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Review: Tutima Tempostopp. The other German chronograph.

From Germany with passion!
by Dan-Andrei Kluska on July 6, 2018

Tutima is one of the important players in the German horological landscape. Situated in Glashütte, it is relatively lesser known to collectors than the neighbours A. Lange & Söhne, Glashütte Original or Nomos. But Tutima have a significant historical importance, and in the modern era, the brand is one of the watch suppliers for the German Air Force. Last year, Tutima celebrated its 90th years anniversary. At this major milestone, the German watchmaker launched a special timepiece – the Tempostopp. The flyback chronograph windrows its origins from the 1939’s UROFA 59 movement. 

 

Tutima Tempostopp portrait

The Tutima Tempostopp is a major achievement of the German brand. The watch with a classical appearance is powered by the calibre T659. The movement is inspired by a pre-WW2 movement. Since the plans and sketches of the original movement were lost during the war, the brand “reinvented” the movement, designing it from ground up.

 

Review:

Tutima is an interesting brand with a focus to classic watches and military timepieces. The brand’s complex history was detailed in our report of the Tutima special event from Frankfurt, Germany. The festive event was organised to celebrate the brand’s 90th anniversary and to present the Tutima Tempostopp to the collectors and enthusiasts.

The Tutima Tempostopp is a hand wound, 30minutes flyback chronograph with small seconds. Before going into the detailed description, please have a look at the hands-on video below.

 

 

The case, dial and hands

The Tutima Tempostopp is impressive. The noble 18k gold case is similar in construction to the watches from their Patria Collection. Measuring 43mm in diameter, the 4N gold case is mirror polished.

 

Tutima Tempostopp oblique crown side

The Tempostopp is a classic chronograph sharing the design cues of the Tutima Patria Collection. This collection offers a recognisable style due to its case and dial construction. The Tempostopp comes as a logical completion to this collection, even if it’s offered aside from the Patria Collection.

 

The case of the Tempostopp excels in elegance. The curved lugs come as an organic extension of the case. The curvature allows a natural position on the wrist. The watch sits comfortable, and wears small, despite the relatively large size.

The raised bezel with a slightly convex shape holds a sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating. On the back, the movement is revealed through the sapphire case back.  The case has a surprising 5atm water resistance, offering a solid protection for a daily user.

 

Tutima Tempostopp case side and crown

The fluted crown is surrounded by a crown guard. It is adorned with the Tutima embossed logo. To note the mirror polish present on all the elements, except crown.

 

From the side, the case reveals the crown and mushroom pushers which, though large is rather proportional to case size. They are well integrated into the design. At the same time, they are big enough to offer a precise functionality. The chronograph function, visible in the video above, works excellently. The feedback on each push is proper, offering a pleasant feeling. The flyback reset function, a high desirable chronograph complication, it is easily visible in the video at 1:35.

 

Tutima Tempostopp oblique

Tutima Tempostopp comes with a complex three-level depth dial, each niveau with its own finish. The dial is rich in details.

 

The dial side of the Tempostopp proposes a delicate combination of modern and classic vintage. The modern approach is visible on the multi-level dial. The sunken dial’s centre is decorated with a circular pattern. On the upper side, the brand’s logo is shown along with the brand name and the geographical origin. The lower side wears the watch name – Tempostopp.

The small seconds and the 30 minutes chronograph counter is sunken slightly more, creating the 3D effect. The dial is nicely balanced. From left to right, the level of details is higher on the pushers right side. The small seconds offers an index for every five seconds and numerals for every ten seconds. The chronometer dial offers an index for each minute and numeral indexes for every five minutes. This detail emphasises the importance of the chrono sub-dial but increases also the legibility.

 

Tutima Tempostopp Dial

The Tempostopp dial is fully decorated with a combination of art-deco numerals and typographic font. The sub-dials are enhanced by the sunken design.

 

The time is displayed using large arabic numerals. The minutes and respective chronograph’s seconds’ register has an interesting approach. The rail track with a crossed index for every five seconds/minutes with art-deco red numerals. The dial legibility is excellent.

The Tempostopp is fitted with graceful lance hands, in gold for the time indication and in blued steel for the chronographic function.

The dial wears proudly the “made in Germany” print at six o’clock.

 

The movement – Calibre T659

The story of the calibre T659 starts in 1939 with the development of the UROFA (Uhren-Rohwerke-Fabrik) Calibre 59. This movement was used for a successful pilots watch for a half decade. The end of the war comes with the loss of the manufacturing capabilities and all the blueprints of the Tutima factory.

For the 90th years anniversary, Tutima redesign from scratch a new movement inspired from the pre-war calibre. The result was the calibre T659. The new movement required three years of development. The result is a fully in-house a column wheel flyback chronograph calibre with 236 individual components.

 

Tutima Tempostopp case back

Calibre T659 has a classic design, expecting one takes into consideration the muse – the Calibre 59. To note the high quality finishes present. To note the lower side black polished switching lever and seconds rocker. The finish is obtained by polishing on tin.

 

The Calibre T659 is nicely decorated. The balance cock is brushed and hand engraved with brand’s name. The caligraphic font is superb. The gold plated cock is further adorned with a polished bevelling. The superior bridges are brushed and present an exquisite polished bevelled edge.

The lower bridges and the mainplate are adorned with a fine frosted finish, probably made by sandblasting. The colour is given by gold plating.

