Wednesday , 28 September 2022
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Perpetuating dashing heritage: the new Crystal Chronometer

Thomas Mercer caused a sensation with the “Nautilus” time object. The Nautilus is a horological sculpture fusing interior design and astronomical timekeeping. Today he announce the launch of its latest creation, the Crystal, a timepiece paying tribute to the 1980’s eponymous model, arguably the most sophisticated design ever conceived in its glorious past.

The original timepiece stood for its ground-breaking, horizontally laid out, eight-day movement mounted within a cylindrical glass revolving case on a rectangular plinth. The dial was partially skeletonised, boasting a silvered Roman chapter ring and eccentric subsidiary dials for seconds and power reserve indicator.

Its distinctive case featuring a rhomboidal-shaped mechanism floating inside a glass tube, can be regarded as one of the milestones paving the way for the “Art of Bespoke Timekeeping” philosophy that today sets the brand apart.

Faithful to its motto “Respecting the past, reinventing the future”, Thomas Mercer now evolves the Crystal by introducing a set of innovative features.

The gold-plated brass frame gives way to elegant stone elements made of orange onyx. This rare variety hails from Mexico and stands for a low level of inclusions, making it almost pure and organic to the sight. The choice of onyx is also extended to the dial, conferring a refined look whilst maintaining its original sheerness. Such exclusive touch is enriched with elegant applique numbers and counters.

In the ever-present blend of tradition and innovation, the mechanism adds annual calendar and sky chart to the original indications of power reserve and offset seconds. In perpetuating the brand’s maritime heritage, the sky chart is a homage to antique navigators who, in the olden days, charted their plot course using the stars in combination with a marine chronometer. The star map shows – in real-time – the constellations over the skies of the Greenwich Observatory or, at request, over a location of the Client’s choice.

Further to the new complications, the movement flaunts an innovative winding and adjusting system. The provisions for winding and setting the hands through the rear of its cylindrical glass are now replaced by two cutting-edge, wristwatch-inspired crowns. These crowns can be pulled in-out and rotated to respectively wind the mechanism and regulate the indications of hour, minute, annual calendar and sky chart.

Further to the new complications, the movement flaunts an innovative winding and adjusting system. The provisions for winding and setting the hands through the rear of its cylindrical glass are now replaced by two cutting-edge, wristwatch-inspired crowns. These crowns can be pulled in-out and rotated to respectively wind the mechanism and regulate the indications of hour, minute, annual calendar and sky chart.

To attest to the increased importance of the piece from its ancestor, dimensions follow the growth suit and move from 295 x 130 x 150 (h) mm to 400 x 260 x 260(h) mm.

 As per the brand’s sign of distinction, the mechanism offers an all-round view and features Thomas Mercer’s sine-qua-non chain-fusee drive and spring detent escapement.

About Thomas Mercer

Established in London in 1858, Thomas Mercer is a name forever synonymous with the marine chronometer, the timekeeper invented for determining longitude at sea. Appointed maker to the Admiralty, Thomas Mercer made the chronometers used by Sir Ernest Shackleton and Sir Francis Chichester during their heroic feats of navigation, as well as those that equipped the Royal Yacht Britannia and the interiors of the private aircraft of Sir Winston Churchill. By upholding the tradition of fine English clockmaking, and combining it with quintessentially British elegance, today the company manufactures exclusive marine chronometers, horological sculptures and timekeeping masterpieces that grace the interiors of the finest yachts and residences.

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About Karl Heinz Nuber

Nuber ist langjähriger unabhängiger Uhren Journalist und begann seine Karriere in den frühen 80er Jahren. Durch das Sammeln kam er zum Schreiben. Er ist Gründer des vierteljährlich regelmässig bilingual – Deutsch und English - erscheinenden TOURBILLON Magazin’s, dem TOURBILLON Blog TICK-Talk, der Ausstellungs- und Event Plattform Art of TOURBILLON und TOURBILLON TV. Er tritt regelmässig als Kenner der Branche in Erscheinung.

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