Friday, March 26, 2010

Zenith- Open Minute Repeater

A technical highlight of the prestigious Zenith Academy watch collection is undoubtedly the remarkable "El Primero" Open Minute Repeater.  Within a collection famed for its mechanical virtuosity and exclusivity, this model achieves a pinnacle of excellence all its own.
Within the classical confines of the 45mm 18-karat gold case nestles the Zenith 4043 caliber, an exclusive creation of the historic Swiss manufacture.  Among the most complicated mechanical movements in the world, this mechanism comprises 461 individual components, 45 jewels, which unite to drive two complications.  In addition to the high-beat chronograph mechanism, which can mark independent time intervals with a precision to within 1/10th second, the Caliber 4043 presents a minute repeater--long esteemed as one the two most difficult and sought after high complications in the horological repertoire.  By activating the slide piece on the left side of the case, the user can activate the minute repeater, which will chime the hour, quarter hour, and individual minute on a combination of low, high-low, and individual high tones.  To unite the chronograph and the minute repeater, Zenith created a clever patented system whereby the chiming mechanism encircles the axes of the chronograph.  

Zenith is offering the Academy Open Minute Repeater watch in a "Classical" variant which features a solid gold guilloched silver dial, and a highly contemporary "Open" version, whose transparent sapphire dial exposes tantalizing glimpses into the daunting complexities of the mechanism.  Both models are extremely limited in production, and each watch is engraved with its individual number.  A hand-sewn alligator strap and a deployant buckle in 18K gold keeps the Academy Open Minute Repeater securely on its owners wrist. 


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