Date:2 June 2016
What has been labelled a watchmaking masterstroke is the application of a radical new concept IWC Schaffhausen built into its Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph: this is the only watch that makes it possible to set another time zone, together with the date and 24-hour hand, in a single movement.
It’s simple, practical and elegant. All the user does is push down the “city ring” bezel, turn it to the desired time zone and release. The movement is conveyed synchronously to the hour hand and a smaller 24-hour hand that always shows whether it is day or night in the selected time zone. The date display is also synchronised correctly, regardless of whether the watch is advanced or turned back, and whether the 24-hour hand passes midnight. The watch movement and the advance of the minute hand, however, are not affected, which has the advantage that the watch shows the correct time even after repeated functional tests.
And since only one time of day is shown, it is impossible to mix up the different zones. For example, if you wish to know whether you are calling a business associate in Tokyo or Mexico City during office hours or at night, you simply turn the city in question to the top of the dial and then back. The same thing applies to air travellers and pilots: no matter how often they change time zones, they can quickly show local time and then revert to home time.
For the Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph, IWC’s engineers have combined and further developed technologies. The city ring itself was adopted from the Worldtimer display: on the polished black rotating bezel are the names of 24 cities, from London via New York to Tokyo and Dubai, each representing one of the international time zones.
The sprung rotating bezel concept was first used for the Porsche Design Ocean 2000 in the 1980s. It ensures that the bezel rotates only when pushed down, protecting it against inadvertent rotation, and once set causes it to spring back into its original position. Pressure has to be exerted on two opposite sides to release the lock smoothly and the bezel (which turns in both directions) has detents for precise positioning.
A system like the external/internal rotating bezel, now part of the IWC Aquatimer watch line, provided IWC’s engineers with a means of connecting the bezel with the gear train inside the watch. Rotating the city ring advances or turns back the white hour hand in one-hour steps and shows the time in the desired time zone. At the same time, the black-and-red 24-hour hand on the inner 24-hour ring shows whether it is night or day. Finally, should you cross the International Date Line, the date also advances or reverts by one day, depending on the direction in which the bezel moves. Since the hour wheel is connected directly to the 24-hour hand and the date advance, all the displays can only be moved at the same time.
The Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph also solves the problem of summer time. Not all time zones and countries on the planet recognise summer time. Some states in the southern hemisphere put their clocks back at precisely the time those in the northern half of the globe are putting theirs forward. For this reason, the rotating bezel has a small “S” to indicate the names of cities that recognise summer time, such as London and New York. IWC Schaffhausen has been awarded a patent for this particular display function.
A NOD TO AVIATION HISTORY
With its black city ring, dial and Santoni calfskin strap, the Pilot’s Watch Timezoner Chronograph retains the colour coding of the classic Pilot’s Watch, the white displays providing a highly legible contrast. Thanks to the new IWC-manufactured 89760 calibre, this model has an innovative display that provides the user with a fast, intuitive means of displaying stopped times between 1 minute and 12 hours. The hours and minutes recorded by the stopwatch can be read off on the totaliser at “12 o’clock” as easily as on any analogue timepiece. Stopped times up to 60 seconds are shown by the central stopwatch hand. The integrated flyback function allows wearers to return the running stopwatch hand to zero and to start another timing sequence immediately.
Engraved into the back of the stainless-steel case, which is water-resistant to 6 bar, is a depiction of a Junkers Ju 52, the aircraft which, in the 1930s, brought the world closer together. Back in those days, the aircraft was by far the most common civilian aircraft and was airborne in all continents.
With a clear focus on technology and development, the Swiss watch manufacturer IWC Schaffhausen has been producing timepieces of lasting value since 1868. The company has gained an international reputation based on a passion for innovative solutions and technical ingenuity. One of the world’s leading brands in the luxury watch segment, IWC crafts masterpieces of haute horlogerie at their finest, combining supreme precision with exclusive design. As an ecologically and socially responsible company, IWC is committed to sustainable production, supports institutions around the globe in their work with children and young people, and maintains partnerships with organisations dedicated to climate and environmental protection.
Connect with IWC Schaffhausen
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/ iwc-schaffhausen
PILOT’S WATCH TIMEZONER CHRONOGRAPH
Mechanical chronograph movement – 24-hour display – Date display – Stopwatch function with hours, minutes and seconds – Hour and minute counters combined in a totaliser at “12 o’clock” – Flyback function – Small hacking seconds – Glass secured against displacement by drops in air pressure – Special back engraving
||28 800 A/h | 4 Hz
Stainless-steel case, black dial, black calfskin strap by Santoni, stainless-steel folding clasp
Sapphire, convex, anti-reflective coating on both sides