watches are rare... and expensive. The subject
of this month's lead article results from news stories about such a watch that
is to be sold at auction by Sotheby's in Geneve, Switzerland, later this year.
These news reports resulted in a series of questions.
Why is it called that? The short answer is because this type of watch is
How so? The watch does more than keep time.
How rare are these watches? Some are very rare, and eagerly sought by
How expensive are they? These watches can sell for millions. Some modern
ones, of course, only sell for thousands, but they are not the truly
watches are rare partially because almost all were
custom built to a customer's order by hand. This is true for virtually all of
the top collectibles.
Patek Phillipe is renowned for crafting watches of the highest quality, with
A complication in a watch is defined by Patek Phillipe as:
A 'complication' is any additional horological function to the display of
hours, minutes and seconds.
Complicated watches are assigned to one of two categories:
Complications: watches with one or several
additional hands that have a timing function such as Annual Calendar,
dual time zones, multiple time zones (World Time), power reserve
indication, 10-day power reserve, indication of the state of wind of the
Grand complications : watches with
astronomical indications such as perpetual calendar (with moon phases),
perpetual calendar with fly-back retrograde date, astronomical calendar,
small and grand strikes, minute repeater, chronographs and split-seconds
chronographs, self-winding Annual Calendar Chronograph, tourbillon
chronometer with 10-day power reserve, triple and grand complications,
sidereal time, running equation of time, sky chart.
The sheer number of tiny parts and the clearances between them to allow
precise movements, resulted in a timepiece that is 'fatter" than you
might expect for a normal watch.
Hundred of tiny parts, crafted to precise tolerances according to
advanced mathematical calculations, are required for these multi-function
Supercomplication watches that were (and are) hand build pocket watches, with few exceptions. The number of parts and the space the parts
require is part of the reason for this size of timepiece. Another reason
is that when many of them were build, that was the style.
With the age of computers, exotic materials, and precision micro-machining,
wristwatches featuring several complications are available on the market now.
Watches worn on the wrist were found to he useful by officers during World
War One. As wristwatches became more popular, luxury watchmakers like Patek
Phillepe began to offer them.
The Henry Graves Supercomplication is described as an 18k gold coach
watch with 24 horological complications, including a perpetual calendar,
sidereal time, power reserve, moon phases, a chart of the nighttime sky
over Mr. Gravesí New York City apartment... complete with the magnitudes
of the stars and the Milky Way, a different chronological function for
each hour of the day, and a minute repeater whose chimes played the same
melody heard in London's Big Ben.
Mr. Graves was a banker, a connoisseur "of beautiful things",
and a watch collector of the highest level. It is said that he competed
with his friend and fellow collector and automaker, James Ward Packard.
Mr. Graves commissioned Patek Philippe to build the world's most
Patek Philippe reportedly took three years
of research to design, and then another five to produce the
timepiece to Mr. Graves specifications.
watches are rare and expensive, especially this one. Sotheby's projects the Henry Graves Supercomplication to sell
for seventeen million dollars.
Top - Grand Complication watch
Next - Grand Complication watch movement
Next - Grand Complication watch
Next - Grand Complication wristwatch
Next - Henry
Next: - Gem special offer - Peridot - Emerald shape (or
octagon, if you prefer). This pair of gems exhibit classic peridot color
Next - Dealer Product Image - Blue Spinel and White
Topaz Ring in Sterling Silver
Last - Dealer Program Image - Pink Spinel and Sterling
A Google search for links or images using keywords such as supercomplication
watches or grand complication watches can return some very interesting information and websites.
We keep gem prices low by buying quality gemstone rough
worldwide, and having the rough material cut by our gem cutters in Asia.
Gem Industry News
Bidz.com Goes Bankrupt
Jewelry e-tailer Bidz.com ceased operations in June according to court
documents. The enterprise grew out of a chain of pawn shops to become a publicly
traded company on NASDAQ.
Bidz.com specialized in closeout jewelry in an instant-auction format.
The company was profitable just a few years ago, In 2007 the company reported
profits of $18 million from revenues of $187 million. However, complaints alleging
fraud, shill bidding, and other questionable business practices helped to create
a financial crisis for the company. This led to the company going private in
Court documents indicate the company possibly owes creditors more than
Gift giving occasions are always coming up for your existing customers.
Birthdays, anniversaries, and many other reasons to give nice jewelry at a
great price just keep on coming. Your customers (and their friends) need what
As more television jewelry sales sites go under because of questionable
business practices, you can continue to offer your customers good value.
Be The Quality Jewelry Discounter.
Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?
Do you enjoy talking with friends and friends