The release of the new Brunswick Pt from Fears is a landmark moment for the modern brand. It’s the first time the watchmaker has created a fully precious metal piece since it was reformed in 2016, heading straight for the king of precious materials, platinum.
Platinum is a notoriously difficult material to work with and Fears is working with award-winning Goldsmith Justin Richardson to make sure each time-consuming process is executed to the highest degree of finesse. With 100g of platinum to work with per watch, it takes 100-hours to make each of the cushion-shaped pieces before they are hallmarked. One side effect is that the 38mm diameter case is three-times heavier than the standard steel Brunswick.
The handcrafting and polishing adds a deep lustre to the metal, which is further emphasised by the anthracite grey coating on the dial. Once the watch has been crafted it is then hallmarked with the initials of the current Managing Director, following the tradition that was used prior to Fears closing in 1976, this piece really marks a return to and an appreciation of the brand’s heritage.
The dial has three surface finishes that creates a two-tone effect that seems to change as the light plays across its face. You can also request your Brunswick Pt to be customised by having the dial from any of the existing steel Brunswicks used instead, as they’re fully compatible. The base model Pt dial also features six diamond hour markers interspersed with large Arabic numerals and the hands are fashioned from platinum in the distinctive ‘Fears’ shape used on the majority of their timepieces.
In terms of internal mechanics, it’s a combination of swiss-made accuracy and British finishing. The movement is the ETA 7001 manual calibre with 40-hour power-reserve and 21,600vph – modified with a new bridge shape and platinum plating, finished in Britain. On the whole, it’s a perfectly fine movement but a 40-hour power-reserve is quickly starting to slip lower in our horological expectations, especially for a piece that purports to be the new flagship of the brand and is by far the most expensive in the range.
Rounding out the watch is the strap, which to counteract the extra weight of the piece is made from lightweight and super durable Kevlar, hand-sewn with contrasting platinum coloured stitching and Fears Blue Alcantra lining.
At a price of £28,200 this is an entirely new ballpark for Fears in the modern era and for the most part they’ve succeeded admirably. I do worry about the triple-weight factor and the limitations of the movement but there’s a lot to be happy with too. It looks good, the anthracite dial is nice and it fits alongside the existing Brunswicks with ease. Great to see a British brand aspiring to live up to its heritage and compete with bigger competition.
Price & Specs:
Model: Fears Brunswick Pt
Case/Dial: 38mm diameter, platinum, cushion-shaped case, anthracite grey dial
Movement: Swiss made ETA 7001 calibre, hand-wound, 17 jewels
Frequency: 21,600 vph (3 Hz)
Power Reserve: 40h
Functions: Hour, minutes, subsidiary seconds at 6 o’clock
Strap: Kevlar fabric with a platinum buckle
More details at Fears Watches.