Buckle: Adjustable three-fold clasp with secure lock and push button release
Buckle: Adjustable three-fold clasp with secure lock and push button release
Say hello to another independent American watch brand. This time from raging New Orleans. Sounds like a place with enough history to support a watch brand. The marque is simply called the New Orleans Watch Company - and the pieces have a distinct feel to them that is both decorative and celebratory - a lot like New Orleans I suppose.
Inside the watch is a Swiss ETA 2824-2 automatic movement. LUM-TEC has used a whole range of watch movements over the years. Swiss movements are not necessarily common for their watches, but more and more LUM-TEC is using them. What I like is that the price of a watch like this V3 is still pretty comparable and not much higher than what they charge for pieces with Japanese automatic movements. The movement isn't fancy or decorated, but that is totally fine with the sub ,000 price.
There is one more important detail - not about the watch, but about the brand. Fabien Cacheux is a designer and apparently never thought he would ever actually be making watches. Back in 2010 he released images of a concept watch called the Cacheux Elephant. He reports that thanks to coverage on sites like aBlogtoRead.com, interested retailers and customers pressured him and gave him the inspiration to start the Cacheux brand. That was a nice bit of info for me to learn.
• Black full-grain hand-stiched calf leather, brass and silicone insert
• Articulated RGT buckle white gold and titanium black PVD
On the back of the Liberty DNA watch is an engraving of the liberty torch and flame that the statue is holding up. What I though is interesting is that the watch itself has no full picture of the Statue of Liberty. Meaning that someone could theoretically check it out and have no idea what the watch was all about. I suppose that is cool. Better than having an engraving of the full statue on the dial. I think it would have been cool for RJ to Photoshop an image of the statue with her wearing a giant version of the watch. Attached to the case is a vintage-style brown alligator strap. The Romain Jerome Liberty DNA watch will be limited to 125 pieces and be priced at ,900.
The Maitres du Temps Chapter One was a massively sized watch with an incredible amount of complications. The Chapter Two was a sort of baby Chapter One with a more simple movement and more wearable size. Each of those watches has tonneau style cases (well, mostly). What endures over to the Chapter Three from the other two models is the use of rollers in the movement to indicate information. Rollers will apparently be a signature element of Maitres du Temps timepieces.
The dial has been cleaned up and looks a lot better than the previous version. JLC uses all applied triangle style hour markers and uses properly sized dauphine hands with that great finishing that has one side being satinized, and one side being polished. As the dial is a bit larger, the subdials thankfully don't intrude as much on the hour markers making for a cleaner, more legible look. The non-main hands are in blued steel - which adds a welcome color hint to the face as well. Though in essence, the dial is very much a carry over from the original watch from a few years ago - which isn't a bad thing. This is an asymmetrical - though relatively balanced dial.
The multi-level blue dial of the watch is set with diamonds which represent actual constellations. Note the diagram below which points them out and also shows that the intersecting point of the hour and minute hands is meant to represent the position of Polaris. What I love is how the dial, flange ring, and bezel are all in blue to maximize the appearance of the night sky theme. That little ring of gold between them is classy as well. Lovers of astronomical themed timepieces will have a lot to enjoy here.
Call me a snob, but I honestly wouldn't have discussed this collection unless I thought the designs were impressive for the price. There are lots of watches in the few hundred dollar range that don't pass muster. Cross partnered with Solar Time Ltd. out of Hong Kong to design and produce the new collection. While the names of the pieces lack cohesion and there needs to be a marketing campaign around them, the watches and designs aren't half bad. I got my hands on a trio of them to share with you.
The HM3 Poison Dart Frog is influenced the small black and yellow poison dart frog with the scientific name Dendrobates Leucomelas. It is otherwise known as the yellow-banded poison dart frog, and interestingly enough is among the larger poison dart frog species out there. Still, these are really small creatures with a size no bigger than about 4cm long. I learned something interesting about the yellow-banded poison dart frog's venom. Apparently scientists believe that it does not create the poison on its own, but rather ingests and then secrets the venom through its skin after eating certain spiders. It is unknown exactly how this works or what arachnid it eats that allows for this venom transfer. Now if only you could use a watch as a defensive mechanism like that. I am waiting for the first watch with a pepper spray function.
If you noticed, my hands-on images of the SpidoSpeed Black Diamond differ a little bit from the final version. Two differences I can spot are the color of the brand logo as well as the hour and minute hands. For the final version, the logo gets a dark application and the hour and minute hands are in blued steel. The rest of the hands retain that matte finished gray tone. I do agree with the changes and think that the blued hands go quite nicely with the black diamonds and mother-of-pearl dial.
Those familiar with Richard Mille know of their pledge to put tourbillons in activities where they do not belong. Here, the case of the RM 053 is said to be rather shock resistant, but I personally wouldn't want to test it on my dime. The case is 50mm tall by 42.70mm wide and 20mm thick. For having such a small viewing area this is still a lot of watch. Of course, you need to make it clear you are wearing a Richard Mille right?
There is a love story that Van Cleef & Arpels likes to play with. It involves a couple in Paris that prefer to look longingly at each other from a distance or occasionally meet on bridges to kiss at midnight. This shy duo has been the inspiration for a range of watches that keeps getting more interesting. This time the story is furthered in a duo of watches. The men's watch has our lovestruck protagonist standing on the Notre Dame cathedral on a starry Paris night. In the background you see the Eiffel Tower. You can see how the platform he is on doubles as an hour indicator and how the star in the sky indicates the minutes - but only on demand.
Coming in a few color styles, the Orchestra mechanical skeletonized watch comes on a leather strap or steel bracelet. The bracelet is fine, nothing fancy, but doesn't really integrate well with the case. I would have much preferred a fitted bracelet that does not leave gaps between the lugs. Breil has done that with some other watches and I think it would be really appreciated here. With the case and dial being as unique as they are, I think the best customers will simply find their own straps or bracelets to match with the Orchestra.
Inside each Swordfish watch is a Swiss La Joux-Perret automatic chronograph movement - which is a base ETA that in this instance has been modified to have a full 12 hour chronograph with a subsidiary seconds hand built into the 12 hour counter. While not terribly easy to see, there is a running seconds hand. Graham calls this movement their caliber G1710, and it has a power reserve of about 48 hours. The rear of the watch has a tinted sapphire crystal that allows for a view of the darkened movement - in the right light. Despite the dark shades of the movement, there is an appreciable amount of decor on the movement surfaces.
I've actually been waiting for an all white Speedmaster for a long time, but it probably wouldn't have been ideal until the Speedmaster Co-Axial Chronograph came around. The reason has to do with the applied marker and special type of contrasting on the dial that makes the steel on white tones still legible. Alternatively, Omega would have had to juxtapose the white and black of the standard Speedmaster dial to get a white dial - which they more or less did with the Alaska Project Speedmaster.
Watch What-Iffed: Rolex Sky-Dweller