Category: Perfect Wrist

Bremont Terra Nova 42.5 Chronograph

I’m trying hard to figure out Bremont’s latest move. On the surface, I understand that after taking on hedge fund money and bringing on ex-Tudor executive Davide Cerrato as CEO, there was probably double pressure to do something new. That pressure would’ve come from Cerrato wanting to make his mark and the investors wanting to make some money. I get that, but Bremont’s introduction the new Bremont Terra Nova collection and a completely redesigned Bremont Supermarine line, along with a new logo and brand font, seem like the blunt force method of achieving those goals. I don’t think I’m alone in struggling to connect the dots between the old Bremont and this new Bremont, and trace how those who make decisions got to a place that they thought such an approach was a good idea.
Bremont touts this sudden shift as an “evolution from the world of aviation to a new brand architecture embodying Land, Sea and Air.” Never minding the needlessly capitalized features of the Earth or the lack of an Oxford comma, using the phrase “evolution” is a stretch. Evolution implies a gradual change that builds upon past elements. But the Bremont Terra Nova and Supermarine dispose of all of what made Bremont Bremont. These are sudden transformations at best, but even that seems generous (even the beast in Beauty & the Beast still echoed his primal form when he transformed into a man). More accurate, I think is to say that the Supermarine has been replaced and the Terra Nova has been introduced. There is no evolution here. Just a hard turn in a new direction, a turn so hard everything flew out the windows.
Except, I should clarify, not everything was lost in the careening maneuver: the brand still offers almost all of its old models. They just don’t appear on the home page, instead having been crowded into a tab called “Bremont Icons”. I’d be willing to wager they’ll completely disappear soon enough, though. What’s more, the so-called evolution completely ignores the Altitude line (as it’s now called), leaving aviation-inspired models like the Fury and the MB Viper untouched, holding onto the rear fender for dear life as they know that, inevitably, evolution will come for them, too. Why go to the trouble of a major rebrand, completely replacing your best-selling collection and introducing an entire new line, and only go two-thirds of the way? Even the logos on the Altitude line haven’t been changed!
Bremont did not hold back with its new Terra Nova collection. Lots of brands will slow roll the introduction with one or two models, but Bremont I think did this properly and gave us four new models, fully rounding out the collection right from the start. The Terra Nova includes the flagship 40.5 Turning Bezel Power Reserve, the 40.5 Date, the Chronograph, and the 38. There’s something here for everyone if you like the look, and while I think the dials are exceptional at a glance, the case and bracelet leave me wanting a lot more, to say nothing of the entire collections total disconnect from any semblance of Bremont DNA whatsoever.
The unifying element of the Bremont Terra Nova is its angular tonneau case. The general criticism of this case so far has been that it’s not befitting a brand of this purported standing, nor of a watch costing a minimum of $2,850. To be sure, this kind of case is almost exclusively seen in affordable microbrands. There’s always an opportunity for such perceptions to be changed, but I’m not sure if Bremont is going to be the one to do that. The cases, which range from 38 to 42.5 (as indicated in the model names) are fully brushed, save for the 38 and 40.5 Date, which feature polished fixed bezels. The Turning Bezel Power Reserve (a name that is surely the result of countless hours of focus group testing) features a solid steel compass bezel, while the Chronograph features the same style but in steel with a ceramic insert. (There is a rather easy method of using a compass bezel for orienteering, which I can’t remember, but you can look up if you’re so inclined.) The Bremont Terra Nova watches all have 100m water resistance, sapphire crystals, and crowns that seem quite substantial, reinforcing the field operation vibe of the watch. While the Terra Nova 38 only comes on bracelet or leather, the other three models add a NATO option. The bracelet is a new design for the brand and in general, with curving links that echo the curves of the case. It has quick-release tabs for easy changes and a butterfly clasp, but my gripe with it is how the curved links start before the end of the lugs. It’s a weird design and I’m not sure what the calculus was there.
What the Bremont Terra Nova models all have in common with their dials is the use of big, bold molded Super-Lumi-Nova for their Arabic indices. These solid blocks of lume shine more brightly and evenly than typical printed lume. Every model is available in brown, except the Chronograph, which is only offered in black. Additional colors include white for the Terra Nova 38, green for the Terra Nova 40.5 Date, and blue for the Terra Nova 40.5 Turning Bezel Power Reserve. The TBPR (that works) has a running second at 9 and a power reserve at 6, while the Chronograph has sunken subdials for a running seconds and a 30-minute totalizer.
I genuinely like the look of these dials and I think they make sense with the whole Terra Nova “Land” mission that Bremont is working at. That said, the dial text could use some editing. First, you’ve got the new logo and brand font — fine, whatever. But then at 6 o’clock, you’ve got the collection name, “Automatic,” and “London” all in the same size. Why are we elevating the movement type to the level of the collection? And why is London, a town over an hour’s drive from Bremont’s manufacturing facility The Wing, on there at all? My two cents: lower this block of text down, reduce the font on “Automatic” and “London,” and change “London” to “England.” As it is, I can’t say the dial text would prevent me from purchasing one of these watches, but it’s another element that looks very much like a watch priced well under $1,000.
Finally, we arrive at the movements. The various Bremont Terra Nova all use rebranded automatic movements running at 28,800 vph. It’s possible that the TBPR uses some modification of the “in-house” ENG300, but the price doesn’t reflect that, and it may also be a Sellita of some sort like the others. The power reserve is quoted at 38 hours for the Terra Nova 38 and 40.5 Date models, 41 hours for the TBPR, and 56 hours for the Chronograph. The movements are all concealed behind solid casebacks with a globe decoration.

