Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

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  1. #1
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    Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    I want one and I want it badly, however something always screws it up for me. The Archimede have stupid cut-off hands, ending square instead of pointy (and they don't make a B-Muster), Aristo have full lumed hands instead of blued skeleton, Steinhart lume only the tens on the B-Muster and stupidly insist on using inferior white day-colour C1 (where the yellowish tint of C3 would fit a vintage homage watch exquisitely), plus they have inferior water resistance, Laco seems to be shutting down altogether, besides making them either too big or too small, etc. ad nauseam. Most of them come with polished bezels, and you can have a handwind but with a bloody small second!. Come on!

    I'd like to voice my distress: give me a nice plain good quality B-Uhr - that shouldn't be so hard. Here's an outline:

    1) Big-ass watch. But not so big that people who never heard of B-Uhr believe I've strapped a desk clock to my wrist, but BIG, too big really. 47mm please. I'll also take 44mm if you get the other stuff right, but I'd prefer too big. 42, 40, 38mm... get out of here, are you serious?

    2) No polished stuff please. Originals were painted grey with no shiny bits. This is what makes them cool. I don't want a watch with a paint that will wear off, but surely it is within the wit of man to use a coating or surface finish that comes close. Diamond-coating or sandblasting come to mind. Grey, matte, non-shiny. Virtually no bezel at all, as thin as possible. Delicate lugs, 22mm wide at least. Highly domed crystal,

    3) Black matte dial with C3, slathered on liberally. Lume everything that is not black. Don't worry about C3 being greenish-yellow, that's fine, originals came with radium paint and must have absolutely lit up everything. Put too much lume on it, I'll gladly give you 50€ extra for the couple of cents an unit worth of extra lume you will use. Seiko it, double-Seiko it in fact. (Aside: how come Seiko see fit to use ridiculous amounts of lume on a 150€ watch while others save on it for watches they ask thousands for? Yeah, lookin' at ya, Sinn.)

    4) Handwind, highly accurate movement with centre seconds. Don't need COSC, but I'd like adjusted to a couple of positions at least. Automatic is ok as well, but if it has date, find a way to place a date window unobtrusively instead of hiding it altogether. I need a date on a watch. I'm ready to do without for sake of originality, but if the movement has date function, let me use it.

    5) Water resistance at least 10 Bar. I got flamed over this on Steinhart forum, because I said only 3 Bar is inadequate. I got a history lesson on how they're worn on nice leather straps and how it's a sacriledge to even think about showering or swimming with one on. As if a good WR rating (which you can't see) would completely spoil the watch, because not true to original. Meanwhile nobody seems to bother about minuscule cases, the shiny bits, or a choice between automatic movements or handwind movements with a SMALL SECOND. That's completely a-ok, but if it were water resistant to more than 3 Bar, it's no flieger no more, completely spoiled, useless. Ridiculous.

    6) Blued skeleton sword hands. As I first started thinking about a flieger, I wanted to avoid blued hands because of how they looked on the photos. Uniform light blue - I didn't realise they were just photographed as blue as they can appear. Meanwhile I got a couple of pocket watches with blued hands, and blued the hands on my molnija pocket watch myself (previously black). I'm a complete sucker for those. Words fail me to describe the beauty of these deep blue highlights shimmering through the otherwise jet-black surface as light plays on it. I've spent hours just staring at them, turning the watch this or that way to make it light up or go dark. It's just achingly beautiful - not as a hyperbole, it actually hurts. This is non-negotiable. Blue it or keep it. Also, make the hands pointy. I like the idea of precision. I want the illusion that I could read seconds off the minute hand with a loupe. Don't square or round them off, it's not like someone could sting themselves on them. Make them so sharp that you'll sting yourself if your finger comes as close as two milimetres to the tip. Also, make the tip end exactly on the inner edge of the indices when viewed from exactly 90°, and bend them slightly downwards so they just about touch the dial.

    I've certainly missed something, but I have certainly made my point (apart from clearing any doubts that I'm stark raving mad certainly). It seems like I won't get the flieger I want until I have started making them myself. What do you think? Do you subscribe to this or think I'm way overboard?

