Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Bell & Ross BR01 Phantom Left Hand

I am currently on holiday and just visited one of my favourite watch shop. I found out that they currently sell Bell & Ross watches. I do like the brand and I do like the watches. So visiting the shop and not leaving with a Bell & Ross was hard, more so when they do have a couple of very nice BR01 watches, which I do really like. 

However I found out that Bell & Ross has issued a very interesting watch in the BR01-92 Phantom Left Hand. This is a limited edition watch they released with the opening of their Singapore Boutique earlier this year. The watch, a limited run of only 50 pieces features the black powder coated case and black luminova on the hands and Arabic hour index. As wit the standard BR01-92, the watch is an XXL 46 mm. Had the shop have this watch, I am sure I would have gotten it. I do like the Phantom and added with the fact it is left-handed makes it much much more desirable.

The watch.

Photograph: Bell & Ross

Friday, September 24, 2010

Bracelet adjustment on my Tutima

I finally got myself the Tutima Military NATO Chronograph TL watch. Actually I wanted the Tutima Military NATO Chronograph T watch but never got it. Maybe the price was not right or one never came up or there were issues with the watch. I was once offered the stainless steel version of the watch (the T not TL), but I wanted the titanium version. There is another shop that has the T version but the price was a tad high. Before we go one, what is the difference? Well the Chronograph T is the version without the bezel (lunette). So the Chronograph TL would be Titanium Lunette? 

However I manage to get one at a good price and the condition of the watch is pretty good. It comes with the box and papers. It has also been last serviced by Tutima in 2008. Thank you to those involved. Why I like the watch? The Lemania 5100 movement that powers the watch and the size, 43 mm diameter. I have another watch with the Lemania 5100 in the Revue Thommen, but it is 'small'. In fact I believe it is the smallest Lemania 5100 powered watch.

The watch has been adjusted by the last owner and it is too small for me. Lucky for me, the owner still had all the links. So out with the tools.

The extra links. 

The back view. Note the arrow, showing the direction to 'punch' out the lock pins.

The link in the holder. I need to do this to push out the lock pins as it was in the link.

The lock pins. It is held in place by the offset tab. You can just see it here. The tab is formed by pinching the lock pin. 

Another view of the lock pins. You can see the tab.

The bracelet, as said earlier was adjusted for a smaller wrist. There is no adjustment links on this side of the bracelet.

The fine adjustment on the clasp. There are only three adjustment holes on the clasp. It is currently in the middle.

The other side of the bracelet has two adjustment links. Notice the wordings 'TITAN'? The bracelet is made of solid  titanium.

What I like about the watch? The bracelet has the diver extension. I never consider this watch to be a diver watch. It can't be as the Chronograph T does not have a bezel to measure dive time and the TL, although it has a bezel, it can rotate both ways (which is dangerous for divers). I always consider this watch a pilot watch. By the way, the watch is water resistant rated to 20 ATM.

The first thing I do is to put the fine adjustment to the smallest setting. This so that (in-case) I get fat, I have 2 more adjustment points.

The 'balance' check. This is to check that the clasp is 'balance' to the watch. Basically both sides of the bracelet are about the same length. If the lengths are not the same, the watch can rotate on your wrist. As can be seen below, it is not very balance.

Splitting the bracelet to put in the extra links.

You can see the lock pin in the link. 

The extra link is added. 

Now the other side is split.

The other side ready for the extra link.

The clasp waiting to be reattached to the bracelet.

Everything is done. Before you push the lock pins in, check for fit and balance.

The balance check. Looks better and more balance.

Fit and comfort test. I have to say that the bracelet is one of the most comfortable bracelet that I have tried on.

Once everything is fit tested, push the lock pins in.

I used a 0.8 pin to push the lock pins out. It is important to chose the correct pin size. Too thin and you damage both the push pin and the lock pin. To large and you damage the hole in the link.

I use the size 1 pin to make sure the lock pins are flushed with the sides of the link. And there you have it, how to adjust the bracelet on the Tutima Military NATO Chronograph.

Slowdown in postings

I will be away next week. As such there will be a slowdown in the number of postings. It will pick up after the 3rd of October.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Christopher Ward C60 Trident GMT

Christopher Ward of UK will be launching their C60 Trident GMT line of watches in October. This will their first GMT (Greenwich Mean Time) watch. It is also known as a dual time watch. These new watches are very exciting. It is a true GMT movement, where the 12 hour hand can be set independently from the 24 hour hand. This is similar to the system used in the Rolex GMT Master II and the Omega Seamaster GMT.

First a little about Christopher Ward watch company. It is small British company that was was founded on a boat on the River Thames in 2004 by Mike France, Chris Ward and Peter Ellis. Its mission is to design high quality Swiss-made luxury watches that are "the cheapest most expensive watches in the world". I believe they are well on their way to achieving this goal.

Anyway, back to the watch. The C60 Trident GMT will feature the following functions: hours, minutes, seconds, date and dual time. The watch measures in at 42mm diameter, and is 13mm in height. The case is constructed of marine grade steel. The crystal, which is sapphire, has anti reflection coating and is 4mm thick. It will be powered by a customized ETA 2893-2. This movement allows for the independent setting of the dual time function, and date change (forward and backward) with the 12 hour hand. The movement also hacks. I like the Trident sweep second hand, from which the watch gets its name. The watch is water resistant to 300m or 30 ATM. Not many GMT watches offers such a level of water resistance. It also has an anodized aluminum uni-directional bezel which can act as a third time zone.

The watch is available on either a leather strap, rubber strap or metal bracelet. Each watch will be individually serialized. As with any Christopher Ward watches, these watches will have a 60 month warranty. The watches are expected to retail for about $700-800 USD, depending on what type of strap you choose.

For more information:

The watches.

Photographs: Christopher Ward

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Patek Philippe Exhibition Taiwan

China Watch here in Tainan Taiwan will be holding a Patek Philippe Exhibition showcasing Patek's 2010 novelties. The exhibition will run from the 30th September to the 3rd October. For more information:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Seiko Marine Master White Dolphin

I am truly a WIS. What is a WIS? It stands for Watch Idiot Savant. So why am I a WIS? Well I had a Root Canal today, OK the technical term is Endodontic Therapy. After the treatment, I did not go home. I went to a shopping mall called Takashimaya. I went there because I was told by my friendly watch shop that Seiko is having an exhibition there (for those in Taiwan, it is Takashimaya in Tienmou). By the way, a WIS is someone who knows a lot about watches but nothing else.

Well there was not really an exhibition but the Seiko shop there is introducing the new Seiko Marine Master White Dolphin reference SBBN19. But before we get to the watch, they (Seiko) did have on display the following watches. These is a representation of the dive watches Seiko had made over the past 45 years. How I wish I had even 1 of these fine watches.

Before anyone asks, nope none of these watches are for sale. I know, I asked.

The focus of the exhibition is of course this watch. The Limited Edition Seiko Marine Master White Dolphin.

A much nicer photograph.

Photograph: Seiko

A bit more about the Marine Master. The watch is issued to commemorate the 45th. Anniversary of Seiko making dive watches. The Prospex Marine Master, reference SBBN19 watch is called the White Dolphin (because of the white ceramic surround?). The watch features a ceramic-coated titanium case and is water resistant to 1,000 meters. It is a limited edition run of only 300 pieces and individually serialised. I understand that Taiwan has been allocated 30 pieces. The retail price is USD 2,100. It is retailing for NTD 85,000. I would be very tempted had it been an automatic like the Seiko reference SBDX011.

Basic specifications:

Functions: hours, minutes, seconds, day and date
Case: Titanium with white ceramic coating, 49.3 mm diameter, 15.3 mm thick
Movement: Seiko caliber 7C36 quartz
Crystal: sapphire
Water resistant: 100 ATM

Monday, September 20, 2010

Watch Competition (Taiwan Specific)

The watch site iWatchome is currently having a competition where the winner can win a Maurice Lacroix watch. I can't read Mandarin but from my understanding, all you have to do is to submit an essay and photograph of your watch and you stand a chance to win the watch. You have to write what is so special about the watch. For those who can read Mandarin, please visit the website and give it a try. The ML is worth about NTD 120,000. 

Patek Philippe Exhibition (Taiwan)

King's Sign Watch Co. here in Taipei Taiwan will be holding a Patek Philippe Exhibition showcasing Patek's 2010 novelties. The exhibition will be held at:

King's Sign Watch Co
235, Section 4, Jhongsiao East Road,
10692 Taipei Taiwan

The exhibition will run from the 23rd September to the 26th September. 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Wempe Zeitmeister Aviator watch

Remember in one of my postings where I said that there were basically 5 companies that made the original pilot watches in the 1940s? They were IWC, A. Lange & Sohne, LACO, Wempe and STOWA. I have 3 of the 5, being IWC, LACO and STOWA (well their current products based on the original watches). Wempe has recently announced that they too have launched their range of aviation based watches. That only leave A. Lange & Sohne.

Wempe has launched their Wempe Zeitmeister Aviator ranges of watches. There are 5 watches in the range. I like all of them. I especially like the Zeitmeister Automatic XL.

Basic specifications:

Reference: WM60 0002
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds and date
Movement: ETA A07.161 automatic with hacking, chronometer (German DIN 8319), Wempe fine adjustment system
Case: stainless steel, 45 mm diameter
Crystal: sapphire
Water resistant: 5 ATM (?)
Price: USD 2,450

The watch.