BREMONT Supermarine 300M Date

Back in 2010, Bremont introduced the Supermarine 500, which introduced a fresh take on a pretty well-trod path: the dive watch. Its unique crown guard, sapphire bezel, signature Bremont three-piece “Trip-Tick” case, and overall styling set it apart from the pack. It quickly became a favorite of dive watch lovers. Then, in 2014, came the Supermarine 2000, which quadrupled the water resistance, introduced the anti-magnetic and anti-shock properties of Bremont’s MB watches, and beefed up the case from 43mm to 45mm. The S2000 is an exercise in sheer overkill in every respect, a watch that will survive things no human wearing it ever could, something many who buy the watch appreciate.

But for many, 45mm, or even 43mm, is too large for a watch, even a diver. So at last week’s “Basel-upon-Thames” event in London, Bremont released new additions to the bremont supermarine 300m date lineup – the Type 300 and Type 301 – both with an all-new 40-millimeter case.
Bremont has always leaned hard on the aviation angle, owing to the company’s founders’ passion for flying. So even the brand’s dive watches take their name from the British company that built many legendary airplanes — Supermarine. The name Type 300 references the name given to the prototype Spitfire fighter that Supermarine built in the 1930s in advance of World War II. The new watches share the same case, which is 40mm of hardened stainless steel with the familiar three-part construction for which Bremont is known. They’re slimmed down considerably too, at 13mm from the top of the domed sapphire crystal to the rear of the solid screw-down caseback. The smaller size should improve wearability, as the S500 and S2000 are both heavy, tall leviathans. Of course, with the smaller size comes less water resistance. But 300 meters is more than adequate for scuba diving. bremont supermarine 300m also wisely edited out the helium release valve from the case, a nod to its more recreational purpose.
Instead of sapphire bezels, the new watches now sport unidirectional ratcheting ceramic timing rings, in either black or blue respectively, matching the two dial versions available. (The blue bezel on the prototype we were shown is not the final iteration and will be more closely matched to the dial on the final production models, we were told.)
The dials themselves are markedly new as well. The “corduroy” texture from the bigger Supermarines is gone, and on the Type 300, Arabic numeral are used at six, nine, and 12, with rectangular hashes replacing the large round markers of the S500 and S2000. The black dial version has faux “gilt” accents for the Bremont logo and minute track while the blue dial version sticks with white markings. The latter’s blue is reminiscent of the shimmering sunburst blue used on the blue version of Bremont’s U2 pilot’s watch, and it catches light beautifully.
The Type 301 has a more vintage-inspired style, with painted (not applied) dots and hashes and an upside-down arrowhead at 12 that, all tinted with luminescent paint meant to mimic old tritium. Sure, it might remind one of a classic Submariner in more ways than one, but Bremont is hardly the first to follow this legible convention. The dial and bezel of the Type 301 are more matte in finish than those on the Type 300, and they almost look a faded grey from certain angles.

