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Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The KLOK-08

From Klokers -

Courtesy of Klokers
The team from Klokers is back with an exciting new offering that is launching on Kickstarter.  Ladies and Gentlemen, and children of all ages, allow me to introduce the KLOK-08!

As the proud owner of the first KLOK-01s I have to say that this new offering is an exciting new iteration of the slide rule style.  As a comparison, here is my KLOK-01 -

You will note that the dial uses a slightly different layout with a slightly smaller sized font used for the minute wheel and a non-numeric second wheel.  And I have to say that it is a great variation on the original.
Courtesy of Klokers
The design team also stretched their palettes a bit, adding a gold tone case and crown.  While the romantic in me loves the original 01 for the wonderful color combinations, I have to be honest that this new take on the KLOKER's concept is equally satisfying for the same visceral reaction it brought me when I first saw the images.  This is something special.
Courtesy of Klokers
The colors that were selected are a bit more somber, offering a  pleasantly aged look.  All three offerings are at once timeless, and yet beguiling in their originality.  

Here are the pertinents, straight from the team in France:

Two concentric disks turning counter- clockwise to indicate the time along the vertical axis in the top of the dial 
Stainless steel casing and triple injected dial glass with integrated magnifying lens 
White and pink gold; black and

beige; warm grey and orange.
39 mm diameter x 10 mm high
(with strap): 60 g
Patented xing system (stainless steel 316L) push-button at 8h to unlock KLOK-08
from its support (strap or accessory) 

Quartz counter-clockwise - Ronda Swiss Made
30 m / 3 atm 

4 types of straps : leather, alcantara, textile, steel milanese
Leather: matte black, blue, caramel, yellow 

Alcantara: orange
Textile: mouse grey, lichen green, black 
Milanese: silver, black pink
230 mm

Patented xing system (stainless steel 316L) push-button at 8h to unlock KLOK-08 from its support (strap or accessory) 

Sunday, September 17, 2017

The BR V2-94 Bellytanker

From Bell & Ross -

Courtesy of Bell & Ross
There is something quite wonderful happening at Bell & Ross.  They are re-discovering their (admittedly not too ancient) roots, and in doing so offering some truly fantastic watches.  While I realize that there is a fair amount of enthusiasm about the Instrument collection, I have always been personally drawn to the pieces that make up the BRV models that are part of what is referred to as the Vintage collection.  But having said that, the line was getting a wee bit flat.  Like Henry Ford's Model T, you could have any model you wanted, so long as it was black.  I kid a bit here, because there had been some options like silver, or in the case of the Aeronvale, a stunning blue.  

But with the release of the GARDE-CÔTES, and now the BELLYTANKER, there is a fresh new take on a classic collection that has this Bell & Ross fan excited!

Courtesy of Bell & Ross

In fairness, I have not seen this model in person, so all that I have to go by are the images and the spec. sheet.  Having recently reviewed a "gently used" Bell & Ross chronograph ( The 2 Year Review ) I have to say that I came to really appreciate the tachymeter scale on the bezel.  The addition of screw-down push pieces greatly adds to the sporty look of the watch, but does so gently, and subtly.  It does not hit you over the head screaming - "I'm a sport watch, dammit!".  Rather, it lures you in, seductively.  

The dial is one that is going to haunt me for some time.  It is pleasingly different from what is available on the market.  What Bell & Ross describes as metallic copper and black.  It pops without overwhelming.  I hope at some point that a review might be possible, but I have to go with what is real - a visual impression (a very positive one), and the spec. sheet, which you can get the pertinents from below:

Movement: calibre BR-CAL.301. Automatic mechanical.

Functions: hours, minutes, small seconds at 3 o'clock. Date. 

Chronograph: 30-min timer at 9 o'clock, central chronograph seconds.

Case: 41 mm in diameter. Satin-polished steel. Steel bezel with tachymeter scale. Screw-down crown and push-buttons. Sapphire case-back. 

Dial: gilt. Metal applique numerals and indices. Metal skeletonised Superluminova®-filled hour and minute hands.

Crystal: ultra-curved sapphire with anti-reflective coating. 

Water-resistance: 100 metres.

Straps: satin-polished steel or brown calfskin.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

The Pharo Big Date with Power Reserve

From Limes -

Courtesy of Limes
Here are the pertinents -
Technical details
Movement Decorated Swiss hand wound movement ETA 2892-2 TOP with big date and power reserve, blued stainless steel screws, Geneva stripes and Perlage, LIMES logo
Watch case ICKLER made stainless steel case, polished and brushed, distinct vertical lines on circumference, diameter 40,5mm, thickness 11mm, domed sapphire crystal A/R coated, mineral crystal display back, crown with Ickler logo, waterresistant 5 ATM
Dial Silvered dial with Clou-de-Paris and Sunray Guilloché patterns, fine Roman numerals
Hands Blue Breguet hands
Band Black leather, width 20mm, wrist size: 18 - 22cm

The City Editions

From Meister Singer -

Courtesy of MeisterSinger
The series embraces 44 cities, and offers an evocative view of the city -

Courtesy of MeisterSinger
This is the Montreal.  

Each of these City Editions is limited to 10 pieces per each city.  

As near as I can tell, the dial is the same for every version, and the one City Edition that is different (at least on the "face of things") is the Rotterdam - EUROMAST -

Courtesy of MeisterSinger

The cities include:

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Embargo, Exlusive, and the Game

This first ran a while back, but it seems to still be a problem.  So I thought I'd reheat it for you -

For A Few Dollars More

So, some interesting watch news came out these past few weeks which you did not, and will not read about here. 

Brand PR staff as well as press agencies sent press releases under strict embargo.  They dressed these announcements with sugary phrases like "we really appreciate all of your support" and "we think you're really swell!"

Now what I and many of my colleagues in the fourth and fifth estate have come to discover is that, in fact, the reason for the embargo or intentional delay in sending the press release is because Brand X has, in some instances made an advertising deal with another outlet and part of that advertising deal is not only that Brand X pays a fee to run / promote the brand's item, but they lock down a media black out for everyone else, therefore conveying sense that they are somehow "more in the know", better connected, etc.  And of course when you get the release and post it 1, 2 or even 3 days in advance of everyone else, it would be reasonable to assume that you are somehow better informed.

An exclusive, gentle reader, is the idea that a writer has cultivated a special relationship with a brand, and owing to this, the brand trusts that one writer or outlet to handle their exclusive story or announcement.  Now in the "good old days", that meant communication, effort, hard work and sharing on both parts.  And if you were a big dog that might also mean that some money might have changed hands - but the idea of an exclusive meant that only one outlet would have the item.  And I think that is fair enough.  But an exclusive did not mean that the brand or agency would pay for the exclusive advance release, and then send the EXACT SAME RELEASE with the intention of paying one big outlet, and expecting everyone else to "carry the water".  It's a bit disingenuous and is guaranteed to engender a less-than warm and fuzzy feeling.

To be VERY CLEAR - this is not a judgment about any outlet and how they go about doing their business.  This is very much up to them, and if they can build a better mousetrap?  Well more power to them.  But to the brand representatives and pr agencies, don't expect the rest of us to wag our tails like little puppies under the dinner table waiting for the scraps to fall onto the floor.  We work just as hard, and many of us do it for free.  Don't be shocked or surprised when we don't want to roll on our backs and show you our tummies.

Either do an exclusive or don't, but don't half-ass it.