In 2018, at the 160th anniversary of the birth of Minerva Watch Factory, Montblanc pays tribute to Minerva Watch Factory’s century-old tradition of excellence in watchmaking heritage.
160th anniversary of Minerva
Montblanc Viller’s watchmaking tradition dates back 160 years: in 1858, Charles-Yvan Robert established a watchmaking workshop in a small village in the St. Mill Valley.
As early as 1880, Minerva Watch Factory was recognized by the global watchmaking industry for its precision timepieces. For example, a keyless gold pocket watch researched by Minerva watchmakers can wind the movement directly by rotating the crown instead of using a separate key, which greatly improves the convenience of control. This is the important reason for the early global success of the Minerva Watch Factory.
History pictures of Minerva Watch Factory
In 1909, the Minerva Watch Factory began to develop chronographs. With its outstanding timing accuracy, Minerva quickly became a leader in professional watch and stopwatch manufacturing. The Minerva Watch Factory manufactures several movements with chronograph functions, such as the legendary 19.09 movement (19-legs, 1909) equipped with a highly recognizable ‘V’ chronograph bridge.
In 1911, the Minerva Watch Factory has developed a chronograph that can accurately measure to 1/5 seconds, and then quickly improved the accuracy to 1/10 seconds. Adhering to this spirit of innovation, in 1916, Minerva became one of the very first watch manufacturers to produce high-frequency movements measuring 1/100 seconds. In 1936, Minerva further improved the chronograph function of the timepieces it produced, and became famous in the field of professional watches and chronographs.
Minerva Anniversary Celebration
In the 1920s, the Minerva Watch Factory developed the first manually-wound single-button chronograph calibre 13.20 (13 legal minutes, introduced in 1920), opening a new chapter in the history of fine watchmaking. This watch-designed movement is equipped with the iconic ‘V’ bridge, column wheel, horizontal disc clutch, and a vibration frequency of 18,000 times per hour.
This series of developments symbolizes the precision technology and innovation level that Minerva Watch Factory has obtained in the field of fine watchmaking since 1858, further consolidating its reputation and position in the manufacture of pocket watches and chronographs.
Old Minerva Plant
Old Minerva Technology and Standards Division
Old Minerva Plant
Today’s Montblanc timepieces inherit Minerva’s 160-year tradition of excellence in watchmaking, and continue to deepen its exploration of three unique fine watchmaking spirits: based on the legendary mountain adventure spirit of the Montblanc professional military watch (Montblanc 1858 series), based on The classic high-end watchmaking spirit of Menela’s traditional pocket watches and wristwatches (the new Montblanc Star Collection), and the racing spirit based on the Menela Honor Chronograph (Montblanc Timewalker Series), connecting today through design, style and technological innovation With the past, the glory days of Minerva Watch Factory are reproduced.
Mountain adventure spirit-Montblanc 1858 series
Montblanc’s legendary Minerva professional military watches from the 1920s and 1930s were the source of inspiration and launched a number of new 1858 series timepieces to pay tribute to the 160 years of outstanding watchmaking history and heritage of Minerva Watch Factory. These historical models have extremely high accuracy and legibility, and can maintain reliability under extreme conditions. Montblanc’s new 1858 series timepieces inherit this watchmaking classic, with unique design aesthetics, innovative complex functions, and different materials. And a variety of case sizes, trace the trend of exploring nature and adventure journey, show retro style, while injecting the spirit of fearless adventure.
The vintage design principles of the new Montblanc 1858 series timepieces are rooted in professional military timepieces of the 1920s and 1930s, inheriting the unique design of classic chronographs of that era. The case is satin-finished, and the edges below the beveled lugs are polished for a slimmer look. Other design details include a grooved crown imitating an antique timepiece, and a domed sapphire crystal glass that adds strength and beauty to the watch.
The new timepiece has a dark dial that contrasts with the luminous hands. The cloisonné cloisonné-designed cathedral-like hands are very historical, with finely polished sides arched slightly; the Arabic numerals are coated with Super-LumiNova®, with the classic rail-type minute scale. Clear; the Montblanc logo above the dial is in the style of the brand in the 1930s: the text in historical fonts is inlaid with the Mont Blanc peak pattern.
Balance balance calibration
Classic watchmaking spirit – the new Montblanc star collection
To celebrate the history and tradition of excellence in fine watchmaking, on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the star collection, Montblanc presents the brand’s iconic watch collection with a new star collection. The redesigned new star series, while retaining all the key elements of this product line, takes classic details and more complex designs to new heights, especially integrating watchmaking technology into new and exclusive self-made complication functions to continuously improve the advanced production Table technical limits.
The new Montblanc Star Collection watches are inspired by Minerva pocket watches manufactured between the late 19th and early 20th centuries, such as the Calibre 19 ‘gold hunter pocket watch made in 1927. The two sides of the new timepiece’s round case After the elegant curved surface treatment, it presents a delicate crystal lens effect. The lugs are designed with unique step patterns on both sides. The new watch inherits the classic watchmaking spirit, equipped with an onion crown and embossed Montblanc hexagonal white star brand logo, easy Very recognizable while operating.
The dial is decorated with Arabic numerals, and its shape and size have been redesigned and adjusted to make it more elegant. The dial is also embellished with Montblanc’s signature radial hexagonal white star pattern. Other aesthetic details include: a unique track-type minute scale circle, and a delicate filet sauté engraved around the dial.
Milwaukee’s iconic arrow beveled
Racing Spirit-Montblanc Timewalker Series
The Montblanc TimeWalker series is a professional timepiece dedicated to performance, which reproduces the glory days of the early twentieth century motorsport and pays high tribute to the 160-year-old watchmaking heritage of Minerva Watch Factory.
This racing passion began in the early twentieth century, when the advent of new engines and lightweight hulls drove the speed of racing. The rider’s ranking depends on the minute, which requires the chronograph used to measure the shortest time interval to be more accurate than ever. At that time, the Minerva Watch Factory was famous for creating high-quality chronographs that accurately record short time intervals. Its famous 1/100 chronograph and ‘Rally Timer’ rally chronograph came into being and became specially designed for motorsports. A precision timepiece that composes the heritage of fine watchmaking. With its highly accurate chronograph, Minerva has shaped the glorious history of legendary racing events around the world.
The Timewalker series of modern timepieces traces the classic design of Minerva’s professional chronographs, harmonizing performance, technical innovation, clarity and solidity. Its aesthetic norms are rooted in the racing world: a satin-finished case, semi-hollowed lugs, and architecturally smooth lines. These design details are inspired by the aerodynamic lines of a classic racing car body. Typical details include the signature high-tech black ceramic bezel, crown and knurled finish on the outer edges of the buttons. The crown and buttons are also reminiscent of the fuel tank lid of an antique car, while the smoky glass case back is inspired by the glass window cover of the V12’s powerful engine. The ubiquitous fine details even include perforated leather straps commemorating vintage leather racing gloves.
As a representative of performance and precision, each Montblanc TimeWalker series watch is decorated with the iconic arrows of the Minerva’s hands or parts of the movement to pay tribute to the outstanding tradition of fine watchmaking and its 160-year heritage. Fine watchmaking history.
Montblanc Reno Watch Factory
160 years – two watch factories share the passion for fine watchmaking
Relying on more than 160 years of Swiss fine watchmaking tradition, Montblanc Fine Watch is based on the unique architecture of the perfect collaboration between the two watch factories to jointly create timepieces and the most innovative movements that show the highest level of Swiss watchmaking. Hundreds of years of knowledge and hundreds of hours of dedicated development can give birth to an outstanding Montblanc timepiece, and the watchmaker devotes all its pride, passion and excellent skills to each Montblanc timepiece.
As a Montblanc movement and innovation research and development center, Villeret Watch Factory is located in the original site of the legendary Minerva Watch Factory established in 1858. It is committed to the research and development, prototype design and assembly of self-made movements. To small and super practical and exquisite timepieces, the Villeret Manufacture has provided passionate support for creation.
Montblanc Viller Collection Original Minerva
Here, Montblanc continues to enrich Swiss connotation with outstanding innovation. All movement components are crafted and decorated by watchmakers in the watchmaking workshop by traditional manual methods, and the delicate and delicate handspring is inseparable from the extraordinary manual craftsmanship of the watchmaker. Only a handful of watchmaking factories in the world have the skills and knowledge to make balance springs by hand. Montblanc Villeret is one of them. Watchmakers make their own balance springs, and traditionally use manual methods instead of Electronic means measure length with high accuracy. The standard spring frequency of the balance spring produced by Viller is 18,000 times per hour. This makes Montblanc one of the industry’s largest screw trim balances, allowing watch enthusiasts to see the ‘core’ of precise and wonderful watches.
Montblanc Reno is the brand’s watch and centre of excellence, combining traditional watchmaking practices with advanced technology. Here, the perfect combination of traditional watchmaking and the latest technology, from aesthetic design to structure, prototype design and final assembly, Reno Watch Factory has all the necessary watchmaking expertise to create a classic timepiece.
Montblanc Willis Watch Factory Workshop
Countless parts are delicately assembled in the Reno factory. In order to meet the highest standards of watch quality and performance, every newly manufactured Montblanc timepiece must pass the rigorous ‘Montblanc Lab 500-hour quality test’- This is an extremely accurate and perfectly designed test. In 500 hours, the watch goes through a variety of extreme conditions: daily wear and tear, countless set-ups and resets, different climatic conditions, and checks for all special functions. This rigorous testing procedure ensures that even the most sophisticated watches maintain perfect performance during wearing.
Only after the Montblanc Reno watch factory’s quality assurance team has verified and meets Montblanc’s strict quality standards, the timepiece works can leave the factory. Every watch that successfully passed the ‘Montblanc Lab 500 Hour Quality Test’ comes with an independent certificate, destined to become your reliable and true life companion.
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