Saturday, November 29, 2014

Best of 2 worlds...

Top Gear and watches.... What more can I ask for...

Monday, November 24, 2014

Watch photography...

Trying out my Olympus EM10 with the 25mm lens and the Olympus Macro Converter MCON-P02. Learning process... trying out different aperture settings...

My Ranger wanna be... :)

With the Heritage Ranger...

The Heritage Ranger...


Have to say that I am impressed....

Sunday, November 23, 2014

A rose by any other name...

I picked this up recently and what an interesting brochure...

Yes, it is the Tudor brochure. It is more then a just a brochure. It is over 200 pages thick and lots to read and learn.

Interactive brochure. You will need to download the Tudor app to fully appreciate the brochure. 

Very cool indeed. Very happy that it is in English. :)

The contents... Covers most if not all the models in the Tudor's offering.

A bit of history...

I love the simple timeline charting Tudor's history...

1926 "The Tudor" brand was registered by the "Veuve de Philippe Huther" company on behalf of Hans Wilsdorf

1936 Hans Wilsdorf acquired "The Tudor" brand and registered it in his own name

1946 Montres TUDOR SA was created on 6 March Geneva

1947 Launch of the TUDOR Oyster model

1948 First advertisements exclusively devoted to TUDOR

1952 Launch of the TUDOR Oyster Price line

1954 Launch of the TUDOR Oyster Prince Submariner, certain versions of which would be produced for the US Navy in the 1960s and for the Marine national franchise (French Navy) from the 1960s to the 1980s

1957 Launch of the TUDOR Advisor model

1970 Launch of the TUDOR Oysterdate Chronograph

1971 Launch of the TUDOR Oysterdate Chronograph, nicknamed "Montecarlo"

1976 Launch of the brand's first self-winding chronograph, the TUDOR Prince Oysterdate

1998 Launch of the TUDOR Prince Date Chronograph

2007 TUDOR brand relaunch process began internationally

2009 Launch of the TUDOR Glamour and TUDOR Grantour lines

2009-2011 Collaboration with Porsche Motorsport as "Timing Partner"

2010 Launch of the TUDOR Heritage Chrono and TUDOR Glamour Double Date models

2011 Launch of the TUDOR Heritage Advisor and TUDOR Fastrider Chronograph models. Launch of the new TUDOR Grantour line and introduction of a Fly-Back Chronograph. Launch of the TUDOR Clair de Rose line. Launch of the "Watch your Style" campaign

2011 Beginning of collaboration with Ducati as "Timing Partner"

2012 Launch of the TUDOR Heritage Black Bay and TUDOR Pelagos divers' models

2013 Beginning of collaboration with FIA World Endurance Championships (WEC) as "Timing Partner"

2013 Launch of the TUDOR Heritage Chrono Blue, TUDOR Fastrider Black Shield and TUDOR Glamour Date 26mm models

2014 Beginning of collaboration with the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA) as "Entitlement Partner" of what will now be known as the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship

2014 Launch of the TUDOR Heritage Ranger, a new version of the TUDOR Heritage Black Bay and the launch of the TUDOR Style line

And what is coming. 

Part of the interactive pages. I don't have the application, but I suspect this will bring you the video showing how the straps are made. 

The TUDOR Heritage Ranger...

The TUDOR Black Bay models..

Movement specifications... interesting use of words.... :)

The TUDOR Fastrider Black Shield. There is a section that covers how the ceramic case is made (in-house).

The TUDOR Style line...

Looks nice..

The TUDOR Clair de Rose line..

The TUDOR Glamour line...

If you want to learn more about TUDOR, get this brochure. 

Lume shot

It has been sometime since I last did a lume shot...

Anyone want to hazard a guess what is the watch?

A review of the watch in question will be up soon... :)

Friday, November 21, 2014

Minuteman MM04

Minuteman would like to announce some exciting news about our new Minuteman MM04 Polished Stainless model.

Our Minuteman MM04 polished stainless steel watch model is now available for purchase.

We are very excited to release this new model. The watch features a high quality Swiss made ETA 955 quartz watch movement. As well as a high quality American made leather strap. In addition the watch features a sapphire crystal with clear type ant-reflective coating, luminous hands and dial, and a screw down crown. The watch is water resistant to 200 meters of depth. 

