The recent addition to the growing Manero family that successfully blends sportiness and elegance, the 2011 Carl F. Bucherer Manero CentralChrono (refs. 00.10910.08.33.01, 00.10910.08.13.21 & 00.10910.08.33.21) offers a new take on a centuries-old idea of a luxury chronograph.
Of course, the main selling point of this watch is its “central chronograph minute hand” complication: something that is unique to this particular watchmaking brand (or, at least, unique among currently manufactured mass-produced mechanical timekeepers, if you like.)
Basically, this means that the watch has lost the usual 60-minute sub-dial, but in return was equipped with a central chronograph minute hand.
Besides making the function more usable (it is a lot easier to count elapsed time with the chronograph hand rotating around the normal minute track,) it also makes the dial more entertaining to look at, as well as allows the watchmaker to preserve the “vintage” bi-compax layout of its face.
As you can see on the photos below, the dial has only two sub-dials: a 24-hour chronograph totalizer at 9 o’clock and a subsidiary seconds display, which sits comfortably at 3 hours.
There is also a small aperture at 6 o’clock for a simple calendar. While perfectly balancing the logo at 12 o’clock, the date window could have been slightly larger. In fact, I would even prefer this timekeeper to sport a Big Date function: a treat for the eyes of a person spending a whole business day staring into a computer monitor.
Otherwise, the watch looks almost flawless in its understated beauty.
Well, perhaps, the version with a silver dial somewhat lacks in terms of contrast: the metal doesn’t look like the best choice of a background for the dauphine-shaped hour and minute hands made from polished steel. And the setting crown could have been somewhat shorter to make it more proportionate to the polished chronograph pushers.
But those are just minor quibbles.
The chronograph central minute and seconds hands, however, are contrast enough in both versions.
The Carl F. Bucherer Manero CentralChrono is powered by a new CFB caliber 1967 automatic movement. According to the official specification, the device is built on 47 jewels, so it must be a pretty complex mechanism.
Beating at a usual for most contemporary movements frequency of 28,800 vph, the movement offers an acceptable power reserve of at least 44 hours of total immobility.
Photos: Carl F. Bucherer
Carl F. Bucherer Manero CentralChrono specification
Price: $7100 (version on leather strap) / $7700 (versions on stainless steel bracelets)
Movement: Automatic, CFB caliber 1967, in-house, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 47
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Movement decoration: Polished and blued screw heads, rhodium-plated bridges, “rotor”-style open-worked oscillating weight
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, chronograph, date
Power reserve: 44 hours
Case: Stainless steel
Size: 42.50 mm
Case height: 14.20 mm
Dial: Black (refs. 00.10910.08.33.01 & 00.10910.08.33.21) or Silver (ref. 00.10910.08.13.21)
Hour markers: Applied
Hands: Dauphine-shaped, luminous
Water resistance: 30 meters
Strap: Brown or black alligator leather strap with steel folding buckle / Stainless steel bracelet with fold-over clasp
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective