Clocks, canons and propellers – we know the stuff from some heavy machinery. And finally, the watch industry celebrates a comeback of this industrial material: Bronze! What makes Bronze so special is not only it’s toughness, but also that it develops it’s very individual patina over the time by being used. That makes every Bronze watch a unique piece. And every watch owner loves to have a unique timepiece in his watch collection!
But first things first: Actually, some brands have already started producing Bronze watches in the past few years. Panerai introduced it’s Luminor Submersible 1950 3 Days Automatic Bronzo in 2011 and at that time kicked of a little Bronze-boom. Tudor presented it’s Heritage Black Bay Bronze at Baselworld 2016. Also smaller watch brands such as Germano & Walter or Hentschel Hamburg have been producing them for many years - only to mention a few. But 2017 is the year everyone should think about Bronze watches!
Three watches that we find especially charming are the new Montblanc Bronze watches from the 1858 Collection. The collection already exists without Bronze (but steal cases) and was originally inspired from the 1930s / 1940s military and pilot watches of Minerva. Going back in history: Minerva was founded in 1858 in Villeret and was acquired by Montblanc in 2007 – hence the name of the collection.
The three new wonderful watches Montblanc introduced at the SIHH watch salon in Geneva this year are the 1858 Automatic, Automatic Dual Time and the 1858 Chronograph Tachymeter Limited Edition. The Automatic and the Dual Time watches have bezels made of Bronze, the case is steal – only the Chronograph is completely covered in Bronze, except for the caseback. They use bronze-colored titanium instead to avoid skin allergies, which generally can occur from this material. What also makes this Bronze watch special is that Montblanc uses a special copper-aluminium-bronze that provokes a unique vintage patina over time by being worn. So some extra patina for real vintage fans!
Looking into the details of this trio we can spot the beautiful vintage Montblanc logo from the 1930s era with the mountain in the centre! Also they have the typical cathedral-style watch hands which Minerva already used for their watches.
The Chronograph Tachymeter in full bronze is limited to 100 pieces and has a crocodile strap. The two very elegant calf leather straps from the 1858 Automatic and the Automatic Dual are made in Montblanc’s own leather manufacture ‘Pelletteria’ in Firence.