This watch carry's a 5 years limited warranty and we offer free lifetime battery replacement. 

25% of the profit from each watch we sell goes to charities that assist veterans and their families. 

Photographs: Minuteman

Product Description:

Built in the United States of America.

43mm width without crown.

200 meter water resistant.

Polished Stainless Steel case.

Screw down Stainless Steel crown.

Swiss made ETA 955.112 quartz movement.

Sapphire crystal with anti reflective coating on the inside.

screw type case back.

Luminous hands and dial.

Free lifetime battery replacement.

5 year limited warranty.

American made Leather strap.

For more information:

Thursday, November 20, 2014

A Journey Through Time VIII

Starhill Gallery is playing host once more to Asia’s premier watch and jewelry showcase – A Journey Through Time. Endorsed by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Malaysia, the annual event has firmly establishing itself in becoming well-known worldwide for bringing together the most prominent names in the global watch and jewellery industries.

Celebrating its eighth edition, A Journey Through Time VIII will be held from 21 – 28 November 2014 and is destined to be a powerful prelude to Baselworld with rare private collections, first-in-market editions and exquisite pieces from over 125 luxury brands, 5 of which are debuting in Malaysia, being featured during the eight day extravaganza.
In conjunction with the A Journey Through Time 8 showcase, daily programmes that will enrich your experience of sheer indulgence are also lined up. These include insightful talks, special workshops and presentations by prominent experts as well as specialists in timepieces and jewellery.

Featured speakers include:

Eric Ong
Eric Ong founded Bonfield Pte Ltd in 1985 as an independent watch restorer and appraiser in Singapore. With 30 years of experience in horology, Eric Ong started his career under the tutelage of esteemed German watch master Horst Frederic Wege in the early 1980s, which led to his extensive training with ETA and other renowned watch houses at their technical training centres located in Vallée de Joux, Switzerland.

Driven by a lifelong passion in horology and also trained in fine jewellery craftsmanship, Eric is a tireless advocate of fine workmanship in watch restoration. With his vast technical expertise, Eric has earned a well-respected reputation in the horology industry in Singapore and internationally. In 2005, American International Assurance (AIA), in recognition of his skills, appointed him as their official watch appraiser.

Over three decades, Eric has received industry accolades from publications such as Timecraft, The Peak, Tic Talk, Timewrekz and The Straits Times, and television coverage on Channel News Asia, Channel 5 and Channel 8. Together with his team of disciples, Bonfield offers a range of services from restoration to authentication and appraisal of timepieces for an international client base of watch collectors. 

Edward Kong
A renowned pioneer in the field of pearl cultivation, Edward Kong has always been an ardent cultivator of the Golden South Sea Pearl since 1994 when he was working at his father’s pearl farm near the diving paradise of Sipadan, Sabah. 

Edward Kong's pearls come in three major colours - white, champage and gold and its secondary hues. Being a pearl lover who is persistent in upholding his brand’s quality, Edward Kong’s successful pearl cultivation stems from combining Japanese, Australian as well as homegrown Malaysian methods. His pearls have since been exported to Japanese and Australian dealers who marketed them to international jewellery houses and sold under exclusive brands.

Thierry Gasquez
Thierry Gasquez is the president, editor and founder of the eminent horological French website He has picked the minds of many of the world's leading horological exerts and professionals in the timepiece industry. His enthusiasm for watches and his extensive knowledge of the different types and the intricate details that are put into crafting them is second to none, all of which combines to allow him to be able to ask all the right questions when it comes to exquisite timepieces.

Dr Bernard Cheong
Known as the only Asian who has presided over both the Grand Prix d'Horlogerie and Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie, Dr Bernard Cheong began collecting watches at the tender age of 15. He first came under the public spotlight in 1998, when he acquired the most expensive watch made by a then-unknown watchmaker, Vianney Halter which was priced at USD $98,000. Dr Bernard Cheong has gained a lot of influence and fame in the watch community through sharing his insights and unique perspectives online. Identified as a renaissance watch collector, he is highly sought after by watch collectors, connoisseurs, celebrities, law enforcement and banks to acquire and identify art pieces from the timepiece industry.

Viktor Moiseikin
Viktor Moiseikin launched his eponymous fine jewellery brand in 1993 inspired by Russian jewellery traditions, a passion for colourful natural stones and a great desire to express his own original ideas. By that time he had accumulated deep understanding and knowledge in the History of the Russian Luxury Art.

