Editor’s note: Ever since we have gone hands-on with the Chronoswiss Lunar Chronograph and have witnessed the beauty of their watches in person, it’s a bit of a treat every time Chronoswiss announces a new model. Here’s our preview and the Gut Reaction Review (Grr…) of the new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition. For our detailed hands-on reviews, please head to our dedicated reviews section here.
Awaken To A Whole New World
There is a Brad Tho quote that reads: “Visiting Lucerne is like going to Disneyland: You can’t imagine that it is real because it looks like a movie lot”.
The sometimes still, sometimes gently moving waters of Lake Lucerne embody the spirit of nature. The painted murals on the buildings of yore bestow a modern yet timeless aura. The quaintness of the Chapel Bridge where colourful flowers intersperse with age-old wooden beams whispers of a place like no other. From the charm of the Old Town to the Mark Twain impressing sadness of the ‘Lion Monument’, there is poetry abound in Lucerne. Beautiful and often awe-inspiring. Take a boat ride and you find yourself deeply enchanted by a different world that envelopes you.
The new Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition from the Lucerne-based Chronoswiss is a reminder of this world, aptly miniaturised for you to carry around on your wrist.
Personifying the spirit of nature is the stunning short-wave ripple-effect hand-guilloché dial in white that reminds one of the irregular shaped snow-sprinkled Lake Lucerne waters on a crisp winter mornin’. A hint of red on two of the hands on the dial recalls the charm of the dusky sun-kissed red-brown roofs of the buildings of yesteryears. The Swiss Alp inspired blue accents on the sub-dials and the periphery of the dial evoke the reflection of the crystal clear skies in the waters as seen by one who is fortunate enough to idle away the time simply standing on the Chapel Bridge. Flip the watch and the decorated movement with its custom blued rotor on display reminds you of the cogs of motion of a boat ride.
If the city of Lucerne invites the blessings of nature, then the new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition encapsulates this and presents another world of horological excellence.
The new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition LE of 50-pieces only ref. CH-8753.1-SIBLB is presented in a 16-piece satin and polished 41mm x 13.85mm stainless steel case that is topped by a curved and double coated anti-reflective sapphire crystal.
Inside beats the Caliber C.299 that comprises 27 jewels, beats at the frequency of 4Hz, and offers a 42-hour power reserve. The 35.2mm x 6.11mm movement features a three-legged Glucydur balance, Incabloc shock absorbers, and while the base may be ETA 2895-2, it is worthwhile to note that the regulator and retrograde seconds mechanism have been fully developed in-house.
The movement incorporates a skeletonized rotor with blue CVD coating, Côtes de Genève, and bridges and plates with colimaçon. One of the interesting features of this movement design is that it is integrated into the dial, with its functioning visible through various cut-outs in the dial. The three-dimensional effect of the dial is carried forward thanks to the movement, including the bridges at 6’o clock that are mounted on top of the dial with three blue galvanised screws.
Slow But Steady
My appreciation for the new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition was kind of a slow burn.
The short wave guilloche is nicely executed, no doubt. But guilloche dials aren’t anything novel, with CNC-machined and stamped ones present in bundles. Then I read about it being hand-guilloched. That was impressive. Then I read the price: CHF 8’800 / EUR 8’900 / USD 9’400 / GBP 7’600. And that’s when I spilt my morning coffee.
A hand-guilloche dial, limited-edition timepiece for the price of only ~13’000 AUD is super impressive. And throw in the most-wrists-friendly 41mm diameter, daily wearable 100m water-resistance, and the quirky regulator style display, and what you get is a superbly awesome horological marvel.
The new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition may be dressed in the colours of the city seal its named after, white and blue, but to me it’s decked out in the colours of a true masterpiece that sees exceptional value-for-money meet stellar aesthetics.
That’s All Folks!
If you are looking for a rather unique timepiece, that ticks both the horological prowess and impressive design boxes, look no further.
It’s got all the defining features of what has come to be the immediately identifiable language of Chronoswiss timepieces: the knurled oversized onion crown, the partial knurling on the bezel, the soldered-on-pocket-watch-style lugs, the display case-back, curved and double coated anti-reflective sapphire crystal on top, guilloche patterns, and a very 3D treatment of the dial thanks to the raised hours and seconds rings that create a striking sense of depth.
The new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition’s 3D dial is what drew me in the most.
The dial being the star features an elaborate construction on two levels, with the bottom level hand-guillochéd and galvanic silver and the upper level featuring screwed-on skeletonized train wheel bridges and funnel-like constructions for hours and seconds display (with blue CVD coating).
On this base the “Trigono” shaped lacquered hands with Super-LumiNova inlays and the 3-handed sickle rotating seconds hand work to create the magic of telling time. From the 2014’s basic three-hander with date Lucerne Edition that could have been a gold dress watch by any brand to the more intricate and fascinating new Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition, the company sure knows how to evolve with time and changing customer needs.
The presence of the white and blue is executed well, and is refreshing to witness how the inspiration for the colours has been taken from Lucerne and beautifully interpreted onto the timepiece: blue and white from the colours of the Lucerne flag evoke the colours of the skies, waters, clouds and Alps; and this imagery is reflected on the dial and even on the blue alligator strap with white stitching. This is a whole new world for watch collectors and enthusiasts to awaken to and embrace.
To find out more about the new Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Open Gear Lucerne Edition and other Chronoswiss watches, please head to their website here. All images unless otherwise specified are © 2021 Chronoswiss AG . Make sure to check out other new 2021 releases here.