010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer
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  1. #1
    Member CzechMate's Avatar
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    Question 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    Dear friends,
    in this thread we will discuss our possibilities regarding our manufacturer and also track progress. I will also post replies form possible manufacturers here.

    For those who do not know:
    This project started as a Steinhart's fan project with the aim to create a design, that will be manufactured by Steinhart. Somewhere in the middle of this project, we lost our previous designer, Steinhart's employee Simon. With his departure, our link to the manufacturer was broken and since then we did not re-establish this connection successfully. Several attempts have been made, most of them unanswered. We tried to call him and after phone conversation, Gunther Steinhart promised to make this watch for us. However, following emails went unanswered again, as well as Facebook messages.

    In this situation, I tried to get in touch with Steinharts representative in Czech Republic. I spoke directly to the owner of the AD that represents Steinhart on czech market. He said he is able to push our project towards completion, but can't do it for free. He also explained, that cooperation with Steinhart is extremely difficult, because Gunther Steinhart is EXTREMELY busy not only running his business, but also running all his side projects, charities etc... He confirmed, that the most difficult part in making this project reality would be communication with Steinhart.

    So, the only option that was on the table with czech AD was, that he will make sure our project gets completed, but he will be the dealer and he will add his mark up to the price. How much this is not known at this moment, as we only spoke over the phone and I did't want to ask him questions like this at this moment, but I expect something between 15-30%.

    He also stated, that if we really want to use the SOPROD movement, he would be strongly against it and that he would only work on this project if we change the movement to something more reliable... That pretty much meant, that this way is closed for us...

    So, now we need to find other ways to get Steinhart's attention. But considering the above stated, I am afraid, that without some project manager on Steinhart's side, this is almost mission impossible...

    We need to call Steinhart and ask him to give us a project manager. Without this step, it is futile to believe that another empty promises will ensure project continuation... Without project manager on the manufacturer side, we cannot continue...

    I would love to get your opinions and ideas...
    Last edited by CzechMate; August 14th, 2017 at 20:04.
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  2. #2
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    15-30% ... what a guy!

    Glad this option will not be persued!

    Like many, I am saddened by the absence of interest at Steinhart's.

    I would say: one last chance to reach out and hope for a response. Perhaps sending the plan, the eye candy in paper format through registered mail could help in making this more tangible?

    Once this last chance expired, send the idea to other smaller shops, like Christopher Ward, as mentionned previously by others.

    Best regards,

    Steph
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  3. #3
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    I've sent Gunther one last email (please understand that the english is not perfect on both sides, so as long as he understand what I'm trying to say, we are OK )

    Of course I have attached our best marketing materials, the endorsement and a full leaflet...

    Dear Gunther,
    it has been a long time since I've heard from you. I would like to inform you about current state of our project:

    • the design is ready for production
    • we are able to sell 111 watches and get deposits within weeks after we update our project conditions with you (before the prototype is made)

    What we need from you is a project manager who will be responsible for prototype production and project completion. After you assign us a project manager, I will update him about our project in full details.

    We will also need updated conditions from you, especially price conditions, packaging and LE# placement options.


    Please see attached leaflets. Our watch has written endorsement from a son of Sir Franke Whittle, the singlehanded inventor of jet engine (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frank_Whittle). This written endorsement draws a line between a generic homage watch and a truly unrivaled limited edition timepiece. I know no other watch on the market, that would be endorsed by a direct descendant of the jet engine inventor, a man that changed this world forever!

    Please see the video promoting our watch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-4MklB4naA

    Dear Gunther, I hope to hear form you soon, or from the project manager you assign to us. Please if this is not the best time for you just let me know when it would be more convenient to discuss our project. We have waited three years, few weeks more won't make a difference.
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    Chr. Ward would be great, but for a full experience we'd need SH21 mod, and I bet the end price would end up in 2000€+ range. It'd be a sight to behold though.
    On the other hand G. Gerlach might be persuaded to buy and modify Seagull ST25 family movement (they sell one with ST2542).
    I wonder if Nomos would try their hand at the project, though it's not their kind of design.
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    Like what alex-w said, c ward is really good with customer service and they are really really active on their own forums. Might be worth floating it on the c ward forum and seeing if the lads there like the design. They are a great bunch of guys, so they'll give us a straight answer.
    I'm not too knowledgeable about the movements, but sounds like it might be an expensive endeavour through another manufacturer....



