A new timepiece – and a new way a keeping time – was unveiled at Baselworld 2011 by Konstantin Chaykin. We had the opportunity to meet up with the maestro himself, and he gave us an exclusive demonstration. The very special watch is called the Konstantin Chaykin Lunokhod (named after the first of two unmanned lunar rovers landed on the Moon by the Soviet Union).
The Lunokhod made its world premiere in the AHCI hall of independent (genius) watchmakers in Basel this year and is currently in production. Expect the retail price to be over $100,000.
Konstantin Chaykin managed to bring to perfection one of the most romantic watch complications. In his hands comes the most lively and realistic watch Moon in the world. Instead of using the classic indicator window through which a stylized image of the moon is usually shown maestro placed in his new watch a miniature copy of the Earth satellite. The ball is 12 mm in diameter, it is coated with the relief of the lunar surface and located in the center of the dial, and lunar phases are indicated by means of covering it up with mobile silver hemisphere. This hemisphere moves around the ball with the speed of the moon in its orbit and symbolizes its shadow side.
This original way of indication reflects the real situation in the night sky of the Earth in the best possible way. As a matter of fact, how do we understand the phrase “lunar phases”? So we call different forms of the visible, not shaded Earth satellite illuminated by the Sun. When the moon moves in the orbit its sunlit changes. And this dark, shaded part changes in size, completely absorbing the night celestial body or revealing its beautiful face on the full moon. This effect is repeated in Konstantin Chaykin’s watch.
Material used for the case of unusual watch is also interesting. This is noble damask steel produced by one of the best Russian gunsmiths, an expert on wootz steel Sergey Lunev. Unique designs of legendary and mysterious metal that resemble pictures of the lunar surface inspired Konstantin to emphasize cosmic theme of the watch.
Here is the movement in action: