The Maîtres du Temps Chapter Three has been unveiled, and it's suprisingly reserved, elegant and slender - but fear not, packed into that classy gold watch case are more than a few ingenious mechanisms - a Maîtres du Temps timepiece which doesn't do tricks? .... that simply would not do.
Maîtres du Temps brings together some of the best Master Watchmakers in a synergistic collective with a common goal - to produce something fabulous. Chapter One and Chapter Two were a veritable compendium of complications - a tourbillon, a mono-pusher chronograph (column-wheel, of course...), power draining rolling bar indications, multi-view sapphire crystals and retrograde displays - both were masterful creations and unsuprisingly both were housed in substantial watch cases. Chapter Three is almost tame in comparison, but is no less accomplished.
Kari Voutilainen has been working on this project since 2008, primarily on the creation of the Calibre SHC03, with Andreas Strehler joining him in 2010 with responsibility for the technical side, including the case and the creation of some very unusual components and also the unenviable task of production. This is the first in-house Maîtres du Temps calibre, so from the sketch pad to production everything has been integrated and not added as modules, keeping the calibre trimmed down and the watchcase suitably skinnied.
And so to the conundrum - how to create harmony in a dial which is bustling with activity and information? For this piece, comes a complex solution - the second time zone and the day/night indicator are hidden beneath the dial and will only reveal themselves on demand using a clever little pusher integrated into the crown. The construction and design was further complicated in order to ensure readability, a roller featuring 12 numerals for the second time zone would either have to be out-sized or the numerals would have to be tiny, to solve the problem, a twin roller system was devised, one featuring the hours 1-6 and the other for hours 7-12, one roller simply slides to the side when required allowing the other roller to take its place - I say "simply", but as you can imagine, this is patented inventive resourcefulness at its finest.
Inside is the manual winding Calibre SHC03 with two mainspring barrels producing 36 hours of power reserve. Kari Voutilainen has never before created a calibre for anyone other than for his own brand, and to this project he brought, not only his talents for the design of the movement but also his fussiness for flawless finishing on the minutiae you can and cannot see, as a result this is an outstanding piece both insided and out.
The splendid Maîtres du Temps Chapter Three Reveal watch comes presented in a 42mm 18K gold case complimented by a hand-sewn alligator strap with 18K gold tang buckle.