Month: October 2018

Reappearing The Disappearing ‘po Weber’

If you go to the Geneva Watch Fair earlier this year, you will definitely see a very special ‘time machine’ in the IWC exhibition hall. It is located in the most prominent hall of the exhibition hall. position. This ‘time machine’ is composed of four large circular digital dials, which rotate to form the string of 1868. This is also the time of the creation of IWC, which has a history of 150 years.
Why did IWC build such a strange ‘time machine’ to show its founding time?

   As early as 1883, the clockmaker Josef Pallweber of Salzburg came up with a very interesting time display structure. It replaces the hour and minute hands with a disc written with numbers. The hours and minutes constitute a digital display by rotating these discs. The movement controls the disc and hides it under the dial. The digital display of time is displayed through the window of the dial.

   This unique digital time-hopping system display method was very advanced at the time, not only simple and clear in reading, but also very interesting. In 1884, it attracted the attention of Pioneer Watches IWC. In the end, IWC and Joseph Poweber launched the first digital time-lapse pocket watch in the history of IWC-Pallweber.
   The unique display method of Powell Parker pocket watch is quite avant-garde design even if it is viewed from the current perspective. Of course, it has been very popular since its launch and is exported to all countries in the world. This is not empty words, we can look at the report below.

   In an antique market in China in 1968, a Pallweber III pocket watch in Chinese Han Xian time was found. It was originally sold to China in the Qing Dynasty in 1887. I have reviewed some historical materials. IWC has launched the Qing Dynasty customized Powell Parker pocket watch with Chinese numerals. Powell Parker has introduced three generations of gears based on changes in its internal movement gears. Eventually discontinued in 1890, in just six years, a total of about 20,000 Beauvais pocket watches were manufactured in Schaffhausen.
   This year, at the 150th anniversary of the founding of IWC, this pioneering pocket watch in the history of IWC was given a new life. IWC introduced the 150th Anniversary Special Edition of the “Pallweber”, featuring the same time-of-day digital display as previous pocket watches.

   It sounds easy to reproduce a former function. However, there is a huge problem for ‘Poweber’, which is the problem of power reserve. At that time, the main reason for the suspension of Powell Parker’s pocket watches was that ‘digital jumping’ had extremely high requirements on power reserve, and the technology at the time could not solve this problem. This time, the technical team of IWC challenged this problem.

   IWC’s engineers have developed an exclusive new solution, which is different from Pallweber pocket watch discs driven by open gear, the new model 94200 on the 150th Anniversary Special Edition of ‘Pallweber’ The self-produced movement adopts a dual barrel structure. The minute and hour display disk is powered by a separate wheel train system of a barrel. The power of the separate wheel train system of the display disk does not affect the conventional wheel train system, so it can Ensures precise 4 Hz operation and provides a power reserve of up to 60 hours.
   In the design of this watch, this ‘tribute to Pallweber (Pallweber)’ special edition watch is reproduced in place, even more remarkable is the watch case with four curved lugs, this is the original The lug style used at birth was minimalistic and expressive.

   45mm case of the new ‘Pallweber’ 150th Anniversary Special Edition watch, in platinum, red gold and stainless steel, with 12 high-quality lacquered dials in blue and white, platinum Limited to 25 pieces, limited to 250 pieces in red gold and 500 pieces in stainless steel. I wore real objects at the Geneva Watch Fair. The dial is comparable to the enamel dial, the face value is very positive, and the word jump display is quite interesting. In addition, the number of limited editions is really small, and each country has no points.

Traditional Hairspring Balance Will Be Replaced By Zenith Defy Inventor

Zenith launched the Defy El Primero 21 watch with a one-second accurate timing in 2017. In the same year, Zenith released Defy Lab, a ‘prototype’ model developed by the watch factory to develop a revolutionary speed regulation mechanism. In 2019, this ‘prototype’ is leaving the experimental stage. Zenith launched the new Defy Inventor, consisting of hundreds of components, and equipped with its own patented governor. Like its predecessor, Defy Inventor has the most advanced technical performance and a modern look made of advanced materials. Coupled with its precise timing accuracy, its style has been designed to attract the attention of watch fans.

