Most people will be familiar with the German watch brand MeisterSinger, as none other has given the “one-hand watch” label more of a face than the Münster-based company that has been in existence since 2001. (If you would like to delve deeper into the history of MeisterSinger at this point, you can do so with our article Deceleration Made in Münster: MeisterSinger Single-Hand Watches.)
The same applies to the brand-new MeisterSinger Bell Hora, although with the added functionality of an acoustic signal to let the wearer know that a full hour has elapsed.
The mechanism called “Sonnerie au Passage” is designed to automatically chime every hour on the hour – a charming and discreet way to signal the passage of time. It is important to note that this is by no means a repetition movement (like that of a Petite Sonnerie), which would for instance ring four times at 4 o’clock. Rather, the new MeisterSinger Bell Hora is a way to combine the sophistication of an automated chiming movement with the subtle beauty of a mechanical movement.
The following video shows how the Sonnerie au Passage sounds:
If desired, the acoustic feature can be deactivated via the button above the crown at 2 o’clock. A black marker will then indicate whether the Sonnerie au Passage is currently activated or not.
From a technical perspective, the elaborate complication was realized with the help of a jumping hour – another complication that MeisterSinger already masters and that the Bell Hora is now based on.
As usual with a jumping hour, the hour hand is replaced by a disc with all twelve hour digits. How this exactly works is demonstrated by the MeisterSinger Salthora Meta Transparent, whose movement module accumulates energy over 60 minutes for the next jump of the hour.
It was precisely the knowledge of this complication that was largely responsible for the success of the “Sonnerie au Passage,” as the MeisterSinger watchmakers were able to modify the movement module accordingly. From now on, it does not any longer collect the necessary energy for the next hourly jump during the 60 minutes, but instead for a full chime.
In other words, instead of a jump of the date disc, the device strikes precisely on the hour against the installed tuning fork. For this purpose, a 12-tooth wheel was coaxially mounted on the hour wheel of the Sellita SW-200.
Despite the additional hour strike module, which is completely invisible from the outside, the Bell Hora is at the end of the day of course still a MeisterSinger watch par excellence. Therefore, it presents itself in the usual classic and unpretentious manner: The dial, which can be either creamy white or blue, features a 12- and a 24-hour scale, while only a small hint at 6 o’clock indicates the nifty feature below the dial.
In typical MeisterSinger fashion, the needle-fine white hand crosses the 144 five-minute markers twice a day on the Bell Hora.
As an authorized MeisterSinger dealer, the new MeisterSinger Bell Hora will of course be available at Montredo as of April this year. A listing of all watches is available in our MeisterSinger boutique.