All dials have red accents in the bremont supermarine 300m name, the sweep hand tip, and the “60” on the minute track of the Type 300. The day display of the other Supermarines is gone in favor of a white-on-black date wheel on all watches. Hands are slightly different from those on earlier Supermarines — here they’re modified swords without the round tip on the hour hand.
The Type 300 and 301 make use of a chronometer-certified, Bremont-modified self-winding ETA 2892 movement that here is called the BE-92AE. Though not in-house, in a tool diver with a solid caseback I would argue this is not terribly important, and bremont supermarine 300m does re-test its movements after they return from COSC certification and are cased up.

The watches are all available on a 20mm stainless steel bracelet, a calf leather strap, or a striped nylon NATO-style strap, with the blue Type 300 also having a blue rubber option. The nylon strap is thicker than most of the $15 aftermarket ones available and has a bit of a smooth shine to it, not unlike that found on the NATOs available from Omega.
Nick English explained that his and his brother Giles’s preference runs more to leather straps on watches, but obviously on a diver they felt that offering a steel bracelet was wise. The bracelet is of high quality and looks sharp, but the clasp is a simple two-button release with no dive extension or security latch. My opinion is that the leather is the way to wear these watches unless you’re getting them wet (in which case you can substitute nylon or rubber).

My personal impression is that these watches look better on the wrist and in person than in photos. The size is predictably good and though the more conventional designs aren’t as distinctively Bremont as the Supermarine 500 and 2000, the Trip-Tick case profile separates the Type 300 and 301 from the rest of the diver herd.
Pricing for the Type 300 and Type 301 is $4,095 on either strap and $4,695 on the bracelet. This pricing draws obvious comparisons to other high quality divers out there, such as Tudor’s Black Bay family. And while value judgments with luxury watches are largely subjective and a futile exercise, these watches do stack up well with others in the vicinity. I’ve dived many times with a Bremont Supermarine 2000 and can vouch for its robustness in its intended environment and I suspect the new Type 300 and 301 will perform similarly. And at 40mm, the new ones should be more friendly for terrestrial pursuits too.

BELL & ROSS BR-X5 Black Titanium

When Bell & Ross launched the BR-X5 in 2022, the watch marked one of the pinnacle works by the brand. Featuring an avante-garde interpretation of the brand’s familiar circle-in-square aesthetic, alongside an integrated case-and-bracelet and a compelling dial, the watch served as a distinct elevation of the brand’s familiar and fan-loved motifs. Last week at Watches and Wonders 2024, the brand once again revisits the design, introducing its latest in the new Bell & Ross BR-X5 Black Titanium.
The watch itself is familiar in general composition, though subtler in tone and style as compared to previous iterations of the watch— which have thus far included light blue, full lume, and orange-touched editions. It measures 41 by 12.8mm on the wrist, featuring a grade 2 titanium construction with a microblasted finishing that provides it with a darkened, matte look. Machined sides and the integrated style connecting the watch to a matching titanium or rubber strap attach the watch in the collection, while the classic square look of the case proper holds it true to Bell & Ross.
The dial of the model is— like the case— a familiar execution of the BR-X5, distinguishing itself via a semi-monochromatic black with white Super-Luminova details. Applied ovular hour marks serve for most of the indices, with a matching handset indicating the running time. An aviation-inspired date window provides some daily utility towards the 3 o’clock position, while a large power reserve scale sits at its opposite at the 9 o’clock. Inside, the Bell & Ross BR-CAL.323 provides the power, with the automatic movement capable of a 70-hour reserve.

BREMONT Bamford Aurora Limited Edition

In a collaboration between Bremont and Bamford, the limited edition Aurora watch has been unveiled. This unique timepiece, inspired by the quest to witness the Northern Lights, is designed to embody a spirit of adventure and discovery.

Limited to 500 pieces, the Aurora watch emerges from the Supermarine collection, known for its ruggedness and reliability. It features a 43mm stainless steel DLC-coated Trip-Tick case, enhanced by a bi-colored polished sapphire 24-hour bezel for clear day and night indication. The watch is distinguished by its luminous qualities, with green Super-LumiNova accents mirroring the ethereal glow of the Aurora Borealis. This effect is achieved through a sophisticated “layered” dial construction, which enhances visibility and adds a captivating depth to the watch’s appearance.

The Aurora is also equipped with GMT functionality and anti-shock protection, making it an excellent companion for any exploration. Its design includes a California sandwich dial, matte black and gloss green hands filled with Super-LumiNova and a durable black nubuck leather strap with green stitching.

Davide Cerrato, CEO of Bremont, expressed his enthusiasm about the collaboration with George Bamford, stating “Joining forces with George following the sell-out success of the first collaboration between Bremont and Bamford Watch Dept has been an exciting adventure. I have always been fascinated by the challenge of creating a timepiece that is as compelling in the dark as it is in the light. Working with George I am thrilled that we have achieved a luminous show which mirrors the magic and spectacle of the Aurora Borealis.”

The Bremont x Bamford Aurora is set to become available for purchase this Thursday, February 22, via both brands’ official sites, for a retail price of $220 USD.

Elton John Shows Us That Vintage Chopard Is Worth A Revisit

Last Wednesday saw the opening sale of Elton John’s “Goodbye Peachtree Road” auction at Christie’s. Some very Elton John-looking things included a pair of silver platform boots emblazoned with large red E and J initials that went for $94,500 and a leopard Rolex Daytona that sold for $176,400. The 900+ lots (some of which are yet to be auctioned off this week) are a largely opulent mix of personal belongings that span from Versace porcelain dinnerware to sequin embellished stage costumes and into one of the most comprehensive modern collections of photography to ever be sold by a sole owner. All of this preamble to say that Elton John is not just a kooky lover of camp but an unduly curious collector. A bon vivant who embraces his eccentricity and with no calculated agenda for (fashionable) irony. He earnestly likes what he likes. It’s a liberated approach.
Having attended the preview a couple of weeks back and sifting through a sapphire-set Cartier Tank Normale, a diamond-set Lange Saxonia, a Vacheron shutter watch, and about 20-odd other very exuberant timepieces, I happened upon my favorite of Elton’s watches – a yellow gold sapphire and diamond-set Chopard Imperiale chronograph. It was so ornate, so frivolous, so Liberace, that it triggered my I-remember-why-I-do-what-I-do-professionally alarm. Suddenly, I wanted all watches to be mildly gaudy and gem-set and obscurely shaped (Pasha shaped in this instance). I wanted glamor, not restraint.

Speaking of frivolity, there was a large diamond skull adorned Chopard watch from Elton’s collection that could be perceived as a flagrant disregard for tasteful, dare-I-say-it quiet luxury. I prefer to think of it as a wondrous ability to lean into an aesthetic of which others might be naturally disdainful —sort of like how kids are happy to wear costumes in public on days other than Halloween.

These very eccentric Replica Chopard watches led me down a very long late-night Chopard-themed internet trawl. I needed to find out what other precious nuggets were hiding in the Chopard jewelry watch crossover archive. I had seen geometric stone dial watches from the ’70s and Happy Diamond heart-shaped watches from the ’90s, but I figured there must be more undiscovered and little-talked-about gems out there. Cartier, Bulgari, Piaget, and Boucheron have all, until fairly recently, been nose snubbed as “jewelry brands.” Is it time for a similar watch-enthusiast light to hit Chopard?
In 1984, in the wake of the original Saint Moritz model, Chopard launched a St. Moritz Rainbow watch set with diamonds and colored gemstones. This was incredibly early to the mark for rainbow setting. Of course, the rainbow Rolex Cellini likely came before at the very beginning of the decade.

Chopard played with a lot of the same design ideas as our favorite brands in the ’70s and ’80s. Massively under-appreciated and often denigrated to a league Toretto likes to call “Fantasy watches,” these watches were legitimate executions of gem-setting like Rolex and metal smithing on bracelets and cases like Piaget and Patek. I encourage you to go on a Chopard hunt and embrace your eccentric side, like Elton. Look for a little vintage freedom in the face of modern conformity.

