Regulators and the New Brew

Just this week Brew and Worn & Wound just released a new limited edition version of the Metric called “Metric Chrono Regulator”. The full name is much less catchy but that doesn’t matter here, what matters is that this release really got me thinking. Why haven’t I talked about this style of watch before, I mean, theoretically it should be my favorite because it’s such a funky way to tell and interpret the time on your wrist. I mean even just this release embodies almost everything I want in a watch. Incredible attention to detail, fun colors, and a new twist on some old themes. So with that here are some other Regulator or Regulator adjacent watches that I like, and reasons I could never wear them. As usual unless it is a wrist shot or specifically noted, any photos used are from the respective brand’s website.

Now the main thing with Regulator watches is that, well, they’re a bit difficult to read or understand. And that’s kind of the point, it’s different really for the sake of being different, but now they are filling such a niche it’s hard to say there’s not a watch for everyone in this segment. They are usually a bit more expensive than normal three hand watches because the off the shelf movements need to be modified, so they usually end up being made more expensive and thus, more dressy. Now I managed to find basically every Regulator design that isn’t mean to be worn as a dress watch, but trust me I am in the minority here. 

Let’s start with the new Brew, It looks great, I don’t really have much to say but I do have thoughts on the colors chosen. My least favorite is the red version, simply because it looks too much like it’s trying to replicate a character from some IP, I know it’s not supposed to be, but the vibe just doesn’t work for me. The pale green variant however, is almost perfect. The mix of green red and blue are surprisingly well mixed and subtle with just a little pop of “oh look at me I’m different and stuff”. The blue color is where thing’s get good however, blue and pink always work well together and here makes the watch look more delicous than ever. The thing that brings all of these watches together are the details, like the textured dial that has concentric circles emenating off of the 24 hour subdial, or how the bezel area which usually has this mirror polish features the concentric circle motife on the dial, even the pushers are different colors depending on the colorway. All this to say, I’m still dissapointed in this release. It’s limited edition which is just a turn off for me, and it’s a chronograph, even if I could afford this watch right now, I don’t want two quartz chronographs in my already small and limited collection. 

Brew x Worn and Wound Metric Sky Blue

This Louis Erard was a limited edition as well, and has been sold out for awhile so I’m not holding my breath on being able to own one, but considering it’s a watch I like you might be able to form a mental picture without even seeing it. This was a collaberation with Alain Silberstein and it looks weird. Only using primary colors and a hand set that is super difficult to even process, I already have nothing to say, it’s perfect. But that’s the most normal part of the design. The crown is this weird half cone with no grooves, but it’s big enough you don’t really need them, and the case features these frame lugs that take the idea of Mr. Jones cases but premium and nice, and the watch comes on this gray velcro strap. If could, I would wear this as a dress watch, but it is also surprisingly sporty. Bummer that I probbaly won’t be able to even try it on, but it’s probably too big for me anyways.

Le Régulateur Blanc Louis Erard x Alain Silberstein

The Junghans Max Bill is the poster child of Bauhaus design. The Regulator version is limited edition unfortunately, but that should be par for the course by now. I respect this design, although not being my favorite I think it balances out most of the different design details. For one the minute and hour hands have orange lume on them for a sporty handset, the case is dark gray pvd coated to match the handset which contrasts with the stark white dial. Even as a 38 mm watch it will wear much smaller because of the tiny lugs and honestly everything just works. By far not my favorite watch but very much up there. 

Junghans Max Bill Regulator Edition

These next two aren’t quite regulator watches but I think they deserve a mention as single handed watches. Reservoir has made a name for themselves by making all sorts of weird regulator style watches inspired by functional tools. This is their dive watch, the Hydrosphere. The dial and hand is fully lumed and features bright primary colors, framed with a black dive bezel oriented weirdly compared to a normal dive watch. It’s based off of an air gauge and I think is executed very well, It also has a helium escape valve somewhere but I don’t know where it is or care to find out. Even besides the fun tool design everything is executed to the degree you’d expect for $4,800, the numerals are applied, the cyclops for the date window is so well well integrated and the minute track is raised to add some dynamicism to the dial.

Reservoir Hydrosphere Air Gauge

Meister Singer literally only makes single hand watches, Regulator in style but not in functionality. Instead of having multiple subdials like the Louis Erard or Brew, you read the time by looking at where the single hand is in relation to each hour marker. It looks difficult to read but I feel like it would be easy enough to get used too. This particular color way is the azure dial with a black date window and black leather strap. It takes a similar classic design style of the Junghans but with a much more interesting color and some real heritage. its also a bit thinner, at 9,7 mm instead of 10,5 mm. In general I think this watch is executed too a much higher degree than the similar Junghans, although maybe a little bit less dynamic. While none of the other casebacks have been much interesting this one has a fun looking spiral of fermata symbols, which is Meister SIngers logo, I appreciate that as a former musician.

MeisterSinger Neo Azure Blue

This style of single hand or regulator watch fills a specific niche that already presents itself as an alternative of what watchmaking could be. While it is mostly filled with dress watches, there are also sport watches, dive watches, chronographs. Regulators still feel a bit to stuffy for my taste, but this new version of the Brew Metric might push regulator watchmaking into a new direction.