Wristwatch Updates: Tissot, Waltham, Speedmaster & MUCH More

Lots of fun stuff this week. Pic via Ben at Hodinkee.

Hands-On With The Tissot Seastar 1000 Automatic Professional Chronograph Valjoux – HODINKEE: So when Tissot showed us their new Seastar 1000 Automatic Chronograph, we said, “Ok, this will do.” Granted, it’s enormous (49mm) but some people are into that. The Seastar 1000 is a certified diver, and it uses a Valjoux 7750 automatic chronograph. It is rated 30 bars, or 990 feet and will be limited to 1000 pieces at a price of $2250. But that isn’t the full story.

Heuer Montreal: Series Overview – Calibre 11 -TAG Heuer: It’s no surprise that the vintage Heuer models best-known today are the ones that have been re-issued in the last 15 years by TAG Heuer. Yes, names like Carrera, Autavia, Monaco and Silverstone were high-profile models to begin with when they were released in the 1960s/ 70s, but making modern re-editions helps bring these classic designs into the modern consciousness and to the attention of TAG Heuer collectors. The converse of this is that there are still many Heuer models from the 1970s that run under the radar, one of my favorites of these being the Heuer Montreal.

A rare unissued Waltham WW2 watch – HOROLOGIUM: Watches labelled as ‘NOS’ (new old stock) are oft prized. For watches, as it is for books or many other collectables, the idea of something that has been untouched, especially vintage watches, is tantalising. The words ‘new unissued in box’ were enough to draw me into the unknown world of vintage military watches. The lure of an untouched 1945 watch was too great.

Watchscapes: Gronefeld One Hertz, the brothers and another watch: The Gronefeld brothers in Holland are one of the secrets of high end horology. Independents, they were both trained in the stables of Renaud et Papi. And have been making their own watches, as well as contracting for others from their little workshop in The Netherlands. I had the opportunity to meet them several times in Geneva, and recently at their short stay in Singapore.

Zenith Christophe Colomb Skeleton – Perpetuelle.com Watch Blog: Here is a jaw-dropping iteration on Zenith’s incredible Christophe Colomb that I recently came across (seems I just can’t stay away from Marcus London lately). What’s unique here vs. the original Christophe Colomb is the skeletonization of the watch.

Photo Essay: A Visit To Manufacture Jaeger-LeCoultre: For most horological aficionados, visiting their favorite manufacture is a necessary pilgrimage along the path. I’ve had the privilege to visit a few in my time, however living halfway around the world makes this a bit more of an expedition than is convenient. However, on my last assignment to Switzerland, I happened to have a free day, and the folks at Jaeger-LeCoultre were extremely accommodating…

Panerai PAM00396 – Luminor 1950 Tourbillon GMT Ceramica – Monochrome Watches: There are essentially two kinds of people in the world: People who LIKE Panerai watches and people who DON’T. Shocking, but true, there are people out there who think that the Panerai watch is a throwback to distant ancestors on the horological evolutionary time-line. To those folks the cases are bulky. The functions are simple. The movements are crude and worse bought-in.

A few closeup pics and videos of the JLC Duometre Spherotourbillon: A few months ago I had visited the Jaeger LeCoultre Beverly Hills Boutique to view the JLC novelties from SIHH 2012. One of the most mesmerizing timepieces from the new collection was the stunning Duometre Spherotourbillon.

Speedy Tuesday – The Speedmaster 125 – World’s First Automatic Chronograph Chronometer: This week’s Speedmaster for our Speedy Tuesday is a bit of a strange duck in the bite, but has quite an interesting story to it. In 1973, Omega celebrated their 125th anniversary by introducing a limited edition Speedmaster for this occasion. The Speedmaster ’125′ was the first automatic chronograph watch that was chronometer certified. The Lemania based caliber 1041 movement has only been used in this Speedmaster 125 watch and was based on the more common caliber 1040 movement.

Viceroy Advertisements from 1972, Including the Autavia Promotion – On The Dash: In 1972, the Brown and Williamson Tobacco Company ran a promotion through which customers could purchase a Heuer Autavia chronograph for $88, with proof of purchase of a carton of Viceroy cigarettes (which consisted of 1o packs). At that time, Autavia chronographs were being sold for $200, through the normal dealer channel.

Watches by SJX: Photo review – The Tudor Heritage Black Bay ref. 79220R up close, with prices: Tudor launched a pair of dive watches at Baselworld 2012, one of which is the retro styled Heritage Black Bay, ref. 79220R. The other new diver is the 500 m Pelagos in titanium, ref. 25500TN, with self-adjusting dive clasp. Both watches have received lots of positive attention due to their design and price.

The Military Diver’s Watch – A Revisionist View by JAMES DOWLING: For over fifty years, it has been the accepted knowledge that the history of the diving watch is intimately coupled to the history of recreational diving. Both Rolex & Blancpain (who equally claim to have invented the diver’s watch) use the introduction of the SCUBA (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) as the driving force behind the demand for divers’ watches; I hope to show that this commonly held theory is untrue. The prime impetus for the development of the diver’s watch was (and has continued to be) the needs of combat swimmers in the armed forces of the developed world’s nations. In this article, I will take watches from every decade from the 1930s up until the 1980s and show how the needs of combat swimmers forced the development of watches we now consider iconic.

RW Smith Watches: British watchmaker beating the Swiss at their own game with £86,000 timepieces – Mail Online: From the outside, there’s not a lot to distinguish the headquarters of RW Smith Watches. It’s a medium-sized semi-detached house with cream walls and an untended front garden at the end of a road, near Ramsey, on the Isle of Man. There isn’t so much as a sign.

HAUTLENCE HL 2.0 Watch – Perpetuelle.com Watch Blog: Let’s take a look at at an haute horlogerie piece from Neuchatel, Switzerland-based HAUTLENCE, the HL 2.0. This watch was officially presented in 2011, but a video recently released by the brand prompted me to action.

…the sydney tarts: An interview with Max Busser: A short while ago I blogged about the arrival of MB&F ‘Machines’ in Sydney and a dinner with Max. Now we bring you part three of this horological trifecta, an interview with Max.

Additional Links:
Dodane Type 23 Introduced and Reviewed – a True Pilot’s Watch
A Profile of Master Watchmaker Roger Smith
TimeZone: 101′ Today … Citizen Diver’s Eco-Drive
another side of McQueen…