Eterna will soon expand its line of vintage-styled chronographs with a new Eterna Heritage Chronograph 1938 Limited Edition (ref. 19188.8.131.520) model. Presented in a massive, rectangular stainless steel body that somehow reminds me of similar timekeepers manufactured by JLC, the new watch leaves a lasting impression.
I am not sure whether the introduction of this model is a sign of an imminent overhaul of the complete Heritage collection or is it just a “design study,” an attempt to find a new, more refined design language for the struggling independent brand. Originally a co-founder of ETA The Great and Terrible, the watchmaker unarguably has a legacy of its own, so this attempt at creating a more “classic” watch doesn’t look unfounded to yours truly.
As you can see on the pictures, the watch features a nicely executed stainless steel case that elegantly combines alternatingly polished and brushed surfaces.
It is a pleasure to note that even the tiny chronograph push-pieces that stay on their usual places at 2 and 4 o’clock, too, have their faces brushed and the edges finely polished.
Powered by the time-proven and reliable ETA 2894-2 automatic blank caliber, which is not terribly large with its diameter of some 26 millimeters, the watch is still presented in an oversized body 45 millimeters long and 36 millimeters wide.
The case is also thick measuring around 13 mm from top to bottom. Perhaps, a part of the blame goes to the sapphire crystal that adds at least a couple of millimeters to the overall thickness of the timepiece.
The good news is that the new Eterna Heritage Chronograph 1938 also features a thin bezel, which helps to dramatically increase the dial real estate and thus increase its legibility.
Thanks to a pair of long gold-toned hours and minutes hands and a high-contrast layout of the dial, the watch allows for an easy, almost instant read-off of all the presented date, including small date window at 6 o’clock and the bi-compax chronograph with its single 30-minute totalizer at 9 hours (the other counter is for running seconds.)
Well, if you are not intimidated by the size of that thing and are looking for a vintage-styled watch with a modern movement (and can’t afford a similarly styled timekeeper from a real Manufacture like, say, Girard-Perregaux) this still may be a nice choice.
See also: Bulova Accutron Conqueror (A Vintage-Styled Timepiece Based on a Historic Lone Eagle Model)
Eterna Heritage Chronograph 1938 Limited Edition (ref. 19184.108.40.2060) specification
Movement: Automatic, caliber ETA 2894-2, Swiss Made
Number of jewels: 37
Movement frequency: 28,800 vph
Functions: Hours, minutes, small seconds, date, chronograph
Power reserve: 42 hours
Case: Stainless steel, polished and brushed
Bezel: Stainless steel, brushed
Dimensions: 45.00 mm x 36.00 mm
Case height: 13.00 mm
Numerals: Roman, gold-toned
Hour markers: Gold-toned
Water resistance: 50 meters
Strap: Black leather strap with contrasting stitching and steel folding clasp
Crystal: Sapphire, antireflective
Back: Solid, engraved, machine-brushed steel