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Where Blue Skies & Clouds Touch Your Soul: Introducing The New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

Where blue skies and clouds touch your soul, where vintage meets contemporary, where precise time keeping meets modern (watch) complications, and where exclusivity is the key, in that rarified air the new Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021 spreads its wings.

Where Blue Skies & Clouds Touch Your Soul: Introducing The New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

Editor’s note: For nearly a decade now we have curiously anticipated the Only Watch Auction. The 2021 edition doesn’t disappoint! While watches earlier this year had a green theme, this year’s Auction watches seem to have an orange theme. Following the releases from Watches & Wonders 2021, today we present the new Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021. Here’s our preview and the Gut Reaction Review (Grr…). For our standard detailed hands-on reviews, please head to our dedicated reviews section here.

Gut Reaction

Following hot on the heels of the recent CFB Heritage BiCompax Annual reverse panda 888-pieces only limited edition timepiece for Watches & Wonders 2021, the Lucerne-base brand has announced a light-hearted take for the Only Watch Auction. 

New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

Under the hood, it’s the same watch as the ref. 00.10803.08.32.02, featuring the same calibre CFB 1972. Modern, precise, and featuring a decently decorated movement. But aesthetically, the new Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021 is a whole new world, one that shines bright thanks to two key features: the introduction of all gold case and light blue colouring on the dial. 

It is the combination of these two that sets this release apart. The previous iterations were very monochromatic, and that gave them a somewhat timeless but mature look that resonated more with their vintage BiCompax watch from 1950s that featured a similar sporty yet elegant design. 

This new version with baby light blue accents on the sub-dials and the peripheral tachymetre scale track lends to this series a more contemporary and youthful aesthetic. And it is under the enchanting spell of this energetic colour segue that the new Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021 blooms. 

New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

There is a fair bit of quirkiness to the dial: the big date is bold and right in the centre; the month aperture sits unbalanced at 4.30, oblivious to the otherwise perfect symmetry of the dial; there is a subtle grained texture to the main dial that stands wonderfully in contrast to the sunken azurage sub-dials; and then there are the silver appliqué numerals at 12 and 6 that again provide contrast to the other painted black Arabic numerals. 

New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

The watch, like its predecessors, is 41mm in diameter and 14.15 thick, and comes packaged in an 18K white gold (150 palladium) case and crown, and features a special engraving of ‘ONLY WATCH’ and ‘PIECE UNIQUE’ on the case back.

It is water-resistant to 30m. 

The Context  

The brand’s Heritage collection launched in New York in 2018 as an ode to the 130 years rich history of the brand. One year later they released the first Annual calendar followed by this year’s version. The 2019 Heritage BiCompax Annual came in two versions: champagne-coloured dial on a steel case with rose gold accents featuring a cognac brown calfskin leather strap; or full stainless steel case sporting a silver-coloured dial with black totalisers on a textile strap.

In regards to the charity, 54 brands are participating this year for the 9th edition — the first one was in 2005 — of the biennial charity auction Only Watch, whose aim is to raise funds for research against Duchenne muscular dystrophy. This auction has raised more than 70 million Euros — the 2019 edition raised CHF 38’593’000 — so far and has enabled scientists to continue their research.

New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

The lots will go on a small world tour — unfortunately, and surprise surprise, Australia is not a part of it — and then auctioned in collaboration with Christie’s on 6 November 2021, at 2pm (Geneva time), at the Four Seasons Hôtel des Bergues.

As an added bonus, the brand informs that the winning bid will come with additional perks such as a tour of Lucerne and CFB’s manufacture, along with a meeting with CFB’s CEO Sascha Moeri.

The Engine

The reference 00.10803.02.12.99 features the calibre CFB 1972 which is an automatic-winding outsourced but manufacture modified movement. The brand hasn’t informed us as to exactly which movement they have modified, but if I am not wrong, it is either a Dubois-Depraz module over ETA 2892 or ETA 2984-2. The movement measures 30mm in diameter and 7.3mm in height, comprises 47 jewels, beats at the frequency of 4Hz, and provides for 42-hours of power reserve. 

New Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021

That’s All Folks! 

Van Morrison said: “Smell the sea and feel the sky, Let your soul and spirit fly”. 

The light blue of the dial reminds me of the above; there is a certain charm to it that reminds you of the open waters and blue skies, allowing your imagination to take flight. 

Where blue skies and clouds touch your soul, where vintage meets contemporary, where precise timekeeping meets modern (watch) complications, and where exclusivity is the key, in that rarified air the new CFB Only Watch spreads its wings.

To find out more about the new Carl F Bucherer Heritage BiCompax Annual Only Watch 2021 and other auction timepieces, please head to the ONLY WATCH 2021 collection website here. All images unless otherwise specified are © Carl F. Bucherer. All basic information Copyright © Association Monégasque contre les Myopathies. Make sure to check out our reviews of Watches & Wonders 2021 releases here.