  2. #2
    Haf
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Why don't you build it yourself?

  3. #3
    Omega Forum Moderator emmanuelgoldstein's Avatar
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    I don't see mention of Stowa.
    “Education is the inculcation of the incomprehensible into the indifferent by the incompetent”

    -- John Maynard Keynes

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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    I'm not much of a flieger fan, but I understand your desires and you have some pretty specific requests that should make a nice watch.

    But I'm not sure how the date window fits the plan?

    Sounds like your prime directive is authenticity, but the date window then sounds illogical and kind of crabs up the whole (theoretical) look.

    Sodiac
    Too many watches, only two wrists and never enough time...

  6. #5
    Moderator at Large stuffler,mike's Avatar
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Quote Originally Posted by emmanuelgoldstein View Post
    I don't see mention of Stowa.
    Well, there is no + 42mm Stowa Flieger.
    Kind regards
    Mike


    Instagram @mikestuffler

  7. #6
    Moderator at Large stuffler,mike's Avatar
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Let Kemmner make you one.
    Kind regards
    Mike


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  8. #7
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Quote Originally Posted by Haf View Post
    Why don't you build it yourself?
    Tooling, materials, room... I'm actually trying to buy no watches to have a chance to start building them. I'm probably able to build one with simple tools, but it would be quite tedious. I want to do it in a way that enables me to produce a limited run - or more. Working on it.

  9. #8
    Moderator Public Forum John MS's Avatar
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Quote Originally Posted by horrovac View Post
    I want one and I want it badly, however something always screws it up for me. The Archimede have stupid cut-off hands, ending square instead of pointy (and they don't make a B-Muster), Aristo have full lumed hands instead of blued skeleton, Steinhart lume only the tens on the B-Muster and stupidly insist on using inferior white day-colour C1 (where the yellowish tint of C3 would fit a vintage homage watch exquisitely), plus they have inferior water resistance, Laco seems to be shutting down altogether, besides making them either too big or too small, etc. ad nauseam. Most of them come with polished bezels, and you can have a handwind but with a bloody small second!. Come on!

    I'd like to voice my distress: give me a nice plain good quality B-Uhr - that shouldn't be so hard. Here's an outline:

    1) Big-ass watch. But not so big that people who never heard of B-Uhr believe I've strapped a desk clock to my wrist, but BIG, too big really. 47mm please. I'll also take 44mm if you get the other stuff right, but I'd prefer too big. 42, 40, 38mm... get out of here, are you serious?

    2) No polished stuff please. Originals were painted grey with no shiny bits. This is what makes them cool. I don't want a watch with a paint that will wear off, but surely it is within the wit of man to use a coating or surface finish that comes close. Diamond-coating or sandblasting come to mind. Grey, matte, non-shiny. Virtually no bezel at all, as thin as possible. Delicate lugs, 22mm wide at least. Highly domed crystal,

    3) Black matte dial with C3, slathered on liberally. Lume everything that is not black. Don't worry about C3 being greenish-yellow, that's fine, originals came with radium paint and must have absolutely lit up everything. Put too much lume on it, I'll gladly give you 50€ extra for the couple of cents an unit worth of extra lume you will use. Seiko it, double-Seiko it in fact. (Aside: how come Seiko see fit to use ridiculous amounts of lume on a 150€ watch while others save on it for watches they ask thousands for? Yeah, lookin' at ya, Sinn.)

    4) Handwind, highly accurate movement with centre seconds. Don't need COSC, but I'd like adjusted to a couple of positions at least. Automatic is ok as well, but if it has date, find a way to place a date window unobtrusively instead of hiding it altogether. I need a date on a watch. I'm ready to do without for sake of originality, but if the movement has date function, let me use it.

