Monday, 13 February 2012

The PIONEER MonoScope from Hanhart

PIONEER MonoScope – One for all

Just like its legendary predecessors produced by Hanhart, the Pioneer
MonoScope features a single button for controlling the entire range of chronograph
functions. This new model from the Pioneer collection also bears another
striking hallmark of the early precision timepieces made by the Swiss-German
watch brand in the widely spaced arrangement of its small seconds and 30-
minute counter displays.

In the first half of the 20th century, Hanhart was a key pioneer in developing
highly-functional precision chronographs. As early as 1938, the Swiss-German
watch brand designed a mono-pusher model for naval officers, featuring its own
“Calibre 40” movement. All of the chronograph functions on this unconventional
wristwatch – start, stop and reset – are performed by the same button and
always follow strictly one after the other. Unlike its two-button equivalent, the
seconds hand on this chronograph cannot be restarted after it is stopped. The
next time the button is pressed, the seconds hand invariably jumps back to its
initial position. This is the perfect technology for navigating safely and
measuring distances at sea as it rules out any possibility of faulty navigation by
dispensing with an addition stopping function.

Extraordinary technology and aesthetics
The technical design with a single button is also the trademark feature of the
Pioneer MonoScope. The automatic movement enclosed in the generously-sized
stainless steel case, which measures 45 millimetres in diameter, has had to be
re-engineered slightly to suit this mono-pusher arrangement. The lever which
sits directly beneath the point where the button at 4 o’clock would normally be
has no function. A large shift lever is therefore responsible for the third strike
on the chronograph cam. This cam has also been modified so that it has an
additional tooth on its lowest level, enabling the shift lever to control not two,
but three positions.

This is not, however, the only distinctive element of this new model in the
Pioneer collection. A further modification of the calibre has made it possible for
the two displays for the small seconds and the 30-minute counter, which are
typical of Hanhart chronographs, to be positioned right on the edge of the dial.

The aesthetic appearance of this model is therefore perfectly coordinated with
the design of its predecessors from the 1930s, for which this arrangement was
adopted in order to accommodate the large size – 15.5 lignes – of Hanhart’s
early manufacture calibre. On the Pioneer MonoScope, the centres of the two
displays, together with the numerals 2 and 4 as well as 8 and 10, form a
straight, vertical axis, resulting in a symmetrically-balanced presentation.

Flawless readability, in the characteristic style of a functional instrument watch,
is ensured in any situation by the distinctive luminous Arabic numerals and the
hands which are also coated with Super-LumiNova®. This is also enhanced by
the minute hand, the end of which is bent downwards slightly to ensure a more
precise time display. The black and silver colours used on this watch reflect the
colours traditionally preferred for precision timepieces.
The typical Hanhart features
In addition to the unmistakable bicompax display format, the new MonoScope –
like the other models in the Pioneer collection – is distinguished by the typical
characteristics of a Hanhart chronograph: the upper chronograph button,
positioned at a greater distance from the lug for more ease of use, is especially
striking and is a feature unique to this watch manufacturer. In order to achieve
this arrangement, Hanhart integrates a specially designed lever into the case in
its own workshops. This redirects the force from pressing the button located at
2 o’clock by the required number of millimetres. No less eye-catching is the
striking red button, which has been a hallmark of Hanhart watches since 1939
and, right from the start, it has helped to deter wearers from inadvertently
resetting the stopped time during navigation. The large, easy-to-handle crown
with a deep bevelled edge guarantees safe and simple use. The bezel is
available either in a thin design which can be rotated in either direction and
which comes with a fluted, slip-proof finish and red marking or in an elegant
and plain design with a flat surface. Elegantly contrasting satin-finished and
polished surfaces give the case distinctive character. To guarantee maximum
water-resistance and robustness, the Pioneer MonoScope is, like the archetypal
models on which it is based, fitted with a sealed, screwed-down case back
which includes three indentations for the case key. The rivetted strap made
from firm, hard-wearing calfskin and a high-quality pin buckle offer a secure fit
on the wrist. The Pioneer MonoScope is also optionally available with a stainless
steel bracelet and an adjustable folding clasp.


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