Two introductions on one day. Monochrome’s new contributor Y. Chan writes about a watch from Paul Gerber. Paul Gerber has been mentioned on Monochrome before, however watches with his own name on the dial haven’t.
Earlier this year we brought you the news of the 10th anniversary of watch forum The PuristS and the various special editions made by watch brands and independent watchmakers, like Peter Speake-Marin and Ludovic Ballouard. Another independent watchmaker, Paul Gerber, also made a limited edition of 10 pieces to commemorate this joyous moment.
This is the Gerber P10, that is loosely based on Gerber’s Model 42. Gerber is one of the founding members of Académie Horlogère Des Créateurs Indépendants (in short AHCI) and most famously known for the MIH watch. In recent years he has been diverting to interesting things with Ochs & Junior.
The Gerber P10 was available at a bargain, just USD 6,200 and all ten were quickly snapped up. There was actually a waiting list of Purists hopeful that someone would change their mind. Alas no one did, but fortunately for Australia, a couple of them have ended up here. Recently, I got the opportunity to get up close and personal with one of them.
This is one of those watches that has to be seen in the flesh. I had not been certain as to whether I would like it, but as soon as I saw it, I wanted to grab it and run for the hills (or harbour, in Sydney’s case). This surprised me.
When you examine the Gerber P10, it’s hard to decide what to focus on first. The engraved dial, or the synchronised triple rotors which provide hours of fun when you look at the caseback, watching them move in circles or pendulum-like? Distinctive, and competing with the dial for attention.
The dial – this was what I had been unsure of, both design wise, and in terms of longevity. I realised that there had to be an identifying “PuristS mark” somewhere, but as is the case with anniversary items which are intended to be kept for the long term, to my personal tastes, the marking of an object as such shouldn’t be too obvious or be easily dated, and not scream “anniversary watch”. The Gerber’s dial has “PuristS” as repeated text, and this was what had bothered me. Seeing it in person, however, I was surprised, and pleasantly so. To the casual observer, the text just looks like a pattern, and it is only when you look carefully at it that you realise what it says. In this, there is something private about the enjoyment of knowing what it is. Against all expectations, I found myself changing my mind, and liking the design.
At 42mm, it may be bigger than some wrists are used to, but despite its size, it sits comfortably and lightly, largely due to the use of titanium. The watch’ strap matches perfectly, and the contrasting texture of salmon skin was totally unexpected, but it works. Paul Gerber has even offered to assist the owners with in terms of getting a new strap, should they need to.
After having had the opportunity to look at this watch, I have to say that for a limited edition of an independent watchmaker, it was more than a bargain, and congratulations go to those who got in early and ordered one. I really like what he has done with the dial, and should he at some point choose to design another titanium model with an interesting engraved dial, I’d hazard a guess is that he’d find plenty of interested collectors.
The specifications :
- Movement: Base automatic ETA 2824-2
- Winding: Gerber Synchron – three synchronised 18K gold rotors
- Power reserve: 38 hours
- Case : 42 mm in diameter, titanium, screw-down crown
- Water Resistance : 10 ATM
- Back: Screw-fastened open case back with sapphire crystal
- Dial: PuristS logo machined; hands and indexes with super-luminova
- Strap: Salmon leather; custom hand-made by a Swiss saddle-maker
By the way, this is how the lucky ten new owners received the Gerber P10.