Konstantin Chaykin and Valerii Danevych

The A.H.C.I.: A Horological United Nations Including Russian And Ukrainian Artists

The A.H.C.I. (Academy of Independent Horological Creators) is a group in which diversity is not only accepted, but truly rules.
Nowhere is this better exemplified than the friendship between Russian Konstantin Chaykin and Ukrainian Valerii Danevych, two artists peacefully co-existing in goodwill and appreciation to produce their high expressions of art side-by-side.

Vostok Europe Mrija chronograph with NE88 movement

The Seiko SII NE88 Automatic Chronograph Movement: A Change In The Wind?

Swatch Group will soon be limiting availability of the Valjoux 7750 chronograph, which powers a significant percentage of the chronographs available today. Seiko’s SII NE88 automatic chronograph enters the fray, but is it up to the challenge?

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!)

Vostok-Europe Radio Room on the wrist.

The Radio Room: Russian Watches In Action (And How The Titanic Changed Everything)

Here is something a little different that was sparked by disaster and created a legacy, especially in Russia, with regard to the design of clocks and watches in telegraph and radio rooms ever since.

The year is 1912 and it’s a cold April night as the Titanic speeds its way through iceberg-infested waters in the north Atlantic. I’m sure you all see where this is going so I will spare you further James Cameron-esque imagery and simply remind you that tragedy struck the luxury liner in the form of an iceberg, dooming what was thought to be an “unsinkable” ship.

Thousands of lives were lost needlessly and not simply because the ship sank; many factors aided in making that night a true tragedy instead of simply a failed voyage. One of those factors was communication and the complete lack of regulation over an international system.

That night there were huge amounts of chatter over the radio waves, and as the Titanic sent out its distress signal she found it hard to get through to other ships. The ones that it did get through to were either too far or too late.

Because of the ice, a few ships simply couldn’t come without risking their own hulls. In the aftermath of investigations that followed, it was found that poor (or nonexistent) regulation over the use of radio signals, especially those at sea, were partially to blame.

Watchmaker assembles the Vostok-Europe Lunokhod 2, the first to use a Soprod movement, in Vilnius, Lithuania. Photo courtesy Tim Temple Imagery

A Short History Of The Russian Watch Industry And Where It Is Today

When it comes to manufacturing in Russia and Eastern Europe, the typical items that most often spring to mind tend to be nesting dolls, Fabergé eggs, amber jewelry and many of the world’s best-built fighter jets and machine guns.

Sochi Winter Olympics logo

Russia, Spaceflight And Watches: Paving The Way For Ski Jumping Since 1930

As unbelievable as this may sound, scientific progress and athletic excellence usually go hand in hand. As technology advances, athletes receive assets to train harder and smarter with the best in new and novel equipment available.