To support the 9th edition of the famous Only Watch charity auction and celebrate the 200th anniversary of the inking chronograph created by Nicolas Rieussec, Montblanc created the Montblanc Star Legacy Nicolas Rieussec Chronograph Only Watch’21 Unique Piece that will be auctioned together with a wooden replica of the historical chronograph from 1821. Moreover, the successful bidder will receive a special invitation to a rare experience at the Montblanc Manufacture in Villeret. The lucky owner will be able to assemble a Montblanc Calibre MB R200 with the master watchmaker who has created the unique chronograph. As a final touch, the personalized 18 K yellow gold oscillating weight will be assembled in the presence of the watch’s owner.
The Montblanc Star Legacy Nicolas Rieussec Chronograph Only Watch’21 Unique features the two rotating, horizontally-aligned, chronograph discs with fixed double index, combined with a gold-colored dial inspired by the original chronograph device from 1821.
Nicolas Rieussec was the sixth royal watchmaker to the King of France. He designed a chronometer to consistently measure the time horses take to travel the race distance. His innovative mechanism could not only time the winning horse, but also all the horses that crossed the line. Its fixed double index would place a black mark on two rotating counters the moment each horse passed the finish line. A few weeks later, he presented his new invention to the country’s Academy of Sciences in Paris who were fascinated by Rieussec’s device and named it a “chronograph”, taken from the Greek “chronos” for time and “graphein” to write. The principle of the rotating counters was the inspiration for the design and the movement of the Star Legacy Nicolas Rieussec Chronograph Only Watch’21 Unique Piece.
This one-off watch comes in a 43 mm 18 K yellow gold case that is shaped like a pebble. The sapphire crystal on the front has been treated with an anti-reflective coating on both sides to allow the wearer to appreciate the dial. As a homage to the charity auction, the caseback features a special engraving Only Watch Unique Piece. The movement’s oscillating weight has been crafted out of 18 K yellow gold and decorated with a guilloché grain d’orge pattern. It also includes a cartridge where a further engraving can be added.
The dial of the watch is comprised of six different parts, providing a three-dimensional effect. Its base is made in a gold color with a traditional guilloché grain d’orge decoration. A ring with the inscriptions Nicolas Rieussec and Homage 200 ans (Tribute to 200 years) has been applied on the outer part of the dial and is surrounded by a refined filet sauté guilloché.
The modern shape and classic finishes of the Montblanc Manufacture caliber MB R200 can be seen through the sapphire crystal caseback. The bridges feature Geneva stripes with beveled and polished edges, while rubies, blued screws, and gold-coated wheels complete the ensemble. This automatic monopusher chronograph has a column wheel and vertical disc clutch, double barrels, and a power reserve of 72 hours.
The watch comes on a new brown alligator strap featuring orange stitching and alligator lining.
Montblanc has developed a wooden replica of the Nicolas Rieussec historical inking chronograph from 1821. Made of a walnut burl, the device features two white enamel rotating chronograph discs that can be easily started and stopped by a pusher located on the left of the device. The zero-reset should be performed manually by turning the counters with the help of the central axes.