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You hear the jingles; you see the merry lights and decorations out and about; and that is when you know that Christmas is truly upon us as 2016 comes to an end.  Getting right into the spirit of the festive season, the Red Army Watches team presents to you our take on the 12 Days of Christmas with our fave picks for the year!

On the first day of Christmas…

Kicking things off is the newest member of Red Army Watches, Evelyn. When approached for what she would pick as a gift suggestion, Evelyn was quick to pick out the Itay Noy Point of View I in red and gold.

“I like how the watch is limited to 99 pieces and individually handmade by Itay Noy himself. You can see how the minute indices are angled upwards, giving the watch a three-dimensional look that’s really unique. Also, the red and gold colours remind me of Christmas!”

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

The Human Touch

11/29/16 4:18 PM

The Human Touch

When we think of machine made watches, what comes to mind is the multitude of watch components manufactured consistently to perfection; or as close to perfection as possible. While these are totally acceptable and even welcomed in certain instances, there are some who may find these watches devoid of soul.

Handmade watches, on the other hand, are different. It has the soul and character of its maker and reflects the watchmaker’s creative process. What may seem like imperfections or inconsistencies are in fact variations inherent in a handmade item. No two pieces are made identical as a result.

Let’s take a closer look at three handmade watches from Red Army Watches’ collection.

Traveller by Schaumburg Watches

The Traveller is aptly named, thanks to the GMT counter at the 3 o’clock position. It allows the wearer to keep track of time in a different time zone. The watch dial is legible without superfluous details on the dial, something German watchmakers have understood and mastered.

Flipping the watch over is where the magic unfolds. The flinqué, perlage and engraved balance cork combine to form a stunning view of the beautifully hand decorated movement. Much of this is credited to master engraver Jochen Benzinger. Jochen specializes in the art of hand finishing, be it skeletonising, engraving or guilloché. He is part of the dynamic duo behind Grieb & Benzinger renowned for their luxury project watches. Schaumburg Watches and Benzinger have worked on a series of watches and this beauty here is one of them.

Carrara by Giuliano Mazzuoli

The case of the Giuliano Mazzuoli Carrara is made of Carrara marble, universally regarded as the most prestigious marble in the world. It was the very same marble Michelangelo used to create the stunning sculpture of David that proudly stands at the Galleria dell’Accademia of Florence – incidentally also where Mazzuoli hails from. Carrara marbles are characterised by the white color and dark gray veins of varying tones.

Each watchcase is handmade in Italy by master marble workers; first milled to the desired shape before being polished and buffed till it is soft and smooth to the touch. As no two blocks of marbles are the same, the resulting watchcases are unique.

ChronoGears by Itay Noy

The ChronoGears is one of Itay Noy’s latest creations, fresh from BaselWorld 2106. Apart from telling time traditionally through the hour, minutes and seconds hands, there are two ChronoGears that rotate around the dial clockwise and contains a central hand, the pointer. While one ChronoGear indicates 24 hours (am-pm) on the lower half of the dial, the second ChronoGear indicates 8 time situations – dawn, morning, noon, after noon, dusk, evening, midnight and night – on the upper half of the dial.

Itay Noy takes pride in the creation of his watches in Tel Aviv, Israel. He personally hand makes his watches, from the cutting of the hour indexes, to painting the watch dial or refining the watch movements. The ChronoGears is limited to 24 pieces worldwide; the plate depicting the serial number proudly sits at the bottom half of the dial.

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

Beyond Watches

10/25/16 2:10 PM

More often than not, the watch is the star on the wrist. It receives the most amounts of envious stares, oohs and ahhs; less so for its trusty sidekick - the strap. Like any great film, the lead actor/actress is as important as his/her support. The chemistry shared and the ways they complement each other allow magic to happen. That is true for watches too. A cheap flimsy strap might not do the watch justice but a beautiful calf leather strap, for instance, can elevate an average looking watch to a great looking watch.

Switching straps is a cost effective way to update or refresh the look of a watch. The choice of strap type, material or colour is a reflection of the wearer’s character.

We curated a few watches from our Red Army Watches boutiques and switched up the straps a little. We hope you enjoy the combinations as much as we enjoyed putting these together for you.

Paloma Beach by Corniche Watches

The Paloma Beach is Corniche’s latest addition. Limited to just 499 individually numbered pieces, it features a steel and ceramic two-tone dial complemented by the classic tricolour at six o’clock. The watch is paired with a midnight blue calf strap with crocodile embossing. The strap complements the blue steel hands and balances the coolness of the stainless steel case and two-tone dial watch dial.