    5) Water resistance at least 10 Bar. I got flamed over this on Steinhart forum, because I said only 3 Bar is inadequate. I got a history lesson on how they're worn on nice leather straps and how it's a sacriledge to even think about showering or swimming with one on. As if a good WR rating (which you can't see) would completely spoil the watch, because not true to original. Meanwhile nobody seems to bother about minuscule cases, the shiny bits, or a choice between automatic movements or handwind movements with a SMALL SECOND. That's completely a-ok, but if it were water resistant to more than 3 Bar, it's no flieger no more, completely spoiled, useless. Ridiculous.

    6) Blued skeleton sword hands. As I first started thinking about a flieger, I wanted to avoid blued hands because of how they looked on the photos. Uniform light blue - I didn't realise they were just photographed as blue as they can appear. Meanwhile I got a couple of pocket watches with blued hands, and blued the hands on my molnija pocket watch myself (previously black). I'm a complete sucker for those. Words fail me to describe the beauty of these deep blue highlights shimmering through the otherwise jet-black surface as light plays on it. I've spent hours just staring at them, turning the watch this or that way to make it light up or go dark. It's just achingly beautiful - not as a hyperbole, it actually hurts. This is non-negotiable. Blue it or keep it. Also, make the hands pointy. I like the idea of precision. I want the illusion that I could read seconds off the minute hand with a loupe. Don't square or round them off, it's not like someone could sting themselves on them. Make them so sharp that you'll sting yourself if your finger comes as close as two milimetres to the tip. Also, make the tip end exactly on the inner edge of the indices when viewed from exactly 90°, and bend them slightly downwards so they just about touch the dial.

    I've certainly missed something, but I have certainly made my point (apart from clearing any doubts that I'm stark raving mad certainly). It seems like I won't get the flieger I want until I have started making them myself. What do you think? Do you subscribe to this or think I'm way overboard?
    It would be way overboard for me but if those feaures are what you want then figure out how to get it done. Knowing what you want and enjoying the chase is the fun of this hobby! You won't find a watchmaker with a watch having all those features so you are faced with either building it yourself or contracting out the work. A custom shop like RGM could certainly craft the watch of your dreams so you might contact them.

  10. #9
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sodiac View Post
    I'm not much of a flieger fan, but I understand your desires and you have some pretty specific requests that should make a nice watch.

    But I'm not sure how the date window fits the plan?

    Sounds like your prime directive is authenticity, but the date window then sounds illogical and kind of crabs up the whole (theoretical) look.
    While it may appear that I'm all about authenticity, it's not the case. I just find the design of the originals excellent. The modern incarnations "improve" on that and get it wrong, for me at least. Striving for authenticity is fine, but in the end it's not really authentic. So the thing I find so difficult to swallow is that most makers seem to have no problem at all installing a polished bezel - for apparently no reason whatsoever - but install a movement with date and hide it away, for sake of authenticity. Why? What makes the glittering hunk of steel on top of the watch ok, but a small unobtrusive window on the dial completely inacceptable? Yes, it is not authentic, and yes, it does disturb the balance of the dial - but I'm far more ready to accept this (in order to have a date function) than to accept a polished bezel for... no gain whatsoever.

    It's just a bunch of bad tradeoffs. You can have centre second, but an automatic. Which is quite thick, also thanks to the date function, but you don't get to use the date. You can have a handwind, but have to accept a small second, which is completely unauthentic. You can have a B-Uhr (albeit only A-Muster) with a date from Archimede, but that has black hands. You can have blued hands, it's the same watch, but the "Historic" version - and that doesn't have a date window. Steinhart does use C3 - but on a "Vintage" Line, and those have a baby-doo-doo brown dial and gilt hands. Design-whack-a-mole. As if they were doing it deliberately to spite me. I know that this sounds nitpicky - probably also is, but that is exactly the thing that kept me from pulling the trigger every time until now.

  11. #10
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    Re: Rant/Long diatribe: Build me a flieger!

    Ask Santa. You still have a few hours, and complaining about something that doesn't exist won't make it appear.

    On a more serious note, I recall Laco has a new version (or versions) of their B fliegers that are 45mm (although I have to confess I didn't read all of your "requirements"; I got tired).

    GL in your search.

    HBL
    ......
    DESIDERANTES MELIOREM PATRIAM

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