The new Angular Momentum Classic Collection Urushi hand-wound dress watch sports a highly unusual dial that looks like it is made of coal powder. The effect is achieved partly thanks to the use of the traditional Urushi lacquering technique, which is employed by the Japanese artisans from prehistoric times using lacquer derived from Toxicodendron vernicifluum — Chinese lacquer tree.
As far as I understand, the new watch shares its, so to speak, “architecture” with the recently presented Angular Momentum Classic Dress Watch, but belongs to a different collection since, being primarily objects of art, AM’s timekeepers seem to be classified on the way their dials are decorated, not on their technical specs or case sizes.
If you compare this new Urushi with the Classic Dress Watch, you will immediately see that both models are delivered in mirror-polished 1.4435Ncu Staybrite steel cases only 36 millimeters in diameter and seemingly of the same shape and finish.
Although the cases may be considered relatively small by some people, the size seems to be just right for a watch, which is supposed to be worn with formal dress and only on rare occasions.
While eccentric owners of such monsters as Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore who dare to wear them on formal, black-tie events usually have to order special long-sleeve shirts with widened cuffs, a classic dress watch never causes its proud owner such troubles although, being smaller than current de facto standard of 38-39 millimeters and featuring a very unusual finish of its dial, the watch may considered by some as eccentric and provocative as the aforementioned AP ROO (but, let’s be honest here, who cares?)
Since Angular Momentum for some reasons doesn’t want to inflate the cost of the watch by decorating and personalizing their stock of historic FHF 96 hand-wound movement (and there is nothing particularly to look at when the NOS caliber comes as is,) the small Swiss watchmaker made a good decision by offering the watch with a solid case back cover.
The cover, by the way, is done in a shape of a hand-engraved medallion that features a painstakingly executed floral motif.
Of course, like it is almost always the case with Angular Momentum timepieces, the main point of attraction here is the gorgeous dial.
Coming without engine-turned guilloche-work or skillfully set diamonds, the dial still looks like a true work of art with its baton-shaped polished hour markers looking like they were half-buried under the black sands of time.
Photos: Angular Momentum
Angular Momentum Classic Urushi hand-wound dress wrist watch specification
Price: CHF 3200 (MSRP)
Movement: Manual, Caliber Fontainemelon FHF 96, 18,000 vph, NOS (new-old stock,) Swiss Made
Movement decoration: Standard finish
Functions: Hours, minutes
Power reserve: 48 hours
Case material: 1.4435Ncu Staybrite steel, mirror-polished
Bezel material: Matching case
Crown material: Steel
Case shape: Round
Bezel shape: Round
Case size: 36.00 mm
Lug width: No data
Case height: 12.00 mm
Dial: Urushi Japan lacquer
Numerals: Baton-shaped hour markers
Hands: Baton-shaped, polished steel
Water resistance: No data
Strap: Black leather
Crystal: Sapphire, double-curved
Case back: Solid, with hand-engraved medallion with floral motif