This Week in Time : An Instagram highlight of the last seven days
Let us keep this simple. Seven days. Seven watches.
On Saturday I saw this extreme macro close up of a Breitling dial from WatchFred and was just blown away by the detail on this piece. The reference in question is a Breitling Chronomat Ref. 769 from 1946 which features a logarithmic slide rule calculator. I was incorrect in my assumption that the Chronomat was a relatively recent addition to the Breitling family so this was a nice surprise to see one from the 40s! What I think is great about this photograph is just the level of detail in printing that has happened on the dial. Look at the B in Breitling and think that seventy years ago someone was able to get the two rounded bowls of the B separate from the ascender by less than a millimeter. Look at the small serif on the R, a small detail that probably wouldn't go noticed 99% of the time yet was included anyway. The more you look the more you see. Watchfred says that if you looked a modern dial you'd probably be disappointed in the print quality. After seeing this piece I'm inclined to believe him!
Now this one might be considered cheating as this Omega Speedmaster Mark 4.5 is often seen around the Worn & Wound instagram page but I've loved this piece for so long I don't care. I'm probably not alone but I prefer this piece to the Mark 4 and it's way above the Mark 3 in my opinion. With the Mark 4 I always felt that the "automatic" line of text left the dial too open and lopsided so the addition of the day balances everything out nicely. What I like about this piece is that despite all the different complications (24 hour dial, day & date apertures, minute and hour dials and running seconds and GMT hand) it all seems to blend together nicely. Of course this piece is being worn on a Wound & Wound branded strap which works very well with the hooded covers lugs of this piece. I would love to see a modern reissue of this piece however the current Omega Co-Axial chronograph movements would not have the same dial placement and don't have a day/date confirugation in the same way either. One can but dream!
Now I'm a big fan of chronographs, especially dress chronographs as I feel they are the perfect combination of style and substance. Not only do you get a beautiful watch that will suit any formal occasion but there is a degree of practicability there as well (Omega Deville Tresor Chronograph. Make it happen Mr Urquhart!). This Omega chronograph coming from the andrea_foffi_odm instagram is simply divine. I don't know what it is about vintage watches but man, that font is gorgeous! I love the simple combination of numbers and triangle hour markers. I'm not a fan usually of numbers that are cut off by sub dials but I'm going to let it slide on this particular one. I don't think I have ever seen such a well designed tachymeter or telemeter before, it's amazing.
I've written before about how I think TAG Heuer should start taking more and more inspiration from their past designs and these two watches from Rarebirds.de showcase exactly why. Two beautiful chronographs that have remained beautiful despite the years, sheer timeless design. The piece on the left is the Heuer Ref.2447NT which is probably one of the rarest Heuers available (or not so available depending on your point of view) and the right is the still very rare Heuer Ref. 2447NST. What do those letters mean at the end? Well NT would be Noir dial with Tachymeter scale and NST would be Noir dial, Silver sub dials with Tachymeter scale. If I had to chose only one I'd go for the NT simply because the NST would look to similar to that Paul Newman Daytona I'm going to get myself one day....As I said above, one can dream right?!
For those that are seriously interested in the NST however it is currently for sale over at Chrono 24 so go check that out if you've got the spare cash.
I've talked about NOS (New Old Stock) here on the site before and how that phrase can sometimes get overused. This is not one of those times. I mean just look at it. Not only does the watch appears to be in absolutely mint condition but it has the original swing tag, the original box + inlay, original blank guarantee papers and the original outer box (which for some reason has root ginger all over it). There aren't any words to accurately describe how good this watch is. This Ref. 94110 circa 1980 is currently for sale over at analog/shift and I do not expect it to last very long especially if you consider that Tudor Submariners are significantly rarer than Rolex to begin with (let alone in this condition). Tudor watches could not be any more in at the moment if they tried and I can see why. I really love the snowflake dial on this as the creamy hour markers go really well against that very subtly dark blue dial. Want.
Something you just have to strip everything superfluous away and bring it back to basics. This Rolex Datejust from Isaacwin is exactly that. I'm a big fan of putting a more contemporary strap on a classic watch and this Datejust/leather strap with white accent combo is a big win in my book. It seems to draw attention up from the strap onto the dial and boy what a dial. On paper it would write as something quite plain (boring even), silver dial with date and rectangular hour markers, but in the steel it's something else entirely. The silver dial has just a touch of shimmer to it allowing the light to play, the hour markers are delicate enough to suit a dress piece but still allow clear precise reading of the hands. Oh those hands. I love those hands. The older style fluted bezel I much prefer as well as it seems less pronounced than it's modern equivalent: less ostentatious more embellishment. A friend of mine wore his grandfather's Datejust to my wedding and it too exhibited the same old world style that Isaac's piece has.
Now I'll be the first to admit that when it comes to bubbleback Rolex my knowledge is very limited. That said you don't need to know every screw, jewel or reference about them to know that this is one heck of a watch. Posted by the very aptly named bubblebackwatches, this Rolex bubbleback is circa 1938-9 and is made of solid rose gold. What is fascinating to me about bubbleback Rolex is how different they are from anything that is being made today. It's possible to see hints of Pre-Daytona within current Daytonas, you have the Oyster Prince that emulates a lot of the original but nothing is quite like these pieces. The only similarity between this and a modern Rolex is the "Mercedes" hour hand and that is about it! Never before do you see so many different dials combinations, unique typefaces for the numbers, strange bezels and different bracelets. It's a smorgasbord of horological fancy. The piece has such a unique bezel with an almost nautical like look to it what with the porthole screw like hour markers running around it. For those that want to see more bubble back Rolex then I highly recommend checking out tenpastten's horological minute interview with Jason Singer (Mr. Bubblebackwatches himself) and Hodinkee's talkign watches episode with him.