Monochrome Watches
An online magazine dedicated to fine watches

Pre Baselworld 2014: Introducing the De Bethune DB28 Dark Shadows

| By Frank Geelen | 2 min read |
DeBethune DB28 Zirconium

The timepieces created by David Zanetta and Denis Flageollet, the creative minds and driving forces behind De Bethune, are “different”. We can use many words – and we will, soon, when we do a review – to describe the uniqueness, the beauty and the brilliant technical innovations. For now we will simply refer to the outcome of the 2011 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Genève, because the DB28 was awarded with the Aiguille d’Or which can be seen as the most important prize in the watch industry. That’s a HUGE achievement, no matter if you’re a small independent watch brand or one of major players. For Baselworld 2014 De Bethune come with a new all-black DB28, called the DB28 Dark Shadows.

The case and floating lugs – the lugs bend to fit your wrist – are made in sandblasted, oxidized, zirconium. Not your average material for making watch cases or lugs, however we already stated that De Bethune is far from ordinary. They found a way to machine zirconium, and use it as a natural and sustainable alternative for the colour black. Zirconium is very hard and after being oxidized it gets a beautiful and extreme hard black layer, which guarantees resistance and durability. Zirconium is also very light, which contributes to the superb comfort that the DB28 is known for.

De Bethune DB28 Dark Shadow

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The DB28 features, like all De Bethune timepieces, an in-house designed, developed and manufactured movement. Caliber DB 2115 features many of the technological innovations developed and produced within the Manufacture. The movement is more or less inverted and from the front we look at a huge traingle shaped bridge that holds the gears and main spring barrel in place. In this case the main spring barrel is a self regulating twin barrel, which is just one of many De Bethune patented innovations. Other patented innovations, which are visible from the front, are the silicon/white gold balance with a flat terminal curve balance-spring and the triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system and the spherical moon-phase indication.

At the upcoming Baselworld fair we’ll photograph the DB28 Dark Shadows (and other De Bethune novelties) and come back with some hands-on reports!

Some specifications:

  • Case: case and lugs from sandblasted, oxidized zirconium, diameter is 42.60mm, solid case-back with a small crescent aperture that shows a linear power-reserve indicator
  • Movement: mechanical hand-wound movement, caliber DB2115, hand-decorated and snailed mainplate, hand-polished and chamfered steel parts, Côtes De Bethune, 293 parts, 36 jewels, 28,800 vph (4Hz), 6 days power reserve
  • Five patented innovations: Self-regulating twin barrel, Silicon/white gold balance – balance-spring with flat terminal curve, Triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system, Spherical moon-phase indication, Silicon escape-wheel

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