The Vintage Collection is now part of Speake-Marin DNA to revive old iconic movements from the past. For its latest novelty, Speake-Marin tackles an incredible movement from the fifties: the Valjoux 88.
The use of vintage movements is indeed part of Speake-Marin’s strategy to develop and to exclusively work with exceptional movements.
For this new limited edition, Speake-Marin pays tribute to one of the most loved chronograph models of the 20th century: the Valjoux 88 Calibre. It will please the watch connoisseurs eager to see one of their favourite chronographs Calibre in a new timepiece. The Valjoux 88 is often seen as the finest manually-wound chronograph ever, thanks to its column-wheel and its three counters.
Inspired by the Valjoux 23 base calibre, the Valjoux 88 Calibre appeared in 1953 with 13 lignes and offered the perfect layout for great chronograph legibility:
- Two pushers
- Three subdials: one for real-time seconds, 30-minute chronograph, and moon-phase indicators
In addition, the timepiece has a triple date complication:
- Week day displayed in the counter
- Month displayed in the counter
- Day of the month displayed thanks to the black outlined hand with a SuperLuminova® layer.
The sublime Valjoux 88 has been very popular thanks to its pushers equipped with column-wheels, which brings a unique softness when activated. This timepiece has a hand-wound mechanical movement.
Although these calibres were produced in large quantities in the second part of the 20th century, these movements are very rare nowadays. The movement components used for the London Chronograph were stored in a safe for many years and it took time for Speake-Marin to find working pieces. Once checked, the components have been assembled, decorated and controlled within our Speake-Marin workshop near La-Chaux-de-Fonds.
For these two new limited editions, the London Chronograph is housed in a 42mm titanium case with a three-dimensional dial. The dial is indeed in three dimensions with two floating black counters – 30-minute counter at 3 o’clock and real time 60-second counter at 9 o’clock – and a moon phase counter at 6 o’clock.
The chronograph function can be easily read thanks to the red colour code, which you can find on the following elements:
- Hours counter at 6 o’clock
- Minutes counter at 3 o’clock
- Central second hands.
Two dial versions are available: one in blue and one in light brown. Both have vintage looks to remind us of the free spirit from the car racing world of the fifties. The red colour of the chronograph function is indeed a tribute to sport racing counters, while the silver colour is used for the Hours Minutes Seconds function.
Last but not least, the subdial at 6 o’clock gives a double indication: 12-hour chronograph function with the red hand, and a Moon phase indication in the two hemispheres.
This collection is a 30-piece limited edition.
As Speake-Marin is aware of the 21st century’s challenges from environmental and social perspectives, the watchmaking house has launched in 2020 a few initatives to impact the world in a positive way.
One of these projects is to launch every year an Art-Series limited edition dedicated to endangered species: part of the sales will be given to a chosen organisation, which acts for their protection.
For this first year, Speake-Marin develops a limited edition of 9 pieces in partnership with the London-based charity “Save the Rhino International”, an organisation working to ensure that all five species of rhinoceros thrive in the wild by protecting their habitat, reducing illegal trade, involving local communities and bringing experts together.
With this project, Speake-Marin contributes to the costs of protecting critically endangered rhinoceros at the Sumatra Rhino Sanctuary in Indonesia, thanks to a CHF 3,000 gift per each timepiece sold. Would you like to find out more ? Please visit the website: www.savetherhino.org
Speake-Marin & Art Series
In 2006, Speake-Marin started to design and develop the so called “Art-Series”, a collection of timepieces that is dedicated to craftsmanship. Speake-Marin includes in the Art-series different traditional techniques such as enamelling, hand-engraving, Maki-e (Japanese art of lacquer work).
Engraving is indeed part of Speake-Marin DNA and is corroborated within its Art-Series collection through beautiful watch dials: Skulls, Dragon or animals are magnified thanks to this technique. Speake-Marin uses both hand and chemical engraving methods, depending on the design complexity.
For this latest limited edition, the rhinoceros has been designed in our creation studio and sculpted by hand (more than 40 hours) to produce a special master stamp, which is then reproduced on each dial. The silver-plated sculpted rhinoceros is hand finished with an oxidising acid to reach this unique shade of grey.
To finish the dial, approximately 15 layers of black lacquer have been applied to reach the perfect consistency both in colour and finish.
Building on the success of the “One&Two” Openworked collection with various models launched in the last two years, which marked a new aesthetic design code for the brand, Speake-Marin now extends its Openworked range with a new complication: a 60 seconds Flying Tourbillon.
The new SMA05 Calibre is part of the SMA proprietary movement family and follows the “Openworked collection” construction approach with a strong element at 1:30: the flying tourbillon. By displaying a Tourbillon cage at 1:30, Speake-Marin’s objective is to break-away from the traditional watchmaking codes: Speake-Marin is the only watchmaker who positions its tourbillon there. It is actually a real constraint in terms of movement development since the tourbillon cage at 1:30 has to go through the time setting module. It is even more complicated than a small second at that place because the tourbillon cage requires more space in length and depth.
The tourbillon cage is covered by the iconic Speake-Marin rotor shape in black as a reminder of the Speake-Marin logotype. The main plate has a microblasted black finish which brings depth to the dial. The regulating organ is especially accurate, with a precision of +/- 4 second per day, which is an excellent very good performance for mechanical movements with a flying tourbillon. For this new movement, Speake-Marin chose to develop a 3HZ movement (21,600 alt/h) to easily see the movement alternations on the tourbillon.
Last but not least, the SMA05 Calibre displays a power reserve indicator at 7:30 (72 hours). It creates a visual balance between the barrel, the oscillating mass, the tourbillon and the power reserve, while the sharp edges of the bridges are counterbalancing the classical shape of the case. The barrel is engraved with the model name: “One&Two Openworked Flying Tourbillon”.
This movement is nestled in a new version of the Piccadilly, an evolution of the iconic case of Speake-Marin. The new case is more technical than the original allowing the straps to be integrated closer in the case, moving the crown further into the case so as to soften its aesthetics whilst maintaining its original DNA. The bezel and the case back slightly overlap the central case section altering the overall “look” of the watch whilst maintaining the iconoclastic feel of Speake-Marin. In addition, the glass traditionally set into the bezel has now been altered to a box form, reducing the overall thickness of the case and accentuating the technical aspect of the watch.
Revealing strong watch architecture, the One&Two Openworked Tourbillon anchors the Speake-Marin contemporary style to create “Belle Horlogerie” for those who want to wear something unique on their wrist. This new aesthetic is very masculine thanks to its material mix (gold, black finish and SuperLuminova® on the hands and indexes) and the sharp flanks of the bridges. Both hyper contemporary with the dial and classic with the case, it will please gentlemen watch connoisseurs who want to affirm their style and individuality with an audacious watch choice that will differentiate them from others.
This limited edition is proposed in 10 pieces only.
Since 2015, Speake-Marin has initiated a movement strategy to fully develop and assemble proprietary movements within its atelier in the Neuchatel area, Switzerland. This new strategy gave birth to the “SMA” collection, which includes Openworked, closed dials and Haute Horlogerie movements. Firstly, Speake-Marin focused its efforts on Haute Horlogerie 3 Hz movements (Minute Repeater and Double Tourbillon). Then, Speake-Marin developed Hour Minutes Seconds 4Hz movements, which were featured in the new One&Two design as an Openworked movement named SMA01. This movement is particular due to the small second counter being positioned at 1:30 and its integrated micro-rotor.