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On Thursday, August 10th, 2017, Montblanc Australia celebrated the spirit of racing with the launch of the new TimeWalker Collection, at the gorgeous Quay Restaurant, overlooking sparkling Sydney Harbour and the iconic Opera House in Sydney.

 

 

Paying tribute to Minerva’s (Montblanc’s specialist manufacture known for developing groundbreaking movements) extraordinary heritage, Montblanc takes a journey back to the glory days of motor racing with its new TimeWalker timepieces that capture the beauty, spirit and values of motorsport history.

 

Montblanc Timewalker Rally Timer 100. A Chronograph, a Stopwatch and a Rally Timer

Montblanc TimeWalker Chronograph Automatic

 

The day began with Montblanc Australia General Manager, Randall Foote story telling the significant connection between Minerva and Montblanc. “We acquired Minvera in 2006. We were determined as a young watchmaking brand that had started in 1996 to bolster our heritage and our tradition. Minerva gave us that”, added Randall.

Leon Mervis, Managing Director, Montblanc Australia, further elaborated, “The connection between Minerva heritage and this vintage sport style is shining through in the new TimeWalker collection.”

The event showcased the accessible new TimeWalker models to the limited edition 100 Chronograph Rally Timer Counter and ExoTourbillion Minute Chronograph 100. More on the Montblanc TimeWalker Chronograph Automatic and TimeWalker ExoTourbillon Minute Chronograph Limited Edition 100 models here.

 

Limited to 100 pieces, The TimeWalker Chronograph Rally Timer Counter was inspired by the renown ‘Rally Timer’ stopwatch produced by Minerva for recording road racing. This innovative timepiece offers different ways to appreciate the time, with the possibility of transforming the wristwatch into a pocket watch or a dashboard clock.

Montblanc activated the spirit of racing with car simulators where guests had the opportunity to race around Sydney’s Eastern Creek Track.

 

 

The Montblanc TimeWalker Collection is now available in store at Montblanc boutiques Australia-Wide.

August 16, 2017 0 comment
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Ladies, correct us if we’re wrong. In this day and age, you want things to be a little different, with an edge. You want that wow factor in every step of your life.  You love surprises. One chic watch and you can break the monotony with a more contemporary mod look… So for all of you who love to leave a little sparkle wherever you go, allow us to introduce you to 5 gorgeous timepieces that combine form and function beautifully, and almost effortlessly…

Reine de Naples Mini 8928 by Breguet

Synonymous with royalty, Breguet has been creating horological art since the early 19th century. The Reine de Naples Mini 8928 features the famous mother-of-pearl dial and an off-centred 6 o’clock chapter ring. The dainty watch has generously-sized graphic Arabic numerals that match the unique case shape. The lug is paved with diamonds and the winding crown is topped with a briolette-cut diamond at 4 o’clock. Opulent prestige continues on the bezel as well, with the flange and folding clasp in gold, finely set with brilliant-cut diamonds.

 

LVCEA Moon Phases by Bvlgari

The Roman jeweller has enriched a much-loved collection with this new moon phase watch. It houses a sophisticated automatic movement capable of tracking the waxing and waning of the Moon with absolute precision. Presented in pink gold, with a colour contributing to the look and sensuality of the watch, the Moon is realistically depicted with craters and transits against a dramatic night sky. Diamond hour markers simulate stars while the mother-of-pearl dial provides a cloudy backdrop.

 

Midnight Diamond Drops Automatic 29mm by Harry Winston

Nothing says it quite like diamonds does it?  The flurry of diamond snowflakes that adorn the dial testify to the gem-setting artistry and superlative design techniques associated with the House of Harry Winston. Presented for the first time in a 29mm case, the smallest timepiece in the Midnight Collection, this petite beauty beats with an automatic heart, promising for a lifetime of precision.

 

Rendez-Vous Sonatina Large by Jaeger-LeCoultre

A delicate chime reminds you of a rendezvous, marked by the collection’s iconic star. The watch houses this complication in a beautifully feminine exterior of pink gold and diamonds. In the hollow of an aperture at 6 o’clock, a day/night indicator alternates between the moon and sun. Dressed in gold, it achieves perfect harmony with the rendezvous star and pink gold case.

 

Oyster Perpetual Lady-Datejust 28 by Rolex

The Oyster Perpetual Lady-Datejust has been a hot favourite for quite a while now. It’s not difficult to understand why. The watch is now in a redesigned, larger 28 mm case featuring a new-generation mechanical movement, calibre 2236, equipped with the Rolex-patented Syloxi hairspring in silicon. The diamond studded dial and bezel lights up the overall look.