Paired with a dark brown Hirsch Osiris strap, the strap is discreet with its fine pored leather upper, tone on tone seams and slight sheen. The result is every bit classic and understated.

The vegetable-tanned Hirsch Lucca strap is hand-lacquered to give it a nice sheen. It has a pull up effect that reveals lighter shades of brown as evident in the upper half of the strap. The effect intensifies as the strap is used over time, lending some flamboyance to the Corniche Paloma Beach.

Avant Garde Chronograph by Alexander Shorokhoff

The Alexander Shorokhoff Avant Garde Chronograph can be regarded as a sporty watch with its two-counter chronograph configuration. The watch dial is clean with oversized indexes in an iconic panda colour way. The tumbled black leather strap with contrast stitching matches the sporty appeal of the watch. The strap is exceeding supple as it is made from the same leather used by revered French fashion house, Hermès.

The chestnut coloured suede strap by Jean Paul Menicucci personifies casual Italian flair perfect for the weekends. It pairs well with the eggshell colour of the watch dial but yet doesn’t clash with the black chronograph counters.

The Hirsch James strapped on might seem like an ordinary strap at first glance. It is, however, a highly technical strap newly developed by Hirsch. As part of the Hirsch Performance collection, classic leather is combined with premium caoutchouc to give high standards of functionality, comfort, aesthetics and longevity.

Q3/01 by SEVENFRIDAY

Part of its fourth collection, the Q3/01 by SEVENFRIDAY is given a slight facelift with the regulator style configuration and date window. The racing inspired piece is paired with a black calf leather strap. Its no nonsense restrained appeal allows the subtle details of the watch to shine.

We created a custom metal bracelet made to fit all SEVENFRIDAY watches for good measure. The sleekness and hypoallergenic nature is a big plus for wearers. The two types of finishings – brushed and polished – alternating with each other on the links is similar to the finishing of SEVENFRIDAY watches. The heft of the bracelet is inherent from solid links making up the metal bracelet. 
Completing the metal bracelet is a top grade, two-sided DP buckle. The bracelet is available in black PVD (as pictured), stainless steel and rose gold.

Black and blue is a combination that shouldn’t work in theory, but if done correctly, it’s often to the benefit of both. Black looks more intense next to navy; that’s why we threw on a pair of Tunx Santo. Entirely handmade from start to finish, the strap is dyed to a deep shade of indigo with subtle shades of black, striking up a balance between the strap and the watch.

Now that you’ve had a look at some of the possibilities, what is the next strap change for your favourite timepiece?

Check out the range of watch straps we carry at Millenia Walk, Wisma Atria, ATRIX and Krasnaya at ION Orchard. Email info@redarmywatches.com with your enquiries.

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

Because a picture paints a thousand words.

 Laco Erbstück

 

Sturmanskie Mars


Otium 07 


Giuliano Mazzuoli Trasmissione Meccanica


SevenFriday V1/1


SevenFriday P1B/2


SevenFriday M1/3

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

The new generation of SEVENFRIDAY watches are equipped with Near Field Communication (NFC) chips, which are readable by NFC enabled devices. NFC is a method of wireless data transfer that detects and then enables technology in close proximity to communicate without the need for an Internet connection. Apple Pay and Google Wallet utilises NFC technology.

First rolled out with the launch of the V-series watches in the third quarter of 2015, the NFC chip is meant to assure owners of the authenticity of SEVENFRIDAY watches purchased. This is especially key in light of the rising number of fake SEVENFRIDAY watches in the market. 

The chip is depicted with a picture of a map, as seen on the caseback of the watch. From the V-series, new releases of SEVENFRIDAY watches come embedded with the chip. The NFC chip is also being gradually rolled out in existing SEVENFRIDAY models in phases through 2016 and 2017.

To register an NFC-equipped SEVENFRIDAY watch on Android devices, simply follow the instructions as seen in the pictures below.

Do note that iPhones and iPads are not NFC-enabled as yet. To register an NFC-equipped SEVENFRIDAY watch on iOS devices, snap a picture of the caseback with the serial number clearly shown. Send the image to SEVENFRIDAY using the app. SEVENFRIDAY will register the watch for you.

Remember: be aware of fake models and copies.

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

The Patina Diary Part II

8/4/16 7:09 PM

Last month, we introduced bronze watches in “The Patina Diary”. In it, we talked about bronze as a material and showcased how oxidation and patina affected the look of a bronze watch cosmetically.

