of diamonds on the bezel. Retail price ranges from $2,550 -$3,750.

2016 | Wristwatch



Ralf Tech Hard To Follow

Making no bones about their aquatic inspiration, RALF TECH’s owners are passionate about watches – if not marketing, since they don’t even have a marketing department or employee. “Our mission is to create technically accomplished watches without marketing’s dictates and without belonging to a school of thought or a story already written” says one of the owners, Frank Huyghe. According to Huyghe; “RALF TECH is not intended as a brand for the general public. You will not find our timepieces in every department store, jewelers’ shop chains, airports ... However, you will discover them in true horology connoisseurs and watch specialists, you will find them in the shops at the avant-garde of fashion and in those shops for whom being different is a Lifestyle”. Variations on the aquatic theme orbit around a cushion shape that adapts to a variety of dial and strap combinations – but each one is built to last to military standards. Case in point: the WRX edition is rated water resistant to an impressive 300 meters thanks in-part to a sapphire crystal no less than 5.9 mm thick! Engine options include tried and true automatic mechanicals – as well as a ‘hybrid’ quartz movement similar to the Meca Quartz that uses a rotor to generate electricity to run the movement for as long as 180 days from full charge. Prices range in the $2,000-$4,000 price range. Now that you’ve discovered RALF TECH you can dig in deeper at


Wristwatch | 2016

Kobold Soarway

Diver Bronze Seal

Return Voyage For WristWatch Readers


n 2004 the late actor James Gandolfini met with Michael Kobold to talk about watches and the possibility of working together (some may remember the #1 ‘finger’ ad). Already a watch enthusiast, Mr. Gandolfini produced a hurried sketch on a napkin for a watch that he would like to see built. This sketch became the start of what was later to become the Soarway Diver Seal, Kobold’s bestselling watch.   More than a decade later, and after retiring the Seal from production following Gandolfini’s passing in 2013, Kobold announced a commemorative edition of the Seal. Limited to 51 numbered pieces, this special run pays homage to its creator and is the first Seal produced in-house at Kobold’s new on-site CNC facilities. It’s also the only Kobold watch to date with a case made out of bronze. This limited-edition Seal will not be advertised. Kobold is offering these few examples by invitation only. Working with Michael, we are happy to invite our WristWatch readers to contact Mr. Kobold personally to reserve one of the 51 examples to call their own. Available in two executions, 10 examples will bear the original prototype dials

made in 2004 and read “Proto-001” on the dial– which is the same as James Gandolfini’s own Kobold Seal and later also gifted to a former U.S. president. The remaining 41 watches feature dials of recent production without the markings. The Prototype and non-prototype versions cost $6,450 and $5,650 respectively, and arrive on a Zulu strap. In keeping with both Michael Kobold’s and James Gandolfini’s history of charitable work, the proceeds from the Seal Bronze will benefit two worthwhile causes. One is a PBS documentary about the humanitarian crisis that continues in post-earthquake Nepal and the other is the Soarway Foundation ( which Kobold founded prior to last year’s massively destructive earthquake in the same region. Run by the former U.S. Ambassador to Nepal, Scott H. DeLisi, the Soarway Foundation performs critical work to help residents recover from cataclysmic event. “The Kobold Seal Bronze is very close to my heart,” Kobold says. “I invite you to contact me personally if you wish to order this special watch.” You can reach Kobold at and learn more about his watches and foundation at

