Assembling the Swiss Caliber in Baltimore, MD.
A watch brand can choose to make their own movement from scratch. They can purchase an assembled proven caliber or they can rebuild that proven caliber. The Towson Watch Company will make its own movement from time to time, but there are only a couple brands in the world that are capable of performing this in scale. For most independents and brands like us located outside of Switzerland, we are restricted to either buying or rebuilding a proven caliber for an official collection timepiece. Most pseudo-luxury brands will use a pre-assembled movement, and unfortunately, many of the consumer-luxury brands that we all know well will do the same.
It’s important to recognize the difference between the two practices. Is the watch brand purchasing an assembled caliber or remaking that caliber? The decision carries a lasting impact on the value, durability and reliability of the total timepiece.
Here at Towson Watch Company, we choose to rebuild a proven Swiss caliber. There are three main benefits to applying this approach to the making of a Towson Watch. They involve decoration, regulation and customization. A watch brand that commits to these three fields of quality and analysis make the owner of a fine timepiece value their purchasing decision for a lifetime.
Let’s begin with what we find problematic about “using a completed caliber.” A brand that simply claims to use a Sellita SW200 movement can’t guarantee that timepiece or provide a long term warranty for it. They likely don’t understand the makeup of that movement because they didn’t build it or assemble it themselves. If there is lacking accuracy after a year of wear or it was demagnetized, the brand that you bought it from likely can’t be there to fix it for you.
Aside from the lacking ability of many watch brands to serve as an actual watchmaker that is capable of service and repair, there are important qualities of a watch composed of a movement that has been assembled in-house that is aesthetically admirable. It starts with decoration.
It won’t be easy finding a timepiece as well-decorated as a Towson Watch. We flaunt this decoration through the exhibition casebacks. While many brands attempt to hide their lack of attention to detail with a closed caseback, Towson Watches expose the additional work applied.
An owner of a Towson Watch has appreciation for the intrinsic value of it, or in other words, the mere functioning as an instrument. And they admire what it represents, a rejuvenation of American manufacturing in the form of highest-grade watchmaking. But if they want to show it off, there’s nothing like flipping it over to reveal the movement.
When someone sees a mechanical movement so elegantly decorated, the appreciation for the fine timepiece as a whole becomes an objective feeling. No matter what kind of person the viewer of the timepiece is, they will appreciate that mechanical movement when it is presented with artisanal qualities. Compare it to an oil painting, where the texturing is noticeable. One can trace the making of the art. This is what movement decoration does. The blued screws, the perlage on the main plate, the engravings on the bridges, the geneva stripes on the rotor and rhodium coated throughout bring the masterpiece all together into one mechanical painting. Once admired, the utilitarian identity of the timepiece only makes that treatment so much more special.