Arnold & Son Globetrotter Night
The Arnold & Son Globetrotter Night employs a domed dial to indicate the prevailing time around the globe (northern hemisphere). The depiction of the world encompasses black and grey tones, intended to represent the earth at night.
Today, the world of luxury mechanical watches is dominated by Germany, Japan and Switzerland. However, in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, Great Britain was at the forefront of horology. The annals of horology include such luminaries as Harrison, Mudge, Tompion, Graham and, arguably one of the most eminent watchmakers, John Arnold.
John Arnold and, subsequently, his son John Roger Arnold, were prolific, continually conceiving new ways of enhancing precision. Both men patented a number of inventions. After John Roger Arnold passed away in 1843, the name ‘Arnold & Son’ was acquired by Charles Frodsham. Ultimately, the name Arnold & Son disappeared from view.
However, in 1995, the name of Arnold & Son was revived by a Swiss company. Later, in 2010, the brand became ‘a fully integrated manufacture, developing and producing in-house all of its movements.’
Arnold & Son, along with its sister company, movement specialist, La Joux-Perret are based in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland. Many of the models within Arnold & Son’s collections are inspired by English clocks and pocket watches. For example, the Time Pyramid was inspired by a British skeleton clock endowed with a fusée and chain (circa 1830-1845).
With its in-house expertise, Arnold & Son has enjoyed incredible creative freedom, often designing dials with optimal proportions and, thereafter, producing dedicated movements to suit. Ordinarily, the architecture of an existing movement dictates the dial design, somewhat inhibiting creativity. Clearly, the approach adopted by Arnold & Son is very unusual.
Since the brand became a fully integrated manufacture, its portfolio of skills has grown to encompass various types of high-end finishing, métiers d’art and breathtakingly ingenious designs. This latter characteristic is manifest with the new Arnold & Son Globetrotter Night. This watch depicts the prevailing time using a domed representation of the world (northern hemisphere) as seen at night.
The brand’s press release
In the 1780s, John Arnold contributed to the great revolution in ocean navigation with his marine chronometers. The Globetrotter Night reflects this historical legacy with its cartographic features and world times. As night follows day, Arnold & Son cloaks its Globetrotter in darkness, spectacularly showcasing our northern hemisphere when shrouded in vesperal shadow.
Beneath a large sapphire crystal dome, an arch supports a half-globe in shades of grey and blue. It depicts the continents, the seas and the lights of the large cities located north of the equator. Together, the hemisphere and ring display the time in one part of the world, represented in a highly original way. In the absence of a dedicated hand or city disc, the time is read geographically in accordance with the continents.
The Earth by night
The Globetrotter Night offers a realistic and meticulously rendered interpretation of a three-dimensional map enclosed in a 45 mm steel case. Chemical engraving has been used on the half-globe to outline the continents. The raised parts have undergone a deep-grey galvanic treatment before being hand-lacquered in a black-grey hue, while the oceans are lacquered in grey-blue. Finally, the city lights twinkling in the northern hemisphere are represented by hand-applied silver sparkles.
The decorative touches and finishes adorning the Globetrotter Night extend beyond the Earth itself. The chapter ring is circular satin-brushed and the hands, despite being mostly concealed beneath the half-globe, are polished and accentuated by red lacquered tips. The large double-foot bridge supporting the half-globe is a spectacular feature in itself that lends structure to the overall appearance of this timepiece. It is circular satin-brushed and chamfered by hand and held in place by screws with polished heads and chamfered slots.
These finishes are echoed extensively on the A&S6022 self-winding calibre powering the Globetrotter Night. Entirely developed and produced by the Arnold & Son Manufacture, it has a nocturnal style thanks to the widespread use of NAC-type surface treatments. The bridges are polished and chamfered, finished with Côtes de Genève stripes and coloured grey. The skeletonised oscillating weight is engraved and treated chemically with ADLC black and NAC grey to obtain a two-tone appearance using a matt straight-grained finish.
Beyond these aesthetic details, what makes the A&S6022 calibre special is its easy setting, thanks to a three-position crown. The first winds the movement. The second adjusts the local time hand by one-hour jumps either clockwise or anti-clockwise. The third regulates the hours and minutes in addition to the planet’s rotation. When travelling to a different time zone, the second position enables the wearer to change local time while keeping world time synchronised.
In the interests of fairness, Arnold & Son can also provide a “southern hemisphere” version of its Globetrotter Night on request at the same price.