A descendant of skillful builders, designers and painters among his ancestors, Viktor Moiseikin managed to combine his artistic talent with brilliant education in International Management, Engineering, Physics and Economics.

Admission is free & open to the public for the talks and workshops.

Photographs: Starhill

The time is from 10am to 10pm, starting 21 to 28 November 2014.

A video of what to expect at the exhibition...


It has been sometime since I last did a watch review. So here is a review of a watch (photographic review) that I was fortunate enough to have held but stupidly did not get.... :( Anyway, from my understanding, this watch was released sometime in 2010 and sold out in record time. The watch?

The Longines Expeditions Polaires Francaises, reference L2.732.4.76.2. This is the version with the black leather strap. There are.... were, as the watch has since been discontinued, 2 version, the other with a brown crocodile strap. That watch is reference L2.732.4.76.3. 

Anyway, before we begin, a bit about the history of the watch...

From the Longines website...

In 1947 France instigated a series of exploratory missions to the Arctic and Antarctica under the leadership of a renowned scientist, Paul-Emile Victor. 

The man himself...

These expeditions brought together geologists, geodesists, meteorologists, physicists, biologists, geographers and glaciologists all were aiming to explore, study and understand the North and South Poles. 

The mass of equipment required by the first Paul-Emile Victor missions for exploring these inhospitable regions included four Longines ship’s chronometers and fifteen Longines wristwatches which were used for determining their astronomical position. 

The original watch that was issued...

Photographs: shamelessly borrowed from the Internet

In honour of these exploratory missions the Swiss watchmaker has re-issued the time-piece used by the scientists on the Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor to explore Greenland and the Adélie Coast.

In the second half of the 1940s, public opinion was fascinated by the most distant corners of the Earth, which aroused a passionate interest among many people. Like other countries, France set up a body for organising national scientific expeditions, namely to the Arctic and Antarctica. Paul-Emile Victor, an ethnologist and explorer who had already spent a good deal of time in Greenland during the 1930s, was mandated to create and manage the new office. Between 1947 and 1976 the Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor organised 150 trips to Greenland and the Adélie Coast, led by the ethnologist.

A considerable amount of equipment was necessary for these expeditions in order to deal with the difficult conditions that prevailed in the inhospitable areas to which they were going. For example the expedition that left Europe in May 1948, took seven amphibious tracked vehicles, two Dakota aircraft, tractors, laboratory trailers, a mobile weather station, tents, sledges and 30 lorry-loads of supplies. For this exploratory trip the scientists also took four Longines chronometers, three being set to civil time and one to sidereal time. Fifteen members of the expedition wore stainless steel wristwatches made by Longines. These time-measuring instruments were intended primarily for determining the astronomical position of the expedition (they were also used for precise geodesic calculations). The reports on the performance of these timepieces written by the scientists who used them are a reminder of the crucial role such instruments played in scientific expeditions to the remotest parts of the world. By being part of these scientific expeditions in the mid-20th century, Longines also travelled northwards and southwards, to the two Poles.

Photographs: Longines

The Longines watch that the members of the Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor wore was a stainless steel wristwatch with a centre seconds. A centrally mounted second hand was still quite rare in the 1940s but apparently met the need for easy reading, as illustrated by the use of luminescent coating on the hour symbols, the numerals and the hands. A point of interest is that the Longines 12.68N calibre used in this model had an anti-shock device that was different from the standard feature in other Longines watches.

Longines has decided to re-issue the timepiece that accompanied the scientists who took part in the Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor as a tribute to these expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctica to explore the remotest corners of our planet. The Longines Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor watch is an accurate reproduction of the instrument used at the time by the geologists, geodesists, meteorologists, physicists, biologists, geographers, glaciologists and film-makers that joined the expedition. Fitted with a self-winding mechanical movement, this model has a date aperture at 3 o’clock and a silvered dial with hour symbols and Arabic numerals, as well as hands coated in Super-LumiNova. It is available on a strap in either genuine brown alligator skin or black leather. The Longines Expéditions Polaires Françaises – Missions Paul-Emile Victor watch is engraved on the back of the stainless steel case, recalling the two geometrically opposed destinations of these legendary expeditions – the Arctic and Greenland, and the Antarctic and the Adélie Coast.