2016 | Wristwatch



RGM Model 300 Pro Diver

Maritime Mechanics From Mt. Joy


nown for its classical approach to watchmaking, as well for creating mechanical movements made in the United States, Mt. Joy, PA,based RGM tackles the ever-popular diver’s watch with precision and perfection. Clean and easy-to-read dials reside under a massive 5mm sapphire crystal that, with the help of a screw-down crown with double gaskets, helps attain water resistance of an impressive 75atm - without the use of a helium release valve. RGM installs and regulates a high line version of the ETA 2892-A2 in the Pro Diver 300 brushed stainless steel case. A wide uni-directional bezel with ceramic insert and a 45-degree milled edge is held in place by lateral screws and sits atop the 43.5mm x 17mm brushed stainless steel case. Rotating with precise clicks, the RGM bezel both looks and feels like a well-engineered component and is wide enough to create a rugged porthole effect for the dial. Inside the case a soft iron ‘cage’ surrounds the movement for magnetic resistance. Traditional dial variations in black, blue, and white are joined by a more playful mother-of- pearl dial in the series. Depending on strap and dial the retail prices range from $3,700-$4,650 at


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Alpina Seastrong Diver Chronograph Added functions include a big date and a chronograph Case: 44mm x 14mm black PVD on stainless steel with screw-down crown and threaded case back Dial: Black with beige lume on indexes and hands Crystal: Boxed sapphire Movement: Swiss quartz Power reserve: 4 year battery Functions: Big date, 1/10th chronograph with split function Band: Black PVD over stainless steel WR: 20atm (200 meters) Price: $1,395 Contact:

Ball Engineer Master II Diver Worldtime Tritium tube illumination combined with a world time in a dive watch Case: 45mm x 15.4mm brushed stainless steel Dial: Multi-level black with inner chapter rings for time and cities Crystal: Flat sapphire Movement: Swiss automatic mechanical Power reserve: 42 hours Functions: Day, date, world time, dual time Band: Two-link stainless steel WR: 30atm (300 meters) Price: $2,999 Contact:

Doxa SUB 300 T Professional A Re-edition of aqua-classic celebrates the origins of orange and the dual-scale non-compression bezel. Case: 45mm x 15mm cushion-shaped brushed stainless steel with unidirectional bezel Dial: Safety orange with SuperLuminova Crystal: Boxed sapphire Movement: ETA 2892-A2 automatic mechanical Power reserve: 42 hours Functions: Date Band: Seven-link stainless steel with wetsuit expansion system WR: 30atm (300 meters) Price: $1,995 Contact: 2016 | Wristwatch



Hamilton Khaki Navy Frogman Canteen style crown protector and solid titanium construction with an 80-hour power reserve movement Case: 46mm x 14mm titanium with red bezel Dial: Black with white superluminova markers and hands Crystal: Flat sapphire Movement: H-10 automatic mechanical Power reserve: 80 hours Functions: Date Band: Soft rubber with titanium pin buckle WR: 100atm (1000 meters) Price: $1,395 Contact:

Monta Oceanking Eterna powerplant within a classic size 30atm (individually tested) case. Case: 40mm x 14mm multi-finished stainless steel with ceramic uni-directional bezel, screw-down crown and back. Dial: Black with white Superluminova hands and markers Crystal: Boxed and domed sapphire with 7-layer interior anti-reflective coating Movement: Eterna 3909A automatic mechanical Power reserve: 65 hours Functions: Date Band: Stainless steel three-link and custom Everest Rubber strap WR: 30atm (300 meters) Price: $3,550 Contact:

Stowa Prodiver Blue Limited edition Amazingly visible hands and markers in an ultra-light titanium case. Case: 42mm x 15.6mm titanium with uni-directional bezel and helium release valve Dial: Deep blue with white Superluminova markers and hands Crystal: Boxed sapphire Movement: ETA 2892-A2 Hi Line automatic mechanical Power reserve: 42 hours Functions: Date Band: Natural rubber or three-link titanium WR: 100atm (1000 meters) Price: $1,250 on strap, $1,400 on titanium bracelet Contact:


