MICRO MONDAYS: Bold and experimental, the Angles Chain of Time is a truly maverick watchFergus Nash
While historically popular watch brands have proven over decades if not centuries that they’re capable of greatness, there’s one edge that microbrands will always have. Wild experimentation is usually not something a big brand can do, as breaking away from their established production line is far too costly for a watch that may end up selling only a handful of units. As a microbrand, Angles have been able to experiment in a way that’s usually reserved for outlandishly expensive independent luxury watchmakers, but manage to keep prices attainable by adapting off-the-shelf movements. The Angles Chain of Time is an incredible conversation-starter, using an unprecedented method of moving the hands.
Whether you’re a fan of cycling or just industrial aesthetics, the Angles Chain of Time gives you plenty to gawp at. The obvious centrepiece of the dial are the chain-driven gears that stretch across the ovular face, with the minutes hand at the bottom helping the hour hand traverse the 24-hour dial while attached to the chain. It’s not the easiest way to read the time and definitely takes some getting used to, however watches like this rarely have time-telling as their primary function. The outer section of the dial uses a convex layer with Arabic numerals on the even numbers, reducing the visual complexity that some 24-hour dials can sometimes carry.
The Angles Chain of Time is available in five colours, each bringing their own personality to the watch. The Adriatic Blue, Cobalt Grey and Arctic White versions are paired with natural finishes for their stainless steel cases, however the Hunter Green and Ebony Black use gunmetal and black DLC coatings respectively to tone down the brightness and lean into a more stealthy vibe.
Given the unusual centrepiece of the dial, the ovular case of the Angles Chain of Time is a necessity that’s been executed well. It’s definitely not a small watch by any means, with a 42mm width and a 55mm length, but the strap integration helps to bring the watch as snugly onto the wrist as possible. The overall height is 14mm, although a large portion of that is thanks to the double-domed sapphire crystal that follows the oval shape and makes the watch look like an old contraption displayed in a museum.
From the side view, you can see that the level of finishing on the case is a lot more intricate than you may have guessed from the slim high-polished bezel surrounding the dial. Beneath the bezel section is a consistently brushed mid case before the caseback returns to a mirror finish. There the gap opens up for the strap to connect, creating an integrated look. The crown is pleasingly symmetrical at the bottom of the case, technically called the 12 o’clock position because of the 24-hour scale. The 30m of water resistance should give you some peace of mind around water, however you probably wouldn’t be taking it swimming.
The first glance of the Angles Chain of Time may lead you to think that it uses a super complex in-house movement that took years of research and development, however at its core it’s a standard Sellita SW220-1. The Swiss movement is now a staple of both microbrands and established brands alike as it’s proven its reliability and accessibility over the years, and the fact that it’s based on an even older ETA movement means that there’s plenty of knowledge and infrastructure around modifying it. The beat rate is that smooth Swiss 28,800vph, while the power reserve is approximately 36 hours.
The Angles Chain of Time pricing and availability:
The Angles Chain of Time is available from the Angles website here, and is limited to only 100 pieces per colour variant. Price: $2,771 AUD / $1,900 USD on sale, $4,375 AUD / $3,000 USD full price.
|Case Material||Stainless Steel|
|Case Dimensions||42mm x 55mm x 14mm|
|Dial||Blue, green, black, grey, white|
|Straps||Colour-matched leather straps|
|Power Reserve||36 hours|
|Complications||24 hour time, minutes|
|Price||$2,771 AUD / $1,900 USD on sale, $4,375 AUD / $3,000 USD full price.|