Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Christopher Ward | C900 Worldtimer

Revolutions in time are difficult to engineer but, with the launch of the new C900 Worldtimer, English watchmaker Christopher Ward have created an extraordinary new interpretation of the classic GMT timepiece – and have filed the patents to prove it…

The C900 Worldtimer combines innovation with unprecedented clarity, creating a dual time-zone watch that sets a completely new standard of readability and ease of use. Historically, the worldtimer genre is notoriously difficult to read and interpret – but the skill of celebrated watchmaker Johannes Jahnke has transformed the experience.

His Calibre JJ03 is based on an ETA 2893 base movement with a complication that, by engineering the gearing system to enable both the ‘local’ hand and the GMT hand to rotate at the same speed, makes the dial extremely easy to read.  The two hands use the same 24-hour scale instead of the traditional approach (whereby one using the 12-hour scale and the other the 24-hour one) and this innovation combines the C900 Worldtimer’s unique design with unrivalled clarity of use.

In a further innovation, the C900 Worldtimer uses a window at 12 O’clock as a ‘location reminder’ – displaying the selected 3-letter airport code appropriate to the chosen time-zone.  By simply setting one hand to local time and, via the central crown, setting the second to the chosen global destination, the two times are easily read.  By using the window to display the selected location, the C900 Worldtimer neatly avoids the often-confusing clutter caused by the squeezing of 24 locations onto the face of traditional worldtimers.  Instead, the watch’s 24 time-zone locations are listed in time sequence on the back-plate, using the zone-appropriate 3-letter airport code and city name, while the beautifully modified ETA 2893 can be observed through the 25.6mm crystal window.

For what is a very visually compelling watch, Christopher Ward’s Maidenhead-based design team has created a hugely detailed, multi-layered dial with an exquisitely criss-crossed ‘dimple’ base.  Overlaying this is the familiar silhouette of the world map, with raised meridians of longitude and latitude. A final elegant and creative visual touch is added by the use of a red dot on the map to indicate the selected city location – another patent-pending feature of this unique watch.

The deep blue tone of the dial – representing the oceans – is perfectly complemented by the ethically sourced, luxuriously comfortable, Louisiana alligator strap in midnight blue. Finally, the C900 Worldtimer also carries another Christopher Ward innovation; the new, highly innovative and patent-pending Bader deployment buckle. Named after Jörg Bader, the head of Christopher Ward’s Swiss operation who created it, this high-grade clasp is smaller, neater and much less complicated than the ubiquitous butterfly clasp.

Chris Ward, co-founder of the company, sums up the significance of this extraordinary new watch: “The C900 Worldtimer will enhance the reputation of Christopher Ward internationally and will have the rest of the luxury market watching us even more closely than they do already. It is another huge step in our strategy of bringing technically innovative and striking attractive watches to the market at accessible prices.”


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