Chronoswiss has built its reputation around an easily recognizable design first and, most importantly, on its extensive (for over 30 years now) use of a specific display: the regulator. Quite old-school for some years, the brand has been revived recently and has started to offer stronger and more modern designs, for instance with the Flying Regulator Open Gear or a Bit-Coin inspired watch. Today, the brand presents a new model with added complications: the Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day.
Basically, the recipe used for the creation of the Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day is the same as the Open Gear: a mix of traditional design codes with more modern features, an architectural construction of the dial, with raised parts and apparent mechanical parts and, of course, the use of the iconic and dear-to-the-brand regulator display. This has become the hallmark of the brand since its first regulator wristwatch in 1987 and this is clearly not about to change. Yet, while the regulator is still at centre stage, the Flying Regulator Night and Day adds some more indications to the package – and also brings one or two cool features.
Technical note: the regulator
In the past, watch workshops or observatories were equipped with precision master clocks known as regulators. Their characteristic display with separate time indications (the minute hand usually taking centre stage) was designed for precision time readings. These master clocks were used in order to adjust the movements the watchmakers were working on, to make sure they were running precisely. With reference to their display, the term ‘regulator’ refers to dials with separate time registers, in general, a central minute hand with hours and seconds arranged in subsidiary registers.
Regulator watches remain an exception, as very few brands use this type of display in modern watches. Inexplicably associated with antique pocket watches, the regulator display can easily be used to create bold watches or even practical dive watches. Chronoswiss started to use this display back in 1987 and built an entire brand around it. The brand is now focusing on bringing this “exploded” display into the 21st century, which can be seen with the Flying Regulator collection. A new member has been unveiled recently, with added complications.
The Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day sticks to what made the previous model successful. The dial is composed of two main layers: one is the base of the dial itself and also serves as a base for the complications, the second layer is devoted to the regulator. This architecture, besides bringing depth and animation to the dial, also helps to identify the multiple indications rather quickly. The nice balance of the three main indications – hours, minutes and seconds – has been kept, as all of them are placed on the 12-6 axis and on the same upper level.
In addition to that, Chronoswiss adds a date window at 3 o’clock – an arched window to be precise, with three digits being shown and the current date indicated by a triangle. Fond of these arched dates, it is counterbalanced with the other complication added to this watch, the Night-and-Day indication.
If you think this complication is rather useless, it actually makes sense in the context of a regulator, which is, after all, supposed to be highly legible and precise. What’s even more interesting is the execution of this indication. This 3D indicator is a section of a globe, made of blued titanium (and not plated as is often the case). When night falls, this dome reveals a starry sky – and all the stars have been laser cut and later filled with glowing super-LumiNova.
The construction of the dial of the Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day, due to the added complications, is also slightly different from the “simple” model. Instead of two large bridges, the brand has created four smaller bridges to harness the sub-dials of the hours and seconds. The opened second sub-dial is still in place and allows a view inside the regulator module. Overall, the dial of the Flying Regulator Night and Day is busier but more balanced than the other version.
Several models will be available, including the two that are shown in this article:
- Steel case, blue dial – on leather strap or steel bracelet
- Steel case, silver dial – on leather strap or steel bracelet
- Red gold case, black dial – on leather strap
- Steel case, black and red dial – on leather strap (limited edition of 50 pieces)
The case of the Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day is the same as the Open Gear version, meaning a 41mm case in polished and brushed steel, with the signature knurled bezel and onion crown. The lugs are rather straight and long, thus this watch requires a solid wrist to feel comfortable (as always, a quick try in a boutique will help). The 5-link steel bracelet is nicely executed and brings a more casual style to this watch.
Powering this specific regulator display is an in-house developed and produced module – the brand now has production facilities in Lucerne, Switzerland. This module is driven by a solid and reliable ETA 2895 – 4Hz frequency, 31 jewels and 42h power reserve. The movement is visible through the case back with a specific openworked and blued rotor.
The Chronoswiss Flying Regulator Night and Day is priced from CHF 6,590 (in steel on a leather strap – available on the webshop). The gold version retails for CHF 15,700 and the 50-piece black-and-red limited edition will be offered at CHF 6,990. More details on www.chronoswiss.com.