 

August 15, 2017 0 comment
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At the Geneva Salon in January, A. Lange & Söhne presented the fifth watch with the appellation “Pour le Mérite”. It’s a classical watch that unites five complications. Hours and Minutes witnesses the creation of “Pour le Mérite”, a microcosm of excellence right in A. Lange & Söhne’s workshops.

Tourbograph Perpetual “Pour le Mérite” unites five complications and pays tribute to classic watchmaking. Watch enthusiasts are well  aware of the complexity involved in crafting a complication. Well, this one has five.

Given the numerous complex mechanisms, the assembly of the 684-part manufacture calibre is a formidable challenge. Only the best watchmakers can put together the individual subsystems with the precision required for them to interact flawlessly in the end.

The assembly

“Substance over semblance” is the underlying motto of the TOURBOGRAPH PERPETUAL “Pour le Mérite”. Two of its five complications serve the sole purpose of improving rate accuracy. The fusée-and- chain mechanism ensures the smooth flow of torque from the mainspring barrel to the balance. Isolated from the influence of gravity, it oscillates inside the rotating tourbillon cage. The split-seconds chronograph is controlled in the classic manner with two column wheels. In a space-saving configuration, the module for the analogue perpetual calendar is built around the tourbillon.

684 minute parts…assembled together, working in perfect tandem. This is no mean feat to achieve. “The harmonious interaction of the five complications does not even begin to do justice to the amount of work involved,” says Anthony de Haas, Director of Product Development at A. Lange & Söhne.

 

Reset Lever

 

In fact, no two assembly processes are alike. “Even if each of the 684 parts is manufactured strictly within the micrometre tolerance range, the watchmaker still has to perform many minute adjustments to ensure that all the mechanisms work together perfectly as envisaged by the calibre engineers,” de Haas muses. He adds: “On the part of the watchmakers, this calls for the utmost of technical comprehension, experience-based knowledge, manual virtuosity and virtually infinite patience.”

Fusée-and-chain mechanism

Once the watchmaker has wrapped the delicate chain around the previously assembled mainspring barrel, they can integrate both components into the basic movement. The chain is then attached to the fusée. The planetary gearing or differential must be mounted first. Inside the fusée, it ensures that the flow of power from the mainspring barrel to the escapement is not interrupted while the watch is being wound. The 38-part mechanism handles this function in a space with a diameter of merely 8.6 millimetres.

 

Assembly of the fusée-and-chain mechanism

Using the ratchet wheel placed on the square barrel arbor, the watchmaker can adjust the final basic tension of the mainspring.

 

Ratchet Wheel

The Tourbillon

This is one of the very complex complications to master. There is a lot of preliminary assembly of individual parts involved. Initial assembly is followed by adjustments, disassembly, final finissage and final assembly. The tourbillon bridge firmly secures the cage to the chronograph bridge as it rotates suspended between two diamond endstones. The newly introduced curved shape of the tourbillon bridge posed new challenges to the finishing specialists. The black-polish technique applied to the surface of the steel part is finished to a mirror gloss so immaculately that incident light is reflected in only one direction. The surface shines only when viewed from that angle. From all other perspectives, it appears to be jet black.

 

Assembling a Tourbillon Bridge

Chronograph and Rattrapante mechanism

With a total of 136 parts that are all manually tweaked and adjusted, this requires a patient effort. All the wheels, levers, arbors and springs involved in the complex switching sequences must interact in a precisely defined order within fractions of a second to prevent mechanical conflicts.

The rattrapante hand arbor is about one centimetre long and extends from the dial to the rattrapante wheel on the opposite side of the movement. The arbor is turned from one piece of round hardened steel and painstakingly trued by hand. Then, it is passed through the hollow chronograph hand arbor. The assembly of the rattrapante split-seconds clamp reflects finesse as well.

 

Rattrapante Wheel

 

The rattrapante hand arbor is about one centimetre long and extends from the dial to the rattrapante wheel on the opposite side of the movement. The arbor is turned from one piece of round hardened steel and painstakingly trued by hand. Then, it is passed through the hollow chronograph hand arbor.

Assembly of the rattrapante split-seconds clamp

Two column wheels control the chronograph functions. One of them deflects the arms of the rattrapante split-seconds clamp. The clamp is freely suspended so that its arms can centre themselves around the periphery of the rattrapante wheel, gripping it with uniform pressure from both sides. The surfaces of the clamp and the wheel are finished with straight and circular graining. The fine teeth of the wheel are roughened for a better grip.

