I love that Tag Heuer made this watch. I don't love that I can't afford it, but at least a few people can. Tag Heuer is hoping that 150 people bite. The first of 150 pieces of this new Tag Heuer Monaco V4 watch will be auctioned off at the Only Watch 2009 charity watch auction. The other 149 of them are up for grabs. Tag Heuer has been known to make interesting watch concepts that that are eye catching, but I don't know how often they ever actually made the watches. With the average price of a Tag Heuer watch retailing at probably ,000 this is a major step up. I wonder watch is going on at LVMH (parent company) that made this possible.
Check out the HourTime podcast episode 2 at HourTimeShow.com.
The interest starts with the heavy satin-finished steel case (also available in black) that was designed in a wind-tunnel and has reverse tear-drop shape. It looks like a space ship but rides on your wrist. The case is 40mm wide by 52mm tall, and centrally weighted to sit even on your wrist. A true driver's watch, it is meant for motorcycle riding and car driving - and makes as much a statement as your ride does. The case lifts the movement and dial at a 35 degree angle so that it is easier to read the watch while not having the twist the wrist. This helps with reading the time while your hands are on handle bars or a steeling wheel. The unorthodox shape feels comfortable on the wrist with its ergonomically curved caseback and lugs that wrap around your wrist. The custom shaped mineral crystal is almost flush with the case, helping to create an organic curved look for the watch as a whole.
Swarovski was smart, using their materials on other brands to build their name. And as their success grows, it's even more exciting to see the history of this brand and the beauty of their crystals being used in trendy, contemporary yet classic designs.
WatchDODdy.com has no less than 15 watch deal of the day websites listed right now. Plus, they are listed in order of "time ending soonest." Meaning that the deals are listed with the one's ending soonest on the top. You get the name of the site that offers the deal, the name of the watch, the price, and the time left in hours (no minutes, sorry - you aren't scoping out auctions on eBay here). I like that if you hover your mouse over the image of the watch, it expands - showing you a bigger image of the watch. If you want to get the watch or look more into it, just click it to go to the originating page!
Anyhow, the Double Diaphragm Eclipse is pretty nifty, and you can tell how it is much like other Michael Bittel watches. He uses adjustable blinds on the dials to alter the images. This watch is similar in theme. Bittel says it has about three dials. This is true. Remember how I said it has a opening and closing shutter for the dial? Well it actually has two of them. Notice the gold and silver tone ones in the dial. You adjust one by moving the watch bezel, and likely the crown at 10 o'clock to adjust the other one. Underneath them, you see the manually-wound mechanical movement. On the partially decorated movement Michael Bittel will place diamonds (or perhaps other jewels) if you like. I've never see thing type of gem setting in watch movements before.
The movement is an automatic made by Orient themselves in Japan. The overall accuracy of the movement is surprisingly good. Orient automatic movements do have a quirk though. Unlike Swiss movements you cannot currently manually wind then via the crown - meaning you cannot hand wind the watches. Only the automatic rotor will wind them. Those who are used to ETA movements haven't heard of this, but it is common in Japanese automatic movements, and here as well in the Orient caliber 46N4A movement. Orient is currently developing hand-wound movements that will show up into watches soon, and it is only a matter of time before they have an automatic movement with hand winding capabilities. Also, when you release the crown from the screw position it immediately adjusts the date. Typically you need to pull the crown out one more notch for this, but this is just another quirk of the movement. Something you should know about, but not a big deal.
I will leave it to the more dedicated car writers to fill you in on the all the goodies about the Bugatti Galibier 16C car as it slowly moves from concept to reality (which I am pretty sure of), instead you can relish in all the cool watch lover bones that Bugatti and Parmigiani threw out to us. Ordinarily I would chat for a bit about why a car would even have a removable tourbillon watch, and how that would all work... though here I do not. We are talking about Bugatti here, the Disneyland thinkers of the car word. It does not need to make sense. It just needs to tickle us in places we didn't know could be tickled. I think it has like eight chrome exhaust pipes. Super cool! Then again, from the side the 16C looks a bit like a Porsche Panamera that just engulfed John DeLorean's chrome dream, like a tricky suitcase of cocaine planted by the FBI did to his future.
Philip Stein, the watch maker best known for their dual dialed watches, is embracing social media and wants your attention. The new trend today is the Twitter or Facebook giveaway. "If we get X followers/friends we will randomly give away something cool. Philip Stein wants 2,500 Facebook friends and will give away two watches when it gets that many. I've seen Philip Stein watches all over the place from people in restaurants to people on TV. The watches they are giving away are worth over a grand each.