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Review: Arnold & Son Globetrotter – instruments for travelling

When art meets 'function'
by Chester Lau on September 1, 2018

Arnold & Son has created a timepiece for the modern-day navigator, always on the move from one time zone to the next: The Globetrotter. Part of the Arnold & Son Instrument Collection, which is inspired by the high-precision marine chronometers made by John Arnold and his son towards the end of the 18th century, the Globetrotter reimagined the world-time function in a three-dimensional way.

 

Arnold & Son Globetrotter

 

The new Globetrotter by Arnold & Son.

 

The case and dial

The Globetrotter is held by a large central arched bridge spanning the entire diameter of the dial, central to the design is the three-dimensional world-time display. At 45 mm wide and 17.23 mm at its highest point, the Globetrotter features one of the world’s largest rotating 3D world-time display on a wristwatch.

 

The watch measures 45 mm in diameter, and is housed in a stainless steel case.

 

The Globetrotter is housed in a stainless steel case measuring 45 mm in diameter, with a thickness of 17.2 mm including the domed sapphire “glass box” crystal, and 10.4 mm without the crystal.

Depicting a view of the Earth’s Northern Hemisphere as seen from space, the Globetrotter’s representation of our planet is exquisitely detailed. Starting with a rounded piece of brass, the different textures of the oceans and continents are brought out by chemical etching with a mask, followed by polishing the upper surfaces.

 

The 3D globe is domed and measures 17.2 mm at its highest point.

 

The mountainous areas are then sandblasted to create a sense of visual depth, then the oceans are lacquered by hand with different blue tones. The entire world-time disk is then treated with a layer of clear lacquer, and finally the entire component is polished.

The world-time display is surrounded by a 24-hour sapphire disk fixed to the same bridge that hold the hemisphere, transparent between 06:00 and 18:00 and with a translucent metallic treatment from 18:00 to 06:00. This functions as a day/night indicator.

 

The details of the globe are hand applied and finished.

 

To keep the focus of the dial on the world-time display, the hour and minute hands, in blued steel are placed under the hemisphere, as if circling in its periphery. To enhance legibility, the hands are filled with red lacquer.

The movement

Entirely developed and manufactured by Arnold & Son, the Globetrotter’s A&S6022 features an automatic winding system by means of a central, rotor, engraved with a hobnail motif with a black ADLC treatment. When fully wound, the movement provides a power reserve of 45 hours.

 

The A&S6022 Manufacture Arnold & Son caliber.

 

The world-time makes one complete rotation every 24 hours. Intuitive to read and adjust, the Globetrotter features a three-position crown system. The first position is used to manually wind the movement, the second position sets the local time (hour hand) in one-hour increments, and the final position is used to set the hour and minute hands and the world-time. Both the main time display as well as the world-time function can be adjusted forwards and backwards.

The movement finishing is attractive and adequate at this price point. NAC grey treated movement features Haute Horlogerie finishing with hand chamfered and satin-finished lever and bridges, polished edges and fine circular graining and Côtes de Genève stripes radiating from the center.

 

Concluding thoughts

 

The overall thematic design of the Globetrotter stems from a hybrid of aesthetics and sporty functionality. The watch looks unique on the wrist, and with its rather large size will inevitably be a conversation piece. Aesthetically, the globe has a nice artisanal appeal to it and the movement is well-finished.

 

The large globe on the wrist.

 

The downsides to the watch however, is the relative difficulty of reading the different timezones using the globe, which also only shows the northern hemisphere, leaving out parts of South America, Southeast Asia, Australia etc. That said, the watch is still ideal for one who likes having a statement piece on the wrist and wouldn’t mind sacrificing legibility for art.

Arnold & Son Globetrotter Specifications and Pricing

Caliber: A&S6022 Manufacture Arnold & Son caliber, self-winding, 29 jewels, diameter 38 mm, thickness: 6.55 mm without earth and bridge, 14.00 mm with earth and bridge, power reserve 45 h, 28’800 vibrations/h

Functions: Hours, minutes, 3D World-time indication on the earth

Movement decoration: NAC grey treated with Haute Horlogerie finishing: hand-chamfered bridges and polished edges, fine circular graining and Côtes de Genève rayonnantes, dial plate NAC treated with large circular finishing, circular satin-finished wheels, screws with bevelled and mirrorpolished heads Oscillating weight: NAC grey treated, skeletonized with brushed surfaces

Dial: Silvery-white opaline and circular brushed 24-hour sapphire

Case: Stainless steel, diameter 45 mm, cambered sapphire with anti-reflective coating on both sides. Thickness: 6.55 mm without earth and bridge, 14.00 mm with earth and bridge, water-resistant to 30 m

Strap: Hand-aged blue calf leather

References: 1WTAS.S01A.D137S

Recommended Retail Prices: – Stainless Steel, CHF 14’900 (VAT excl.) 

 

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