Being in the watch business for 160 years is certainly something to celebrate. Eterna is celebrating this prestigious milestone by debuting a trio of exceptional chronographs that are sure to stir the souls of enthusiasts the world over. Welcome to the NEW Eterna Super KonTiki Flyback Chronograph with an in-house Eterna movement.
Life for Nick & Giles English changed significantly one clear day in March 1995. Nick was practicing for an air display with their father Euan. But the 1942 WWII Harvard aircraft they were flying was involved in an accident. Giles, waiting to take off for the next sortie was told that his father had been killed. His brother had broken over 30 bones and probably wouldn’t make it.
Six months later, however, Nick was back in the air and being flown by Giles. But things would never be the same again. Life was too short to waste. The two brothers decided to pursue what they enjoyed most: a life crafting beautifully engineered mechanical devices.
When they weren’t flying old aircraft, Nick & Giles had spent most of their childhood making things in the workshop of their gifted father – an ex-RAF pilot with a PHD in Aeronautical Engineering. Models. Restored cars. They even helped him to build an aircraft they still fly to this day. Euan was also passionate about mechanical timepieces. He would often bring home an old clock from an auction for the brothers to try and get going again. The passion lives on in the classic curve of a Bremont timepiece.
In the late 1990s, Nick & Giles were flying across France in their 1930’s biplane. The weather was closing in. A rough-running engine forced them to make an emergency landing. Keen to avoid the French authorities, the brothers were more than happy to accept the gracious help of the farmer whose field they had landed in. They stayed in his home, the aircraft took cover in the barn. It transpired their host had flown aircraft during the war, as well as being a gifted engineer. Half-restored wall clocks lay everywhere, together with numerous engine parts. The farmer still even wore his own father’s wristwatch. The brothers promised that his warm hospitality would never be forgotten. His name? Antoine Bremont.
Uncompromising functionality and absolute reliability are the basic principles of a professional timing instrument. The NATO chronograph by Tutima, developed in 1984 and the official service watch of the German army’s pilots to this day, has outstandingly proven itself in global use for decades. Now the M2 arrives to continue this classic timepiece’s success story. We have made several improvements that will not only profit professional users but also sporty, active amateurs.
Nothing can rattle it.
Good legibility, reliable functionality, high comfort level and water resistance, a large sweep minute counter, pressure-resistant for use to 15,000 meters above sea level, and shockproofed for blows, vibrations, and acceleration up to 7 g in all directions: these are the enormous prerequisites that the procurement office and forces alike put upon the Tutima NATO chronograph in 1984.
Our reedition, the M2, even surpasses these prerequisites. In the classic from 1984, Swiss caliber Lémania 5100 kept the time. Since this is no longer in production, we have integrated our own caliber Tutima 521 into the M2. It is protected by a pure titanium case pressure-proofed to 30 atm including a strong sapphire crystal coated with anti-reflective treatment on both sides and an additional casing of mu-metal. This nickel-iron alloy binds magnetic field streams so that they do not even reach the movement. The integrated push buttons are furnished with grooved neoprene inlays.
The hour counter has its own scale. The less often consulted display of running seconds and 24 hours modestly step out of the limelight. The time and chronograph hands as well as the hour markers are coated with luminous Super-LumiNova. This ensures good legibility, even under adverse lighting conditions. The Pioneer model variation additionally contains a nonslip rotating bezel with 14 luminous capsules so that set time intervals are easily recognizable even in full darkness.
This model comes on a titanium link bracelet with folding clasp. The box that the M2 titanium bracelet model is delivered in additionally contains a Kevlar weave strap as well as a tool set for changing the strap.
The evolution of G-Shock is here! We would like to introduce you to once of the most impressive G’s to ever hit the market. Not just in design, but this is one of the most complex, highly functional, and smartest G-Shock’s to be introduced. Say hello to the new Casio G-Shock Sky Cockpit Aviation GPS Hybrid Wave Ceptor, the Gravity Master, GPW1000! We were fortunate enough to get a trial run prior to its national debut in the USA, test out its functions, and see just how this piece works. I think everyone will be truly impressed.