Lets get the basic specifications out of the way...

Case: 38.5mm diameter, 9mm thin, 48.5mm lug to lug, lug width 19mm
Crystal: sapphire
Water resistant: 3ATM
Movement: Longines L619 Automatic movement, based on ETA 2892A2

On to the photographs...

Please note that this review is long and apologies if the photographs are not in sequence... :)

The real Greenlander. The Longines Expeditions Polaires Francaises. That is indeed a mouthful. For the sake of simplicity, I shall just call it the Polaires. I have to say that the watch is a nice reissue from Longines, along with the Legend Diver. 

The watch is fitted with a non original strap as the watch is not mine and I wore it for a couple of day and do not want to 'damage' the original strap. :)

The watch case is stainless steel and it is a 3 part case, case back, mid-case and bezel. The watch has a polished finish. It is a very beautifully made watch. 

Lovely smooth bezel. 

The silver dial. It has a vertical brushed finish and is curved along the edge. The dial is not really dome. The dial has very little legends on it, just the Longines signature and logo at 12 and 'AUTOMATIC' at 6. There is a date window at 3 o'clock. 

There have been much said about the inclusion of the date complication. I am fine with it as I think it brings the watch forward and present. Don't think it disrupts the 'harmony' of the dial design. :)

The crystal is sapphire. It is slightly domed and the edge is bevelled to the bezel. The crystal just sticks out of the bezel.

The hour markers luminous and the application is perfect. 

A closer view of the Arabic hour markers ...

It is interesting to note that the crown design is different from the initial mock up of the watch as issued by Longines. The final shape is much nicer and easier to use. I am glad that Longines decided to install a larger crown on the Polaires (as compared to the reissued W.W.W.).

The crown is a non screw down crown. The crown measures 5mm in diameter and is 3mm thick. It is shaped like a saucer. It has 3 positions, in for winding, first position for date adjustment and second for time. 

The crown is signed.

The case is slim. It is only 9mm thin. I love the extended lugs. It makes the watch very comfortable on the wrist. The other benefit is that the case back will not touch any surface and end up with scratches. 

The hands... 

The hands are blue, not sure if the hands are painted or heated or chemically blued. It is nice and well made. It contrast beautifully against the silver dial and makes reading time easy. The hands are lume filled with the lume plot of the hour hand broader compared to the minute hand. 

The minute hand just touches the minute markers and the pencil hands (double pencil) is sufficiently differentiated. The sweep second hand is also blue but without any luminous plots. 

The case back... 

Yes there is lots of writing on the case back. But the engravings are well done and does not 'eat' into your wrist (smooth to the touch).

Basically the case back honors the expeditions and also where the watch (original) have been...

Lets just appreciate the watch... It is an awesome watch and one has to see it in the flesh to really appreciate the combination of silver dial and blue hands...

Yes, at certain angles, the hands can look like it is black..

Attention to details... I just love that Longines has 'window frame' the date window and not just leave it as a simple cut-out. The other interesting detail? The crown. The base of the crown is convex and it sits in the case which has a slight concave to accommodate the convex bottom of the crown. Don't see that in many watches... 

I like the watch. It is a well executed reissue by Longines. Wish I got the watch when I had the opportunity...

The strap... 

The watch comes fitted with a simple black calf leather strap. It has white stitching and is well made. I removed the strap and fitted one of mine. It is important to note that the strap is an uncommon 19mm in width. It tapers down to 17.5mm at the tip. This makes using independent straps a tad difficult. The strap measures 115/75. 

The bottom of the strap is velvet lined. It is also signed and the width is clearly marked .

I am guessing it is the strap part number? Makes ordering a replacement easier. Nice touch Longines. 

The strap is matte black and is well made and very comfortable. 

The watch comes with a simple pin buckle. It is signed with the Longines logo. 

Highly polished and well made buckle. 

Yes, it is made of stainless steel. 

Conclusion? Well, I do like the watch and it is a well made watch. Lots of watch for the money. It is a watch that you have to see in the flesh to really appreciate the beauty of the watch. It wears beautifully and very comfortable. It does go against the current trend of larger watches, but after a couple of days with the watch... Lets say that my current collection of large watches have seen lesser and lesser light of day...

Photographs were shot with Fuji X-E1 with XF60mm lens.