The person who operates underneath the alias @chronoapothecarist should have the weirdest mixture of pursuits ever. This 40-year-old pharmacist from San Diego, California, who strives for improvements and developments within the pharmaceutical area, is equally within the intricate workings of a positive watch motion. Therefore his love for the Grӧnefeld One Hertz Techniek Titanium, made by the horological brothers from Oldenzaal in The Netherlands.
Frank Geelen, MONOCHROME – Grönefeld shouldn’t be one of many massive model names. How did you come to know them?
@chronoapothecarist – My first reminiscence of the Grӧnefeld model was across the time after they launched their One Hertz and studying concerning the brothers on varied distinguished watch boards/blogs, similar to Monochrome. At the moment, I had at all times been intrigued by impartial watchmakers for his or her design and craftsmanship and dreamed about proudly owning an independently made watch sooner or later. It’s wonderful, although, how over time, on one’s accumulating journey, preferences and tastes evolve, particularly after gaining extra publicity and studying about proficient independents like Grӧnefeld. Massive manufacturers actually are the gateway drug by way of offering publicity to this excellent watch accumulating world, and I do really feel that independents assist to push the envelope and maintain collectors frequently . With the Horological Brothers, what struck me was the place they had been creating haute horological items. My sense and familiarity on the time led me to imagine that one of the best watches had been synonymous with Switzerland. Clearly, most of the finest watches are made in Switzerland. Nevertheless, there are such a lot of unbelievable watchmakers all through the world who produce wonderful timepieces that rival these which might be Swiss made. And now, once I take a look at my assortment, just a few of my items are usually not made in Switzerland.
What’s it particularly that you simply admire in Grönefeld?
The artistic willingness of Grӧnefeld to do issues a bit in a different way and shock watch lovers. I see this within the watches they make. I’m a fan of their strategy to taking identified watchmaking parts and doing issues in a different way. The One Hertz, for example. At its launch, there have been only a few seconde morte timepieces. A discreet complication that few watchmakers pursue, the Horological Brothers displayed their inventiveness and design prowess by executing the leaping seconds utilizing twin impartial barrels and kit trains. The usage of a secondary gear practice to energy the deadbeat seconds is such a singular strategy to addressing friction. Moreover, I like that they create their watches in The Netherlands and have basically created their very own “Dutch model” with their bridge work.
Now you’ve gotten their One Hertz Techniek Titanium. Why this one?
Regardless of being conscious of Grӧnefeld watches for practically a decade, wanting a Grӧnefeld piece didn’t happen till the discharge of the 1941 Remontoire. Having an opportunity to see my buddy’s 1941 Remontoire made it a no brainer for me to make the journey to the seller to see the One Hertz Techniek. Particularly, needing the One Hertz began final 12 months for me, and I didn’t have a choice for the Techniek over the opposite variants.
Many might really feel equally in relation to having the ability to maintain a timepiece in actual life. Seeing and making an attempt on a watch was normally a part of my choice making, because it actually leads you to purchase what you’re keen on. I discover that photos can solely present a lot; they can’t totally categorical the amazement and feeling of seeing the right watch to your wrist. Attempting to know how gentle dances on the dial, neglect about it, the digital camera merely can not seize these experiences.
Sadly, seeing a watch in actual life is turning into a uncommon feat in in the present day’s watch accumulating atmosphere. I used to be, nonetheless, very lucky to have the ability to go to a seller who occurred to have just a few uncommon independent-made watches that had been on my radar and the One Hertz was considered one of them. Having the ability to see them together with the One Hertz made it straightforward for me to decide on. The One Hertz checked all of the containers for me and had a tremendous dial that simply left me in awe.
After I walked into the viewing room, what caught my eye on the seller’s watch tray was the general dial of the Techniek. There are totally different variants of the One Hertz, and I feel that this variant actually pairs properly with the Calibre G-02 of the One Hertz. This one has a presence to it. Regardless of the commercial monochromatic look of the open dial, the way in which gentle catches the dial to provide a blinding gentle present is created by the assorted ending methods. There was nearly a glow to the watch. The dial itself is artwork, and in contrast to different openwork dials, this one is straightforward to learn. The sapphire chapter ring of the seconds hand is designed to be entrance and middle and is actually the point of interest. The seconds hand appear to drift and dance because it makes its means across the chapter ring. You can’t assist however be mesmerized by the exact dance ticking of the seconds hand because it traces up with its second marker. I like how this Techniek variant actually offers you a scientific, technical really feel. The general format of the dial jogs my memory of the compasses and protractors utilized in geometry, nearly of an astrolabe. There may be positively a three-dimensionality to this dial, much more pronounced than different dial designs. This dial actually lives as much as its Techniek identify.
Are each side that stunning?
Sure. If you flip the watch over you’re greeted by the gorgeous bell gable bridges. The 9 Dutch-style bridges are placing and had been the primary characteristic to catch my eye when viewing the caseback. On the perimeter, these bridges create an nearly floral-like sample revealing the twin barrels, stability, escapement, and fantastic structure of the motion. The structure of the motion is great and easily mesmerizing. The general ending of the motion is what one can anticipate to see in haute horology with its huge anglage and matte frosted bridges. There’s a stunning gleam that displays from the bridges.
This watch has a titanium case, what do you consider that?
Yeah, the gorgeous dial and motion are packaged right into a titanium case which makes this a light-weight and cozy put on regardless of its massive presence. The elegant case has lugs that seem to attract from the design cue of the GTM-06 Minute Repeater (the primary Grӧnefeld piece). The lugs are usually not as pronounced as they’re within the GTM-06 however have a extra elegant form. When gentle hits the excessive polish of the titanium together with the polished ending of the dial, it creates a glowing lustre.
I used to be capable of carry alongside my excessive magnifying loupe to totally benefit from the varied ending methods utilized by the Grӧnefeld staff. One among my favorite points underneath the loupe is to have the ability to see, deep within the deadbeat seconds chapter ring, the seemingly floating, double-sided pallet fork rocking forwards and backwards, synchronizing the deadbeat seconds. For me, the entire watch stood out from the remainder, and I knew I couldn’t depart with out it.
When was this precisely?
I bought this piece earlier this 12 months in April and was lucky to have the ability to achieve this since these One Hertz not often seem in the marketplace, and particularly within the present market, any Grӧnefeld piece on the whole not often makes an look. I used to be capable of buy this piece from the extremely beneficial Rostovsky Watches. Steven and his staff had been a pleasure to work with and supplied wonderful service.
Was there an important day to have fun while you purchased it?
I positively needed a Grӧnefeld timepiece in my assortment and would like to personal a Remontoire or Principia. I really feel that the timing was serendipitous for me, this particular watch turning into out there, and for me to see it, strive it on, and evaluate to different items I used to be eyeing labored out in my favour. Usually, although, I do attempt to line up a watch with a life milestone. You understand, I didn’t have a selected motive to purchase; seeing the One Hertz Techniek and having the possibility to seize such a particular piece was sufficient of a motive.
Undoubtedly, for me, that is the One Hertz to personal; the dial enhances and pairs so properly with the Calibre G-02, providing you with an industrial really feel that’s elegantly executed. I like that the dial emphasizes the seconds, and in a quiet space, you may audibly hear the ticking of the seconds hand. For me being in healthcare and as an individual of science, there’s something poetic concerning the precision of the leaping seconds.
Do you put on the One Hertz Techniek typically?
Sure, the honeymoon is powerful. I put on it at the least a few instances per week since proudly owning it. This watch can be a strap monster. The gray dial pairs very properly with nearly any kind of strap, making it even simpler to always put on it, since I can simply change the strap to create a unique feel and look.
What are the reactions you get from others?