MB&F LM Perpetual EVO Blue

Max Büsser might have a fervent imagination, capable of dreaming up spaceships to relay time in the most unusual way to his fellow earthlings, but he also has his feet firmly on the ground. Following the buzz surrounding the launch of the brand’s first perpetual calendar in 2015, a groundbreaking movement with a mechanical processor created by independent watchmaking wizard Stephen McDonnell, Max decided to take the complication out of the safe and adapt it to everyday life. Fitted with shock absorbers, water resistance and a redesigned case in lighter, more resilient materials, the newly christened 2020 LM Perpetual EVO was ready for action – perhaps not kickboxing, but certainly robust enough for an active lifestyle. The fifth LM Perpetual EVO in the all-terrain saga is this titanium version with an attractive icy blue dial plate, a new colour that replaces the titanium model with a green dial.
The MB&F LM Perpetual EVO (which stands for Evolution) has appeared in three limited-edition zirconium versions, followed by a titanium edition with a green CVD dial plate. Replacing the titanium case/green dial model, the fifth MB&F LM Perpetual EVO is also crafted in titanium and shares the 44mm case diameter and 17.5mm thickness of its predecessors. The no-bezel construction means that the domed sapphire crystal is directly bonded to the case, increasing the viewing pleasure. In a departure from the pushers on the classical LM Perpetual, the EVO has enlarged, easy-to-use oblong actuators, and its screw-down crown ensures the 80m water-resistance of the case. An annular steel dampener – called FlexRing – is placed between the case and movement. to protect the vertical and lateral axes from shocks and increase robustness.
The novelty here is the attractive light blue CVD colour of the dial plate, contrasting effectively with the calendar indications and the time. Smack in the centre of the dial is the mirror-polished V-shaped bridge arching above the spectacular 14mm balance wheel beating at 18,000vph – a signature element of the MB&F LM Perpetual EVO Series. The hours and minutes are at noon on a black galvanic disc with luminescent-tipped hands and light blue markers. Using black galvanic rings, luminescent hands and light blue markings, the days of the week are at 3 o’clock, the months at 6 o’clock and the date at 9 o’clock. At 5 and 7 o’clock, there are two small, rounded tracks: the one on the left indicates the retrograde leap year, and the one on the right is the power reserve indicator.
Visible on the dial is Stephen McDonnell’s revolutionary perpetual calendar. Turning the conventional perpetual calendar movement upside down and inside out, McDonnell’s QP relies on a mechanical processor consisting of a series of superimposed discs. This groundbreaking processor takes the default number of days in the month at 28 – because, logically, all months have at least 28 days – and then adds the extra days required by each individual month. This ensures that each month has precisely the right number of days and removes the possibility of the date jumping incorrectly. An inbuilt safety feature disconnects the quickset pushers during the date changeover so that even if the pushers are accidentally actuated while the date is changing, there is no risk of damage to the 581-component movement.
While most of the horological treats are revealed on the dial, the reverse side reveals the escapement, the double barrels – providing the movement with 72 hours of autonomy – and the superlative hand finishings. Embracing 19th-century decorative traditions, the reverse side is a trip down memory lane with gorgeous internal bevel angles, polished bevels, large gold chatons, Geneva waves on the darkened bridges and handmade inscriptions.

Richard Mille RM 35-03 Automatic Rafael Nadal

After three years of development, Richard Mille has taken the wraps off the new Richard Mille RM 35-03 Automatic Rafael Nadal, a trio of extra-sporty automatic watches that feature a special mechanism for the winding system that allows the wearer to adjust the winding activity based on their current level of activity. The whole feature is tied to an automotive-themed “sport mode” button that disengages the winding rotor on demand to prevent over-winding the movement.
We’ll get to the buttons and modes in a moment, but the Richard Mille RM 35-03 Automatic Rafael Nadal is offered in three versions, including Carbon TPT (black for case and case band, shown in many of the included images), blue and white Quartz TPT, and a version in Carbon TPT with white Quartz TPT. Sizing is the same for all three models and comes in at 43.15mm wide, 13.15mm thick, and 49.95mm lug-to-lug. Water resistance is 50 meters, and yes, the price is much heavier than the watch.

