Central triple-axis tourbillon of the Vianney Halter Deep Space Tourbillon

Why I Bought It: Vianney Halter Deep Space Tourbillon

This is the first in a planned series of “why I bought it” articles that will unfold here over time. Of course, there will be photos – and lots of them – but I hope you’ll find my commentary on a collector’s mindset and the motivations, delights, and possible misgivings behind each individual transaction interesting, too. Let’s start the series off with a bang: the Vianney Halter Deep Space Tourbillon.

Dial of the Gustave Sandoz Regulator

Urwerk And The Gustave Sandoz Clock That Doesn’t Tell The Time

In Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity, the great man introduced the concept of “spacetime: henceforth, space by itself, and time by itself, are doomed to fade away into mere shadows, and only a kind of union of the two will preserve an independent reality.” Which segues nicely into the discovery of a clock by Gustave Sandoz that doesn’t tell the time: it tells distance.

Philippe Dufour in the film "Timepiece"

‘Time Piece’: If You Only Watch One Film On Independent Watchmaking, Watch This One

The short documentry film “Time Piece” features two of the world’s best living watchmakers, Philippe Dufour and Vianney Halter and provides insight into what makes the watches by these masters so special.

A happy momement. Your author collecting his Simplicity from its creator, Philippe Dufour.

Why Philippe Dufour Matters. And It’s Not A Secret

“I have no secrets as past watchmakers had. There are graveyards full of secrets and that’s enough.” –Philippe Dufour, 2014

Have you heard of Philippe Dufour?

Chances are, if you have been collecting watches for any significant period of time, his name is well known to you. If not, let me enlighten you.

Dial close up of the Greubel Forsey Tourbillon 24 Secondes Contemporain in red gold

Give Me Five! Tourbillons From Baselworld 2014 Part 3

This is the last in our three-part series on tourbillons from Baselworld 2014. It includes fantastic timepieces from Blancpain, Greubel Forsey, Girard-Perregaux, Hautlence and Vianney Halter I have stretched the criteria a little here: while I saw the Greubel Forsey and Vianney Halter watches during Baselworld, neither of them was actually exhibiting at the fair.

Close up of the Girard-Perregaux Tri-Axial Tourbillon

The Mechanism That Sparked A Passion: Thank Heavens For The Girard-Perregaux Tri-Axial Tourbillon

Today I don’t want to talk about one specific watch (though the Girard-Perregaux Tri-Axial Tourbillon gets special attention). Instead I want to discuss a whole class of mechanisms that made me cross the line from watch fan to so-called “watch idiot savant” (affectionately abbreviated as WIS): the multi-axis tourbillon.

Roger W. Smith GREAT Britain watch

Why Great Britain Is Actually GREAT Britain: The R.W. Smith GREAT Britain Watch

I simply went gaga over R.W. Smith’s latest creation when I first saw it. Commissioned as part of the British government’s GREAT Britain campaign, which is on its third year, Smith’s latest creation is appropriately called the GREAT Britain watch. Well, of course!

The engraved eyes of the Sarpaneva Doublemoon

Stepan Sarpaneva’s Man In The Moon

Most of Stepan Sarpaneva’s timepieces involve the moon in some way. And of one thing I am certain: it is surely Sarpaneva’s stylized rendition of the earth’s satellite that has drawn me to his work in such a powerfully magnetic way.

The moon seems to draw Sarpaneva himself in, but this trademark element came about in a bit of a surprising way, with much less advance planning as one might think. And, surely this is how the best things come about.

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.