The Zenith time-controlled oscillator control system on the watch replaces the traditional hairspring balance with more than three centuries with a high-frequency, timing accuracy, reliable and stable pendulum.

Defy Inventor vibrates at an extremely high frequency of 18 Hz and has a power reserve of up to two days. Its outstanding performance is attributed to a single Zenith speed-adjusting oscillator developed by the watch factory itself, replacing three used in mechanical watchmaking. Half-century hairspring balance. This major innovation will benefit watches. First, it improves reliability, because the function of this ultra-thin component is to use the innovative speed regulation mechanism to change the clockwork power to time, replacing the traditional escapement system. Thirty or so parts are used, eliminating contact, friction, wear and deformation. Second, the stability is enhanced because it is made of single crystal silicon, so it is insensitive to temperature changes and magnetic fields. In addition, its escape wheel is made of soft blades, which is also the first in the watchmaking world.

The equally lightweight hollow face plate forms a stylized structure, five of which are reminiscent of the star logo of Zenith

The watch is made of ultra-light brushed titanium, while the textured bezel is made of new Aeronith materials. The world’s lightest aluminum composite is developed using an exclusive high-tech process. One-third the weight of titanium, made of foamed aluminum and reinforced with polymers, Aeronith is as light as it is when worn, and has a unique modern style.

The case is made of lightweight titanium and Aeronith, an innovative aluminum and polymer composite that complements the structured structure

The wide hour and minute hands on the face plate swept through the mechanical structure, while the top of the slender middle small second hand is decorated with a star and equipped with a second hand stop system to achieve ultra-precise calibration to the second. The iconic Defy Inventor features a blue crocodile leather lined with a black rubber strap that fits on the wrist and has the ultimate futuristic style.

Defy Inventor

Titanium, Aeronith material / 9100 self-winding movement / hours, minutes and seconds display / sapphire crystal mirror / waterproof 50 meters / table diameter 44mm / reference price: 135,000 RMB

Swatch Of 10,000 Yuan, Can You Buy It?

Recently, the Swiss watch brand Swatch (not Swatch Group) has launched a watch with a price of about 10,000 yuan, called Flymagic. There are two stainless steel versions and one PVD coated stainless steel. Versions, each limited to 500 pieces, priced at $ 1,500, renminbi price of about 10,000 yuan. When this news came out, it was really shocking, because we all know that Swatch has always been one of the cheapest Swiss watches. The price of ordinary watches is only a few hundred yuan, and mechanical watches are more than 1,000 yuan. Except for a few collections and limited editions, there are really no watches that cost 10,000 yuan, so this time Flymagic really did a great deal. So what’s so amazing about this ‘highest’ price Swatch? Let’s see it together.

New movement of the movement
   First of all, this Flymagic does not use a precious metal case, nor does it use any expensive exterior materials, so it is so expensive to sell, mainly because of the movement. The movement used by Flymagic is the ‘modified’ Sistem 51 movement. Swatch turned the Sistem 51 over, adding 15 components, so that the dial can be displayed on one side of the automatic rotor of the movement, which is to reverse the movement .

   The Sistem 51 movement is very familiar to everyone. It was first introduced in 2013. It is a magical mechanical movement of Swatch. Its appearance directly led the price of Swiss mechanical watches to more than 1,000 yuan, and it also has 90. Hour power reserve. You know, the automatic movement, 80 movement watch with 80 hours of dynamic storage, the price is at least about 4,000 yuan. The 51 movement through the Swatch Group’s strong movement development and manufacturing capabilities, full mechanized platform operations, automatic production assembly, laser etching, only 51 parts to achieve these functions, it has to be said to be very powerful. Tissot now also uses the higher-level Sistem 51 movement, which costs more than 2,000 yuan.