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Ulysse Nardin Lady Diver submersible Style This Lady Diver bridges the gap between instrument and accoutrement. Pairing the evolved look of the Diver collection with glamorous touches of color and diamonds makes for a counterpoint of horological philosophies. White mother-of-pearl dials are enhanced with diamonds while these same stones counterpoint the deep black dials in other variations. The Lady Diver can be playful in steel with lipstick red accents, or rich and sophisticated in rose gold and black. The presence of diamonds can be subtle, with only the hour markers hosting their gleam, or for a bit more panache you can also add them to the bezel and strap elements. Powered by the in-house UN-320 movement inside the rather substantial (for a feminine wrist) 40mm case, the Lady Diver features a silicium hairspring and anchor escapement and allows for simple forwards and backwards setting of the date without harming the watch. If ever these Lady Divers were to be subjected to submersion, they also happen to be water-resistant to 30atm. Depending on diamond and precious metal content, prices can range from $6,700 - $25,000.

UTS 100M Dive Watch Hand-built cases make for a rock solid tool watch that plays as good as it looks. Case: 42mm x 14.5mm brushed stainless steel with 60-click locking bezel and hex head screw-attached back. Dial: Dual level blue with white Superluminova Crystal: Boxed sapphire Movement: ETA 2824-2 Automatic mechanical Power reserve: 42 hours Functions: Date Band: Stainless steel or natural Italian rubber WR: 100atm (1000 meters) Price: $3,500 Contact:

Triton Subphotique Integrated crown protector/lug at 12 o’clock makes this watch comfortable for both right and left-handed users. Case: 41mm x 14mm stainless steel with helium release valve and uni directional bezel Dial: Black with white Superluminova Crystal: Boxed sapphire Movement: Modified Soprod A10-2 Swiss automatic mechanical Power reserve: 42 hours Functions: Date Band: Silicon or alligator (both rubber lined) WR: 50 atm (500 meters) Price: $6,200/$6,500 Contact: 2016 | Wristwatch


U T S W atc h e s

By Michael Thompson


Tolerance UTS has achieved cult status among dive watch collectors.


o manufacture a dive watch that safely reaches depths that, frankly, very few men or women actually visit underwater requires the use of a case with strictly calculated tolerances and carefully judged designs. Water under pressure is unforgiving, and a dive watch is meant to be a tool to assist a diver. Underwater, a leaky gasket or a poorly assembled case is more than simply an inconvenience. Nicolaus Spinner, the founder and chief engineer of German-based UTS Watches, leaves nothing to chance. Since he founded his brand seventeen years ago he has been the only person to decide whether each of the two hundred dive watches he makes each year is truly professional grade.


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“I only trust my own precise calculations,” Spinner says. “As a result, the manufacturing tolerances are exact, and all detail items, such as shafts, crowns, pushers, and seals, are not standard components but represent wholly individual engineering solutions. Since 1999, I have been building our high quality German-made watchcases.” Thanks in large measure to Spinner’s obsessive nature and focus on deep-dive models, UTS has achieved cult status among dive watch collectors. Spinner’s facility, near Munich, operates much like a small-production maker of complicated watches, but with a focus on cases, bezels and their attachments rather than strictly on the automatic or manual movement inside.



I only trust my own precise calculations Nicolaus Spinner

A UTS Diver watchcase, before and after machining.

The UTS 4000M Blue Diver

2016 | Wristwatch


U T S W atc h e s

Above: The UTS 4000m Crown Right: The UTS Factory Research Center

Spinner himself oversees the entire production process and assembles each watch individually. He uses a modern CNC and machine tools that allow him to turn and mill solid stainless steel bar stock into components measured to a tolerance of a few microns (1 micron = .0001millimeter.) He alone fabricates each watchcase in-house, most measuring between 42mm and 45mm in diameter, and then tests each finished watch, also using the most modern testing procedures. But UTS prides itself on more than just its functionality, explains the firm’s North American business partner Stephen Newman, who sells the German brand’s timepieces online from his office in California.