 

Split Seconds Clamp

Perpetual calendar and the moon phase

The perpetual calendar is a very useful complication to have. In this watch it correctly displays the different durations of the months in the 100-year cycle of the Gregorian calendar. It only needs to be corrected by one day in the year 2100. This is ensured by the 48-month wheel of the calendar module that has recesses and protrusions for each month.

For all those who love the poetic moon-phase complication, this watch has a very precise one. The seven-stage transmission for the moon phases is calculated so precisely that it only needs a one-day correction after 122.6 years of uninterrupted operation. The deep blue hue of the white-gold lunar disc is the result of a patented coating process. Interference effects function like a filter that hides all non-blue colour spectra of the incident daylight. The crisply contoured stars are cut out of the coating with a laser beam.

 

Moonphase Disc

 

Tourbograph Perpetual “Pour le Mérite” is a watch that unites the aesthetic and functional aspects of classical watchmaking, leading to a timeless classic.

August 13, 2017 0 comment
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A strong and unmistakable signature, the Heure H, created in 1996 under the creative impetus of the designer Philippe Mouquet, is more than just a watch: it is a symbol that has succeeded in retaining its energy, dynamism and freshness. Notably thanks to a unique idea: that of capturing time inside a letter. A strong concept and a playful and con dent way in which to shape the passing of time.

Above all else, the Heure H is a style that does not follow convention. Its case epitomises a bold and joyful sense of companionship. And now, its capital H is filled with black or white lacquer. Its dial, varnished in black or white, has also been treated with lacquer, in this instance translucent so as to better reveal the pigments it protects. Immediately identifiable, the Heure H offers an interplay of rigorous stylistic and technical discipline, and creative spontaneity. The beauty of paradox.

The strap colours – eight in all – alternate the depth of black or white with the vibrancy of red, orange, yellow, blue… An interchangeable strap to suit the wearer’s mood, wish or desire, and available in two versions: the Simple Tour (once- round) and the Double Tour (twice-round) – a Hermes emblem invented by Martin Margiela.

The lacquered Heure H is available in two sizes: medium and small. Cases, dials and straps are finely crafted down to their finest details in the Hermes watchmaking workshops in Switzerland. Objects shaped by artisans to make them true companions for those who wear them. Stemming from uncompromising expertise, they radiate the lightness of the unexpected. They make everyday life their playground, and each instant a uniquely special moment.

For Hermes, time is also an object. Rather than measuring, ordering, and seeking to control it, Hermes dares to explore another time, designed to arouse emotions, open up interludes and create spaces for recreation. Daring to capture time, to play with it. This is what is made possible by the Heure H, whose earnest reliability and creative charm multiply endlessly to construct an intensely personal time.

August 11, 2017 0 comment
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The new Monete Regal Festa ‘secret’ watch by Bvlgari combines the Roman jeweller’s parallel worlds of watchmaking and high jewellery. Secret Watches have been in vogue ever since the early 1930s. Simply put, they refer to watches that have a cover on the dial. The cover, which is generally ornamental and highly decorated is lifted to tell the time.

Monete Regal Festa, the pendant watch by Bvlgari also hides a beautiful secret. The pendant, innovative and recognisable, assumes an octagonal shape; again a signature design code of the brand. It is crafted in pink gold and set with brilliant-cut diamonds and rubies.

The ornamental depictions on the cover is nothing like you’ve ever seen before. A silver tetradrachm (Macedonia Alexander III, 336-326 B.C.) is on the front of the cover and the back depicts a divinity holding a sceptre and an eagle.

 

 

The BVL Calibre 208, mechanical hand-wound Manufacture skeleton – worked tourbillon movement in 18 carat pink gold serves as a dial. An 18 carat pink gold chain set with 1270 brilliant-cut diamonds holds the entire piece together.

The world of haute joaillerie and horology merge in the creation of secret watches. Precious stones, noble metals and artistic decorative elements combine to form heirlooms that always remain timeless. The Monete Regal Festa definitively fits in this mould.

August 11, 2017 0 comment
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This marriage of past and present, of time-honored hand craftsmanship and modern elegance, requires the utmost technical expertise to achieve its micro mechanism. Struck on demand by a slide piece on a thin, 42 mm white gold case, the Minute Repeater features three distinct sounds for the hours, quarter- hours, and minutes. The hand-wound RL 888 movement, with its 100-hour power reserve, is equipped with an additional complication that offers needed protection between the caliber and the activating lever at the side of the case, ensuring the timepiece’s 30-meter water resistance.

Created on an antique rose engine by a master engraver, hand-guilloché designs complement the sophisticated complication with an intricate barleycorn pattern of 80 waves spiraling from the center of the watch and adorning the bezel. A small seconds subdial at the 6 o’clock position further emphasizes the Art Deco- inspired geometry of the dial, highlighted against a black alligator leather strap.

