What can I say - the 1815 Chronograph is perhaps the most beautiful in-house developed column wheel chronograph.
I hope you enjoyed the photos.
I hope you enjoyed the photos.
Go down to the Lange Boutique at Ion Orchard to view the Lange One and also the 200th Anniversary Lange 1815. Only one piece of the 1815 left at the Boutique and limited to 200 pieces worldwide.
Photos taken with iPhone 6 and iPad light source.
Right off the bat, the folks at De Bethune understood the philosophy of quality. What makes a timepiece desirable? Well as far as I know, they feel a timepiece has to be accurate and the finishing top notch. At first glance, one will know the work done and the class of a well finished timepiece. Such is the earlier series of DB timepieces. I was lucky to see the original DB8 mono pusher chronograph belonging to a friend and I fell in love with the earlier DB series. And it is a lot more within budget too!
The beautifully executed guilloché dials of the earlier DBs are just absolutely mesmerising. The DB8 comes with a third party movement and a closed case back. I understand the movement was from the days when Denis Flageollet was at Techniques Horlogerès Appliquées (THA).
I had asked Alessandro Zanetta (Marketing Director of DB) why the earlier pieces were closed case back and he had said that this was probably because they were third party movements and the only time De Bethune will come with a see-through case back is when they had developed their own in-house movement. Kudos to the folks at De Bethune. Slight digression… Another beautiful look at the guilloché dial of the DB8. Stunning!
As I understand it, the DB9 comes with another third party movement - the Jaquet J4000 movement with a 7 days power reserve (168 hours) and a power reserve display. De Bethune DB9 comes with a white gold polished moon on a blue disk which moves from the maximum (right side) to the minimum power reserve. I originally thought the moon was a moon phase but quickly learnt that is it De Bethune’s way of displaying the power reserve - novel!
According to their marketing materials, the modified movement is decorated with the Cotes de Geneve pattern and is hand polished. I trust they do good work there looking at their in-house pieces. They have inserted an up and down mechanism to the base calibre for the power reserve indication. The crown is octagonal in shape. Their attention to detail is the hallmark of a De Bethune timepiece.
There is something about the way the folks at DB does the blue - I simply love the blue hue they are able to develop. The DB9 is my first De Bethune but I hope it will not be my last. So the search continues for more De Bethune timepieces that are within reach.
For a more detailed report please visit this post.
A good friend of mine had wanted the 1815 chrono for the longest time but finding one at the right price with the right piece was always elusive. The 1815 chrono in the pre-owned market is always difficult to find - especially if you want one at the right price. Patience they say is a virtue and so he waited and waited - then one day, it was there. From an overseas AD in Japan! Amongst our group of watch collector friends, many were eyeing this piece and I had to be quick. Not only do I need to be quick, I had to enlist the help of my Japanese colleague to call the AD to reserve this piece. And it all worked out beautifully!
So happy with the purchase, the first thing we did was take the watch to my place and examine it inside out. And with all 1815 chrono or Datograph owners, the first thing we did was turn it around and examine the movement.
However you look at it, both version of the 1815 chronograph are exquisite. I love them both and I am so happy for my friend. Next, the hunt for the rose gold black dial.
The Goldpfeil series had watchmakers like Vianney Halter, Felix Baumgartner (Urwerk) and Vincent Calabrese amongst others. Mr. Calabrese as many would know is the name behind the Corum Golden Bridge and he later started his own company NHC which specialises in the jumping hour complication. The Goldpfeil Jumping Hour is housed in a white gold case.
Encased in white gold, the scratches show through unlike steel case which are probably more scratch resistant. The hour and date discs are slightly salmon pink is colour and the "jump" is instantaneous.
Each Goldpfeil watch features a signature - the Goldpfeil arrow. In this timepiece, the blue Goldpfeil arrow is the minute hand. What is also unique is the case - lacking a "dial". Mr. Calabrese reduces the timepiece to the essentials of telling time.
Unfortunately, the Goldpfeil collection launched in 2001 is long closed and all watches probably account for. Read more about the Goldpfeil collection in my earlier post on the Vianney Halter. And the immediate task is to have this restored to its former shine. Runs well but I have to take better care of the case.
I took the pictures when I was in the Wempe outlet in Hamburg so pardon the lighting in the showroom reflecting off the watch.
The watch looks very similar to the GO Senator Chronometer except that the GO version comes with a silver dial, a big date as well as a day and night indicator. The Wempe version comes without the date and the day/night indicator.
And if I were not rushed for time or had a bigger budget, I would have spent more time admiring the watch and probably ended up buying it myself like I did the Chronometerewerke Tonneau which I had earlier posted about.
The German luxury marque approached the Academie Horlogere des Createurs Independants (Horological Academy of Independent Creators - AHCI) to commission a few watchmakers to develop a one-of-a-kind timepiece featuring style unique to each watchmaker. The watchmakers were invited to the Offenbach headquarters outside Frankfurt to view the works of Goldpfeil and probably to draw inspiration to their own masterpiece. The invited AHCI members were Sven Andersen, Urwerk Founders (Thomas & Felix Baumgartner & Martin Frei), Vincent Calabrese, Vianney Halter, Frank Jutzi, Bernhard Lederer and Antoine Preziuso.
The year was 2001 when the “dream team” unveiled the 7 timepieces - all uniquely reflecting the character of each watchmaker. One of the more sought after piece from that collection came from Vianney Halter. And in my recent trip to Japan, I managed to pick up one piece for a friend - and what a catch it was!
And what about the moon phase indicator? Well, instead of showing a revolving moon as most other timepieces will show, Vianney decided to change the display. And what a novel way to tell the moon phase using a rectangular pointer to indicate the phases of the moon.
Made in limited quantities, the Goldpfeil collection is actually 14 timepieces - 7 piece-unique timepieces for auction and another 7 “regular” pieces bearing the watchmaker’s signature and the Goldpfeil name. For the Goldpfeil Vincent Calabrese please find my post on that piece.