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“From the trademark shape of our lugs, which are separately machined, to the hex screws, which machine the multi-part cases together, the design is unique,” he says. “Each watch is not an homage to something, but a unique design all to itself.” All UTS timepieces, which range from those rated at 4,000 meters water resistance to the Adventure models rated at 500 meters water resistance, feature screw-down crowns, screw-in case backs, industrial-grade seals, German-made sapphire crystals with antireflective coating, top-grade ETA Unitas or ETA automatic three-hand and GMT movements and Super-LumiNova hands and indexes. One ten-piece limited edition model even features a tourbillon, made with a movement supplied by the former STT, which is today part of

Above: UTS founder Nicolaus Spinner At work at his facility in Munich. Below: CNC Milling at the factory

Left: The UTS 1000m GMT

2016 | Wristwatch


U T S W atc h e s

Above: 4000m GMT and a selection of case-making tools.

Bovet Fleurier. Among its newest models is a blue-dialed update of the original 1,000-meter dive watch, the UTS 1000M Diver. With such a limited production, and with his very focused designs, Spinner therefore offers a truly independent alternative to many of the mass-produced dive models available. As UTS watches are offered in limited edition collections (except for the ongoing Adventure and Adventure Automatic) and each timepiece is engraved with its own serial number (of course, by Spinner himself) that signifies the watch’s handcrafted manufacturing processing and genuine rarity.

Dual-Time Deep Diver

UTS first attracted attention among collectors when it became one of the few watch companies to offer dive models rated to 3,000 meters of water resistance. Soon after, UTS began offering 4,000-meter models, and in recent years the company has added a GMT version of that deep-diver, called the 4000M GMT, a rare dual-time deepdive watch. The UTS 4000M GMT arrived in the collection after the debut


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of the firm’s popular 3,000M, but with a slightly larger case (45mm versus 43mm), a proportionally larger dial and a thicker sapphire crystal. The 6mm-thick sapphire crystal is screwed into the central case to assure a strong seal. Both the crown stem and the 8mm crown require screwing down for maximum grip and the watch’s machined lug adapter (22mm) is screwed directly into the central case. Like all UTS bi-directional rotating diver bezels, the 4000M GMT securely clicks in sixty positions and is locked using a customized UTS bezel locking mechanism. Many UTS watches, including this one, feature a second crown at 2 o’clock that locks the bezel in place using a ceramic ball bearing system. A super-thick 4mm case-back is screwed into place with eight screws to securely protect the ETA 2893-2 Top Grade automatic GMT movement, which is also protected by an Incabloc shock protection. As a final testament to Spinner’s own personal touch he engraves the rotors, despite the fact that, with UTS’s solid case backs, only a watchmaker will ever see it. For details, see

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INSIDE What you will find in AboutTime is a huge diversity of great watches from both iconic brands and newcomers alike. What you won’t find is any watch costing more than $3,000 retail !

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With a growing vintage collecting community, AboutTime will also include choice vintage watches and offer details on collecting, brand communities, and events. Categorical guides in every issue of AboutTime will help expand/refine your search and help steer you to your next watch. Published quarterly in print and digital editions find out why It’s AboutTime at: or call (203) 485-6276



he Chelsea Clock Company has been making clocks for home dwellers and seafarers alike since 1897.  The company had existed in two prior incarnations as the Harvard Clock Company and then the Boston Clock Company.  Charles Pearson took the helm in 1897, and it has been the Chelsea Clock Company ever since. The clockmaker recently moved to new digs in Chelsea, Massachusetts. The facility that now houses Chelsea Clock is a beautifully converted historic building that retains the look of its former self, while the interior has been painstakingly remodeled to provide a modern work space for both manufacturing and administration. It is important to understand the historical significance of Chelsea Clock and how remarkable it is that the company is still making mechanical (and now quartz) clocks in the city it has called home for such a long time. If the Vulcain Cricket could be referred to as the “Watch of the Presidents”, then truly the Chelsea Clock is the “Clock of the Presidents”.  Previous as well as the current office holder (President Obama) have selected Chelsea clocks as official gifts of state