While the refined materials and guilloché decorations of the timepiece demonstrate a respect for tradition, the cutting-edge calibers of the Minute Repeater complication exemplify Ralph Lauren’s eye for innovation in the world of haute horology.

August 7, 2017 0 comment
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The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie continues to attract the leading names in luxury watchmaking as well as the talented independents. Much ahead of the SIHH 2018, the fair is already embracing change and momentum in the watch industry. The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie has shown that it can transform with time. In 2017, it welcomed the creation of “Carré des Horlogers” – an area dedicated to artisan-creators and independent workshops. There was the addition of Girard-Perregaux and Ulysse Nardin, as well as five artisan-creators and independent workshops, who joined “Carré des Horlogers” bringing the total number of exhibitors to 30 – a record for the SIHH.

 

 

Next year at the SIHH 2018 (January 15th to 19th 2018), important new developments will continue to be part of the 28th edition. We’re all looking forward to the arrival of Hermès. There’s also a bigger Carré des Horlogers with DeWitt, Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud and Romain Gauthier all set to take their watch game a notch higher.

One of the most important things about the fair is that it is highly selective and very exclusive. This ethos continues even as the number of participants continue to rise.

“There is no intention of extending SIHH indefinitely. It will grow within carefully measured limits so as to preserve the values of excellence that have forged its reputation. It must also meet the expectations of its exhibitors and clients, both now and in the future”, commented SIHH Managing Director, Fabienne Lupo.

Each January, exhibitors unveil their finest creations in Geneva setting the latest trends in technical and precious watchmaking.  Professionals, journalists and influencers, experienced and aspiring collectors all converge on this unique and eagerly anticipated event. New players, new clients, new markets… the luxury business is extending its boundaries and engaging in a genuine dialogue with its fans. In keeping with this spirit, SIHH opened its doors to the public for one day last year, and will be doing the same again in 2018.

Exhibiting Maisons include A.Lange & Söhne, Audemars Piguet, Baume & Mercier, Cartier, Girard-Perregaux, Greubel Forsey, Hermès, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre, Montblanc, Panerai, Parmigiani, Piaget, Richard Mille, Roger Dubuis, Ulysse Nardin, Van Cleef & Arpels and Vacheron Constantin.

Carré des Horlogers brands: Christophe Claret, Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud , DeWitt, Grönefeld, H. Moser & Cie, Hautlence, HYT, Kari Voutilainen, Laurent Ferrier, MB&F, MCT Manufacture Contemporaine du Temps, Ressence, Romain Gauthier, RJ- Romain Jerome, Speake Marin, Urwerk.

The Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie will take place at Palexpo, Geneva from 15-19 January 2018. SIHH 2018 does hold exciting promises…

August 3, 2017 0 comment
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Less is more… You’ve probably heard this time and again. Sometimes all you want to do is just stick to the basics and we get that. You don’t necessarily have to spend a fortune on a timepiece. Of course, a high-end timepiece has its own unique aura designed with the rarest of materials and technology, but that doesn’t mean affordable watches aren’t crafted with absolute attention to detail. A good classic will always be timeless. These watches don’t scream for attention but stay true to their goal of time telling in the simplest way possible. Perhaps this in itself makes a statement? Let’s take a look at some minimalistic pieces…

Frederique Constant Classics Index

The Frederique Constant Classics Index is a classical timepiece with a vintage touch. But, don’t be fooled by its apparent simplicity. Every timepiece within the Classics Collection has been engineered to the most exacting standards. Housed in its stainless steel case is a mechanical movement that is 100% Swiss. The watch is available in a variety of versions.

 

Maurice Lacroix Les Classiques Tradition

What we have here is a more sober design and a compelling appearance that reflects the centuries-old tradition of craftsmanship. The restrained elegance is highlighted in particular by the slim case and simple beauty of the dial. Les Classiques Tradition is available in a stainless steel case with a choice of two different dial sizes; a 38 mm men’s version and a somewhat smaller one, of 28 mm, for ladies. The delicate hours, minutes and seconds hands is plated with rhodium or pink gold. The only additional feature is the date display at 6 o clock.

 

Raymond Weil Tango

This is a great choice for a night out without looking too gaudy or overbearing. Of course, for daily wear, they blend in seamlessly. The two tone bracelet is striking yet simple. The dial is punctuated with elegant roman numerals and a date display at 3 o clock. In terms of price and value, you simply can’t go wrong. Housed inside the 41mm stainless steel case is a quartz movement. The watch also carries the Raymond Weil logo on the crown.

