When it comes to MeisterSinger, most people immediately think of their single-hand watches. While that particular style is not to my own preferences, I have become a fan of their models that also incorporate a jump hour complication. This of course keeps the single hand aesthetic while still giving you accurate time telling. While that is certainly what I would opt for, their latest model – the MeisterSinger Benjamin Franklin – offers up something rather more intriguing, and just for the U.S. market.
Upon first glance at the MeisterSinger Benjamin Franklin, you can tell that there is something different going on here. Going contrary to other single-hand watches, the minutes are outlined in definite demarcations. A closer examination reveals that 60-minute scale is repeated four times around the watch. That gives us an accurate reading of the minute, but how do you actually read the time? The watch itself – or, more precisely, the dial – is divided into four quadrants. To pick out the hour, you look at the quadrant the hand is in, infer in your own mind the approximate time of day, and there you have it. For example, in the image up top, the time could either be 1:33, 5:33, or 9:33 – so you either just had lunch, are thinking about dinner, or are perhaps getting ready for bed. Definitely different times of day. Then again, if you have a habit of immersing yourself into a project without realizing how much time has gone by (and do not have ready access to a window), then this may not be the watch for you.
This is certainly one of the more unique designs from MeisterSinger, and it does claim a lineage to Benjamin Franklin. This comes courtesy of a design that Franklin came up with while visiting England in 1770. Apparently he described a clock with three wheels, two weights, and one pendulum to a James Ferguson. While that particular design was never published or patented, somehow word of it carried forward to the current day, and now we have this watch.
The 43mm MeisterSinger Benjamin Franklin houses a Unitas 6498-1 movement (the same as we saw in the Aether AE01), and is available in an extremely limited edition of 50 pieces. As you might imagine, pricing for this commands a premium, and comes in at $4,399. For myself, I hope they execute this presentation in a regular production model, as I would love to see one in person. This is the sort of crazy implementation that might just let me get in touch with the single-hand world of watches. Until then, I guess it’s two hands or more (or a jump hour) for me. meistersinger.net
- Brand & Model: MeisterSinger Limited Edition Benjamin Franklin
- Price: $4,399
- Who we think it might be for: You like single-handed watches, but want a presentation style that you have not seen before
- Would I buy one for myself based on what I’ve seen?: While I certainly am intrigued, not at LE prices, no
- If I could make one design suggestion, it would be: Realize this execution in a standard production model (perhaps on a deep blue dial with white numerals and hand)
- What spoke to me the most about this watch: Aside from how different this execution is, it is the fact that you can accurately read the minutes, rather than inferring it to the closest 15-minute mark.