The new GPW1000’s are going to be solar powered, which is impressive in its self. The power it requires to sync to satellites nearly 13,000 miles away is huge, but not only does this piece have a GPS receiver, but also a radio signal receiver which means it could require more power. However, Casio has a very low power radio receiver and actually worked with Sony on the development of one of the lowest power consuming GPS receivers on the market. The GPS tech inside this piece is incredible and utilizes a grid consisting of over 2.6 billion points, or a 500m segment. This is ultra accurate for finding the correct timezone no matter where you are standing. The solar power reserve will last around 7 months, but can go a maximum of 18 months if in power save mode. There is a low power alert, and you can see the energy in the watch, every time you adjust back to timekeeping mode. When you go into timekeeping mode, the second hand will rotate between 12:00 and 6:00, with 12:00 expressing a full power reserve , and 6:00 meaning empty.
The lower right hand button will be to engage your GPS reveive. The watch will actually connect to a single satellite automatically up to once a day when exposed to bright light for 1-2 minutes. This will only adjust the accuracy, not the timezone. You can do this type of connection by holding the lower right button for a couple of seconds, or until the second hand points to “TIME” between 6:00-7:00. If you hold down the button for more then a few seconds and the second hand points to “T+P” between 8:00-9:00, this means time and position. You will then connect to multiple satellites, the mode hand around 3:00 will go up and down a couple of times, and generally within 30-40 seconds, the watch will pin point your location and adjust the hands to the timezone you are standing in while the mode hand indicates your current latitude. Another cool feature is that this piece will automatically recognize daylight savings, so there is never a need to adjust. Even in Arizona where we do not adjust for daylight savings, this piece will sync for mountain time, but it knows AZ does not use daylight savings, so it turns it off when necessary. On top of that, the watch will automatically connect to the radio control towers, if in range, starting at midnight.
You have a secondary timezone displayed at 7:00-8:00. This piece uses Smart Access technology to adjust this timezone. You simply unlock the crown, pull it to the first click out, your second hand will point to the city code your sub dial is set for, and then turn until it is for the timezone you want. Close the crown and the hands will have adjusted themselves. There is an option to switch to UTC time for the sub dial without turning the crown, you just hold the lower right button with the crown out one click. You can also manually set the central hands in the same way (minus the UTC quick adjustment), but you would pull to the second clock instead. Of course, it is more fun to use the GPS to set the timezone for the central hands. You have date and day of the week while in standard timekeeping mode. It also has airplane mode to turn off the GPS receiver. You simply hold the lower left button for more then four seconds to turn on or off.
By just pushing the lower left button once, your watch will then go into chronograph mode. This can measure from 1/20th of a second up to 24 minutes. The 1/20th of a second is displayed on the center seconds hand, seconds and minutes on the secondary time sub dial. Pushing the lower left button again will be for your count down timer mode. You use the Smart Access crown to adjust the hands on the secondary time sub dial to the amount of time you want to count down. An alert will sound once the timer has reached zero. Next, is your alarm mode. The alarm is again set by using the crown and the secondary time zone sub dial. With the crown closed push the lower right button to turn the alarm on or off. Your seconds hand will point to “ON” or “OFF”.
The resin case surrounds a DLC coated stainless steel bezel and measures out at 56mm wide by 18.8mm thick. The piece is no doubt large, but certainly is impressive and very good looking. These will have anti-reflective coated sapphire crystal, a unique and easy to use crown, Hybrid Mount Construction, Alpha Gel and 200m water resistance makes for the shock, gravitational force, vibration and water resistance that G-Shock requires.
