Konstantin Chaykin Cinema watch

Why Independent Russian Watchmaker Konstantin Chaykin Is A Movie Star

Konstantin Chaykin, the Wonderboy Russian Watchmaker – my name for him, hopefully he doesn’t mind – is a serious contender for being crowned one of the most progressive and talented watchmakers alive right now.

Previous models like the Levitas, Lunokhod, and his incredible clock creations that feature Jewish and Islamic calendars show that he is both creative and a top-notch complication specialist.

With his most recent creation, the aptly named Cinema watch, he stumped and astounded me with a creative direction that did not leave me wanting. The Cinema features an animation, or more correctly, stop motion recording of a horse at full gallop.

The mechanism used to create said animation? Why that would be his own miniaturized version of Eadweard Muybridge’s Zoopraxiscope. (One of the most awesome names for any machine ever; it even rivals one of my own wordinations!)

Urwerk EMC fine tuning adjustment

Heartbeat: EMC By Urwerk

Urwerk’s EMC is the first high-end mechanical watch that uses sophisticated integrated electronics to monitor its own precision. A simple adjustment screw on the back allows the wearer to easily regulate the timing themselves.

Inversion Principle by Fonderie 47: central 3-minute tourbillon, juming hours, retrograde minutes, dual display power reserve indicator

Forget Ploughs To Ploughshares: Fonderie 47 Transforms AK-47s Into Haute Horlogerie

It was all over the news just six weeks ago: Mikhail Kalashnikov, the inventor of the AK-47, had died at the age of 94. The weapon originating in post-World War II Soviet Union is one of the most widely used assault rifles in the world thanks to its low production costs, relatively simple design, durability, easy use, and – let’s face it – availability.

Linde Werdelin Oktopus Moon Tattoo dial

Heartbeat: Linde Werdelin Oktopus Moon Tattoo

In just over 10 years, Linde Werdelin have established themselves as a serious player in the highish-end sport watch category, with very credible claims in the domains of skiing and diving models.

However, for those looking for a dressier casual approach, Linde Werdelin do branch out of their more casual titanium case timepieces,

De Bethune Dream Watch 5 top

Heartbeat: De Bethune Dream Watch 5

Before Dream Watch 5, the world of modern independent watch brands was a much simpler place and De Bethune’s place in it was clear: Superlative movements housed in either traditional or contemporary, but not extreme, cases.

Breva Genie 02 wrist shot

Breva Génie 02 Terre: It’s Got The Altitude, If You Have The Attitude

There are two things that you should be aware of if skiing, trekking, hiking, or climbing in the mountains: position and altitude. And if you have a decent topographical map, knowing your altitude helps determine where you are.There are two things that you should be aware of if skiing, trekking, hiking, or climbing in the mountains: position and altitude.

De Bethune DB16: perpetual calendar, spherical moon-phase, leap-year indication, 30-second tourbillon, power indication, age of the moon

Heartbeat: De Bethune DB16 Perpetual Calendar

De Bethune has two main styles of timepieces in their collection: one which is more contemporary with models like the DB28 and Dream Watches, the other more classical. And the beautiful DB16 is as classical as they come, both in looks and in complications.

The extremely legible dial design belies an incredible number of indications and complications: central hours and minutes; small seconds; perpetual calendar with day, date, and month; spherical moon-phase; leap-year indication; age of the moon; power reserve indicator; and 30-second tourbillon.

Grieb & Benzinger St. George

If you have been following my writing all these years, there are a few things you probably know about me. One, I am extremely enamored of the rare handcrafts that almost died out of the mechanical watch industry when it was declared dead during the quartz crisis of the 1970s and early 1980s. I am talking about unique crafts demanding high amounts of skill and concentration like guilloché (a particular favorite of mine), engraving, skeletonization and enamel. Two, I really, really like German watches.

Heartbeat: Urban Jürgensen Montre Observatoire Enamel

Introduced at Baselworld 2013, the stunning Urban Jürgensen ‘Montre Observatoire Enamel’ features the in-house UJS P8 caliber with pivoted detent escapement and an oven-fired enamel dial that will keep its pristine look for many generations. Creating the dial requires no less than 15 separate layers of enamel, each individually oven-fired, on a gold base dial.

MB&F Legacy Machine No.2 in platinum

Heartbeat: Legacy Machine No. 2 By MB&F

When MB&F launched its Legacy Machine collection in 2011 with LM1, it was with no small amount of trepidation. The young brand had quickly developed an excellent reputation and passionate following by creating avant-garde Horological Machines, and it certainly wasn’t a given that round watches featuring a reinterpretation of traditional complications would be as well accepted.