Eddy

This month, we continue on our bronze journey and explore how a brand new bronze watch develops patina over the course of a month with daily wear; almost like a “before and after” project. Part of the reason we decided to expand on the bronze journey is because Eddy recently picked up his second watch from Red Army Watches, which is a bronze watch. He was more than happy to be part of this mini project of ours.

Eddy joined Red Army Watches in May 2015. As an Aftersales Care Executive, Eddy is normally found tucked away behind the scenes in our Service Centre at ATRIX. Having previously been in the line of watch retail, Eddy decided to expand his interest in watches by branching into aftersales care.

“I get to be hands on with a watch and understand how the mechanisms work. It is both interesting and challenging at the same time because the mechanisms are so delicate.”

In choosing another watch to add to his collection, Eddy considered a few other watch options before finally deciding on the Heroic18. Apart from the Heroic18, Eddy owns a Vostok Europe Expedition that he picked up roughly a year ago. 

The watch on Eddy’s wrist is the Heroic18 M9600. It is essentially similar to the Heroic18 M9100 covered in the previous post, with the exception being the dial colour. The dial of the M9600 is black while that of the M9100 is gradient green; both dials are textured.

Heroic18 M9600

Why did you choose the Heroic18?

I remember the day I first saw it, it was love at first sight. But when I decided to pick up my second watch, I had doubts that this was the one as there were so many other good watches to select from. What won me over was the bronze case, and not to mention the specifications of the watch – from the domed sapphire crystal to the sandwich dial and screw-in crown, to name but a few.

What is the favourite feature or component of the Heroic18?

Definitely the bronze case. Having the hacking seconds hand is a bonus.

What do you think about bronze watches in general?

I like how the patina makes the watch unique to the wearer. It gives the watch a certain character unlike its stainless steel or titanium counterparts per se. It is this used, beat-up, rugged look that gives bronze watches their true beauty.

How do you feel seeing the evolution of the patina?

There’s a “rainbow patina” starting to develop on my watch. The “rainbow patina” is desirable for the subtle rainbow hues found on various metals including bronze. Normally, “rainbow patina” is achieved through artificial means by using various chemicals and heat colouring treatments. The colours achieved through these processes aren’t natural; so for me, I was thrilled to see the “rainbow patina” develop naturally on my watch.

Do you miss the original lustre or do you look forward to seeing the patina develop further?

I don’t miss the original look of my watch. In any case, there are ways to restore the original lustre of bronze; for example, by polishing.

There are articles on the Internet that talk about “forced patina”. Patina takes days, weeks, months and even years to develop naturally. “Forced patina” is essentially a shortcut to rapidly develop patina by exposing the watch to chemicals. What are your thoughts about this?

I came across these articles before and I’m open to the idea of “forced patina”. I think it will yield interesting patina results and it’s something I’d like to explore in the future.

We chronicled Eddy’s watch over the course of one month to see how the patina of his brand new watch developed when worn daily.

Original Lustre of M9600

Darkened Case After Patina Starts to Develop

Patina on Crown and Crown Guards

Subtle Patina on Bezel

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches

Whether or not you know exactly what a NATO strap is, chances are you’ve definitely seen one.  It can be found on just about any watch, from Seiko Fives to SevenFridays to Rolex Submariners. 

The origins of the NATO straps can be traced back to the World War era where they were commonly found strapped onto the wrists of soldiers and pilots alike. The double-loop system made watches harder to slip off, giving soldiers added assurance. The NATO strap should not be confused with its cousin, the ZULU strap. The difference between a NATO strap and a ZULU strap is the absence of the double-loop system that isn’t found on the ZULU strap and the strap thickness. ZULU straps are generally thicker compared to NATO straps. 

Fast-forward to the present day and you will find that we are living in the Golden Age of watchstraps.  Images of straps continue to proliferate the Internet and various image-sharing platforms such as Flickr, Tumblr or Instagram even as you are reading this article. Riding on this wave is the resurgence of NATO straps.

What makes the NATO strap so popular these days is due to its versatility, comfort on the wrist, relative ease to remove, choice of strap material and the myriad of colours available. Imagine a ballistic grade nylon NATO in navy, a weathered nubuck NATO in tan or an ostrich leather NATO in purple. The possible combinations are endless; making NATO straps a great expression of individualism.

Red Army Watches is proud to present its new range of NATO straps, now available at all Red Army Watches (Wisma Atria, Millenia Walk and ATRIX) and Krasnaya (ION Orchard) boutiques. Available in solid colours, regimental stripes, monogram or camouflage, there’s bound to be one that you’ll fall in love with. Prices range from S$15 to S$24.

Posted in Stories By Red Army Watches
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