The resin strap is inlayed with carbon fiber to add durability and has a stainless steel clasp and keeper. The overall construction and attention to detail is very impressive. There is Casio’s Neo-Brite for the hands and markers, but to give it that extra boost, there is an incredible LED light that gradually increases in brightness, and gradually fades out. It is literally strong enough to use as a flashlight in complete dark.
The GPW1000-1A will be the core production model which retails for $950. You can order this piece direct from AZFT HERE.
The GPW1000-4A will be the same price, and is going to be a limited production model. This is also $950 and is available for ORDER HERE.
The GPW1000-1B will also be a limited production model, also retail for $950 and can be ORDERED HERE. All three models are currently in stock! Stay tuned to the AZFT Blog to see as we attend and guest speak at the national press conference for the release of these new timepieces!
See the new Gravity Master GPS Hybrid G-Shock in action in our video below…
See more pictures below…
A ground breaking day has occurred in watchmaking. On June 18th 2014, Citizen announced the introduction of a new collection in their stunning Campanola series. These new Campanola models will be the first to feature mechanical self-winding movements. Campanola Automatics are not the ground breaking news I was discussing. What is, is that the mechanical calibers featured in these two new pieces are actually manufactured in La Choux De Fonds, Switzerland and assembled in Japan! In March of 2012, Citizen Japan announced its purchase of the holding company Prothor, which owns the incredible Swiss movement manufacuture La Joux Perret. LJP produces parts, movements and complications for a huge list of watch companies such as Hublot, Panerai, Corum, Graham, Eberhard & Co. and many more. They are also renowned for their own brand, Arnold & Son. During the year of the 150th anniversary of Swiss – Japanese trade, Citizen has introduced the first true Swiss – Japanese hybrid.
In a day and age where movements are becoming increasingly difficult to obtain, watch companies need alternative movement manufactures in order to stop relying on Swatch Group owned ETA. Swatch Group has made it loud and clear over the years that they wish to reduce ( or more ultimately stop providing completely) ETA movements to companies outside of Swatch. One of the biggest hurdles in this is that ETA is the most commonly used movements in the Swiss watch industry. Sellita movements have become a great alternative to ETA for most watch brands, however, the one thing they still have to buy from Swatch is hairspring. The Swatch owned company Nivarox is the largest (near only) source right now for hairspring and there aren’t many other companies out there who provide it. Interestingly enough, other parts for Sellita are provided by La Joux Perret, and the tie with Citizen is where it gets really interesting. Citizen not only makes their own mechanical movements under the Miyota label in Japan, but they also manufacture their own hairspring. This could solve a lot of problems in the long run. Not only will there be options for using Citizen’s hairspring as an alternative to Nivarox, but I could also imagine that there will one day be technology for manufacturing the springs in Switzerland brought over from Citizen Japan. Basically, in my eyes, Citizen is pushing to prove they are tremendous competition for Swatch Group, which they truly are. It was over two years ago that Citizen not only obtained Prothor, but also loosely stated their plans to purchase other Swiss companies, challenge Swatch in a manufacturing sense, and to one day introduce a Swiss – Japanese hybrid.
To help elaborate on La Joux Perret’s manufacturing capabilities, it is important to discuss their brand & and Son. This is very innovative and highly skilled factory that manufactures these pieces. One of the most unique and interesting complications they have become renowned for is the True Beat (or Dead Beat) seconds hand. Essentially, this mechanical caliber is complex and a perfect example of Haute Horlogerie. The example above is A&S’s DSTB (Dial Side True Beat). This in-house self-winding caliber with 50 hour power reserve and rate of 28,800 bph does not express the typical 8 advancements of the second hand as most watches with this rate. Instead, the expression of seconds counting is done by having the second hand jump from second to second as you would see on a quartz, but is fully mechanical. The time (hours and minutes) is indicated at the small sub dial located in the 4-5:00 area, with the large True Beat seconds located between the 11-12:00 area. This truly impressive piece retails for around $50,000.
