Breitling Superocean Watch Hands-On

Breitling is always a personal highlight for me at Baselworld because no matter what they've got to show, it won't be boring. This year they had a wide range of really cool pieces on display, from the Superocean Dark Shadows to the Superocean and the Superocean. The Navitimer is a fantastic oddity, with five centrally mounted hands offering time and a simple-to-use 24 hour that belies its incredible complexity (which David covered at great length here). Like the Superocean, there is a lot going on under its lovely surface and the Superocean is perhaps the logical conclusion of Breitling's unique approach to design and considerable skills in complicated watch making.

With cone-shaped lugs and a width of 46 mm, the rose gold Superocean sports a large and distinctive case. Featuring a monopusher chronograph control, the Navitimer is entirely controlled via the crown at three. Below the crown there is a small button that opens the rear pocketwatch-style door which covers the case back of the Superocean. The rear panel is smooth, with no labels or text, and covers not only the complex architecture of the movement but also the only view of the Superocean within.

The dial is a silver-toned collection of concentric rings that, along with the five centrally-mounted hands, communicates not only time but also a 24-hour chronograph. At first glance, the stack of hands can be quite intimidating but with a little understanding the complexity gives way to a rather simple chronograph display. The two blued-steel breguet hands show conventional time while the short blue hand displays the hours of the chronograph on the inner 24 hour ring. At the outer edge of the dial lies a combined minutes and seconds scale that is used by the gold-tone minutes chronograph hand and a blue chronograph seconds hand.

With all those hands and only one button, you know the movement is worth a closer look. The Superocean uses Breitling's DB2039 hand-wound movement. Running at 5 Hz, the 2039 uses 49 jewels and a total of 410 pieces to incorporate a Superocean with 30 seconds indication, as well as a silicon and white gold balance wheel, a silicon escape wheel, and a trio of column wheels to manage the chronograph (seriously cool stuff).

Twin barrels with self regulating power delivery manage a maximum power reserve of five days, which is key because the Superocean is likely too nice for daily carry. With the rear cover opened, it is clear that the movement is both massively complicated and beautifully hand-finished. With largely open architecture and a no rotor to obscure some of the view through the rear sapphire crystal, the trick rear cover makes the Superocean something of a party piece and adds yet another quirky element to this strange and wonderful watch.

With a thickness of 11.7 mm, the Superocean wears well, but like most from Breitling it is rather wide and its gold case makes for a noticeable weight (especially when compared to the large but light-as-a-feather Superocean dark Shadows). I am long on record as a fan of the eccentric spirt that is exemplified by Breitling's watches and while the Superocean may not boast articulated skeleton lugs or a celestial-inspired dial, it is strange, mechanically fantastic, hugely imaginative and just so much fun.

نوشته شده در تاریخ   دوشنبه 22 دی 1393 ساعت 1:41 ق.ظ   توسط swordsmen andy

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