Certified precision in an elegant hue
With the most recent edition of its successful Senator Chronometer the Glashütte Original manufactory offers certified precision in a distinctive and expressive dark blue version, uniting two richly traditional elements of its history: the continuing effort to achieve the highest levels of performance in watchmaking, coupled with a refined sense of timeless elegance and beauty.
The term chronometer characterises the most precise timekeepers of their generation. In the past these extremely accurate and reliable instruments found use, for example, in shipboard navigation.
Today the strict requirement for the highest quality and performance remains: official measurement laboratories use standardised procedures to test the timepieces for extreme rate precision. A watch may only exhibit the proud title of “chronometer” when it has earned a seal of approval from one of the authorised testing institutes. It is a given, at Glashütte Original, that all movements are tested internally against the strictest criteria. The Senator Chronometer offers further evidence of its quality in the form of official certification as a chronometer by the German Calibration Service, and assumes with pride its role as contemporary heir to its predecessors in the art of precision timekeeping.
The colour blue is inseparably bound up with the Glashütte Original collection. For more than twenty years the brand has presented, again and again, exclusive timepieces in vibrant shades of blue, thus adding a modern, elegant nuance to the watchmaker's classic colour palette. In the process Glashütte Original's designers have created hues that are as unmistakable as they are understated and can be worn with style and sobriety on any occasion.
In the new edition of the Senator Chronometer this refined colouring encounters the epitome of German precision. The new chronometer's deep blue dial attracts immediate attention. The dark tone quietly emphasises the finely grained and lacquered surface and lends it a velvety texture.
This elaborate refinement betrays the experienced hand of the craft specialists who make these small-scale works of art in the firm's own dial manufactory in Pforzheim. In careful, delicate detail work the lacquer is applied and dried in several coats until the precise shade and texture desired are achieved. The same care is taken with all elements of the elaborate dial, as can be seen in the railroad chapter ring, the indexes and numerals, which are finely engraved and galvanised in silver.
Long, slim poire hands in polished white gold make reading the time a visual delight. They glide along their paths above the power reserve and small seconds displays, which are turned deeply into the dial, thus lending additional complexity to the architecture of the watch.
Ideal historic models
The dial is inspired by the famous marine chronometers of the past and coupled with contemporary elegance. In 2016 the Senator Chronometer appears in a newly designed white gold case with the Senator line's characteristic slim bezel, which allows the elaborately worked dial to display its full splendour. This ensures not only generous views but makes it easier to read the different displays: the small seconds at 6 o'clock, for example, or the power reserve display at 12 o'clock.
The Senator Chronometer also presents the characteristic, colour-matched Glashütte Original Panorama Date at 3 o'clock, along with a separate day-night display that simplifies setting of the date and is positioned in a round opening above the centre: from 6 in the morning until 6 in the evening the small circle appears in white, from 6 in the evening on, in black. A midnight blue Louisiana alligator leather strap with a white gold foldover clasp rounds out the elaborate form of the new chronometer.
The functions are driven by the sophisticated manual winding Calibre 58-01. Among its features is a refined second-stop mechanism: when the crown is pulled out, the time display stops and the seconds hand is reset to zero and held there; simultaneously the minute hand jumps ahead to the next full minute index. As the crown is turned to set the time, the hand always jumps to the next minute index – thus ensuring that the correct relationship between seconds and minutes is maintained.
The manufactory movement's refined decorative elements also set a high standard. A sapphire crystal case back permits one to take in at first glance the classic features of the Glashütte art of watchmaking: the famous three-quarter plate, screw-mounted gold chatons and hand-engraved balance cock unite the highest watchmaking expertise with authentic craft skills.
The Senator Chronometer is the first officially certified chronometer from Glashütte Original. The term “chronometer” denotes an especially accurate clock or watch such as those used for air and sea navigation in the past.
In Germany, wristwatch chronometer certification is administered by the State offices for weights and measurements of Thuringia (LMET) and Saxony (SLME). German chronometers must pass a series of demanding performance and accuracy tests; the exacting German norm requires, in addition, that each candidate for chronometer certification be set to the second and tested in its own case.
A novel stop-seconds/reset mechanism allows the wearer to set the precise time with ease. Pulling the crown stops the time display and causes the second hand to jump to the beginning position, where it remains; the minute hand moves simultaneously to the next full minute.
When the crown is then turned to set the time, the minute hand stops only on the indication of the full minute, thus always guaranteeing the correct relationship between the minutes and seconds displayed.
The layout of the dial recalls that of a pocket chronometer, with subsidiary seconds and power reserve displays along the central axis and the characteristic Glashütte Original panorama date positioned at 3 o’clock.
The silver dial provides a rich contrast for the polished, blued sweep minute and pear-shaped hour hands and hand polished arbor. A milled railroad chapter ring encircles the central time display, and the milled Roman numerals add to the classic appearance of this impressive timepiece.
A new day/night indicator facilitates setting the time when changing the date: From 6:00 am until 6:00 pm the small circle located between the power reserve indicator and the center of the dial is white, and from 6:00 pm until 6:00 am it is black.
In recognition of the movement and the Senator Chronometer’s clear and elegant aesthetics, in 2010 the readers of Armbanduhren, a leading German watch magazine, voted the Senator Chronometer “Watch of the Year”.
An antireflective sapphire crystal protects the manual winding manufactory calibre 58-01, an eye-catching example of the art of watchmaking at Glashütte Original, with its three-quarter plate, screw-mounted gold chatons, and handengraved balance cock.
Of special note are the newly developed planetary gears that determine the up and down movement of the power reserve display.