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to present to foreign dignitaries. The production and assembly of the clocks themselves take place in the first two floors of the facility.   And while the machinery used to craft the clock cases are modern and computer programmed, the machines used to fashion the gear wheels and other components are very much of an earlier time. And they still produce flawless parts. No doubt it would be easier to outsource this to a foreign entity, but that is not how things are done at Chelsea Clock. These clocks are assembled the old-fashioned way, by hand, of course. During my recent tour of Chelsea Clock I discovered something else truly interesting. In fact, it was revelatory!  For the most part, Chelsea Clock does not hire already qualified clock makers.  No, in many cases Chelsea Clock trains its own clock makers.  While there is one recently joined member who trained at the watchmaking school in Lititz, Pennsylvania, and another very senior clock maker who trained in the United Kingdom, by and large, new clock makers come in and are apprenticed to a senior clock maker.  And in this manner Chelsea Clock ensures that every clock will be made in

A ship’s bell mechanism, which will be incorporated into a ship’s bell clock at Chelsea Clock.

This Ship’s Bell Clock is built onto a custom Thos. Moser Cherry Wood Base and is available in three sizes. At far left is a Ship’s Bell Clock set into a traditional base.

2016 | Wristwatch



Scenes of ongoing clock production at Chelsea Clock, where each clock is made by hand.

much the same way as they have always been.

Time Machine

In many ways it is safe to say that each clock has been touched by everyone who has ever worked at Chelsea. A Chelsea clock is a time machine in the truest sense. Chelsea Clock takes a somewhat “just in time” manufacturing plan.  This ensures that while there might be a small supply of clocks that are ready to go, the production schedule ensures that there will not be too many unsold clocks clogging up the supply/distribution chain. It’s a business model that their Swiss cousins could benefit from. And having visited several factories in Switzerland, the other thing that I noticed sadly lacking in La Chaux de Fonds and other Swiss locations was the effort to restore and repair older pieces. Again, something completely different is taking place at Chel-


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sea Clock. A fairly extensive and capable team works on the repair and reconditioning of Chelsea Clocks - be they ancient, or of more recent vintage. Attention to history, tradition and continuity are three reasons why Chelsea Clock has been around as long as it has been, and these reasons are why the company continues to attract new, talented and committed team members.  Chelsea Clock is something bigger than any one person or one clock.  The company is a living, breathing, ticking entity that lives on through the many people who have worked there as well as in the even greater number of Chelsea Clock owners.   So if you’re really looking for something authentic, you don’t have to travel all the way to Massachusetts to experience it!  Chelsea Clock distributes both through retail and direct. So do yourself a favor, and grab hold of a real time machine!

2016 | Wristwatch


Doing Good

This year, a traditional Polynesian voyaging canoe from the Pacific, Hōkūle’a, arrived at the United Nations timed for the World Oceans Day festivities. In his message, Nainoa Thompson, President of the Polynesian Voyaging Society and Master Navigator of the Hōkūle’a shared first-hand stories of the state of the ocean and presented declarations and commitments to action entrusted to Hōkūle’a.

Blancpain Dives

to Save the Oceans


lancpain has long supported initiatives designed to preserve and protect the world’s oceans. Indeed, the company has been has been active in the ocean ever since it presented the first modern diving watch, the Fifty Fathoms, in 1953. In recognition of this heritage, Blancpain has in the past decade been specifically dedicated to raise awareness of ocean protection issues through support of important scientific projects, ocean exploration initiatives, underwater photography, environmental forums, public exhibits, major publications and a dedicated web site. The brand’s efforts in all of these areas are expressed globally as Blancpain’s Ocean Commitment, and this past year saw several additional events that continued those efforts. This summer, Blancpain U.S. Brand Manager David Gely addressed the crowd gathered at the United Nations for World Oceans Day (June 8) about the brand’s long-standing commitment