Another unique and impressive movement is their Time Pyramid movement. This skeletonized movement features twin barrels providing a 90 hour power reserve with dual power reserve display. The first barrel will basically wind the second, transferring the energy and showing so in the power reserve indicator. The gear train is formed in a pyramid shape, showing the balance at the very top, just under the 12:00. The Time Pyramid in steel is about $30,000 and about $40,000 in 18k red gold. Aside from these complications, they also make an array of tourbillons, double tourbillons, chronographs and more. The brand also has an incredibly rich history behind watchmaker John Arnold back in the 1700’s, and his good friend Abraham-Louis Breguet.
Getting back to the new Campanola Mechanical Collection, these new La Joux Perret movements are labeled as the Y513 caliber. These movements will feature self-winding plus hand winding, a 42 hour power reserve which is displayed at 6:00, a rate of 28,800 bph, 25 jewels and big date display at 12:00. There will be 2 models in the line up. The “old silver” dial on the NZ0000-58W with stainless steel case and bracelet and the black dialed NZ0000-07E on black crocodile leather. Both models will measure out at 42mm wide and 14mm thick (mostly due to the tremendously thick domed sapphire crystal with 99% clarity anti-reflective coating). The dials on these pieces will be extremely detailed and three dimensional. The process of electroforming is used in order to create the unique rippled and parchment paper look in each corresponding dial. The inspiration of “Space and above” is implemented on these dials, yet still feature a very classic look. The uniqueness of a Swiss manufactured movement assembled in Japan is reason enough to be intrigued by these timepieces, but the design will draw people in on its own. We are very excited to see this finally come to life as we have been anticipating it for nearly two years. We are sure this is not the last we will see of the new and unique relationship, and look forward to more compilations between 2 of the finest watch manufacturing countries, Switzerland and Japan.
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To celebrate 150 years of diplomatic relations between Switzerland and Japan, JEANRICHARD has introduced a series of special release timepieces honoring this relationship. In 1864, the two countries signed a trade agreement and established a friendship that still proves strong today. As a small production item for 2014, JEANRICHARD has intrduced their gorgeous diver model the Aquascope, with a very unique “Hokusai” dial.
The reference to the name Hokusai comes from famous Japanese artist during the Edo period, Katsushika Hokusai. Hokusai created ukiyo-e wood block prints, and became most renowned for his work, Thirty-Six Views of Mount Fuji. The most popular in this series is The Great Wave of Kanagawa. Created sometime in the 1830’s, the image depicted boats caught in a tremendous wave with Mount Fuji in the background. This new JEANRICHARD Aquascope features an engraved dial featuring this illustration.
The 44mm stainless steel case of the Aquascope has a beautiful combination of satin and incredibly high polished attributes. The 60 minute divers bezel is also completely stainless steel with the circular satin finish on the top, and high polish on the teeth of the 120 click uni-directional bezel. Though the case is over 13mm thick and 44mm wide, the pieces short lugs make it very wearable on most any size wrist. The lugs are actually a part of the case side inserts that are attached to the inner cushion case. The JR cases are one of the most elaborate produced in their price range, using over 20 different parts.
The Aquascope will feature a 300m water resistance with screw down crown. The branded crown lacks no detail with JR logo on the end, and a colosseum design on the sides. Sapphire crystal is utilized and has anti-reflective coating to eliminate glare. The overall design is stunning, and the amount of detail expressed throughout is very impressive. I can easily say, the quality standard of JR as a brand is top of the line, even though the prices are modest.
Inside it’s closed case back is the Sellita based, JR60 movement. This modified self-winding caliber has 28,800 bph, 26 jewels, hand winding, hack, and a minimal power reserve of 38 hours. This movement only displays 3 hand time, and a date displayed between 4:00 and 5:00.
