Monday, 31 May 2010

Patek Philippe Exhibition in Singapore (Last Day 31 May)

Just doing a quickie post first as there are a number of pictures to process, if you haven't made it down theres a couple of hours left... DOH! Its great that the exhibition tours as it brings a lil bit of whats in Geneva to us in Asia. I must admit that i will definitely be getting a Patek someday but will have to save up for it :)

star caliber was on display. ultra complicated pocketwatch...
Photobucket

5002 Sky Moon Tourbillon
Photobucket

uncased movements were on display too... one of the ones i really liked other than the lemania one in the 5070, 5970...
Photobucket

haven't made up my mind yet but this is a strong contender for my first Patek... we'll see :)
Photobucket

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Other Diversions Pt I: Visions of Visionaire...

Photobucket

Visionaire is a multi-format album of fashion and art produced in exclusive numbered limited editions. Since its inception in the Spring of 1991, Visionaire has offered a forum for works by both famous and emerging artists from around the world as well as personalities, fashion designers, art directors, and image makers. (Source:www.visionaireworld.com) Artists work in collaboration with Visionaire to produce their personal interpretations on a theme and are given unparalleled freedom to push Visionaire's different formats.

i won't say a lot more but just note that you can find out more about the issues at the site and you figure out if its of interest to you ;) i for one have determined that i like many of the concepts and images, expressions i have seen but do not consider a US$200 or more per issue price sensible. One of the more notable issues #18 came with a LV monogram portfolio and went from a US$75 to over US$5k so it got some attention ;) but other notable issues to many would be #24 Tom Ford's Light issue, #20 Comme des Garcons curated by Rei Kawakubo, #22 Chic the ultimate fashion scrapbook... the following images are from "Dreaming in Print: A Decade of Visionaire" which covers a bit about the first 38 issues from their first decade in print...

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

[ click to see more images of visionaire... expand or collapse ]

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Saturday, 22 May 2010

Money Never Sleeps ;) The Return of Gecko The Great

trailer for the movie... for the young pups readin this, its a killer mix of the stones 'sympathy for the devil' playing in the background... check out his 'dai kor dai' ~ ancient mobile phone in it... the 80s man :)

It doesn't matter if its good or not really... i'll end up watching it once and then end up re-watching it when it comes out on dvd ;) the rest of the cast isn't so inspiring but its michael douglas in one of his most kick ass roles ever... they've kept us waiting long enuff :)

Natalie: What makes you think it's his birthday?
Bud: Well, it's in the bible, see?
Photobucket

marketing blurb: Michael Douglas is back in his role as one of the screen’s most notorious villains, Gordon Gekko. Emerging from a lengthy prison stint, Gekko finds himself on the outside of a world he once dominated. Looking to repair his damaged relationship with his daughter Winnie (Carey Mulligan), Gekko forms an alliance with her fiancé Jacob (Shia LaBeouf). But can Jacob and Winnie really trust the ex-financial titan, whose relentless efforts to redefine himself in a different era have unexpected consequences.

Greed for lack of a better word... is good...

cast of the movie wif mr. stone... oh and the reason i have the image is coz vacheron constantin has a 1921 american in the show :) product placement is happening as always and richemont is not passin it up of course. JLCs in Iron Man 2, VCs in Wall Street 2 etc etc etc...
Photobucket

a longer post on product placement to come in future of course. cheers, raph

Monday, 17 May 2010

What Goes Into A Vianney Halter Timepiece? A Peek Into The Magical World of Manufacture Janvier ~ Les Montres Vianney Halter

Photobucket

this is something that i chanced upon a while back and on communication with its author he noted that he was fine with me using some text and photos from his experience. the story in full can be found here (CLICK THIS) and i do recommend that you check it out... but over here i just wanted to point out some things that are done at the atelier and some of the photos that interested me from that post. so my hats off to Steyr for his detailed report on his four weeks at the atelier and my thanks to him for letting me repost some of the photos which have been tweaked by the raphmeister... so through his captures and my re-visioning... do come with us through the looking glass :)

the cases of the watch which most people outsource is done in the manufacture and the polishing too...
Photobucket

People who know watches, know that a lot of whats made these days are outsourced or provided by suppliers. A few manufactures do however look to do more parts of the watch in house then others. it goes back to a philosophy i suppose. the best way of ensuring that you get something done right and to the quality that you demand is if u do it under your own roof... so in the next series of photos and text, i will share a bit on what exactly is done under the roof at the Manufactures Janvier...

* Conceptualisation and design of the movement to testing & development
* Creating most of the watch's parts with machines in the manufacture...
* Hand engraving of the dial and case
* Crafting and manual bluing of the hands
* Making and finishing the case (eg.
the case of the antiqua is made out of 6 different parts assembled by invisible soldering... and the finishing is pure perfection :)
* Constructing the watchwinder which is also the watch box that the Antiqua comes in
* Finishing the watch movement, application of perlage and cotes de geneve
* Hand assembly


a movement of an antiqua waiting to be cased... it takes over a month of work in pre-assembly and the assembly to get it to this point...
Photobucket

hand assembly done by one of the watchmakers at the manufacture... Christian L
Photobucket

and after it all comes together... an art time piece that can make one dream...
Photobucket

[ click to read the rest of the post... expand or collapse ]

a lot of machines are used as well in the process... example tools are made with machines there and they are used to make many of the parts that go into the watch movement...

Photobucket

vianney showing how its done... hardening some steel parts old skool style...
Photobucket

manual blueing of hands gives the hands a certain consistency vs doing many at one go in a big oven... alcohol lamp and brass fillings and someone skilled should get the job done...
Photobucket

and voila! you obtain the most perfect of blued hands :)
Photobucket

engraving work done by Corinne in the picture below... it takes two weeks to engrave the dials of an Antiqua
Photobucket

for the gold dials, some letters are cut as a start to help in the hand engraving process but for the platinum dials, it is engraved without these... hand engraving allows for the unique character of the fonts...
Photobucket

the process of creating the dials is very similar to the one used for making those in old Marine chronometers... the engraving is filled up with paint...
Photobucket

which is then cleaned off and polished splendidly...
Photobucket

and the finished product... the coming together of a quality in house manufacture movement, hand engraved and finished dials, manually blued hands, crafted and polished case... all becoming one...
Photobucket

to end off, i would like to wish the team there the very best in the years ahead and my hats off to the artists and artisans that imbue these creations with a kind of magic and also to all the folks working at Manufacture Janiver ;)

A timetapestry salute then to Vianney, Evelyne, Corinne, Dilenia, Laurence, Maartje, Meryl, Miho, Rosa, Sadija, Anton, Bertrand, Bruno, Enrico, Gaetan, Jocelyn, Philippe, Sébastien (and any others i may have missed :)

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Patek Philippe Exhibition in Singapore end May and another very pricey Patek

for horology lovers who haven't signed up as yet and are in Singapore end of May, do go to patek.com/exhibition to book a slot for the guided tour...

Photobucket

a 4 day exhibition is on at the St Regis ballroom and over 250 rare exhibits will be making its way here from their museum in Geneva so its not to be missed unless you're heading to Geneva to check it out of course :) the tour is a lot more worthwhile and informative than just seeing the exhibits so do signup...

next up is a jaw dropping price for a wrist watch... the Patek Philippe 1527... 18K gold perpetual calendar chronograph with moon phases, manufactured in 1943 [ Estimate: $1,500,000 – 2,400,000 & Price realised: $5,637,702 ]
Photobucket

raphmeister's take: only for the uber rich who need to buy the rarest toys or those looking at pricey watches as an alternative asset class for investment or perhaps Patek for their museum... anyones guess :)

Press Release Info: A truly unique and historically important watch by Patek Philippe made horological history this morning when it was sold at auction for CHF6,259,000 ($5,637,702) in Geneva . The watch was rediscovered 20 years ago when it was first offered at auction, and it is only in recent months that the full history and attribution of the watch has been fully determined, with the help of numerous scholars and archivists. Dating back to 1943, only two complicated wristwatches with this reference number, 1527, were ever made. The other model which is currently housed in the Patek Philippe Museum does not have the chronograph mechanism as in the present watch, making both of them equally unique one-off pieces. This large size, perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch, with its avant-garde design and proportions, is a highly important masterpiece and historically the most noteable forerunner of future generations of complicated Patek Philippe wristwatches.

In today’s world, where everything is made in vast quantities, individualism is hard to come by. As a consequence, the present watch is, by all means, not only a significant milestone in Patek Philippe's history of complicated wristwatches, but without a doubt also one of the world's most important wristwatches. With a pre-sale estimate of CHF1.5 – 2.5 million the model was met with an overflowing saleroom and a series of keen bidders resulting in this phenomenal result of CHF 6,259,000.

Monday, 3 May 2010

opus? & la kermit ;)

one of the worst watches out of basel this year with a over half a million USD price tag (if i recall correctly) is the harry winston opux X. just look at it! emperors new clothes kaching kaching ;) the question is how did it get to this point... i mean what happened along the way from great pieces like opus III (though sadly not delivered still) and V and now to this?

thick and big 46mm in white gold and limited to a 100 pieces. the whole dial turns but honestly, who cares? :)
Photobucket

perhaps its because the hwrt team lost one of its best and brightest? :) something new came out today from a man whose name is inextricably tied to that of the harry winston's opus line(for now) and thats max busser with the mb&f hm3 frog. why frog? let the pics speak for themselves...

ribbit... ribbit... i did a double take when i saw the "H" and "M" at the top of the globes... thought it read "H""W" for a second ;) an interesting version of the hm3. this one coming in black pvd coated titanium and limited to 12 pieces...
Photobucket

a titanium version is gonna be out there too with the nice blue battle axe rotor showing... the super-thin-and-lite aluminium domes rotate to tell the time in globe shaped sapphires... its 835 right now based on the pointers...
Photobucket

it makes me think of frogger games and ...
Photobucket

ms piggy goin "ker-mit..." ahh the lovely couple
Photobucket

no final verdict from the raphmeister on the froggie yet. hope to see it in the metal [though i may not get the chance] before makin' up my mind but for now... in all honesty, i find it alright. cheers, raph

