There is no substitute for getting close to a timepiece before forming an opinion on its specification. Armin Strom embraces a new design language with its latest timepiece, the Armin Strom Edge Double Barrel skeleton replica watch, a watch replica which deserves close inspection.The very nature of motor racing is that it is inherently dangerous and necessitates bravery on the part of each participant. Observing a race from an armchair might be safer but doesn’t deliver the true thrill of wheel to wheel competition.

Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_front - ESCAPEMENT blog by Angus Davies

Often at weekends, numerous alpha males assemble at various venues around the globe and participate in motorsport events. They explore the limits of grip and performance indulging an inner thirst for adrenaline and a competitive desire for podium glory.

Part of my personal attraction towards independent watch replica brands is that they often do not play it safe with conventional, mainstream designs but instead choose to exhibit audacious aesthetics and, in so doing, take risks. There are some examples where this daring approach to styling can prove disastrous but, conversely, on other occasions the outcome is splendid.

Ascending the rocky façade of a mountain, employing merely skill and the tenacious grip of outstretched fingers and limpet-like toes, holds much appeal to those individuals who yearn to explore the extremes of their physical and mental ability. Indeed, it is only by exploring the edge of human performance that some courageous souls feel truly alive.

I have previously waxed-lyrical about Armin Strom, the independent Armin Strom watch replica company based in Biel / Bienne, reviewing several of its contemporary timepieces. Indeed, I remain the proud owner of a Gravity Water and appreciate its plethora of admirable qualities.

Until recently, virtually all Armin Strom models shared a similarly designed 43.4mm case and as a result whenever I have placed an Armin Strom upon my arm in the past I have been rewarded with a very comfortable union with my wrist.

 

To my delight, placing the Edge Double Barrel upon my wrist at Baselworld proved very agreeable, demonstrating I need not have worried about the vital statistics of this new watch. The styling of the case confers a gentle interaction with the arm and does not unduly protrude or inhibit free movement of the wrist. Moreover, within seconds of making the acquaintance with the Edge Double Barrel its seductive gaze and handsome mien enticed me to appraise its specification closely.

Just prior to Baselworld 2016, I received a press release from Armin Strom announcing the forthcoming debut of a new model, the Edge Double Barrel. Whilst this new design shares a family likeness with other Armin Strom timepieces, it clearly embraces new aesthetic codes. More pertinently, the scale of the watch replica has grown, measuring 46.8mm in diameter. I confess, the notion of a larger case did cause me some concern at the time of reading the press release. I have worn similarly sized watches in the past only to find them too cumbersome and the crown prone to chafing my skin. However, I elected to reserve judgement until an intimate encounter could ensue.

The dial

The Edge Double Barrel, in common with other Armin Strom watches, features an off-centre dial display, biased towards the left.

Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_dial - ESCAPEMENT watch replica reviews by Angus Davies

 

Consistent with the Armin Strom brand DNA, the Edge Double Barrel embraces open-working to sublime effect. Where this model differs from its siblings is with the use of angular, straight-edged bridges and ‘spider-shaped crown wheels’. The resultant appearance effervesces with stylish modernity.

An unusual ‘cross-grinding decoration’ of the hand beveled bridges proffers a fresh, masculine and robust appearance which differentiates the Edge Double Barrel from other timepieces.

The display sits close to the sapphire crystal, accentuating the depths of each visible component and masterfully exploiting the three dimensional quality of the dial vista.

Steel hour and minute hands, lined with white fill, interact with hour markers which are delivered with bold Arabic numerals. The numerical depiction of each hour represents a first for the brand. Previously, hours have been denoted only at 3, 6 and 12 o’clock or using simple batons. By embracing this design aspect, Armin Strom has imbued the Edge Double Barrel with a greater degree of sportiness.

Located at 9 o’clock, a subdial combines a centrally-positioned power-reserve indicator with a small running seconds display encircling the periphery.

The case

As previously stated, the stainless steel PVD black case measures 46.80mm in diameter with a case height of 13.20mm, although It’s matt appearance helps mitigate the sense of scale. Moreover, the stepped crown guards harmoniously draw the crown close, according a cohesive and neat appearance to the case.

Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_crown - ESCAPEMENT watch replica magazine by Angus Davies

The bezel design is new, featuring 11 v-shaped cut-outs which augment the visual interest of the case still further. The Edge Double Barrel sports the maison’s ‘lip’ on the bezel adjacent 6 o’clock.

Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_caseback - Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_caseband - ESCAPEMENT magazine by Angus Davies

Gracing the rear of the case is an exhibition caseback, revealing more of the calibre ARM16 manufacture movement. The timepiece is presented on a black alligator strap with contrasting white stitching and also comes supplied with an additional black rubber strap.

The movement

The Calibre ARM16 manufacture movement is hand-wound. By turning the crown the wearer is indulged with some delightful horological showboating. It would be an inert soul who did not smile as the spider-shaped crown wheels, visible dial-side turn, impart energy to the twin barrels. This free disclosure of the movement’s thought processes has always been a major reason for my affection for Armin Strom watches.

Armin_Strom_Edge_Double_Barrel_calibre_ARM16 - ESCAPEMENT watch replica blog by Angus Davies

 

Despite the contemporary detailing of the movement, purists will no-doubt appreciate the screwed balance with Breguet overcoil and the impressive 8-day power reserve. Indeed, the prowess of the Calibre ARM16 is that it expertly navigates between traditional craftsmanship and admirable ingenuity.

Closing remarks

The styling of the Armin Strom Edge Double Barrel is both brave and highly original. It eschews convention and explores unchartered territory. The striking appearance of the open-worked movement and substantial case diameter may not be to everyone’s taste, however, by taking risks this Swiss independent watch replica company has delivered an exciting ownership proposition. Indeed, similar to the pursuit of extreme sports, the enjoyment and thrill of this watch replica can only really be appreciated when the observer gets close to the Edge.

Technical specification

  • Model: Armin Strom Edge Double Barrel
  • Reference: ST16-EB.90
  • Case: Stainless steel PVD black; diameter 46.80mm; height 13.20mm; water resistant to 5 bar (50 metres); sapphire crystal to front and caseback.
  • Functions: Hours; minutes; small seconds; power-reserve indicator
  • Movement: Armin Strom Calibre ARM16; hand-wound movement; frequency 18,000 vph (2.5Hz); 34 jewels; power reserve 8 days
  • Strap: Black alligator strap supplied on a stainless steel PVD double folding clasp. Also supplied with an additional black rubber strap.
  • Price: CHF 26,900 (Price as at 17.4.2016)
  • Limited Edition: 100 pieces

Armin Strom replica Edge Double Barrel skeleton copy watch with a distinct character all of its own. Whilst traditional finissage is in evidence with hand-beveled bridges, the ‘cross-grinding decoration’ is overtly modern, according an almost distressed appearance.

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