Turn the Open Gear ReSec Paraiba around in your hands, and the handmade guilloché watch display magically changes from soft turquoise and petrol blue into jungle green and deep purple – the result of relentless experimenting in a field unique to Chronoswiss. The timepiece´s varying hues are as mesmerising as the semi-precious Paraiba tourmaline unique to the Brazilian region.
“Chronoswiss is the only brand with colour-shifting, handmade guilloché. And you cannot simulate this effect in any way – you simply have to experiment,” says Chronoswiss head of design Maik Panziera.
After months of testing a plethora of treatments, colouring agents, lacquers, finishes, patterns and materials, the most stunning result came from a secret, unique type of nano-decorative chemical vapour deposition. The relentless experimenting also led to the conclusion that the light reflection achieved with a short-wave guilloché pattern executed by hand in the Lucerne atelier was fundamental to achieving this mesmerising effect. “When the prototype finally came back from the lab, I instantly thought of the Paraiba tourmaline, one of the world’s rarest gemstones unique to the north-eastern Brazilian state,” continues Panziera, who was goldsmith for two decades before switching to watches. Mimicking the different varieties of the Paraiba tourmaline, when you turn the watch in the light, the display of the timepiece – a hybrid between dial and a functional module board – changes from a soft, tropical lagoon turquoise to jungle-dark green; from petrol blue to blue violet. Through this unique mix of traditional handmade guilloche and innovative use of CVD, Chronoswiss is able recreate the wonders of nature in a modern mechanical way.
The rest of the Open Gear ReSec Paraiba is packed with Chronoswiss characteristics, such as a regulator set-up with separated hours, minutes and seconds – in this case a 120-degree retrograde second in a conscious allusion to a 17th-century invention. “With the open gear solution we show how the regulator functions. Normally this part of a watch is not visible, but exposing these three wheels that drive the hour hand is a beautiful way to reveal the complication we pioneered back in1988. To me it is like the Ferrari models that have a transparent display of the engine,” laughs Panziera.
Add to that the typically knurled bezel and an abundance of fine finishes and grains, including a circular satin finish on the funnelled hour ring and a horizontally sanded plate revealing the number of the limited edition of 50 timepieces.
Says owner and director Oliver Ebstein about the Open Gear ReSec Paraiba: “Shifting colours, a regulator set-up, a retrograde second and exposed mechanics – since Chronoswiss is an independent family company we don’t have to compromise. We have more freedom to experiment to find such unique solutions for our limited series of watches.”