Added note on 8 May 2010... check out this pic Harry took of the live frog here [click here] ok... i like the frog based on this and other live pics i've seen... looks very cool :) cheers, raph

Saturday, 1 May 2010

nah there's nothing more i want... well except perhaps one of the best damn tourbillons out there ;)

prototype of a kick-a$$ tourbillon... kick-A$$! was informed that M. Journe sold this to his friend and first client...
Photobucket

i like asking other watch passionistas whats next for them... what have you been researching on? hunting for? is it an elusive iwc or patek? is it a vianney halter classic or antiqua... well what is it??!?! :) for the raphmeister... the phrase oft heard by mrs. r is 'this is the last one honey... no more watches for me' and we both know its BS of the highest order... after my freak acquisition it was 'no more watches for the year!'... and i got the antiqua a few months later (head scratching...) but this is a definite thing... raphmeister having very finite resources will be getting only one last cheap watch this year... and no more! (for the year :)

but if i had the money (eg if i struck the lottery or have a rich distant relation that i have never met pass on and bestow a couple of 100k to me or any sudden windfall from sale of body parts that i don't need 2 of) i've decided... the one tourbillon that i want will be mine... the FP Journe Tourbillon Souverain à remontoir d’égalité or the one wif avec Seconde Morte... hubba hubba hubba

Photobucket

no official numbers of the original tourbs made but it is believed that there are less than 400 out there today... about a 100 ruthenium dial LEs, 200 in plat, 50 in rose. for same dial and case combos, about 80s out there. its the first wristwatch made in the world with remontoir = a more constant outflow of energy from the escapement to hopefully give u more accuracy (isochronosim) for the time. end of day its just a time only watch yuh :)

there are 2 versions of FPJs tourbillon remontoirs.. the first sans dead seconds is this one... which is probably my fave dial color combo for this version...
Photobucket

and the second one up is the one with dead seconds. what does dead seconds mean raph? well u know those quartz watches that tick second to second? well thats what the dead seconds is about. instead of sweeping it jumps from second to second like uhm an analog quartz watch... but of course this is a mechanical wonder and art (said with no tongue-in-cheekness) after the second is up, it jumps to the next second so it should be ultra accurate to the second... u see comparo pics of the 1st and 2nd one below...

note the orientation of the power reserve indicator at 12 o'clock position for the 1st and 2nd one... one without and one with the seconds dial... the cock attachment shown on the dial to hidden
Photobucket

one thing to note about fpj is that he creates and prototypes them beautiful watches and once they are created fresh and new and working ok for awhile, he outsources production of all the bits and pieces that go into it. when these bits and pieces are made they ship to his shop and he has folks that put them altogether working for him in montres journes. so the quality of the watch then is dependent on the quality of the stuff his suppliers make. if they give quality stuff than u have a quality watch. if they give stuff that isn't up to it in terms of tolerances and fine-ness than well u might get a not so great ticker. [note: i believe as of 2006 most of the production has been done in-house. a source states over 90% is done in-house. note what this could mean is that Journe bought over or into the companies that supply to him the parts which is perfectly fine of course. some of it may be done in their own buildings though. i won't know the %s...so if your watch is made post 2006 and has issues, it means Montres Journe QC is not up to scratch] many fpj owners will be able to relate quality issues they have faced with their watches. also of repairs needed within the first year of ownership. dates that went past 31... power reserves that couldn't hold power... etc etc etc. now some folks would jump up and down if their $10k watch behaved this way. if their $50-100k watch behaved this way... well u get the picture...

uhm lets see... what version is the bestest? i'd take the dead seconds with a dark dial ruthenium or black mother of pearl... and for the 1st version probably the yellow gold dial...
Photobucket

so i would say fpj, and a fair number of the independent manufacturers who have small volumes and require specific parts, beholden to certain suppliers out there could be not the best choices for folks who can't accept that their exotic timepiece may require more tlc or more trips to the factory than say an eta/unitas workhorse at a fraction of its cost. how we suffer for our love of art ;) [side note... a bit of history... in 1989 THA had fp journe, denis flageollet of de bethune and one vianney halter working for it :) 3 french watchmaker buddies who worked in a movement concept company and did some astounding work before they went their seperate ways...]
oh but what lovely art it is...
Photobucket

retail for the plat is about US$150k if memory serves me... rose gold at US$130-140k maybe... retailers will give u some discount so we're probably still looking at above US$100+k... in the secondary market though it goes for about US$50-80+k at dealers and auctions... the black label going for about US$100k in the past. these are so rare though so they may go for more if they ever popped up... theres one coming up on may 2010 (click the link to go to auction info: Estimate US$37-56k )... 38mm, white gold dial, brass movement may not be the bestest combo though... but if u want a proper tourbillon, i would recommend this over all the junk shown in the last few years... another nice tourby is the haldimann h8 but i think that'll cost a fair bit more...

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...