World of Watches (Singapore) - - Fea­tures -

Even in the rel­a­tively dig­ni­fied realm of lux­ury watch col­lect­ing (high ex­pense and a Bri­tan­nica’s worth of tech­ni­cal his­tory and cult lore pro­motes so­bri­ety), there are fan­boys, and the ob­jects of their fevered af­fec­tion falls upon Rolexes, not a few. Lusted af­ter at a higher pitch even in this com­pany, is the Day­tona Cos­mo­graph, and this was re­cently demon­strated once again at Basel­world 2016 when the an­nounce­ment of a new steel cased Day­tona with white dial and black ce­ramic bezel sent the watch press and en­thu­si­ast com­mu­nity into an­other fit of ec­stasy.

Why is this? Some credit surely ac­crues to the move­ment be­hind the sil­vered/ lac­quered face: the Cal­i­bre 4130.

The Day­tona wasn’t al­ways mated to the 4130. In­tro­duced in 1963, it was driven by a hand-wound Valjoux move­ment till 1988


Au­to­matic chrono­graph move­ment beat­ing at 4Hz, with 72-hour power re­serve Di­men­sions: 30.5mm x 6.5mm Num­ber of parts: 201

when it was cased with Zenith’s self-wind­ing El Primero move­ment (also fea­tured on our list). How­ever, Rolex fa­mously de­tuned the move­ment from its na­tive 5Hz to a more con­ven­tional 4Hz, while swap­ping out more than 50 per cent of the El Primero’s orig­i­nal parts. Ma­jor surgery; but still, not a Rolex move­ment. That would come in 2000, in the shape of the 4130, tick­ing all the right boxes: self­wind­ing, col­umn wheel con­trol, ver­ti­cal clutch for smooth starts, and Parachrom hair­spring de­signed to per­form well against mag­netism, tem­per­a­ture vari­a­tion, and shock. Rolex even re­duced the num­ber of parts enough that it could fit in a longer main­spring to achieve an im­pres­sive 72 hours of power re­serve. It is a chronome­ter too, nat­u­rally.

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