Photograph: Wempe

I have to say that it is a nice looking watch. I also understand that these watches were made with the assistance from NOMOS (I stand corrected on this). Some people may not like the date function on an aviator watch but I am fine with it. The Arabic hour index markers are luminous as are the hands. The case back will have the engraving of the Glashutte observatory indicating that these watches have passed their chronometer testes.

For more information:

I will probably visit Wempe London at New Bond Street when I visit London in October to have a look at the range. Who knows maybe I might end up with one (wishful thinking perhaps).

Breguet Type XX reference 3803

Now this watch I really like. In conjunction with the the French Aeronavale celebrating its 100th Anniversary, Breguet will be producing a limited edition Type XX chronograph to commemorate the event. The watch, reference 3803, will be a limited edition run of only 1,000 pieces. The watch will be available from November. It has been some time since Breguet issued a special edition watch (I stand corrected on this).

A bit of history. The Type XX was first produced for the French Naval Airforce back in 1960. Actually the order was made in 1958 (500 pieces), but Breguet only delivered in 1960. The requirements was a watch that easy to read, with flyback chronograph function. And the rest is history.

Basic specifications:

Reference: 3803ST/92/3W6
Functions: hours, minutes, seconds, chronograph, flyback function
Case: stainless steel, 39 mm diameter
Movement: Breguet calibre 581, automatic
Crystal: sapphire
Water resistant: 10 ATM
Price: USD 9,200

I have to say that the watch is very nice to look at. It has a very easy to read dial and I just love the luminous Arabic hour markers. The unique aspect of the watch is the bezel. It is a black-lacquered rotating (bidirectional) bezel with the raised numerals. The case back will be engraved with the official Naval Aviation Centenary emblem. I like the Type XXI, but with this watch, the choice gets more difficult (if I can afford them). 

The watch.

The beautiful case back. 

Photographs: Breguet

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Smiths Radio Watch

Back in the day, Smiths clocks and watches were not only found on the walls and wrists of discerning buyers, but can also be seen in cars and ships. Smiths developed a reputation for their products, some of which were specialised for their function. The Smiths Radio watch (PRS-28) celebrates one of these specialised clocks.

The Radio Room Clock with its coloured segments were one of the specialised clocks. The coloured segments, each measuring 3 minutes long indicates periods which radio silence   observed. This is to facilitate listening to any distress calls on the International Distress Frequencies (for many years 500 kHz was the primary international distress frequency).

The red segments indicate the listening period for distress calls made with Morse code, while the green segments indicate the listening periods for voice calls on (usually) 2182 kHz (medium range maritime voice use). Other frequencies include 121.5 MHz for civil aviation and 243 MHz for military use. Current international frequency has been updated to 406 MHz (digital).

The clock.

The watch.

As usual, the beautifully executed case back. A limited edition watch perhaps? Limited to 100 pieces?

The movement.

Photographs: Timefactors

Basic specifications:

Functions: hours, minutes and seconds
Case: stainless steel, 40 mm diameter, 10.35 mm thick, 20 mm lug width
Movement: ETA 2840/42 automatic movement
Crystal: sapphire
Water resistant: 5 ATM
Price: USD 380

For more information:

Friday, September 17, 2010

My desk Clock

I was asked if I could show some photographs of the clock worn on my wrist. I have an 8 inch wrist and I have to say that the watch is big. And since it is made with stainless steel, it is also very heavy. I think it is not a practical watch to be worn on a daily basis, unless you want to build your biceps.

The watch.

In comparison to the Casio Pathfinder PAG-40. This watch measures 54 mm across the horizontal and 57 mm vertical.

So who can wear the watch? The Governator of course....

Photographs: Facebook

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My new desk clock

Got my new desk clock today. OK, what is so exciting about a desk clock. Stay with me on this. It is not a big clock but I like it. The basic specifications:

Functions: hours, minutes and seconds (what no calendar function, no alarm.....)
Case: stainless steel, 60 mm diameter, 20 mm thick
Crystal: I have no idea.....
Water resistance: its a desk clock, what water resistance?

Anyway, it is a mechanical clock, powered by a hand wind movement. I was told that at full wind, it will run for about 2 days. 

Here is the desk clock....

Yes it is a homage watch. It is a homage to the Panerai Egiziano. Comes with a working locking lever and bezel (well somewhat working...). I will write a review of the watch soon.

The Egiziano was a watch issued to the Egyptian Navy in the 1950's. It is actually a Radiomir. Only about 50 pieces were made. Panerai reissued this watch this year as a Special Edition watch.

The dial. 

The watch on my desktop. It is a hulk of a watch (bad pun) so I placed it with my favourite superhero (perhaps the new Rolex Green Submariner would be a better choice).

Another close-up. It is a big watch. Even with my 8 inch wrist, it is too big. So, now it functions as my new desk clock.