For this outing of what the brand calls the “Baby Nadal,” the party piece is the aforementioned sport-mode button that is located at seven o’clock on the case flank. While there is a more complicated explanation for this special “Butterfly Rotor” system, the conceit is that the winding rotor’s ability to harness gravity can be mitigated by pressing the sport button. The rotor has been designed to have two halves hinged at the center. When sport mode is engaged, the two parts fan out, removing the ability for the rotor to spin as the weighed elements are now evenly distributed across 180 degrees. Confused? Check out the mechanism animated below. See? Not that hard to understand (at least, at a functional level).
The idea here is that when you’re planning to do something sporty – such as playing professional tennis – you can enable sport mode to suspend any additional winding of the movement. Looking at the dial side, there is an indication as to whether or not automatic winding is active (on/off), and the system aligns with the function selector that we’ve seen on other RMs that allows the user to cycle between three modes – “H” for time setting, “N” for neutral, and “W” for winding.
This functionality is supported by the RMAL2, a fully skeletonized automatic movement that displays hours, minutes, and seconds (along with the functions mentioned above). The movement’s bridges and baseplate are made of grade 5 titanium, and it ticks at 4 Hz with a power reserve of 55 hours. That power reserve is supported by a double-barrel system that can meter the torque from either barrel for better timekeeping.
While Richard Mille watches are constantly being offered in more and more shapes and sizes, the Richard Mille RM 35-03 Automatic Rafael Nadal feels like a core offering from the brand. The intensity of the design, the wild case materials, and the adherence to a gimmick-like sport mode – all classic Richard Mille

As the fourth in the “Baby Nadal” series, the Richard Mille RM 35-03 Automatic Rafael Nadal adds a fun and superfluous function via its butterfly rotor system. While I suppose we could argue the need for such a system, I think that might be out of scope for such a watch. For engagement (both literal and emotional), I kinda dig the idea of having the ability to shut off the automatic winding on my watch. In modern, high-performance cars, programmable modes (like sport mode) have become a major feature set, so I also get the connection to the lifestyle and experiences of the people who are in the market for a quarter-of-a-million-dollar Richard Mille. Their cars are full of buttons that allow them to control various elements of the experience; why not their watch?
But a Richard Mille watch need not be treated like a literal thing. Like a supercar, these watches are not valued for their practicality or, I’d argue, outright functionality. Rather, these are objects of emotion, collectability, and raw fascination, and I can’t think of any watch in which a sport mode feels more appropriate. If you can, let me know in the comments.

Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne

For its latest new release of 2023, Richard Mille has just announced a new version of the RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne that embraces a crisp black and white colorway with a case that is crafted from white Quartz TPT, Carbon TPT, and titanium. From a design and movement standpoint, the Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne is hardly a new watch, as this core concept and the RM21-02 movement were both originally unveiled back in 2009 with a set of models that featured cases crafted from 18k gold. However, the new 2023 RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne takes that original concept in an entirely more modern direction with high-tech case materials and a distinctly contemporary overall appearance.
Over the years, Richard Mille has produced several different variations of the RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne, although the latest 2023 version is most closely related to last year’s limited-edition model that featured green Quartz TPT case components and orange accents. What this means is that you get Richard Mille’s signature tonneau-shaped case in a format that measures 42.68mm in diameter by 14.3mm thick with a lug-to-lug profile of 50.12mm. However, on the new 2023 Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne, the center caseband is made from grade 5 titanium, while the pillars that run down either side of the case and cover the titanium connecting screws are crafted from black Carbon TPT.
The white and black colorway extends throughout the rest of the watch, with the caseback appearing in white Quartz TPT with a clear sapphire display window, while the bezel features a multi-component structure with a black Carbon TPT center section paired with white Quartz TPT segments running down either side for the areas that hold the grade 5 titanium connecting screws. An anti-glare sapphire crystal sits above the dial, water resistance comes in at 50 meters to protect against daily contact, and to complete the entirely white and black color profile, the ventilated strap is made from white rubber with black contrasting inlays. At the 3 o’clock location on the new 2023 RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne is a winding crown that appears in white and black to match the rest of the watch, and at the tip of the crown is a titanium button, which serves as the watch’s function selector switch. Just like a number of other Richard Mille watches, including previous models based upon this platform, the crown on the RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne does not pull outwards at all, and instead pressing the button on the tip of the crown lets you swap between the different modes (winding, setting, and neutral), in somewhat of a similar fashion to how a transmission works on a car. The dial layout on the new 2023 Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne is virtually the same as what can be found among previous executions of the model, and it features a skeletonized pair of centrally-mounted hands for the hours and minutes, along with a clear sapphire dial and applied Arabic numeral hour markers. The tourbillon symmetrically resides at 6 o’clock, while the indicator for the function selector switch appears with its own dedicated hand directly next to the 4 o’clock hour marker. Meanwhile, placed near the very top of the dial are two additional multi-colored, arc-shaped displays, with the one on the left serving as a power reserve indicator, while the other is a torque indicator that provides information about the chronometry quality of the tension in the mainspring. Basically, what this offers is a visual representation of how accurately the watch will run depending on the amount of tension in the mainspring. Above or below a certain point, accurately will suffer, and the torque display is intended to help users achieve optimum timekeeping performance. Lastly, sitting visible though the transparent dial along either side of the display on the new 2023 Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne is a mainplate crafted from HAYNES 214, which is an alloy consisting of nickel, chromium, aluminum, and iron that is capable of withstanding temperatures in excess of 955 degrees Celsius (1,751 degrees Fahrenheit). The geometric honeycomb pattern of the HAYNES 214 mainplate provides extreme stiffness with a low thermal expansion coefficient, and the alloy has been given a jet-black PVD finish to match the rest of the colorway of this particular model. Powering the new 2023 Richard Mille RM 21-02 Tourbillon Aerodyne is the same Caliber RM21-02 manual-wind movement, which runs at a frequency of 21,600vph (3 Hz) with a power reserve of approximately 70 hours. The bridges of the movement are all crafted from grade 5 titanium, and in addition to featuring a function selector switch, tourbillon, and three additional indicators dedicated to the crown function, torq display, and power reserve, the Cal. RM21-02 also incorporates a modular time-setting assembly that can be removed through the caseback whenever adjustments or maintenance are needed, and this means that routine work can be performed without having to dismantle the movement from the mainplate or even remove the dial and hands from the watch.