 

Tutima Tempostopp movement detail

The finishes are beautiful. The polished bevel is present on all edges, regardless if it were for bridges, mainplate or screws. The screws and jewels are set in a polished sink. To note the interesting parashock present not only at the balance wheel but also at the escapement’s wheel – a rare element. The chronograph zero reset cam is also visible in this photograph.

 

The jewels and screws of the calibre T659 are fitted on polished sinks. The screws present a polished chamfering and mirror polished head.

The movement is powered by a 3Hz free-sprung Breguet balance spring. the balance wheel features gold weighted screws and four regulating screws in slotted. The movement has a power reserve of 65 hours.

 

Tutima Tempostopp chrono detail

Calibre T659 in detail: the column wheel and start-stop reset mechanism. The chronograph’s main components are manufactured in steel. The elements are brushed. The functionality of the chronograph module can be easily observed in the hands-on video clip.

 

Competitive landscape

Tutima Tempostopp comes with a high but justifiable price tag of €28,600. For the money, one gets a robust but attractively decorated movement (and we like to add: with a great story behind) packed in a beautiful case adorned with a gorgeous dial.

The obvious choice in the competitive landscape is the iconic A. Lange & Söhne 1815 Chronograph. Priced higher at €50.000, the Lange wears the indisputable qualities of the German brand: the recognisable brand’s style and magnificent finishes. The 39.5mm diameter case comes in rose or white gold. The watch is powered by the 60 hours power reserve manufacture movement L951. An extra feature is the precisely jumping minute counter.

 

The 1815 Chronograph is a flyback chronograph with jumping minutes chronograph hand. The dial shares some dial similarities with our reviewed piece but the movement has a different design approach.

 

We also feel compelled to field another Glashütte neighbour – the Glashütte Original Senator Chronograph Panorama Date. The watch comes with a flyback chronograph and added date and power reserve function. The Senator Chronograph is a modern good looking timepiece. The black dial and blue SuperLuminova inserts packed in a 42mm steel case comes with a price tag of US$14,600. The watch uses GO Calibre 37-01, an in-house column-wheel fly back automatic movement with alluring finishes.

 

The Senator Chronograph Panorama Date

The Senator Chronograph Panorama Date is a lovely wrist presence, a true eye catcher

 

An exceptional timepiece celebrating a 90th years anniversary, this time of the Mille Miglia automobiles race – the Chopard Mille Miglia Classic XL 90th Anniversary Limited Edition. Chopard has an entire collection released to celebrate the Italian prominent race each year. The watch is manufactured in a series of 90 pieces. The case with a diameter of 46mm and mushroom-shaped chrono pushers has an elegant note. The white dial is decorated with SuperLuminova numerals and black printed indexes. The watch is powered by the Calibre 03.07-L, a hand-wound flyback chronograph movement, designed, developed and produced by Chopard. The Mille Miglia Classic XL 90th Anniversary Limited Edition is priced at US$43,880.

 

Mille Miglia Classic XL 90th Anniversary - 1.1

A beautiful, good looking watch with a rich background, the Mille Miglia Classic XL 90th Anniversary celebrates car races.

 

Concluding thoughts

The Tutima Tempostopp is an extraordinary achievement. Even if the brand used a 75 years old concept as its muse and inspiration, the result is extraordinary. The movement presents the unpretentious beauty of the pre-war design combined with the perks of the modern development and production. There are a few brands on the market that can brag about complete in-house new movements development and Tutima is one of them. It deserves all the respect and consideration for it.

The Tempostopp is a lovely watch with a great wrist presence. It is elegant and despite its fragile look, the Tempostopp is a solid piece. The watch is easy to set and use. The chronographic functionality is exemplary. The pushers work like a charm, have a precise action and a proper feedback. And, it is designed, manufactured and finished in Glashütte, Germany. These are good reasons to argue for the price.

This year, Tutima won the ‚Manufaktur des Jahres 2018‘ (Manufacture of the year 2018) this year for its commitment in the manufacturing industry. Congratulations Tutima!

 

Tutima Tempostopp wrist

A great wrist presence: comfortable and with an excellent legibility. On the other side, the movement is mesmerising – a lovely chronograph design and admirable finishes.

 

Tutima Tempostopp Specification and Price

The Tutima Tempostopp Ref. 6650-01 has a price of €28,600.

 

Movement

Calibre: Tutima T659

Type: Mechanical hand-wound movement

Dimensions: Ø 33.7mm, thickness 6.6mm

No. of individual components: 236

Jewels: 28

Power reserve: 65 hours when fully wound

Frequency: 3Hz / 21’600 vph

Functions: Hour and minute; small second; chronograph with additive stopping, flyback function, jumping counter for up to 30 elapsed-minutes.

Special features: Chronograph with column-wheel; cocks and main-plates matte and gold plated; hand-engraved balance-cock; cocks for wheels and balance are decorated with a finely striped pattern and polished bevels; surfaces of steel parts have a finely striped pattern polished on tin to a high gloss; springs for switching lever and seconds rocker are polished on tin; all setting and positioning pins are polished.

 

Case

Material: 18 karats rose gold 4N

Dimensions of the case: Ø 43.0mm, height 12.95mm

Crystal: Sapphire crystals with anti-reflective coating

Crown: Screw-in crown titanium

Caseback: sapphire case back

Water resistance: 5atm

 

Strap

Material: Aligator Leather

Buckle: Pin buckle in 18 karats rose gold 4N.

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