See Mondaine watches on eBay here.
See Mondaine watches on eBay here.
I want to know what is going on in 2012 that is so important to Fortis. Is it the estimated year for us to start a mission to Mars? Maybe that is it. I know Fortis has a few watches it would like to go there. A few of the new cool Fortis limited edition watches to be announced are limited to 2012 pieces. For example the (freakin' awesome) Fortis Cargo Spaceleader watch. Well another "2012" watch to be released is this phantom version of the B-42. I grabbed a glimpse of it on the WatchTime website. Surly, but experienced Mr. Disher over there wrote about it. He doesn't like me very much, but I'll thank him anyway.
In this episode, we talk about the lawsuit involving F.P. Journe and Jaquet Droz. Rogue Warrior the "real deal" rugged watches are discussed, as well as military watches and their role in military history in general.
The case is 44mm wide (like I said) and in steel. There are sapphire crystals on the front and rear of the watch (AR coated on the face), with a very nicely decorated movement for the money. Not exactly sure who makes the movement. ETA, or Soprod, or alike. With 100 meters of water resistance, the watch is rugged, but you don't want to engage in water sports with it given the lizard strap that might not fare too well to prolonged water exposure. Price for the watch? A relatively reasonable ,800 on James List right now.
Deepest diving mechanical watch ever. That is one way to sum up the Swiss Military Watch 20,000 Feet Diver. Built by CX (Montres Charmex) in Switzerland, this has to be one of the greatest "man" watches of the year. I first wrote about the 20,000 Feet Diver watch here. What is stunning about the watch is that it is an incredibly well made and refined, in addition to it being an extremely successful execution of the concept. What does this mean? Well Swiss Military Watches (not to be confused with Swiss Army Watches) wanted to beat their old record of a watch that would survive 12,000 feet underwater. Upping the goal to 20,000 feet this time, the engineers in Switzerland spent copious amount of time planning, building, and testing on the new 20,000 Feet Watch concept until the vision was realized. The 10mm thick sapphire crystal alone can resist pressure of 750kg per square centimeter.
I have been pondering how I should think about this watch for a while. I want to like it, and a big part of me does. Another part of me questions the wisdom of the watch. Is it wearable? Does it makes sense? Would you be considered akin to an alien from outer space for wearing one? The watch is a new piece from the Confrerie Horlogere, a watch making arm of the popular watch movement maker BNB Concept (that is about the declare bankruptcy). The model is the La Clef du Temps Tourbillon, and there will only be 24 of them ever made. Apparently one for each timezone. One of these watches was auctioned off in the Only Watch 2009 watch auction in September for well over 0,000 which was close to its retail price. As a limited edition of just 24 pieces, the watch can justify itself. Still, I feel the need to evaluate it as though they were going to me 24,000 of them.
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Pro-Hunter took a brand new Rolex DeepSea Sea-Dweller Ref. 116660 - which is a great watch to begin with. The watch has a massive 3,900 meters of water resistance is and sized well for a Rolex at 43mm wide. Like all Rolex DeepSea Sea-Dweller watches it has a helium escape valve, more or less perfect rotating diver's bezel that is made in ceramic, and a date window minus the magnifier lens. Don't forget that on these newer Rolex Sea-Dweller watches, the lume glows blue. Pro-Hunter gives it a special, individually numbered engraved caseback. This Pro-Hunter Military Single Red DeepSea collection was made around March of 2009, so they are still fresh. While there are many Rolex modders out there, Pro-Hunter is one of the good ones known for quality results. The price on James List for this hard to find number is about ,000.
Wow, these are pretty wild I have to say. From the odd and rare Tiret New York watch company comes the Gotham collection of watches. Here are the Chronograph and Power reserve models, and I hear there is a GMT version as well. Based on Batman's version of New York, the Gotham is a mixture of square modernism, art deco, and sheer horological goodness. I would wear the thing for sheer novelty value.
