Wednesday, 11 January 2012

PIONEER Stealth 1882 Limited Edition

To mark its 130th anniversary in 2012, Hanhart is launching two limited versions of the Pioneer Stealth 1882 (each limited to 130 pieces), which takes its name from the stealth technology used in aviation and reproduces all the characteristic elements of the legendary Hanhart pilot’s chronographs from the 1930s in an eye-catching contemporary design.

Enclosed within its gleaming, velvety black case is an exclusively modified chronograph movement, which features increased spacing between the two displays at 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock, an integrated hour counter in the small seconds and a flyback function. The dial also offers practical tachymeter and telemeter scales, with designs reminiscent of the traditional Hanhart “Tachy Tele” model from 1939.

Limited edition pilot’s chronograph with legendary predecessors

Hanhart is celebrating the 130th anniversary of the brand by introducing a new model, the Stealth 1882, to its Pioneer collection in a strictly limited edition. This model quite rightly prides itself on its association with the legendary Hanhart chronographs on which it is based and is distinguished by all the typical characteristics of these timepieces: the upper chronograph button, positioned asymmetrically towards the lug, is especially striking and is a unique feature of Hanhart. In order to achieve this arrangement, Hanhart integrates a specially designed lever into the case. This redirects the force from pressing the button located at 2 o’clock by the required number of millimeters.

No less eye-catching is the striking red reset button. Legend has it that a young pilot, as he was putting on his Hanhart watch one morning, discovered that his wife had painted one of the buttons with red nail varnish so that he would always think of her and return home safe and sound. This distinctive red button became the trademark feature of the watch brand from 1939 onwards. It deterred pilots from inadvertently resetting the stopped time while navigating during a flight and going off course as a result.

A particularly outstanding aspect of the Pioneer Stealth 1882 Limited Edition, however, is the extraordinary way in which the highly characteristic design of the display has been realized in terms of technology and aesthetics, with two auxiliary dials at 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock. An exclusive and complex modification of the automatic calibre enables both of these displays to be placed right on the edge of the large dial which is housed in a case measuring 45 millimeters in diameter. This brings the aesthetic appearance of the watch perfectly into line with the design of its predecessors: due to the relatively large size – 15.5 lignes – of Hanhart’s manufacture calibre 41, the two displays were spaced widely apart on these early pilot’s chronographs too. In addition, the small round display at 9 o’clock on this model is not simply reserved for the small seconds, as would normally be the case; it also accommodates a 12-hour counter which would usually be omitted from a bicompax display of this kind. As a result, the Pioneer Stealth 1882 Limited Edition remains true to the bicompax display format, yet it features all the functions of a tricompax chronograph.

The Pioneer Stealth 1882 Limited Edition also does justice to the early chronographs from a functional perspective: like these models, it is fitted with a flyback mechanism. While on a conventional stopwatch, one button controls the start and stop functions, another is used for setting the relevant hands to zero and an intermediate stop is required for a restart, this flyback mechanism, designed in the 1930s to facilitate navigation, enabled pilots to simultaneously stop, reset and restart their chronograph by simply pressing a single button. The chronograph hand thus returns to its starting position and immediately resumes its time measurements; there is no need to restart the watch after it has been reset.

Like the “Tachy Tele” pilot’s chronograph from 1939, the Pioneer Stealth 1882 Limited Edition also includes telemeter and tachymeter scales. The tachymeter scale is designed to measure speeds and coils around the centre of the dial in a spiral shape, mirroring the design of the original model. This allows up to three revolutions of the stopwatch hand to be taken into account which considerably extends the measuring range and also enables even relatively low speeds of 60 to 20 km/h to be recorded. The practical telemeter scale printed on the peripheral edge of the dial is used to measure distances, taking into account the

speed of sound.


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