Tag Archives: skeleton

Orient Star 70th Anniversary Edition

Orient is a sub-brand of mighty Seiko and sadly, they don’t seem to get the investment that the brand deserves, given its heritage. The latest Skeleton Star model, a tribute to the Star from 70s years ago is a case in point.

It actually looks like a Chinese clone, nothing like the original Star. Here’s the press info from Orient;

The new Skelton ( yep, they couldn’t even spell check skeleton) is featuring a new hand-wound movement with 70 hours of power reserve. The latest in-house 46-F8 series movements, feature longer power reserves of 70 hours, making them more practical than ever before.

The longer running time is achieved thanks to the new silicon escape wheel which is lighter and processed with higher accuracy. Beside, it has longer running time as well as a high accuracy of +15 to –5 seconds per day even with the ultimate skeletonisation.

The escape wheel visible through the watch’s skeleton structure uses Epson’s MEMS technology to control the film thickness at the nanometer level to adjust its light reflection, resulting in an eye-catching blue.

DUDE, DID YOU JUST SAY CROC LEATHER?

The vivid blue and a unique spiral shape evokes the Milky Way Galaxy, and the movement part at the nine o’clock position in the shape of a comet with two tails, symbolising the universe-inspired design theme. The model uses high-quality SUS316L stainless steel for the case, and comes with a hand-stitched, genuine crocodile leather strap.

Yes, they did say crocodile. In a woke era it is astonishing that Seiko-Orient think this won’t attract activists on social media keen to cancel their brand.

Classic Orient Star, with dial that changes from black to deep blue.

MISH MASH APPROACH

On the upside this 38mm watch has a sapphire crystal, front and back, but bafflingly it’s only got 50 metres of water resistance. So why not fit a Hardlex then?

70 hours of power is great but it’s hand-wound, mechanical, not auto. Again pointless. This mix of prestige features with some really dull aspects of the Star means it’s unlikely to attract many buyers. To be fair there are some better looking Star models in the range, including some with sub-sec dials that capture the early 50s spirit of the original. But this thing looks like a Thomas Earnshaw.

Sad times.

 

Zelos Tourbillon Mirage Skeleton: Rare Earth Tech

Zelos have a strong fanbase online and it’s easy to see why; tough, beefy watches with quality components, fantastic dive ability too.

But not every watch has to be a dive model right? Dress watches, everyday chronographs, old school three hand mechanicals, they all have their place. Then there are tourbillons, arguably Breguet’s greatest leap of imagination and skill. Perhaps the greatest technical advance in watchmaking from the 1780s to the mass production line techniques and toolmaking strategy at Waltham in the 1860s.

Here’s the latest from Zelos and it’s kinda different. Expensive too, but when you check the spec you’ll understand that Zelos are raising their game to the Swiss level here.

The sequel to last year’s Mirage Tourbillon, the 8 days skeleton is a showcase of engineering and design. A custom skeletonised, twin barrel movement powers the Mirage 8 day. This movement is supplied by La Joux-Perret, a prestigious movement manufacturer located in La Chaux-de-Fonds.

OK so they merged titanium with another metal called zirconium which creates a unique case design. Sapphire crystal of course, both sides, with the movement from La Joux Perret skeletonised on the dial plate. It’s a twin barrel 8-day tourbillon and you have to say there are very few watches using the LJP movements, so it has a real exclusivity, as this type of watch engine is usually seen on an Arnold & Son, Angelus, Hublot or Armin Strom perhaps.

The turbine effect on both barrels adds a jet age era feel and the dial has that carbon-fibre racing car dashboard feel too. It isn’t a throwback tourbillon which has elements of mantel clocks and fancy poker style hands. There are a range of colours and each option is limited to 25 pieces.

Yes, you would hesitate before spending $4000 on a Zelos. You could lose $2000 of that value in a  few years, or it might just hold about 70% of its retail price. It would be safer to buy a Tudor Black Bay for £3300 or so and watch the value creep upwards. Yeah, it is a safer choice, also you’re running with the herd to an extent.

Bottom line; you love technology and rarity? Buy one because you can dare to be different. And afford it.

More here at the Zelos website.

Hamilton Ventura Elvis80 Skeleton

Hamilton’s Ventura watch was cool enough for Elvis, so do we need to say more? Yes. There’s a skeleton version of the famed triangular case watch now available from the Swatch Group. Hamilton also has a long heritage in electronic watches, so this latest version of the Ventura has a little electric pulse going on too. Here’s the press info;

Go bold and bright with a red electric pulse that lights up the center of a black PVD-coated case and skeleton dial; or, choose to shine a little brighter with a rose gold PVD-coated case, black skeleton dial and matching rose gold electric pulse. A black rubber strap finishes off both models, ensuring a comfortable and secure fit all day – and all night – long.

Available in two impressive versions, the Ventura Elvis80 Skeleton’s precisely cutout dial offers a striking view of finely engineered movement mechanics. With its Côtes de Geneve decoration clearly visible, our H-10-S movement with an extended 80-hour power reserve beats tirelessly beneath its skeleton dial.

It’s (still) electric

An automatic movement might power the Ventura Elvis80 Skeleton, but a stylized pulse of electricity zig-zagging across its open structure is a dramatic reference and tribute to the Ventura’s origins. The Ventura Elvis80 Skeleton is an ultra-modern tribute to the world’s first electric watch. A piece of history, a story of invention and a futuristic legacy, it’s an unforgettable representation of those who influence the world by daring to be different.

It retails for 1795 Swiss Francs, which is approximately £1620, we spottted on the CW Sellors website.

 

 

One We Missed: Hamilton Jazzmaster Viewmatic Skeleton

I’m in two minds about skeleton watches. On the upside, it is great to see inside any watch movement because there is always a fascination with the intricate workings of any calibre. On the downside, you lose the impact of a beautiful dial.

Hamilton released the skeletonised Jazzmasters in April 2020, and since we missed a load of stuff during lockdown, it was time to catch up.

The H-10 movement is inside the 40mm case, which is derived from the ETA 2824 base, although it has had some work done by Swatch Group. It provides the entry level power unit for the Tissot Powermatic 80 as well. Now 80 hours reserve is impressive, but you have to say, this isn’t the greatest looking movement to put on display.

hamilton jazzmaster skeleton 1

The big problem I have with Hamilton is that the resale values are incredibly poor on them. I’ve seen pawnbrokers offer under £200 for a minter, with box and papers, because you cannot sell the thing in the window for much more than £450-£550, depending on the model and colour etc.

Nobody wants them, and they don’t see them as being `Swiss’ watches, even though they are because the same company that owns Breguet are manufacturing Hamilton.

In short, the Hamilton brand lacks prestige and although the Jazzmaster is a well made watch, it isn’t worth over £1100 and never will be. Not when the same company is selling a Tissot Powermatic 80 for £403 via its dealer network.

Crazy.