This particular JG1900 (seen is the model JG1900-12) comes in several different colors and in a chronograph or 3 hand model. You can see each of the models in the image. The bright colors against black make for a very attractive , stand-out design that will appeal to a lot of people. As far as fashion watches go, Jorg Gray does a pretty good job at making a solidly made, dependable watch.
The website covers a few important areas about the watch. First it boasts a bit about the watch, which is nice. Then it talks about the specific types of chimes and "songs" that the watch is able to produce. Recall that this is the first watch to be able to sound out the entire Westminster Carillon. You then get some details and images about the trebuchet hammers, the infernal tower (part of the sonnerie), the cool crystal gongs (really neat), and the complexity of the striking rhythm. You can see that most of this regards the sonnerie functions of the Hybris Mechanica Grande Sonnerie watch, but the fact remains that the watch has a wealth of other very cool complications. I hope that the site continues to evolve to discuss the rest of the features contained in this amazing timepiece.
A sexy bracelet that tells time. By Gucci.
No doubt the dial of the watch is going to be a polarizing design. You either love the artsy, architectural, mechanical look, or you don't. There is nothing inherently wrong with it. The dial is not very easy to read, but that isn't the point. This is a "look at me watch." It wants you to spend more time admiring it, than caring about what time it is. There is a ballsy masculinity to it, which is does not try to hide. At the end of the year Avakian is going to release more watches using the Watch Concept 1 format, as well as some new women's watches. If they catch my eye, I will be sure to share them with you.
The dial of the watch is an important area of discussion. Like all TX watches it is made to be visually stimulating and complex. It is busy and cluttered, but in a good way. Sort of makes you want to look at it closely to see what is going on. The dial is in a soft steel tone with a few different types of textures In a lot of angles it looks whitish to match the rest of the watch. Most of it is vertically brushed. There are also some applied plates in a rose gold tone. These match the rose gold toned hands, which are all technical in design. Then there is the neon orange. Personally I love the color and think it looks good. Some people might think it looks abrasive next to white, but everyone admits that it helps legibility and the important areas of the watch dial stand out. Like all TX watch dials, there is a good level of depth to the dial, and it does not appear flat. The dial also has a curved chapter ring around it that is a good look and helps make the dial easy to read and have a quality look about it. No doubt that it is a stylish look. The hour markers and hands have lume applied to them. The standard TX lume isn't the greatest, but gets the job done if you are in daylight for a bit. The watch crown is also in the rose gold tone and has a good looking engraving of the watch logo. A nice deep laser cut design that feels substantial. The pushers are highly polished and simple to use.
Like most Chinese watch makers, Longio started out as an OEM watch maker (and still is one). This means that they are an "original equipment manufacturer" for other watch brands. Essentially, they make all or part of the watch, while someone else puts their name on it. Longio eventually decided that they want to put their own name on watch. One thing that is most striking about Longio watches is that they are original. The Chinese are known for copying things that others have made. The design of this watch is totally original though. We begin to see character and design that is innately regional to Hong Kong and the surrounding areas. It took Japan a long time before the watches they made had a Japanese character to them. China however is able to learn these lessons observing them from afar, and are already making watches that suit them, not just others.
In the future, I anticipate that Orient will have a full line of manually wound watches, and then eventually watches that have both manual winding, and automatic winding (just as Swiss automatic movements do). Orient takes the time to decorate the movement with perlage polishing. Overall I am happy with the movement as it has nice operation and is made Orient themselves. It is a nice value for the money. Feels smooth in operation, and it is nice to wind via the top-mounted crown. It has all the feeling you want from a traditional style manually wound mechanical movement. You can see the movement through the sapphire caseback window. Lovers of this genre can't really go wrong.
Learn more or get one at the Swatch online store here.
Although the collection is pretty cool, it will appeal to mostly a niche audience of mostly existing Pierre DeRoche watch lovers. I do feel that while there are three different pieces in the collection, they are too similar to each other. Mr. von Koeding could have easily mixed it up a bit giving each version of the Dare watch collection its own style and personality. The movement inside the watch is a Dupois Depraz mechanical automatic, and the case is done in stainless steel. An interesting timepiece with a mixture of luxury and contemporary urban art.