From one of watchmaking’s most prolific Master Watchmakers, the Time Shadow by Andreas Strehler is an exquisite and fascinating eight-piece limited edition watch, which combines analog minutes with digital hours in a superbly appointed case, containing Strehler’s eighth bespoke, in-house designed and manufactured hand winding movement.
The Time Shadow’s case, in gleaming polished stainless steel has become a signature trait of Andreas Strehler for his own pieces, and is a gracefully flowing affair with a fabulous ellipsoidal face of sapphire crystal giving an almost widescreen view of the dial.
A study in the most basic horological disciplines, Time Shadow is a dedicated hours and minutes watch with a brooding contemporary cool personality in dark grey and black with vivid orange Super LumiNova accents, but this seemingly simplistic display belies a beautifully executed piece of micro engineering and finishing of exemplary standards. The matt grey dial with its finely textured grenage surface separates the minutes and hours and a single hand indicates the minutes in an orange marked arc before ceding to the hour wheel. The disappearing minutes just past the half-hour seems peculiar, but to the minute accuracy is still there, even if it takes a moment to realise that the short end of the hand is pointing at an inner ring of orange markers, and so if unconventional, it is very Strehler and an amusing detail.
If many watchmakers choose to display their digital hours function using a ‘jumping’ mechanism, then using that analogy as a reference Strehler’s solution could be likened to a ‘walking’ system, because the black hour disc is actually a large and functional gear wheel whose rotation is driven directly from the minutes gear, means that the hour wheel is constantly in motion and the wire-cut digits pass over the luminous orange dot which highlights the hour dead centre when the minutes hand passes through the top of the hour.
Designed exclusively for Time Shadow, the movement is wholly designed and conceived by Andreas Strehler, and it is in the intricacies of the mechanical masterpiece where his talents are most evident. Visible through the transparent exhibition caseback, almost each one of the 132 individual components, including the conical winding gear, double spring barrels, escapement and are manufactured in-house. The movement plates and bridges have been polished or grained by hand, with polished hand bevelled edges accentuating a meticulous attention to detail.