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A Watch is Born: First look at the new 99.5

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1 A Watch is Born: First look at the new 99.5 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 7:53 pm

My new Dornblueth, the 99.5, is here. Given the timing of its receipt, I plan to wrap it up and put it under my Christmas Tree so I can open it up on Christmas morning.

However, as I sometimes did when I was a boy, I did sneak a peak inside the box when it arrived (ssshh....don't tell). I even put it on my wrist and snapped a few pics with my iPhone. Nothing spectacular, but good enough for now.

As some of you may have noticed, I've been a little coy with the images of the dial and case. This was out of respect for Dirk's wishes, who asked that I not publicly share some of the images until certain milestones have been reached, and others he asked me to refrain from publishing at all. That is, until this morning, when he lifted all restrictions and gave me permission to reveal the results of our labors these past 18 months. So - without further ado, let's take a look:

the first image is the computer generated mock-up of the dial and case that Dirk sent me after we agreed on the dial layout:

In July, Dirk sent me a series of photographs of the movement under construction and this image, which shows the first printed dial and case. Notice that the crown has not been installed yet.

After Dirk sent me the images above, he told me that he would like to add this model to his regular line up. I then began to think about the case and the dial. Following some brief discussions, we then agreed that an engraved dial would be a worthy addition to the new 99.5. Early in our discussions, I had asked dirk about a coin-edge bezel along the lines of what was on the Gorch-Fock. We initially rejected that notion, but later, Dirk agreed to produce a one-off coin-edge bezel for me. About 2 weeks ago, he sent me photos of the final product. I took a few liberties with Photoshop and created this image:

Here is a quick iPhone image of the watch in its burled wood case, as I received it yesterday.

Here is a quick shot of my newly a-"Dorned" wrist . I have to admit I was a little apprehensive about the bezel, as it's a bit of a departure from the typical Dornbluth, and the first images I saw did not reflect what I had imagined. But now that I've seen it, I think it could not be more perfect.

To my mind, the watch is perfect. The grainy, matte finish of the engraved dial is exactly what I was looking for - it's not too white, it's not to brown or creamy - it's just right. I could not be more delighted with my new 99.5.


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Allow me to be the first to congratulate you! A beautiful outcome and well worth waiting for.

I look forward to your official opening and additional photos, especially of the movement.


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That's absolutely lovely, James, congratulations to you and Dirk on a wonderful collaboration.

It was definitely worth the wait!

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4 Unique! on Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:36 am

Hi James
Congratulations with a very unique and interesting watch! It's a beauty and I'm impressed that you were able to convince Dirk in making the very special bezel.
Looking forward to seeing more pics! Very Happy

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Hi James,

you own a fantastic new Dornblueth. Congratulations!

I had the chance to have look on the new 99.5 during one of my last visits in Kalbe last year. The movement is extremely beautiful, too and I think that this model with the central second will find a lot of friends...



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