One hand watch? How precise do you need your watch to be? Even with the best one-hand watch – and we’ve got three of them here – it’s not the ideal timepiece if you want to be exactly on time like, say, the entire population of Germany. And yet one of the field’s heavy hitters is German. Go figure. As you do, contemplate a selection of watches that proclaim “Look ma! One hand!” Beginning with the wristwear above . . .
Reservoir GT Tour 371 SE – $3900
Reservoir offers the same basic design in five themes: Automotive (GT Tour, Supercharged Sports Red Zone, Longbridge British Racing), Aeronautics (Airfight Jet), Marine (Tiefenmesser), Hydrosphere (Hydrosphere Air Gauge) and military (Battlefield D Day). The GT Tour is the only watch that doesn’t scream gimmick — in the Bell & Ross put-a-cockpit-instrument-on-your-wrist sense of the word. The GT Tour 371 SE is the most subtle and elegant of the French watchmaker’s selection.
Like the brand’s other automotive watches, the GT Tour 571 SE is based on old race car tachometers, complete with a “fuel gauge” power reserve indicator and “red line” indices. But the GT Tour 371 SE doesn’t look like it was lifted from a car. It looks like a watch.
I may be alone in admiring the one Reservoir product that isn’t an immediately obvious literal interpretation of a gauge, but talk to me in ten years, when the Hydropshere sits next to that really funny joke T-shirt you used to wear. I reckon the Reservoir GT is built to go the distance.
If you want a single-hand watch, Germany’s MeisterSinger has single-hand watches. Their Circularis ain’t cheap, but it offers a lot of horological bang for the buck. The 43mm dial and blue-on-ivory applied hour indices enable admirable at-a-glance time telling – a critical factor in this genre (in case I didn’t mention it before). More than that . . .
This Circularis runs on an award-winning “high-precision” MSH01 hand-wound movement. With two mainspring barrels, the Circularis boasts a staggering 120-hour power reserve. You also get the MeisterSinger’s bespoke bridge, gold inlay, blued screws and fine ornamental cuts – all on display under an exhibition caseback. It’s a special piece even without the one-hand watch setup.
The Defacto one icognito’s indices mark time on the hour and 15-minute intervals, providing an excellent instant idea of the approximate time. For some people – folks who know what a zen kōan is – that’s close enough for rock and roll. Anyway, ipso defacto – the icognito’s skeletonized hand leaves little doubt where you are within that temporal range.
It’s a lumetastic 42mm timepiece with an exhibition caseback displaying the ubiquitous Swiss ETA 2824-2AF automatic engine. Bonus! Bereft as it is of a logo or Arabic numbers, you can wear the icognito one on either hand with the exact same limited legibility. It’s not waterproof, but you’ve got to hand it Defacto for assuring buyers there are no annoying reflections.