News: Habring² Doppel 3 split seconds chronograph

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Last year Habring² presented the Doppel 2.0, which was based on the simplified split seconds chronograph built on a Valjoux 7750 base that Richard Habring developed at IWC. It was a success – the limited edition of 20 pieces sold out quickly and the Doppel 2.0 also won the Sports Watch Award at the Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève 2012. So it is no surprise that Habring² has just announced the Doppel 3.

The biggest upgrade is that the Doppel 3 is now a monopusher chronograph – the button at two o’clock controls the start, stop and reset while the button at ten o’clock is for the split seconds hand. In addition the Doppel 3 is available with options like complete calendar, central minute counter or moon phase, thanks to the modular system of upgrades offered by Habring².

The Doppel 3 is available in silver, black or grey, with red and silver hands, in the style of 1960s  sporting stopwatches. Only 20 pieces will be made per year, with each engraved with the serial number as well as year of production, with a retail price of EUR6750. – SJX

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Photo essay: Corum Chargé d’Affaires alarm

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Last year at Baselworld Corum presented the Chargé d’Affaires alarm watch, a limited edition using a new old stock AS 1475 (Anton Schild) manual wind alarm calibre.

Corum Chargé d’Affaires in white gold

A faithful replica of the 1956 original save for its modern 38 mm size case, the Chargé d’Affaires is part of Corum’s Heritage collection, which comprises remakes of vintage timepieces. The brand’s better known timepiece is of course the Golden Bridge, originally designed by Vincent Calabrese, who recently joined Corum. The movement inside has the typical 20th century alarm mechanism with a powerful, vibrating alarm which sounds like a cricket and goes on for more than 12 seconds. It is powered by twin barrels, one for the time and the other for the alarm.

Corum has done an admirable job of recreating the feel of a 1950s wristwatch, complete with a domed sapphire crystal and a matching domed dial.

The dial is grained and silvered, with applied, faceted markers.

This is limited to 200 pieces, 150 in rose gold and another 50 in white gold, with retail prices of SGD26,857 (about USD21,700) and SGD29,639 (which is approximately USD23,900) respectively. – SJX

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Baselworld 2013: Harry Winston Histoire de Tourbillon 4

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Harry Winston, which was just acquired by the Swatch Group, will unveil the Histoire de Tourbillon 4 at Baselworld 2013 in April. The Histoire de Tourbillon 4 is a triple axis tourbillon – the balance wheel inside three concentric cages, each rotating at a different speed. 

The goal of all that is to average out the errors caused by gravity in all positions, not unlike what the Jaeger-LeCoultre Gyrotourbillon does, albeit with two instead of three tourbillon cages (note the visual similarities in the tourbillon cage). The first cage closest to the adjustable mass balance wheel makes one round every 45 seconds, the next cage rotates once in 75 seconds and the outermost cage takes 300 seconds to complete one revolution. Despite its complexity and size, the tourbillon weighs only 1.57 g, being mostly titanium.

All the bridges as well as the base plate of the movement are PVD coated titanium, with a frosted finish on top and polished, bevelled edges.

On the front the dial is regulator style, with the hours and minutes on separate sub-dials, along with the power reserve display at four o’clock.

Because of the spherical shape of the tourbillon, the crystal over the tourbillon is domed. And the seconds hand is also curved to follow the shape of the tourbillon carriages.

The 47 mm cushion-shaped case is white gold, while the case band, arches and lugs are in Zalium, Harry Winston’s proprietary alloy. This is a limited edition of 20 pieces. This is the fourth Histoire de Tourbillon wristwatch from Harry Winston. Its predecessor, launched last year, was a double tourbillon and was conceived and produced by Complitime, the sister company of Greubel Forsey which specialises in manufacturing complications for other brands. Neither Harry Winston nor Complitime officially acknowledge the origins of the Histoire de Tourbillon watches, but I believe this year’s Histoire de Tourbillon has a similar provenance. Interestingly, despite the shared origins with Greubel Forsey, the Histoire de Tourbillon watches have a drastically different aesthetic and finishing style compared to the magnificent timepieces of Greubel Forsey, which is likely on purpose so as to differentiate the product. Ironically that is the philosophical opposite of the Harry Winston Opus series, which is a very public collaboration between an independent watchmaker and Harry Winston. – SJX

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