Hanhart Introduces the Flieger Friday Edition

A modern take on the air force chronograph .

Historically the world’s leading producer of mechanical stopwatches – the sort once standard issue at athletic meets – Hanhart has shifted its focus to sports chronographs in recent years. Most of them are based on the brand’s vintage watches from the early- to mid- 20th century, especially the distinctive pilot’s chronographs it supplied to the German air force.

While some of its offerings are remakes, the brand’s latest is an overtly modern take on the 1930s pilot’s chronograph. The #FliegerFriday Edition combines a black-coated steel case with a dark blue dial as well as the brand’s trademark red reset pusher. With the origins of the design are vintage, the Flieger Friday Edition has a calculated casual style that stems from its inspiration – the social media hashtag #FliegerFriday, which refers to wearing a pilot’s watch over the weekend.

Initial thoughts

Hanhart is not short of vintage remakes – usually executed with signature elements like a red pusher or knurled bezel – so the modern style of the Flieger Friday Edition is unusual and welcome.

Admittedly the blue-dial sports chronograph formula is well used, but here it’s done with a little more novelty by pairing the dial with a steel case coated in black diamond-like-carbon (DLC). Add to that the splash of red, and the result is a striking watch that does live up to the hashtag’s basis of a fun, weekend watch.

The watch is reasonably priced at US$2,700, which is not much more than the standard version. The price is well within the ballpark for a chronograph powered by a Sellita (or ETA) movement, but here it comes with the bonus of a DLC-coated case as well as Hanhart’s fliegerchronograph history.

Despite being an affordable watch, the Flieger Friday Edition is more than meets the eye. It incorporates a few notable vintage-inspired details, including the obvious red pusher, but also the less apparent asymmetrically-spaced pushers.

And it designers also got most of the other details right. The hands, for instance, are coloured to distinguish between functions – the hands for time-telling are frosted silver, while the elapsed-time hands are white with a red tip. Crucially, the watch incorporates several cool details taken from the vintage originals, including asymmetrically-spaced pushers.

Vintage details

The bi-compax layout is a nod to the brand’s first-ever chronograph from 1939 that was powered by the in-house cal. 41. The modern version, however, is powered by a modified SW-500, derived from the ubiquitous ETA 7750. Specifically, it’s a cal. HAN3809, which is a SW-500 that’s been modified by movement specialist La Joux-Perret (LJP) to relocate the minute counter from 12 to 3.

Similarly, the cathedral hands are taken from the vintage original. More interesting, but less apparent, is a quirk found on the vintage original – asymmetrical pushers. They’ve been replicated on Hanhart’s modern-day offerings, with the start and stop pushers positioned at different distances from crown, with the start button sitting farther away.

The case size, on the other hand, is definitely modern. It’s large at 42 mm but sized appropriately for a modern sports watch, though it’s thick at 15 mm tall.


Key facts and price

Hanhart #FliegerFriday Edition

Diameter: 42 mm
Height: 15 mm
Material: Steel with DLC coating
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance:
 100 m

Movement: Cal. HAN3809 (Sellita SW-500 with modified by La Joux-Perret)
Functions: Hours, minutes, date, and chronograph
Frequency: 28,800 beats per hour (4 Hz)
Winding: Automatic
Power reserve: 42 hours

Strap: Ox leather strap

Limited edition: 100 pieces
Availability: Now at Hanhart’s online shop and authorised dealers
Price:
€2,490 (including 19% VAT)

For more, visit hanhart.com.


 

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Singer Reimagined Introduces the Track 1 DLS Edition

Light, sleek, and smart.

Having just concluded, Monterey Car Week was a series of shows and auctions, concluding with the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. The week was the venue for Porsche 911 specialist Singer Vehicle Design to exhibit the DLS for the first time in the United States. Launched in 2018, the DLS is a Porsche 964 that’s been entirely remade to be ultra-light and ultra-aerodynamic.

