Achtung, German watchmaking enthusiasts! Since it was introduced in 2010, the Zurich Worldtimer - or Zürich Weltzeit, as it is known to our Deutsch-sprechen friends - has become one of the most compelling models released by the innovative German manufacture Nomos Glashütte.
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With a concept watch guru on board and a new production and research facility at its disposal, the future is looking bright for HYT - a fluorescent green kind of bright. hytwatches.com
Today, British watch company Bremont has announced the Bremont Kingsman selection of special edition watches. We have seen Bremont try to associate itself with quintessentially British products, such as Chivas Scotch Whisky or sports car maker Jaguar. This time around, Bremont hits the movies, as three slightly different models are released to mark the role these watches play in Matthew Vaughn's new film Kingsman: The Secret Service.
Between the nearby official Omega boutique in the Beverly Center down the road (one of the brand's greatest AD locations), Swatch Group's new Tourbillon boutique, and Jackmond, a sort of perfect storm for Omega aficionados has coalesced, where in an afternoon stroll, one can truly absorb every facet of the manufacture. It may be one of the most profound Omega concentrations outside of Switzerland, and Khorsandi and his Jackmond boutique provide a crucial part of that nexus. Set on one of the major retail avenues that make up the famous Rodeo Drive shopping district, Jackmond has little to do with its glitzy neighboring emporiums purveying everything new and shiny. Instead, Jackmond is devoted purely to vintage Omega. The storefront is open to the public, and much that's on view is for sale. However, Jackmond is not just about merely selling vintage timepieces; it also provides a home for research, information, and primary sources and objects in the service of maintaining Omega's heritage and legacy.
An additional interesting "twist" to the watch being a standard automatic is the "mystery" automatic rotor. It is mostly a piece of sapphire crystal, but with five "metalized" Roman chariots on it that spin around with the rotor. The weighted section of the rotor which causes it to spin is likely hidden from view under the caseback of the watch, outside of the sapphire crystal exhibition window. Given the mirascope in the watch, the case is going to be rather thick at 18.49mm, while it is 44mm wide. It is the standard Christophe Claret style case we have seen for a little while now - though with slightly different proportions.
If I was going to plant a bug in Scott Devon's ear about this, it does seem like there could be some cool ways around this. First off, perhaps hiding a UV LED somewhere in the case could help. If we want to go really pie-in-the-sky, though, I would envision the noise/vibration that comes from the belt motors getting used in a sort of a minute-repeater fashion. That would be crazy complex, but could still hide in the simplicity of the design. And wow, what a hidden gem that would be on the watch!
Apparently, in late 2013, TAG Heuer mentioned the TAG Heuer Carrera MP4-12C Chronograph McLaren watch on their Facebook as a testament to their long relationship with McLaren (because apparently in the past McLaren used Heuer stopwatches). As of now, I don't think the watches have shipped. What is a bit funny is that McLaren has actually officially stopped producing the MP4-12C car - whose name is part of the watch and on the actual dial. McLaren replaced the MP4-12C car in 2014 with the new McLaren 650S. At least the cars look a bit similar.
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I don't blame the luxury watch industry, or any other industry for not wanting to get in the middle of the conflict between the Chinese government in Beijing and the protestors in Hong Kong over new rules related to Beijing's approval of candidates for the 2017 elections in Hong Kong. A question the watch industry is probably asking themselves is "what next?" In other words, if Hong Kong loses its luster when it comes to watch sales, where else will Chinese buyers go to get watches? CNBC claims that the gambling-friendly island of Macau off China is a probable venue, and even that Japan – despite the ongoing conflicts between the Chinese and Japanese – is an attractive place for Chinese consumers seeking luxury goods. This is an interesting issue that perfectly illustrates how global political and economic issues can have great impact on the seemingly remote watch industry.
The caseback does not have a window, which is appropriate for the level of movement in this watch, and the fact that it is a 600m diver. It does have the typical engraving with various technical specs about the watch.
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The dial is slightly domed and coupled with the domed sapphire crystal, giving the watch vintage vibes. For a classic looking dress watch, some may argue there is quite a lot going on on the dial, but overall it can still be described as clean. There’s a fairly large seconds sub dial at 6 o’clock, a date window at 3 o’clock, and a power reserve indicator for the hand-wound movement's massive 8 day reserve at 9 o’clock. The hours, minutes and seconds hands are gilt steel, whereas the hand for the power reserve indicator is blued steel.
The automatic works, with its extra bridge, reversing wheels, and the rotor itself is a reasonably simple complication and is easy enough to incorporate into the basic mechanical watch movement design without a lot of changes to the basic functioning of the watch. A chronograph, for example, may need pinions going through the movement to drive sub hands on the dial side, as well as fitting in cams and hammers to create the zero-reset function. You don’t need to factor this in with an automatic works, as they are thin enough to fit onto the back of a movement and don’t need to affect anything else in the movement apart from the barrel.
Most of the innovations related to timepieces over the last 100 years have been in the realm of durability. We have seen the water resistant watch, the dust-resistant watch, the shock-resistant watch, the diving watch, the flying watch, the anti-magnetic watch, the vibration-resistant watch, and more. Each of these innovations have been developed in order to protect the delicate mechanical movements inside of a watch case from wear, environmental hazards, or the daily abuse a watch can suffer from being jolted around on someone's wrist.
Every year, A. Lange & Söhne presents one mega important watch and this year’s hero piece is arguably the Zeitwerk Minute Repeater. The original Zeitwerk watch was first released in 2009 and is today still the brand's most unique and distinctive piece. You see, most of A. Lange & Söhne watches, such as the Datograph, Saxonia, and Lange 1 are all arguably classically designed, and the A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk is unusual because it displays the time digitally. The only thing traditional about it is its case design, with the subsidiary seconds dial and the power reserve indicator at 6 and 12 o’clock respectively. Even the movement, though decorated classically, is a tour de force in haute horology, featuring many innovations including a patented jumping hour mechanism.
One day, I found an old Gruen up there. It turned out it was my grandfather's, a gift from his dad when in high school. So I took it back to LA and had it restored as a gift for their fiftieth anniversary.
Just a few days ago, Apple announced its smart watch. Called simply the Apple Watch, it is capable of displaying notifications from your iPhone and it also has some built-in functions such as a fitness and health tracker and a heart rate monitor. Prior to the launch, many have been hyping and raving about the watch, with some people even claiming that it will herald the end of the Swiss watch industry. But now that we know more, just how “screwed” is the rest of the watch industry? Ariel shares his thoughts.
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A new video series by Ukrainian watch lover and journalist Mykhalio Malyi called "Chronograph" begins with an entertaining and easy to digest look at the Casio F-91W that accumulates a lot of the story behind it into one fun piece. This is apparently just the start for Malyi who I hope continues his Chronograph series channel on YouTube. The "Bin Laden Watch" video is available in both English and Russian languages as well.