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The hand-wounds Shaftesbury sm301 is the first watch to bear the Garrick name. The English company has expended many hours on developing this classically styled timepiece, fastidiously refining each element of the specification in order to create a truly special watch.
Some of the key elements of this fascinating timepiece include a machined brass dial, featuring an enamel coating and polished stainless steel, leaf-shaped hour and minute hands, designed to look resplendent in ambient light. In addition, a small seconds display, with a slender red hand, resides adjacent 6 o’clock.
There is a delightful depth to the dial, courtesy of raised stainless steel chapter rings, mounted on steel pillars. The chapter rings are held in position with thermally blued screws, adding a flourish of colour with their vibrant bluish-purple hue, differentiating this watch from those which are mass-produced.
A sense of tasteful restraint is the order of the day. The case is constructed of stainless steel 316L, arguably one of the finest materials available for this purpose, measuring a highly agreeable 42mm in diameter, conferring ubiquitous appeal. The surface of the case features Garrick’s unique scratch resistant treatment, helping to preserve the factory-fresh appearance of the Shaftesbury sm301 for many years to come.
The incorporation of an onion-shaped crown will proffer ease of operation, as well as an elegant aesthetic, cohesively complementing the exterior of this handsome Garrick timepiece.
A talented team of English-based, Swiss-trained, watchmakers use an existing vintage Unitas 6498.1 base movement and enhance it to Garrick’s exacting standards. The specification includes an in-house free sprung balance, open spring barrel and thermally blued screws. Adding the free sprung balance means that the Shaftesbury is an extremely accurate timepiece and performs well above expectations. The Shaftesbury sm301 is regulated to +3 seconds and outperforms all of it’s competitors.
The artisans based at Garrick’s workshop, further enhance the movement by adding in-house open bridges with hand bevelled edges, evincing a traditional mien.
The Shaftesbury sm301 is set to be a fine English watch with impeccable breeding.
The price of the Shaftesbury sm301 is £3995
What makes the Shaftesbury sm301 more accurate than it’s competitors? Read Here
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Shaftesbury with exhibition case back
This excellent movement will provide the basis for the new Garrick watches, modified and enhanced in-house by our team of watchmakers.
A free sprung-balance, produced in-house, will provide a means to precisely poise the hand-wound movement and confer accurate timekeeping. The increased cost of manufacture is obvious, but the pursuit of perfection leaves no room for compromise at Garrick.
Hand-bevelled bridges, thermally-blued screws and other examples of exemplary finishing provide further testament to the excellence demanded by Garrick. Such are the exacting standards which define the company’s ethos that assembly takes place within a dust-free environment where “positive air pressure” prevents contaminated air entering the workshop.
Why use a free-sprung balance?
Congruent with the company’s desire to produce a timepiece of impeccable breeding, Garrick has chosen to fit a free sprung balance to the sm301. By adopting this approach, the effective length of the balance spring remains constant. The rate keeping of the watch is achieved by adjusting the position of the hairspring and by adding mass to the rim of the balance wheel or the spokes within.The creation of a free sprung balance is more time-consuming to achieve but confers enhanced isochronism.
A common approach when creating a free sprung balance is to affix screws to the rim of a balance wheel, often termed a screwed balance. The degree to which they are tightened or loosened effects the inertia of the balance. The mass of the screws and their relative position is used to regulate the rate. Additional mass is added in a symmetrical fashion often proving time-consuming and necessitating much skill on the part of the watchmaker. However, the result in superior accuracy.
The Shaftesbury sm301 is tested and regulated to ensure a daily variance of only +3 seconds which means it is currently the most accurate British mechanical timepiece in its price range.
Seldom have I witnessed each development stage of a watch company and the evolution of a new model. I know that the journey to produce the Shaftesbury SM301 has, at times, proved arduous, but David Brailsford and his colleagues have persevered and the dream has now become a reality.
Read the full review HERE
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