Two new vivid dials show off the traditional Japanese metalworking craft.
At Baselworld this year, we saw two really remarkable unique pieces from Blancpain’s Métiers d’Art workshops. These red gold cases Blancpain Métiers D’Art Shakudō copy watches were made to show off the Japanese craft of working with an alloy known as shakudō, which is a mixture of gold and copper that traditionally was used for sword fittings, such as the tsuba (handguard) and menuki (a decorative element found on the grip). Shakudō was generally used only on smaller metal objects, due to the cost of the gold in the alloy, and it can be combined with a compound known as rokusho, which includes copper acetates, chlorides, and sulfates, to produce a wide range of decorative patinas.
As we all probably know, this is the Year Of The Rooster; I’ve seen a number of thematic watches related to the Chinese Zodiac over the years but this one is definitely one of the most successful. The rooster is quite powerfully done and the combination of low relief sculpture and very rich patination from the combination of shakudō and rokushō really adds to the effect of the charming copy Blancpain watch with high-end Swiss movement.
I’ve read that one of the virtues associated traditionally with the Rooster is punctuality (the whole crowing at dawn thing) which seems especially appropriate for a watch; this particular rooster certainly seems to be glaring at you as if to dare you to be late. There’s a real sense of animal vigor in the metalwork – often, engraved dials or dials with designs in metal relief can seem a bit static but this guy looks ready to jump right out at you, and he certainly has the general air of you-talkin’-to-me one associates with the rooster.
Everything is very naturally rendered, including the feathers, and there’s a wonderful quality of immediacy and realism.
The movements in both unique replica watches online are the same: the Blancpain caliber 13R3A, which is an eight day, hand-wound movement, with an indication for the power reserve built into the movement plate.
The second of the two dark brown alligator straps Blancpain fake watches sales has a motif I would bet fifty thousand Nivarox balance springs you’ve never heard of (well, I hadn’t anyway). This particular dial is an homage to Swiss culture and depicts something called “The Battle Of The Queen Cows,” which takes place every year in the Val d’Hérens, in the canton of Valais. Valais has extremely mountainous terrain (the Matterhorn’s there) and the cows shown have short legs, great endurance, powerful physiques, and a combative, territorial streak. Once a year they get to blow off steam in the village of Aproz, before ascending 3,000 meters to their summer pastures.
The “Battle Of The Queen Cows” is not a bullfight – the cows don’t attempt to gore each other with their horns and a fight, when it occurs, is for dominance in the herd rather than to inflict injury. Generally the way it works, apparently, is that a couple of potential rivals are allowed to give each other the stink-eye until they decide they dislike the cut of each other’s jib enough to mix it up. Despite their impressive armament, the actual fight is relatively sedate – the two cows put their foreheads together and engage in a shoving match until one or the other decides the game is not worth the candle, and wanders off. Herdsmen watch the animals carefully and if it looks like someone might get hurt, the cows are disengaged (these are valuable animals after all, and what’s wanted is good clean fun, not personal injury).
As with the rooster, there’s quite a lot of raw animal spirits captured in the metalwork – the cows have a wonderful archaic quality that reminds me a little bit of Paleolithic cave paintings, and the sense of power they radiate makes you take the whole thing a little bit more seriously than you might otherwise take something called “The Battle Of The Queen Cows.”
In the background, between the combatants, is a representation of the Matterhorn. These two timepieces really seem as if they’re meant to work together as a set – price is $160,600 for each top replica Blancpain watch. They’re both examples of a type of metal craft you certainly don’t see very often in horology, with great execution in everything from the engraving itself, to the patination characteristic of shakudō work.
For almost 80 years, the Portugieser has been synonymous with timeless design and watchmaking perfection. The Reference 3904 – the third Chronograph in the Portugieser family – was presented for the first time in 2013, yet it still retains the unmistakable character of the originals from the 1930s. IWC is now reissuing the Swiss silver dial fake IWC Portugieser Chronograph Classic (Ref. 3903) with a slightly revised and updated design. The dial with the typical Portugieser railway-track- style chapter ring looks even neater than its predecessor without the subdivision of the seconds, while the watch as a whole has a more modern impact thanks to the convex sapphire glass.
The top-of-the-line version has an 18-carat red gold case and a silver-plated dial, as well as golden hands and indexes. It is fit with a brown alligator leather strap (Ref. IW390301). Two models are available with a stainless-steel case and a black alligator leather strap. One features a silver-plated dial and blue hands and indexes (Ref. IW390302), while the other modern copy watch online sales has a midnight blue dial and rhodium-plated hands and indexes (Ref. IW390303).
When it comes to the technical components inside these watches, the low-price replica IWC relies on the aspect of continuity: the new Chronographs are still driven by the tried-and-tested IWC-manufactured 89361 calibre with flyback function, self-winding system and a power reserve of 68 hours. The recorded time is particularly easy to read on the combined hour and minute counter at “12 o’clock”. A see-through sapphire-glass back provides a view of the movement and the rotor, which is adorned with Geneva stripes.
The new copy IWC Portugieser Chronograph Classic models are available now in IWC boutiques and from authorised IWC dealers.
Silicon has many, many benefits for watches; anti-magnetism, longevity-of-life, temperature resistance, and not requiring lubricant being among them. However, because of the difficult-to-produce and fragile nature of silicon, hairsprings made of the material have typically been used exclusively in high-end timepieces.
And that is why Tissot unveiling the noble Tissot Ballade replica watches featuring a silicon balance spring and COSC-certified Powermatic 80 movement at Baselworld 2017 is unusual. And the most interesting part of that announcement? It will cost less than a thousand dollars.
Tissot is no stranger to anti-magnetic watches. During the 1930s, they created one of the first anti-magnetic watches with the Tissot Antimagnetique. Ever since then, they’ve been using anti-magnetic components in their watches, so the next natural step would be silicon. That’s not surprising. What’s surprising is the price.
There are seven models of the decent Tissot Ballade fake watches, and while the three ladies’ pieces were reviewed hands-on here back in September, the newest “Gents” models are a bit more masculine with a 39mm or 41mm case. All cases will be in steel with a Clous de Paris-patterned bezel and inner-dial disc, which I find a tasteful nod to the 1930s style.
Both the men’s and women’s watches will feature bi-tone rose-gold and yellow-gold-plated models, with the yellow gold coming on a stainless steel, bi-tone bracelet, and the rose-gold fitted with a brown leather strap on the Gents, and a white leather strap for the ladies.
A full stainless steel case with steel bracelet is also available for both. Each piece has the date window displayed at the 3 o’clock position. While I would normally always go for a bracelet, I find the steel case on black leather to fit the Tissot DNA more than the bi-tone bracelet models. Tissot Ballade copy watches with Swiss mechanical movements are water resistant up to 50m, and all models feature a sapphire crystal and transparent case-back displaying the movement (sorry we don’t have any pictures for you of it from Tissot).