   This time Swatch ‘refit’ this movement, the added components are mainly located above the barrel, used to ‘relocate’ the display system from the front to the back of the movement. Through the transparent automatic tourbillon, we can see that the automatic hammer rotates out of thin air and looks dazzling.
Use of new hairspring Nivachron
   In addition to the movement modification, its biggest highlight is actually the use of a new hairspring, Nivachron. This hairspring was jointly developed by the Swatch Group and Audemars Piguet. It has already applied for a patent in the first half of last year and will be announced in the second half of the year. At that time, there was no exact information on which brand of watch this gossamer would be used on, but no matter what brand, it may not have been thought that it would be applied to Swatch first.

   The emergence of Nivachron, the main problem solved is still the antimagnetic of the movement. At present, there are two main methods of anti-magnetic movement of the movement. One is used long ago, adding a soft iron inner case to the watch. The engineers of IWC and Vacheron Constantin are the typical examples; the other is to use anti-magnetic Material for key parts of the movement, especially hairsprings, gear shafts, etc. The current trend is the second one. The first one is easier to do, but it cannot be seen through and cannot show the beauty of the movement. Therefore, after the technology is upgraded, the second one is becoming more and more mainstream. At present, the most popular method for anti-magnetic parts is to use silicon, titanium and other anti-magnetic materials for production. Among them, the balance spring and escapement system are mostly made of silicon. For example, the coaxial movement certified by Omega To Zhen Observatory uses silicon. gossamer. Silicon itself has a large stock, easy to obtain, and the cost will not increase significantly. Both Tissot and Mido are already using the 80 movement of silicon hairspring, the price is not high, and it is very versatile. However, silicon has two weaknesses. One is that it is relatively brittle compared to metal hairsprings. The toughness is not good enough, so it cannot be repaired. If it is broken, it can only be replaced. In the long run, it is not ideal. After all, finding original parts after decades will increase a lot. Difficulty; the other is the manufacturing process. The manufactured hairspring can only be flat. It does not have the traditional Breguet Shangrao structure. If it is added, a second layer structure will be installed, which will make it almost isochronous. Therefore, anti-magnetic metal hairspring is an ideal choice. Rolex’s Parachrom hairspring is one of them, but it has a patent and cannot be used by others.
   The emergence of Nivachron is bound to be a new choice. This hairspring is based on titanium. Official data show that it is 10-20 times more antimagnetic than conventional hairsprings. Therefore, this hairspring is not actually a completely anti-magnetic hairspring. It is a hairspring with strong anti-magnetic ability. Compared with silicon, it is better than metal, and its anti-magnetic ability is sufficient for the magnetic field in daily life. After all, Except for medical or some professional scientific research institutions, most people are rarely exposed to strong magnetic fields. This hairspring should be widely used in various brands of the Swatch Group in the future, so that it can greatly enhance the market competitiveness of Swatch Group watches.
New breakthrough for Swatch Group-anti-magnetic

   In fact, antimagnetic has long been a strong market competitiveness of the Swatch Group. In the past, the three major natural enemies of watches, almost all of them have waterproof and shockproof technology. Antimagnetic is an area that everyone has been exploring. Many people may also have misunderstood the anti-magnetic field, thinking that the anti-magnetic field of the hairspring is sufficient. In fact, the anti-magnetic field spring is part of the anti-magnetic field of the movement. It is very important, but not all. We know that most of the gears in the movement are made of brass, but most of the gear shafts are made of steel. Because the gears run at a high frequency, copper is too soft and easy to wear, so most of them are steel and subject to magnetism. So in recent years, the Swatch Group has applied for many patents, which are all about anti-magnetic, including anti-magnetic material and anti-magnetic processing gear shaft technology. It is known to include carbon-based or ceramic shafts, which have high hardness, are not easy to wear, and are magnetically resistant, of course, brittle. Anodized aluminum coating is also used to prevent magnetics. Through such a series of component anti-magnetic technology blessing, the movement can be truly anti-magnetic. Once the Swatch Group has popularized anti-magnetic technology into conventional watches, then Swatch Group’s watches can really be dominated in terms of practicality and cost performance.
   According to the news, the Swatch Flymagic watch was officially launched on April 30 this year, but with such a high price and limited amount, it is better to wait. The regular version of the Sistem 51 movement with Nivachron hairspring will also be available in September. It is estimated that it will not be much more expensive than the original Sistem 51, but it is worth looking forward to.

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