To go along with the car, Singer Reimagined rolled out the Track 1 DLS Edition. It’s a new take on Singer’s trademark central chronograph, reimagined to be, well, ultra-light, while retaining its recognisable case design and thoroughly original Agenhor movement.

Initial thoughts

Because it combines a distinct, retro design along with a truly ingenious movement, I like the Track 1 (and I own another version of the watch). The DLS is essentially a condensed version of the same thing – and it’s cool.

The aesthetic is pared-back just enough, while the composite case is an interesting novelty. Though the material is common in watchmaking, it’s a first for Singer.

The only shortcoming I can uncover is a philosophical one: the DLS Edition echoes its namesake automobile with lightweight materials, but unlike the car, it doesn’t make any functional changes. The movement is identical to that of the standard model, but it is admittedly an excellent and innovative movement.

Still, all that’s a moot point given that the watch is only available to owners of the car, of which there will be just 75.

Condensed and streamlined

Singer Vehicle Design is a cult brand that specialises in modifying the Porsche 964, the 911 version produced in the early 1990s. In 2017, an American client asked for a high-performance version of its automobile, resulting in the DLS, created in collaboration with Williams, the race-car engineering outfit best known for its eponymous Formula 1 team.

Short for “Dynamics and Lightweighting Study”, the DLS is essentially a 964 that’s undergone a Formula 1 facelift, making it lighter, stiffer, and faster. So it’s made up of lots of carbon fibre composite, with a body that’s been refined to be even more aerodynamic.

The DLS. Photo – Singer Vehicle Design

Priced at about US$2 million, the DLS is a limited edition of 75 cars – all sold out apparently. Only the 75 would-be owners of the car will be able to order a DLS Edition chronograph.

The DLS Edition wristwatch approaches the matter in the same way. All the metal components, like the bezel and pushers, are titanium, while the case is made of carbon composite – with unidirectional layers hence the concentric grain – with each of the lugs hollowed out to further trim the weight.

To go along with the lightweight construction, the DLS Edition has a stripped-down dial, which brings to mind the Flytrack, a simplified version of the Track 1 that has only a flyback seconds.

Its minimalism is extreme but also functional. Everything that’s superfluous has been removed, including the hour and minute scales for the time. In their place are twin rotating rings, each with an arrow pointing to the current time.

The chronograph is similarly streamlined, leaving just the 60-minute scale for both the elapsed seconds and minutes, along with baton markers for the elapsed hours.

The DLS Edition is customisable to a degree, allowing the owner to match the livery of his car. Specifically, the case can be rendered in another material, titanium being an obvious choice, while the bezel, pushers, and crown can be treated with colour, while the finish of the dial elements can be varied.

Mechanically, the DLS Edition remains identical to the standard model. It’s powered by the cal. 6361 AgenGraphe, a cleverly constructed movement developed by Geneva specialist Agenhor.

The calibre boasts several patented mechanisms within the chronograph, along with a unique donut-like construction that leaves the centre of the movement open for the complications. And it has a novel automatic winding mechanism that sees the rotor hidden under the dial, leaving the back entirely unobscured, revealing the intricate chronograph mechanism in all its glory.

The cal. 6361 in the Track 1 Geneva Edition


Key facts and price

Singer Reimagined Track 1 DLS Edition

Diameter: 43 mm
Height: 15 mm
Material: Carbon composite with bezel, back, pushers, and crown in titanium
Crystal: Sapphire
Water resistance:
 100 m

Movement: Cal. 6361 AgenGraphe
Functions: Hours, minutes, and central chronograph with elapsed hours, minutes, and seconds
Frequency: 21,600 beats per hour (3 Hz)
Winding: Automatic
Power reserve: 55 hours

Strap: Leather or fabric with titanium rivets

Limited edition: Maximum of 75, to match the number of cars made
Availability: Only to owners of the Singer Vehicle Design DLS
Price:
On request, dependant on customisation (standard versions of the Track 1 starting at about US$50,000)

For more, visit Singerreimagined.com.


 

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