 

 

These watches have their own allure. While we also love our ornate pieces, sometimes minimalism comes as a breath of fresh air, choosing to focus on what’s really important.

August 2, 2017 0 comment
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Rolex celebrated their 40th year as the Official Timekeeper of The Championships, Wimbledon, marking an enduring alliance shaped by excellence at the summit of tennis.

This association between two prestigious classics – the leading Swiss luxury watch brand, and the pre-eminent grass court tournament in the tennis calendar, came about on a shared quest for precision and top performance in 1978. According to Rolex Testimonee, Roger Federer, “It’s wonderful that Rolex and Wimbledon have been partners for so long. They are both the perfect embodiment of prestige and top performance.”

Rolex clocks keep the official time inside the arena, on court and throughout the grounds. The Wimbledon media centre – an international hub – shows Rolex time in Wimbledon, Johannesburg, New York, Rio de Janeiro, San Francisco, Shanghai, Tokyo and Melbourne, just a few of the major cities where the tournament is broadcasted live.

Today, Wimbledon is the world’s oldest tennis championship, steeped in a rich heritage that stretches back to 1877, when 22 tennis players competed in front of 200 spectators at the All England Club’s courts for the first-ever Gentlemen’s Singles Championship.

Roger Federer’s victory at Wimbledon 2017 brought a record eighth men’s singles title from 11 finals at the All England Club. His record-breaking triumph in the finals, earned him his second Grand Slam singles title in the 2017 season.  Having said that,  Roger Federer wasn’t the only Rolex Testimonee who shone bright at the Wimbledon. Garbiñe Muguruza, earned her place among the sport’s greatest players winning her second grand slam and her first at The Champions Wimbledon 2017 after defeating Venus Williams 7-5, 6-0 in the finals.

 

Rolex Testimonee Roger Federer, winner of the men’s singles at The Championships, Wimbledon 2017

Rolex Testimonee Garbine Muguruza, winner of the womens singles at The Championships, Wimbledon 2017

 

Every woman who wears a Rolex has a story. One of passion and adventure. A story of a pioneering spirit who has pushed back the limits of performance. These women epitomize the essence of Rolex since its very beginnings and what the Swiss luxury watchmaker stands for.

Rolex is a leading supporter of tennis, with a commitment that extends across the men’s and women’s game to high-quality events and exciting talent.  Each year, new champions emerge at The Championships, Wimbledon, and sporting history is made as the game soars to new heights of excellence.

July 31, 2017 0 comment
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This fully integrated Manufacture has all its timepieces embossed with The ‘Geneva Seal’ or Poinçon de Genève, a certification that guarantees the finest craftsmanship. Known for their highly creative and different timepieces, Roger Dubuis made quite a noise at the SIHH 2017 in Geneva, earlier this year. The Theme: ‘Disruptive Materials’. Taking off from that, we caught up with Dorothee Henrio, Marketing Director at Roger Dubuis for a quick chat.

The focus is clearly on the Excalibur this year…

We have gone in for a disruptive material and for a more original complication in the movement that we have created. To push boundaries, we needed to work on new materials and movements. We have also put in a lot of colors. We have an association with Pirelli for the straps. This is the year of the Excalibur and this is a collection that enables us to express the contemporary skeleton, emblematic of the brand. It is part of our DNA.

On collaborating with Pirelli…

They are focused on new technologies and materials. They have wonderful formulas. Our watchmakers worked with them. We have a tourbillon with a strap that is made out of the material from the tyre of the winning car. We invented a special formula and made a strap out of it. For this, we have only 8 pieces and it is a boutique exclusive.

 

 

There’s a lot of blue in the collection this year…

Blue for this piece, is just to remind us of the emblematic tyres of Pirelli and the fact that it represents performance. We introduced the cobalt watch in blue, but the actual material is black in reality. People generally associate Cobalt with blue. Also, there is a growing trend of blue watches for men. Men don’t want something that is only classical. They want something that is different and extravagant. That said, we will have different colors during the year as well.

 

Excalibur Quatuor Cobalt MicroMelt

 

This year we have experimented with new materials. Last year as well, we had a carbon watch for women, which is rare. It is daring and is part of our DNA. This year we have three world premieres with disruptive materials. We have the urge to rebuild…its about creativity and mechanics, and thinking like an artist. We build the world in our own way.

 

Excalibur Spider Pirelli – Automatic Skeleton

 

What kinds of associations and collaborations can we expect?

We have a lot in common with super cars and will have a couple of surprises coming in this year.

Visit www.rogerdubuis.com to view their entire collection…

July 30, 2017 0 comment
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