Glashütte is a small idyllic village near Dresden, which, despite its modest size, is a world-renowned birthplace for fine timepieces. Glashütte has been known as a place of horological inventions since the 19th century.
However, the Second World War and the German Democratic Republic-era brought about hard times for the company Glashütte Original. The private watch manufacturers were mercilessly nationalised and became the state-owned company, “Glashütter Uhrenbetriebe”. The company produced watches for neighbouring countries and had to build a difficult vertical manufacturing process due to limited import possibilities. The company could no longer import pieces from Switzerland or other countries and instead had to create most watch parts on their own. Many popular designs that date from this period include the Spezimatic or the Spezichron.
Following the reunification of Germany, the company re-emerged as GUB or the “Glashütte Uhrenbetrieb GmbH”, eventually changing its brand name to “Glashütte Original” in 1994. The company still holds patents on many different mechanisms and watchmaking art techniques that characterise the German company. Tradition conscious and extremely proficient, Glashütte Original now has one of the highest vertically integrated production systems in the industry.
The watches from Glashütte Original feature a variety of trademarks in which Glashütte watchmaking tradition is reflected. Galvanised surfaces, polished steel elements, screw-mounted gold chatons, blue screws, bevelled edges, hand-engraved ornaments and the swan-neck fine adjustment – these refined elements call out to watch lovers of Glashütte Original manufacturing.
Glashütte Original models stand out thanks to their signature Panorama Date Display. The mechanism fascinates with bold black numerals on an ivory ground positioned at 6 o’clock. Furthermore, unlike other date display, the fascinating Glashütte date mechanism is not displayed on one disc, but on two concentric date discs that rest on the same level. Thus, through the utilisation of two discs instead of one, the date display is larger and more uniform. The finesse of the Panorama Date display is highlighted in the Pano models from the renowned German Manufactory.
The Swan-neck fine adjustment mechanism is a delicate component of the Glashütte movement. It is an instrument that is comprised of the index and steel spring. These components work together in order to regulate and optimise the accuracy of the timepiece. The spring is screwed onto the balance cock and pushes against the index. By turning a screw set into the side of the device, the index can be adjusted according to the desired rate. The spring then creates the required rotation to accurately adjust the index.
The Three-Quarter Plate is another signature Glashütte Original feature. It has been incorporated in Glashütte watchmaking since 1864 and covers three-quarters of the movement’s surface. It houses all the movable parts of the movement such as the spring barrel and the escapement wheel. The Three-Quarter Plate can be easily admired through the sapphire crystal case back of the watch. Connoisseurs of fine watch technology can understand the complex precision that is required during the assembly of these stable movements, and can therefore highly appreciate the complex works created by Glashütte Original.
Precisely manufactured dials complemented with fine filigree hands round off the elegant ambience of Glashütte Original watches.
With production completed in-house, the Glashütte Original manufactory guarantees a unique and high-quality finish of watch dials. The manufactory only utilises the noblest of materials including yellow gold, white gold, sterling silver, along with more traditional materials such as silver and brass. The standout features of the Glashütte Original dials are that they are almost completely created manually. The dials undergo tricky manufacturing processes such as the setting of appliques or the incorporation of Super-LumiNova materials on the hands and indices of the watch.
Glashütte Original once again proves its expertise in the field of fine watchmaking with its in-house manufactured dials.
The Glashütte Original company reputation has travelled far from German national borders. In recent years, Glashütte Original has collaborated with famous athletes, which has most definitely contributed to the international fame of the company. Michael Ballack, the former captain of the German national team, was a prominent advertising partner of Glashütte Original back in 2006/2007. Christian Danner, a former German motorsports racer and Formula 1 commentator, was also an advertising partner of the prominent company.
Eric Singer, the drummer of the iconic rock band KISS, has been a passionate collector of Glashütte Original timepieces for years. In fact, he recently visited the company workshop in Glashütte for further insight into the production process of the exquisite Saxony timepieces. Another avowed Glashütte Original fan from the world of American rock is Bruce Springsteen. Even Arnold Schwarzenegger, former body-builder, actor, and Governor of California, relies on the classic and precise Glashütte timepieces.
Glashütte Original has been the official partner of the International Film Festival in Berlin since 2001 and is regularly committed to the skilful art form.
Glashütte Original was crowned with the prestigious “Watch of the Year” title in 2000. The Senator Classic Perpetual Calendar was the undisputed favourite among readers of expert German magazines “Armbanduhren” and “Welt am Sonntag”.
The Senator Classic is equipped with the highly complex Perpetual Calendar mechanism – an innovative watchmaking feature that automatically recognises leap years and the lengths of the months. The timepiece also features the date, which is displayed upon the signature Panoramic Date. The month and the day are displayed at the ten and two o'clock markers in bold black lettering against a white dial or vice versa. The elegant blue steeled hands of the watch create a perfect contrast against the bright dial, which is fitted with a phase of the moon display that is adorned with silver stars and a bright silver moon. Ticking at the heart of the masterpiece is the automatic calibre GO 100-02 with a power reserve of 55 hours.
The German watch manufacturer has successfully established itself in the strict and demanding Swiss market. The label “Manufactured in Germany” adorns the dial of the watch and attracts followers who appreciate the disciplined and attentive Glashütte watchmaking process. Not to mention that experienced watchmakers often manually test all individual components of Glashütte Original models.
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