Demonstrating its rich British history and quality Swiss craftsmanship, Arnold & Son unveils the beautiful Eight-Day Royal Navy. The watch is a testament to Arnold & Son’s tradition of building marine chronometers. With a stunning new eight-day power reserve movement, it is part of the sophisticated Royal Collection that took its inspiration from the timepieces commissioned by King George III.
Back in the 18th century, Arnold & Son’s marine chronometers delivered the robustness, reliability and down-to-the-second precision needed by marine navigators to determine longitude on the high seas. The Eight-Day Royal Navy combines these historic features with a high-performance movement and two of the hallmarks of the antic Arnold & Son chronometers: the power reserve display at 12 o’clock and the “large” small seconds at 6. Inspired by the company’s historic chronometers, the watchmakers and designers at Arnold & Son set out to create a new in-house movement featuring an eight-day power reserve together with a digital date display. This top-flight movement features an unusually open design and meticulous finishing. It delivers further proof of the brand’s creative flair and is the 18th movement to be developed and designed in the company’s own workshops in just five years. The ability to create an unending series of new, customized in-house movements enables Arnold & Son to make the perfectly designed, uncompromising timepieces for which it has made its name.
To perpetuate the company’s heritage, Arnold & Son felt duty-bound to develop a new movement that would be both technically and aesthetically worthy of the house’s historic timepieces. As with every new caliber, Arnold & Son’s R&D team started with a blank sheet of paper, and set out to design a movement that, together with the case and dial, would constitute a harmonious whole. Among the more important specifications were a long power reserve, integrated power reserve and date displays, and a slim case. Ultimately, then, the positioning of every element had to be carefully though out so as to achieve the optimum arrangement for the displays on the dial.
Thus was born the A&S1016 caliber. Equipped with a highly efficient twin barrel, the A&S1016 caliber features an eight-day power reserve and has a fully integrated power reserve display and date function. Despite all these features, the movement is only 4.7mm thick. To further underscore this technical excellence and in typical Arnold & Son tradition, the 242-part, 33-jewel A&S1016 caliber is meticulously finished: the entire palladium-treated nickel-silver movement features hand finishing indicative of the finest haute horlogerie timepieces, including skeletonized and chamfered bridges with polished edges, Cùtes de Genëve rayonnantes and fine circular graining, circular-grained wheels, and blued screws with polished and chamfered edges. The main jewels are set in solid 18-karat gold chatons.
The Eight-Day Royal Navy watch measures 43mm in diameter, and its classically elegant stainless-steel case just 10.7mm in height. Viewed from the side, the housing is stepped and tapers from top to bottom, the widest section accommodating the extra-large glass with the lower part narrowing to fit snugly on the wrist. As an indication of the attention to detail, the satin-finished inserts in the horns can be dismantled during servicing and re-satinized if necessary. The timepiece naturally features an anti-reflective sapphire crystal and case back to view the intricate details.
The watch is available with a choice of three guillochè dials in different colors: silver grey, black anthracite or the shade of royal blue typical of the brand. Further examples of the attention to detail are the color of the date disc and the exquisite hand-aged calfskin strap, both of which match the color of the dial. Overall, the Eight-Day Royal Navy is a beguiling work of technical mastery and fine art.