Breitling Avenger Automatic 42

Breitling has introduced an updated Breitling Avenger Automatic 42 collection of pilot-inspired watches. Dating to the early 2000s, the Avenger collection has been scaled down and simplifed to make for a sleek update. The collection includes the Automatic 42, GMT 44, and the B01 Chronograph 44 – the chronograph uses Breitling’s manufacture caliber 01.
While the new collection maintains the aviation inspiration and rugged profile of the Avenger, the updates align the Avenger with other updates we’ve seen across Breitling’s catalog.

Younger than many of Breitling’s other collections, the Breitling Avenger Automatic 42 is a bit of a modern mash-up of everything that makes Breitling Breitling. The adjectives practically write themselves: big, bold, rugged, aviation-inspired, tool.
The tweaks to the case, dial, and profile of the Avenger make it a bit more streamlined and contemporary. Gone are the big winged Breitling logo, and Arabic numerals, replaced with the simple stencil “B” and baton markers. The stainless steel case of the GMT and chronograph models measure 44mm, while the three-hander automatic measures 42mm. All are a downsize compared to the previous collection. Additionally, the case offers more detail and finishing, with bevels on the lugs and polished details on the tabs of the rotating bezel.
The Breitling Avenger Automatic 42 collection has aviation inspiration all over it, and with that the chronograph remains the most important model of the collection. The updated Breilting Avenger B01 Chronograph 44 measures 44mm by 15.2mm (53mm lug-to-lug), using the manufacturer’s caliber B01, a COSC-certified, column wheel, vertical clutch movement with 70-hour power reserve. The manufacture movement represents a technical leap forward for the Avenger chronograph. It’s still a big watch that won’t be for everyone, but that’s what we expect – even ask – of Breitling. And with downsized offerings in other corners of the catalog, this keeps the Avenger true to its original purpose. The Avenger Chronograph 44 is offered with a steel bracelet or military leather strap and four dial colors: blue, green, black, or sand. On a strap, MSRP starts at $8,000. The Avenger GMT 44 measures 44mm by 12mm (53 lug-to-lug) and has an independently adjustable 24-hour hand thanks to the ETA base Breitling caliber 32, COSC-certified and with 42 hours of power reserve (a “caller GMT” in Stacey speak, as it’s the 24-hour hand, not the hour hand, that’s adjustable). The Avenger GMT has a bi-directional rotating bezel with the quickly indentifiable “Rider tabs” at the cardinal directions that are something of a Breitling signature. It’s offered with a black or blue dial, on a strap or bracelet, with prices starting at $5,250 on strap.
Breitling’s history in timekeepers optimized for aviation dates back to the 1930s, when Willy Breitling Avenger Automatic 42 formed the HUIT Aviation Department, dedicated to creating precision aircraft instruments and pilots’ chronographs. Fast forward a few decades and the brand launched its Avenger collection in 2001 alongside its iconic Navitimer and Chronomat. The Avenger collection is distinguished by its military look and feel. Now, we get three fresh new takes on the collection—one is even equipped with Breitling’s own B01 movement.

Urwerk UR-100V Time and Culture II

Although Urwerk is recognized as a pioneer in modern high horology, the company is not immune to looking at history for its avant-garde creations. But not necessarily from the early to mid-19th century as so many other watchmakers do but rather from antiquity — ancient civilizations such as Aztec, Greek, and Egyptian have all been referenced in Urwerk watches. In fact, the name “Urwerk” is derived from Ur, the major Sumerian city-state located in Mesopotamia, where the concept of time is said to have originated around 3,000 BC. For its newest release, the company travels back to Mesopotamia to give us the Urwerk UR-100V Time and Culture II “Sumer” watch, inspired by the city of Ur.
As its name suggests, the Urwerk UR-100V Time And Culture II is the second installment in the series; the first celebrated Amerindian civilizations, which Sean Lorentzen covered in his Urwerk Announces Limited-Edition UR-100V Time And Culture I Watch article. The “Sumer” Urwerk watch, on the other hand, is rooted in Mesopotamian history. The watch retains the same angular steel case (with a titanium caseback) that measures 41mm wide, 49.7mm in length, and 14mm thick, but this time, rendered in a rich blue hue. The blue was chosen to mimic lapis lazuli, which was apparently a favorite stone of Inanna, the ancient Mesopotamian goddess of love, war, and fertility.
As Martin Frei, co-founder and artistic director of Urwerk UR-100V Time And Culture II , explains, “Through my reading and my travels, I’ve been fortunate enough to discover all the richness and diversity of the Sumerians. Their mythology is rich and fertile, their constructions truly timeless. This astonishingly little-known civilization is fascinating. For this new creation, I loved staging some of its hallmark features: mythology, astronomy, astrology, and time measurement.”
Under the dramatic sapphire dome of the watch are laser-engraved motifs that tell a story. At the center is the four-pointed star that symbolizes Utu, the ancient Mesopotamian sun god. Framing that symbol are sky charts and planispheres to represent the Sumerians’s early attempts to map out our skies. There are also two depictions of the moon god Nanna floating near the edges of the sloped cut-out minutes display. Right above the minutes indicator is the satellite wandering hours display, which follows a similar curved opening and includes beryllium-bronze Geneva crosses to support the rotating satellite hours disks. To read the time, simply look at where the large hour numeral is pointing on the minutes track.
Once a minute pointer is done with its initial task, the hour satellite it’s attached to disappears under the laser-etched cover and the pointer reemerges as a kilometer counter that serves to course Earth’s rotation. There are two kilometer counters in fact: one aperture at 10 o’clock to display the 477.29km covered every 20 minutes by Ur inhabitants and one at 2 o’clock to illustrate the 35,742km that Earth travels around the sun every 20 minutes. Driving the Urwerk UR-100V Time And Culture II “Sumer” is the Caliber UR 12.02 movement, which operates at 28,800vph and supplies 48 hours of power reserve. Finally, the watch is water-resistant to 30 meters and is paired with a Baltimore technical fabric strap, furnished with a pin buckle.
Esoteric timepieces are what Urwerk does best. Here we have a futuristic-looking Swiss timepiece that expresses traveling through time and space, all wrapped up in a package that honors one of humanity’s earliest cities. Call it creative, eccentric, or even crazy, but it would be a shame to discard it as unnecessary. Even if this unconventional piece doesn’t speak to you stylistically Urwerk UR-100V Time And Culture II (or make sense to you at any level), the watch space needs wild imagination and creativity to not only stay alive but thrive. Besides

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