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to the Ocean and its ongoing partnership with the United Nations. Blancpain first became involved in the celebration of World Oceans Day in 2013 when the brand sponsored “Oceans,” an underwater photographic exhibition at the U.N. The exhibit was visited by more than 100,000 people and it highlighted the ecological and economic importance of healthy oceans and the need to protect their fragile ecology and submarine life. The exhibition featured photographs by sixteen photographers whose work is featured in Edition Fifty Fathoms, Blancpain’s own yearly publication dedicated to the underwater world. You may recall that in 2014 Blancpain unveiled the first piece of a series of limited edition diving watches, the Ocean Commitment Bathyscaphe Chronographe Flyback, and connected the special limited editions to its global Ocean Commitment by making a charitable contribution in the amount of 1,000 euros for each watch in the limited series.

2016 | Wristwatch


Doing Good

By Michael Thompson


Tides of



aeger-LeCoultre has teamed with UNESCO for eight years to protect the marine treasures on the World Heritage List. The manufacture’s involvement includes both financial support and direct, on the ground (and in the seas) involvement. The project’s goals include protecting the destruction of fragile ecosystems, especially the forty-seven marine sites, threatened by illegal fishing, pollution and unsustainable tourism. With the company’s backing, UNESCO has been able to create a global network of marine managers who utilize UNESCO’s Marine Program.


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Jaeger-LeCoultre’s work with UNESCO, called Tides of Time, was the subject of a recent exhibition this past June held at the Jaeger-LeCoultre Miami boutique, where guest speaker Alan Scott, Chief of Resource Education and Interpretation of the Everglades National Park, spoke about these initiatives. Among the projects detailed in the accompanying exhibit was a joint venture at Cocos Island National Park in Costa Rica where surveillance vessels financed by Jaeger-LeCoultre now enable the park to better counter illegal fishing that pillages the oceans of species in danger of extinction. Similarly, at Glacier Bay Na-

tional Park in Alaska, Jaeger-LeCoultre supported an expedition of this largely unexplored site. In the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, technical support to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre helped establish a thirty-year plan geared toward the long-term protection of the largest coral system on earth. The Tides of Time exhibition is currently travelling the globe and can be seen at Jaeger-LeCoultre boutiques in Geneva, Shanghai, Singapore, Moscow, Miami, and São Paulo. For its part, Jaeger-LeCoultre says it has been long concerned with the natural environment and has been “actively

involved in protecting its integrity and beauty. Because of its international growth, it is quite natural for Jaeger-LeCoultre to extend its involvement to other sites than its own. The endeavors pursued through the Tides of Time partnership encompass not only natural treasures, but also a legacy of time that nothing can replace. Like true crown jewels of the oceans, these sites need our protection in order to maintain their integrity and to continue their history in peace, in the same way that time ticks by on a clock that nothing should disturb.” 2016 | Wristwatch


Doing Good

At Sailing Heals, it is our mission to provide a free day of relaxation and joy for our patient guests— those who are undergoing treatment for cancer or dealing with the effects of a serious illness or injury—as well as their caregivers.


anerai is helping make possible through their generous support of Sailing Heals. So just what is Sailing Heals? Essentially it offers an opportunity for cancer patients and their caregivers to enjoy a day away from their current concerns and enjoy a day on the ocean in a vintage yacht.  And did I mention, it’s free?  In its own words: “At Sailing Heals, it is our mission to provide a free day of relaxation and joy for our patient guests— those who are under-


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going treatment for cancer or dealing with the effects of a serious illness or injury—as well as their caregivers.” What is truly remarkable about Sailing Heals is the level of organization, support and the amazing atmosphere created by the small, yet very passionately committed team.   But it goes beyond that. Organization is important, but if you don’t have an event to organize, what’s the point?  And that is where Panerai steps up in a big way. By partnering with their Classic Yachts Challenge, Panerai creates an opportunity to bring several classic wooden yachts together along with their crews a day before the racing to act as the seagoing hosts. Because let’s be honest, to have a boat ride, you need a boat.  And let’s be very clear, these are no ordinary boats, these are beautiful vintage yachts.  And these are not mere charter captains taking people out for a day of fishing.  These are the people who race the boats in the Regatta.  But you wouldn’t have known that from the way they acted while hosting the Sailing Heals participants.   2016 | Wristwatch


Doing Good

For the twelfth consecutive year, Officine Panerai is sponsoring the largest international circuit of regattas reserved for classic yachts: the Panerai Classic Yachts Challenge 2016.

I spent the afternoon on one of the boats with some of the Sailing Heals guests and you would have been forgiven if you thought you were on some sort of vacation wind-jammer cruise with a kind, warm and friendly captain and crew. It was fascinating to see the interaction with the crew and the passengers.  Everyone engaging in conversation, guests being encouraged (and sometimes cajoled) to participate in some of the on-board “chores”.   I will be the first to admit that I am oftentimes loathe to the extent of waste and expense that gets flushed down the public relations toilet of vanity with many brands - Oscar party red carpet


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shots, a glamorous evening that only VIPs are invited to, airfreighting a press junket to Hawaii for surfing lessons. And this was SO NOT THAT!  This was genuine, heartfelt, and extremely refreshing to see, and very gratifying to participate in. One of the things that the luxury industry often forgets is the importance of getting involved for more than just a “Grip and Grin”.  And for their support of Sailing Heals, Panerai deserves a HUGE thank you! For more information on the great work that Sailing Heals is doing, please visit them at:

514 Poplar Street Columbia, PA • @museumoftime

Watch specialist Adam Harris presents proven methods of identifying watch types and evaluating their authenticity and condition. October 22-24, 2016, at the NAWCC education facilities, Columbia, PA $1,000 early bird (on or before 9/22/2016) $900 NAWCC members (early bird period only) $1,250 regular (registration after 9/22/2016) **Other discounts are available if registering more than two spots or if you register for both Time Is Money and the Luxury or LieTM courses (October 25-27, 2016). Please call or email for pricing.

For additional information or to register: Contact the Education Department 717.684.8261, ext. 237, or email: • 514 Poplar St., Columbia, PA 17512-2130


By Steven J. Lundin, Watch Culture Editor

Collectionneurs de célébrités


Author Jay McInerney displaying some of the jewels of his Patek Philippe collection, including his Ref. 5035J.

ay McInerney, author of Bright Lights, Big City (1984, Vintage Books), is often referenced as one of the defining icons of the 1980s, as much a shaper of that era’s culture as Depeche Mode, Robert Longo or Issey Miyake. And he’s still hard at work chronicling days and nights in Manhattan, in his most recent novel, Bright, Precious Days (2016, Knopf). McInerney’s an impassioned connoisseur of all things machined and masculine: cufflinks, fountain pens and, of course, watches. So what does this latter-day F. Scotty keep wound? Here’s an inside look at novelist Jay McInerney’s collection, and why his watches live on his wrist, not in a safe.

Jay McInerney and the daily wear Patek SJL: When I met you at BEA (Book Expo America), you were pretty proud of the Rolex you were wearing. JM: It’s a special watch, a double red Sea Dweller, distinctive by having two lines of red print on the dial instead of one, reference 1665. Mine dates from the early 1970s. SJL: Few people outside of connoisseurs would recognize that watch as anything but a Rolex. Is there a special personal feeling in wearing something that’s only known to a handful of the discerning? JM: This particular Rolex makes an understatement that’s communicated to a certain few, and that’s just fine. It’s not an in-your-face gold bling-bling. I love old Rolexes, and gold watches, but prefer the simplicity of a stainless bracelet or leather strap. I know, and that’s what matters to me. 128

