With bold designs, impressive construction and high-tech movements, Graham Watches has charted a course few have dared in producing coveted and appealing timepieces. Although the brand stands at the forefront of cutting-edge design for timepieces, it still very much embraces its well-storied past. It continues to honour and celebrate the heritage of George Graham, a London clockmaker, whom many consider as the father of modern watchmaking.
The eminent British watchmaker and scientist was a leader in watchmaking in the 18th century –inventing amongst many things, the start/stop device of the chronograph, the dead-beat and cylinder escapement and the mercury pendulum. The spirit and passion of Graham live on in the independent Swiss watchmaker today as it constantly focuses on challenging itself by reinventing as well as improving its brand of luxury machinery.
The Chronofighter, the timepiece Graham Watches is best known for, embodies these traits. A quintessential stopwatch series, the Chronofighter was specifically designed for World War II pilots. Back in the 1940s, during the allied bomber raids, pilots needed to know how many seconds into the flight they were past a certain landmark. High up, very cold, being shot at and of course wearing gloves, they needed a specially designed stopwatch. The big, generous crown lever, a precise mechanical movement, the rugged construction and a big dial were vital features for such dangerous missions.
However, pilots are not the only people for whom elapsed time is a critical element. Inspired by and dedicated to pursuits such as diving, racing and exploring, the Chronofighter series has become Graham’s answer to split-second timing in extraordinary environments. The latest models in the series certainly embody that element but with added elegance and incomparable beauty.
Big on Vintage
With a 47mm case, increased aperture and the iconic stop-start trigger, the Chronofighter Grand Vintage certainly means business. Powered by a Swiss G1747 automatic chronograph movement with an Incabloc shock absorber and power reserve of 48 hours, the four new models feature the signature left hand trigger, which acts as a symbolic bridge between nostalgia and modernity. Originally placed there for easy thumb-activated operation in the cockpit, it now facilitates smooth operation of the chronograph on the ground, stationary and at speed.
The Graham Chronofighter Grand Vintage models are also elegantly designed with a domed sapphire glass, which integrates a magnifier for the date at nine o’clock. The case’s large aperture serves to enhance legibility of the chronograph dial as well as add an active signature. For better visibility, regardless of weather conditions, the case back comprises a see-through sapphire crystal. Dials come in blue, brown, silver or black with strap choices ranging from rubber straps, in black or green, with distinctive Milanese-style mesh pattern as well as blue calf leather for true vintage appeal.
Touch of Art
Inspired by decorative nose art that adorned military aircrafts in the 1940s, the new Graham Chronofighter Vintage Nose Art Ltd boasts four hand-painted glamour girls gracing the dials of this limited edition. There are only 100 pieces each of the four numbered limited editions featuring Belle, Linda, Lucia and Chloe. A fifth Asian-inspired number featuring Kelly was also released specifically for Chinese New Year in February.
All Chronofighter Vintage Nose Art Ltd timepieces feature a 44mm steel case and are powered by an automatic chronograph G1747 movement with 48 hours of power reserve. The Swiss made timepieces comprises hand‐sewn calf‐leather straps in blue, black and light or dark brown. Blue and grey dials provide the canvases for the exquisite and expressive nose art.
Old School Cool
Vintage comes of age with the Chronofighter Vintage Aircraft Ltd and it also represents the most fitting example of Graham’s military aviation past. The new range, available in four styles and limited to 250 pieces each, is inspired by watches used in Military Air Forces. The 44mm aged steel case with grey PVD coating evokes a feeling of edgy nostalgia, which is further underlined by a riveted dial with radial gradient and vintage colours on both indexes and hand.
Powered by the G1747 movement with an Incabloc shock absorber and power reserve of 48 hours, the automatic chrono also sports a domed sapphire crystal case with anti-reflective coating for optimum visibility. Style choices include colour combos of black dial with beige canvas strap, blue dial with matching denim strap as well as black dial with Anthracite denim strap. The 2CVAV.B17A unit sporting a black dial with green canvas strap further enhances the spirit of military aviation with a picture of the British Royal Air Force’s Halifax aircraft stamped on the case back.