Wednesday, 25 December 2013

MERRY CHRISTMAS & BLESSINGS TO ALL! :)

New evidence has been found that Santa is a WIS and a chrono-lover! :)
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as you know, it's a tough gig getting all the gifts out to the nice kids on Christmas and it's important he has the best sports chronos(as things get a lil rough) to help time his runs in different parts of the world ;)
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hope you like the pics. it's been awhile since my last post as it has been a busy time for the raphmeister. work, family, more work, and other complications(unlike the watch variety that are more fun) got piled on in 2013, making life that little bit more challenging but like the best movements out there, i'll take a beating and keep on ticking :) 

So parting words before the festivus I mean holidays... Just be good to each other and try doing that every day instead of only on the merriest of occasions... the world can be a better place :) [at this point u may be thinking 'I want to know what he's on n I may want summadat'... u may say I'm a dreamer but I'm not the only one... ] have a great 2014!


Well Wishes to all! A Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year! :) hmm what do we have here. A nice card and an uhm... let's see... is it a reindeer's nose ring or santarina's uhm... nevermind... whatever the case, me likes it :) thanks Harry Winston
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Sunday, 1 December 2013

The Challenges With Roger Dubuis... & The Beauty of the Hommage Chronograph

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Some history first
  • 1980 - Roger Dubuis sets up his own atelier after 14 years in the high complications department in Patek Philippe
  • 1995 - Société Genevoise des Montres (SOGEM) and Roger Dubuis founded by Roger Dubuis and Carlos Dias(former watch designer at Franck Muller)
  • 1999 - SOGEM renamed Manufacture Roger Dubuis off the back of having in-house manufacture watches and their movements begin to qualify for the Poinçon de Geneve ~ Geneva Seal
  • 1995-2008ish - Watches of questionable quality and some ranges with garish over the top designs. Bad quality control and after sales support plague the company.
  • 2003 - Mr Dubuis lessens his involvement with the company
  • 2008 - Mr Dubuis is one of the watchmakers involved in the Maîtres du Temps Chapter 1 watch (for some info click LINK
  • 2007 - Richemont acquire RD's movement making factory. it wants a watch factory that can churn out Geneva Seal movements for its other key brands. Cue Cartier having one Geneva seal movement in 2008 and several Geneva Seal movements in 2009 with a quarter of the RD Meyrin factory output dedicated to Cartier in the beginning years.
  • 11 Aug 2008 - Richemont acquires RD. First CEO is Matthias Schuler, former IWC COO.
  • 2010 - IWC's George Kern is made CEO in Oct. (Looks like they threw some firepower at it for awhile)
  • 2011 - Worked together with Geneval Seal folks to upgrade the Geneva Seal to cater for additional criteria including accuracy of the cased watch.
  • 2011 - Engaged independent Timelab to certify quality(and Geneva Seal and COSC) so timepieces post 2011 should boast much better quality
  • 2012 - Jean-Marc Pontroué(formerly from Mont Blanc) made CEO in Feb 2012
  • 2013 - SIHH sees some focus on Excalibur line, eagles and Gerard Butler...
Some views
  • the brand name is tarnished by past quality issues and bad after sales service and support (for watches with average price of 50k) pre-Richemont acquisition
  • the Geneva seal prior to 2011 was just a certification for movement finishing and the checks and policing on whether the standards of the Seal were met were not strong so a lot of it was based on 'trust'
Some of their more interesting watches:
  • Sympathies with the bi-retrograde quantieme perpetual complication which was a module developed by Mr Dubuis WITH the crystal shaped like the watch case please ;)
  • Some of the earlier Hommage pieces(which was a tip of the hat to the great brands/watchmakers of the past), including the chrono(which also came in a monopoussoir configuration) which is the photo subject of the post today...
lovely dial with nice guilloche and beautiful applied indices in a good sized(for a dress watch) 40mm red gold case...
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the dial is a thing of beauty for sure with it's different guilloche patterns for the main and sub-dials
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with the beautiful Lemania CH27 movement[now only used in VCs and Breguets for new watches] finished to Geneva Seal standards... similar Genevois' style cap on the column wheel as PP5070 
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there is a light etched RD emblem on the crystal
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great looking logo on the deployant buckle...
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 nice crown and pusher design 
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final views of the wonderful dial... this watch to me is a buy for below S$20k (the lesser the better of course because of weak resale value)... if you can find em popping up as they're rather rare on the aftermarket. if i'm not mistaken this was still done at a time of 28 watches per metal/dial configuration so will be pretty rare in a way
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hope you liked the pix and the history lesson :) have a good Sunday and week ahead this start of December. cheers, raph

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