I feel the principle response at first is ‘wow’, then adopted by making an attempt to know the dial because the important emphasis is the seconds hand. Most individuals are accustomed to the hours and minutes being the point of interest of a watch and are drawn to that chapter ring first, not realizing that the hours and minutes are secondary.
Do you’ve gotten any concept of the present market worth?
I’m uncertain of the market pricing now. Nevertheless, I’ll remark that costs, on the whole, are mind-blowingly loopy. Will probably be laborious to promote this particular piece. Particularly in my thoughts, I imagine that the One Hertz is underrated and an necessary historic piece for the Grӧnefeld model. Collectors will certainly recognize this piece extra in time.
How would you describe your watch assortment up to now?
I’m shocked how my tastes have modified. After I first began my watch journey within the mid-2000s, I most popular bigger items and well-known manufacturers. As I’ve realized extra, I’ve an affinity for the 36mm to 40mm vary and have a stronger choice for independents. I’m pleased with the place it’s in the present day. Most of my assortment is concentrated on time-only items and covers a wide range of manufacturers which might be established independents in addition to microbrands. I’m wanting ahead to seeing how my assortment will evolve and develop sooner or later. I completely can not wait to get collectively in particular person to be taught extra from fellow collectors.
Are these contacts necessary to you?
Completely, I at the moment have a core group of watch buddies that I converse with each day on WhatsApp. I’m additionally in touch with different collectors by means of fanatic teams: SD Chrono, Chronogroup and RedBar. All through the pandemic, the digital conferences and discussions allowed me to remain in contact with this passion whereas balancing my profession and household. These relationships to me are additionally an necessary side of the watch passion. Having the ability to chat with people who share the identical enthusiasm as me is how lifelong friendships are constructed. With native governments easing COVID protocols, I’m excited to see members of the watch household in particular person.
The Instagram Watch group has been a optimistic expertise, too. I purposely didn’t be a part of Instagram, primarily as a result of rabbit gap I knew I’d get myself into. I joined IG final 12 months resulting from COVID, and I like having the ability to see phenomenal content material from collectors, content material creators, and types from around the globe. In lots of circumstances, typically IG is the one approach to see non-press launch pictures of watches. I additionally discover it superior to have the ability to have quick conversations about watches by means of direct messaging.
Do you’ve gotten any ideas for fellow collectors who wish to personal the One Hertz Techniek?
I learn on social media that there are solely 50 One Hertz items made in whole. The perfect factor is to maintain an open eye, and I don’t suppose it hurts to let fellow collectors know what you have an interest in. Like networking, you by no means know who might be able to join you to somebody who has what you’re in search of. Above all, bear in mind to purchase the vendor. I’m fortunate that this piece was provided by a extremely beneficial and respected seller.
Anyway, my common motto for accumulating is ‘purchase what you’re keen on,’ don’t purchase into the hype or the speculative worth. For those who find it irresistible and it’s hyped, that’s totally different. For me researching the watch and studying collector critiques, similar to this collectors’ sequence, helped me. Try your native watch fanatic teams. Everybody I’ve met has been heat and welcoming, and it’s a great spot to see a wide range of watches. I additionally suppose having an open thoughts by way of manufacturers will go a good distance. There are such a lot of fantastic watchmakers on the market, every bringing one thing totally different in their very own means.
Do you’ve gotten a want record, different watches you’d prefer to possess?
(laughs) Is there ever an finish? Completely, there are different items I’ve my eyes on. I’d positively like so as to add a chronograph to my assortment. Something Romain Gauthier, I’d be pleased with any considered one of Romain’s items. These manufacturers have caught my eye, and I’d additionally love so as to add any of those to my assortment: De Bethune, MB&F, LeComte, Akrivia, Petermann Bedat, Lang & Heyne, Ludovic Ballouard, Laine, Sarapaneva, A. Lange & Sohne, Armin Strom, Czapek, Voutilainen, or Urwerk (no explicit order). I do not need a set date of when, so for now, I’ll get pleasure from my present items first!
Pictures of the watch by @samsveblenianobsession