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  7. #6
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    Quote Originally Posted by spotvi View Post
    15-30% ... what a guy!

    Glad this option will not be persued!

    Like many, I am saddened by the absence of interest at Steinhart's.

    I would say: one last chance to reach out and hope for a response. Perhaps sending the plan, the eye candy in paper format through registered mail could help in making this more tangible?

    Once this last chance expired, send the idea to other smaller shops, like Christopher Ward, as mentionned previously by others.

    Best regards,

    Steph
    I would have said exactly this. The only extra thing I would do is give Gunther an out. Ask him straight out to tell us if he is not interested so we can pursue other options. That's just the decent thing and I would hope he would respond even if it was just to say no.

    I think Christopher Ward could be a great option, they have just released a stunning Limited Edition Aviator with a piece of a Hawker Hurricane which the pilot sacrificed to save Buckingham Palace embedded in the back, with a beautiful engraving showing a map of where the plane eventually crashed. It's a stunning piece but comes in at around €3,300. So they have a history, but I think it would come with a cost.

    I spend a bit of time on the forum and agree with Soulspawn's comments that they are a good bunch, but I do worry about our movement, and then the effect on the price. I'm not that knowledgable with movements but is there another more cost effective movement that could offer the same configuration?
    Horoticus and Cosmograph like this.


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  8. #7
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    I would be happy with C Ward as they do seem to have good products. We could just try Steinhart and I agree with the above that if its not something worth their time, at least give the courtesy of telling us. Busy or not, its an email. Seriously it isn't that difficult. I am fine with most manufacturers but if Gerlach is the choice, I am out. Just my personal take. Appreciate that it was not given up throughout. Not for paying an additional 30% to get it going with A Steinhart AD. I understand that its business but all the work has been done here and they do nothing but facilitate and that isn't worth 30% IMO. How about Gruppo Gamma? Maybe they are willing to take up this project but than it would mean that we may need to make compromises. :(
    You can buy watches but you can't buy time.

  9. #8
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    OK, folks... No reply from Steinhart. I've sent my email to Gunther and to info, nothing. I was also contacted by one of the members here, who told me, that from his historical experience, communication with Steinhart is catastrophic... That pretty much confirms my suspicion, that we will never re-establish our connection with Steinhart... Since we don't have Steinhart to manufacture the watch for us (which is a disappointment), we now need to start looking for another manufacturer.

    In order to do so, I will need to find contact addresses for these companies. I would appreciate help from someone, who knows these companies. If you have any useful contact for this purpose, please send me a PM with appropriate email address. Maybe you have already had contact with someone, who is really helpful and competent... I will wait few days for you to send anything you have and then, if I don't have enough addresses, I will start to look for them myself...

    In the meantime, I will prepare the email text and we will continue our journey...

    Here is the list of possible manufacturers:
    C Ward
    Stowa
    Halios
    Laco
    Sinn
    Ickler
    Gerlach
    Grupo Gamma

    Any other manufacturer I forgot?


    Thank you all!
    Last edited by CzechMate; August 17th, 2017 at 22:15.
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  10. #9
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    CM - Many thanks for the tremendous effort. I am flabbergasted that Steinhart won't even return your multiple attempts to contact them. Must say I will take my business elsewhere at this point. I have a contact at CWard, so will follow up there. I also have a good relationship with the US Sinn distributor, and can pursue that angle. Will let you know what I find.

    Hope we can find inroads elsewhere.

    Peace
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  11. #10
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    Re: 010 -Project THOR - Manufacturer

    Hello all;
    I have been quite of late, but I do read every post. I would not even bother with Steinhart, enough is enough. I am sure that we can find another manufacture.
    even if we have to pay more I am willing. If I could have a dream pilot watch why not Junghans ... this is a really great project watch. I am sure someone else will
    feel the same.
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