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Sea Dweller Double Red

SJL: Everybody has a first watch story, what’s yours? Dad or paycheck? JM: My father gave me a Longines when I graduated from college. It was one of his watches. Gold, respectable, and a big jump up from a string of Timex watches that I’d been wearing throughout my youth. When I had some money in my pocket from Bright Lights I stopped by a store near where I’d been living in the East 50’s and walked out with an 18K Rolex Bubbleback. That became “my watch.” Several years later I began thinking about acquiring more models, then I got deeper into Rolex and discovered Patek Philippe.

you have to be careful with the Pateks. I’ve got a Tiffany Patek from the 1920s that’s strictly for dress and special occasions. I keep my Rolexes in the country and my Patek’s in the city. Fitting accessories for the different types of use.

SJL: The bug bit. Do you consider yourself a watch guy? JM: Not hard core like John Mayer, but I have several timepieces and love wearing different watches for different occasions. I appreciate the beauty and craftsmanship. Watches are one of the few accessories that men can control and have fun with.

SJL: So what’s your go-to, all around watch? JM: A Patek 5053 J in rose gold. It’s a good everyday city watch in a discreet 36.5 mm package. In the country I’ll wear a Rolex.

SJL: So definitely not a watch snob. JM: I don’t think so. I wear my watches for their utility, dress or sport. I love wine and wrote about it for WSJ, now Vanity Fair, but I don’t hold anything over those who love their beer. SJL: Like the entire generation of millennials. Speaking of which, they’ve embraced smart watches over traditional. Do you own a smart watch, or, say, wear a rugged quasi-tech watch like a G-Shock on the weekends? JM: Well, I already have a smart phone, so why do I need a smart watch? In terms of rugged, weekend watches, I wear a Rolex or a Panerai. They are designed for the rough. I don’t baby them. SJL: So what’s in the collection? JM: I have ten or twelve serious watches, four Pateks and five or six Rolexes, including a Daytona. I can beat around and travel with the Rolexes, but

SJL: And the Panerai? JM: I bought that big, clunky thing on Capri, and that’s the best place to wear it! SJL: Where do you acquire all these pieces? JM: At Sotheby’s or Christie’s. John Reardon, a Patek expert, has assisted with acquisitions.

SJL: You’re literally the first person I have ever interviewed who has referred to a daily wear Patek. Kudos. JM: I love the history and mechanics of watches. They’re like wine, which has its own formidable and complex pedigree. You can get very geeky very quickly in the exercise of connoisseurship, but it’s a brilliant and fascinating and utterly addictive pastime. So why not wear a Patek daily; I own these pieces to entertain myself, not the inside of a fancy box.

“I love wearing different watches for different occasions. I appreciate the beauty and craftsmanship. Watches are one of the few accessories that men can control and have fun with.”

2016 | Wristwatch


winding up

Leather & Steel

You only need to be crazy about watches for this padded room

Döttling’s Fortress Maximus safes are imposing works of functional art that grace any room with their peerless design. Unlike so many safes that are simply large cubes of hardened steel, the stitched and padded leather upholstery surrounding the solid inner structure create a new effect for this double cabinet safe.

The upper section with its round oversize door is reminiscent of the famous American bank vaults of the prohibition era while the lower section is a high-tech, high-security safe with a versatile interior. Both are housed seamlessly into a single steel body to produce a unique vault for timepieces. The complex locking mechanism opens upon entering a personal code and reveals an interior as elegant as the façade. Inside the top there is room for fifteen precision watch winders, or the Döttling Touch & Move precision watch winders. The lower section of the Fortress Maximus provides maximum security, meeting the certified security class VdS/EN 3. If required, VdS/ EN 5 is possible. The interior is protected by a biometric fingerprint lock and can be also configured to suit personal preferences. Fortress Maximus is available in a limited edition of only five units and starts at $270,000. Protect your collection by contacting Esper Luxe at (781) 269-5569 or e-mail 130

Wristwatch | 2016

WristWatch Magazine #19