The hands and indexes of this model are rhodium coated, beautifully finished and give dominant legibility. A unique aspect to the “Hokusai” model is that the indexes are actually not applied to the actual dial. Instead, they are attached to the chapter ring and float slightly above the dial. This technique allows for the dials engraving to be without interruption and also gives a more three dimensional presence.
Of course, the luminous material on this diver is very strong and bright, providing great night time legibility. The 60 minute mark on the bezel is luminous, as well as all 3 hands and each index. The lume for the index lies in the middle of each index, sandwiched between the rhodium coated attributes.
The strap is black rubber, ribbed and branded with the JR logo. The strap also features a well constructed dual push button deployment clasp, with two steel inserts to secure the clasp to the strap.
The “Hokusai” Aquascopes will come in 4 color variations, with the grey being sold as an exclusive to AZ Fine Time in the US. The MSRP on this piece is $3,300, and is now available at AZFT.
As always, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at 1-800-486-3996 or submit an inquiry through AZFineTime.com.
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See our video review below…
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This year at Baselworld 2014, AZ Fine Time had the distinct pleasure of seeing one of Seiko’s master craftsmen work in front of a large audience, in a way we have never seen before. The highly regarded brand Credor is typically only sold in the Japanese market and has an extravagant line up of both men’s and ladies pieces, requiring different skills as compared to their other top quality brands, Grand Seiko and Galante. The amount of skill required for the Credor brand as a whole is amazing, working mostly with precious metals and gems. Today, we discuss one technique you will only see in the Credor brand from Seiko, hand engraving. The craftsman we saw in Basel is the award winning Kiyoshi Terui, who uses tools that he makes himself.
Mr. Terui is responsible for hand engraving movement parts as thin as 0.25mm thick, at a depth of only 0.15mm. As you can see in the image above, Terui does his work under a microscope ensuring his engravings are within a 0.01mm tolerance. The main plate bridge of the Credor caliber 6899 is being engraved in a unique fashion, with no polishing and focusing on sharp edges and gleaming surfaces. The sharp edges give the engraving more definition, not to mention a tremendous finished product.
The near 20 years Terui has been engraving for Seiko is very impressive and his experience is expressed beautifully in his work. In 2002, Mr. Terui was recognized by the Japanese government for his outstanding skill and awarded the “Outstanding Skilled Worker Award”. By 2007, he was awarded the “Medal with Yellow Ribbon” for outstanding professional achievement by the Emperor of Japan. There were samples of engravings that Terui had previously completed on display. As you can tell from the picture, these examples are precisely executed, incredibly detailed and sparkle beautifully. Hard to believe something so small can be done so perfectly, but this is what an artist like Terui is renowned for.
You can see Terui’s work in progress on the monitor behind him. On this bridge, he is engraving peacock feathers in perfect detail. This process is tedious and time consuming , as one could imagine from the detail alone. In most cases, engraving for one watch can take an entire week making a perfect example of being “dedicated to perfection”.
On Mr. Terui’s wrist, you will see the platinum Credor Signo Skeleton model GBBD985. This model features the hand wound mechanical caliber 6899, with 26 jewels, and is ultra thin at under 2mm, enabling them to keep it in a case under 6mm thick. This was our first time seeing this model in person and it is truly extravagant. The piece glimmers beautifully and is certainly eye catching, even though its size is subtle at under 35mm. Even the crocodile leather is impressive in person, with a tremendous high gloss finish. These pieces are manufactured, engraved and assembled at Seiko’s Shizuku-Ishi Watch Studio in Morioka, Japan.
This year, AZ Fine Time will get a very small taste of Credor in limited edition form. To give a subtle clue, imagine the Signo GBBD985, with subtle accents of cherry blossoms incorporated. To find out more about this model, please contact us 1-800-486-3396.
It was truly an honor to see one of the many highly skilled craftsmen of Seiko live in action. Stay tuned to the AZFT Blog for more news on Credor and other amazing Seiko products!
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See our video of Kiyoshi Terui below…
See more pictures below…