Last summer (I am so sorry for this article being so late...), I had the pleasure of being able to attend another Redbar brand meet up. This time with the heavily under-appreciated German brand, Junghans. The event was attended by three representatives from the brand, as well as the CEO, Matthias Stotz, and a room full of watch geeks obviously…
For me, despite having been aware of Junghans, and all the amazing things that they do, for some years now; I feel that they are a brand that not many people really know about. As a result, before we delve into the event itself and some of the amazing watches that were on display, here is a short bit of background.
Junghans was founded in 1861 by Erhard Junghans. Within the space of just over forty years, Junghans was already the biggest producer of clocks in the world. By the time the brand celebrated its one hundred year anniversary, 20,000 clocks and watches were being produced and sent out to over one hundred countries, every single day. One of the things that Junghans are most famous for is their collaboration with world renowned architect, painter, sculptor and product designer, Max Bill. In 1969, Max Bill designed the legendary Max Bill wrist watch. This has been a true icon of not only the brand, but watch design ever since its inception. The brand's roots are something that they hold at the very centre of their ethos, and to this day the brand still resides in the rolling hills of South Germany where it was originally founded. This is a brand that really should be getting more consideration amongst collectors. Their legacy and quality of watchmaking is something truly remarkable.
So, now to delve into the wonderful evening that I got to spend with the brand. Junghans brought with them a vast array of their current model line up, from simple dress watches, to made for purpose PVD pilot chronographs and even a stunning vintage inspired Telemeter Chronograph. I think its about time we dive right in?
Junghans Max Bill Chronograph
The particular model from this line that I am going to talk about is this. The Junghans Max Bill reference 027/4003.44. This is probably their most iconic watch in the model line. It features a self winding, in house caliber movement, the J88.02. This features a date, chronograph with second stop, a thirty minute timer and a twelve hour timer. It comes in a forty millimetre stainless steel case, and the dial features luminous markers and hands. This watch truly is the epitome of classic design. The watch is clean, uncomplicated, and versatile beyond belief. The other benefit here is that through not having a bezel, on-wrist the watch feels much closer to thirty seven millimetres than forty. This watch truly is fantastic, and at the price point of just shy of £1,400, this watch is a true value prop.
The minimal dial on this watch is just superb...
Junghans Meister Telemeter
We were lucky enough at the event to get hands on with this watch. However, not just any example, but the personal example of the CEO himself, Matthias Stotz. But the fact it was the CEO’s example is not what makes this watch so amazing. I have to say I truly fell in love with this watch. At 40mm, and like the Max Bill in the fact it wears significantly smaller, this watch just feels amazing on the wrist. But the thing that I really fell in love with was the dial. The colour is a perfect parchment colour without looking like forced vintage, and the subtle accent of red on the outer scale gives it a playful nature. This watch really is superb, and suffice to say I am very tempted.
This watch is just awesome. Its versatility perfectly shown here by pairing it with a lovely brown suede strap...
Now the reason for not speaking about more of the watches that I had a chance to get hands on with is because I want to take a bit of time to talk about the fantastic chat that I had with the CEO of the brand, Matthias Stotz. Matthew was not only generous enough to attend the event, but he was also generous enough to sit down with myself and a few others and tell us about his story. Suffice to say he is a fascinating and lovely chap. He has been CEO of the brand for the past thirteen years, having gone into the brand to sell them the watchmaking tables that he has crafted over the years. He has done this using expertise he learnt whilst becoming a watchmaker, and has been lucky enough to supply them to the likes of Patek Phillipe and Vacheron Constantin, to name a few. He went into the brand to sell his tables to them and, in the same meeting, was offered the job as CEO. Not only is Matthias an incredibly passionate ambassador and leader of the brand, he is also a fully qualified watchmaker and a professor of watchmaking, teaching masters students the craft of making watches. This coupled with his passion for providing the highest quality watchmaking tables to give every watch maker the best environment in which to hone their craft, means that his passion and enthusiasm extends far beyond just the brand that he has been at the helm of for over ten years. It was truly a pleasure to sit down with him and hear his story first hand, as well as the inner workings of a truly amazing brand.
Junghans CEO, Mr Matthias Stotz...
I hope you have enjoyed this article geeks. It was really a fantastic event and I will continue to give you an insight into some of the brands we get to see and events we get to go too as it is such a pleasure to be able to experience them and pass on the brilliant things that we see to you all.
We have again had a hiatus in uploads on the blog. But suffice to say the drought is over, and we will now be returning to our regularly schedule programming.
Editor & Co-Founder