Chuck Maddox’s Watch Blog

This page is a journal of my journey in the field of Horology, which is timekeeping. In other words, watch collecting. Which in my case is the collecting of chronograph watches. To contact me, email me at: cmaddox3@sbcglobal.net .

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Location: Chicagoland, United States

The Extremely wordy version of my Resumé is located here: http://home.xnet.com/~cmaddox/resume.html

Friday, October 13, 2006

Further proof: Bizzare stuff going on at Swatch Group...

For quite some time, I've been watching events with the Swatch Group in Switzerland with an increasing sense of bewilderment. Swatch Group is a huge conglomerate and, of course, is not an easy entity to get a grasp of. But still there have been a great deal of moves by the firm and it's subsidiaries that are questionable.

Some of the moves which I see as dubious at best are certainly debatable, and believe me... folks have debated them with me. But a number of them are just bizarre and the fact that they are bizarre is really beyond debate...

Here's a case in point... Jorge Merino Posts: N E W M o d e l - Omega Seamaster Railmaster Chronograph [May 06, 2004 - 11:12 AM]

You see what's wrong with this picture? Need a hint?

Apparently, they don't teach people to count by 5's accurately in Switzerland...

This picture was posted by Jorge Merino who get's the press releases from many many Swiss watch firms. So this photograph came from an Omega press release. [Many thanks to Steve Waddington, moderator of the Zowie/Chronocentric Omega discussion forum for helping me relocate this post]...

The other night, I was mentioning the curious case of the Tissot NASCAR chronograph while chatting on IM with Eric [Eptaz, moderator of the Omega forum over at WUS]. I had mentioned the curious inclusion of "Valjoux" on the display caseback on this watch previously, after Swatch Group takes great pains to encourage firms which use the 7750 to call the movement by it's newly bestowed "ETA 7750" name. When I noticed another major goof in this watch.

Here's the picture:

I took a look at the "Tachymeter MPH" bezel and said...

What the F**K!

Between Eric, Jeff Stein and myself, the only possible explanation that we could postulate is that perhaps someone decided to convert Kilometers into miles because 37 Miles per hour is roughly 60 KPH, and 50 MPH is roughly 80 KPH, etc..

All a Tachymetre bezel is a scale that divides the 3600 (the number of minutes (60) times the number of seconds (60) = 3,600) by the number of seconds to generate a "Units per Hour" indication. The number would be the same if measuring Kilometre's, miles, or furlongs. Why anyone would do a conversion when one is not necessary is confounding.

The absurdity of this is simply mindboggling! I mean all a person has to do is look at a picture of any watch with a Bezel (that isn't laughably incorrect <-- Warning, link not for the weak of stomach!) and copy it. I mean, how difficult is that?

But in this instance, like the Omega Railmaster, not only has the mistake been made, but professional watch photography been booked, taken and distributed to the press and the public, and in this instance, is pictured and remains on Tissot.ch's website:

[Pictured on the left] at this very moment! Now, Tissot does have a different model pictured in the subwindow on the right, but why continue to have that fouled-up model as the main picture?

Eric pointed out a post in a blog of this Tissot and a Quartz model... Guess what? The Quartz model has a mucked up bezel too!

How can these watches (or even pictures of watches) with such mistakes make it to the public eye? This watch had to be designed, approved, "gone to metal", been professionally photographed, given to Marketing/Webmasters/etc. Where's the scrutiny?

I'm reminded of the 1992 song by "Fresh Bush and the Invisible Man" called "Hard Times"...

Politics is higher taxes,
Politics is fewer jobs,
Federal regulations...
Surely, Congress doin' drugs!

I don't know what the explanation is, but there is some seriously bizarre stuff going on at Swatch Group. This is nothing new, just further proof.

-- Chuck

P.S. Thanks again to Steve, Jeff and Eric for their input on this one.

9 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

great read, Chuck. thanks!

it appears to me that swatch is having the same very issues toyota is going through right now. quality control has gone away.

if i had to guess as to the biggest cause of quality controls death...i'd say uncontrolled growth. the biggest killer of quality control in any size business.

anyways, thanks for pointing out these issues.

j.h.

Sunday, October 15, 2006 6:41:00 PM  
Blogger Pascal said...

It's not just one picture on the Tissot website: the flash movie that serves as intro is showing the same watch with the incorrect bezel!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006 8:36:00 PM  
Anonymous Bas said...

I don't see what's wrong with the Railmaster. From your comment I understand that you're talking about the first 5 minutes of the minute totalizer. There are just 4 steps between the digit "0" and the digit "5". I think this digit is part of the number "30". The hand is pointing at 30 (or "zero") right now, and the digit "0" is placed next to the "1" indicator.

Of course the dial is not very readable, but this is quite common on non-speedmaster-pro-watches :-)

The bezel on the Tissot is just stupid.

Thursday, October 19, 2006 11:42:00 AM  
Blogger Chuck Maddox said...

Bas, Take a good look at the picture of the sub-dial again and follow along with me as I count the major subdivisions...

00... 05... 10... 15... 25... 20...

Buck-a-Wha?

Do you see the issue with the Railmaster now?

=)

-- Chuck

Thursday, October 19, 2006 12:59:00 PM  
Anonymous Bas said...

Okay, Chuck... I didn't see that :-) Wow! Have watches with this "bug" hit the stores yet? They might become collector's items one day.

Friday, October 20, 2006 11:01:00 AM  
Blogger Chuck Maddox said...

Well, according to a post on TZOF, there was one of the Tissot's with the bad bezel on "fway" ¿eBay? last week...

http://forums.timezone.com/index.php?t=rview&goto=2227944

I don't know if the Omega made it that far, but you can do a search on "Speamaster" on TZ OF and find another goof of Omega's that DID make it to customer's hands.

Friday, October 20, 2006 7:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Regarding the Tissot, that's exactly what happens when a designer tries to "smarten up" a feature without even understanding how it works.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007 8:55:00 AM  
Anonymous alanford8 said...

Dear Chuck,
I am an Italian watch enthusiast. I have read all your articles and I really believe that you are the best! I fully agree with your opinions. However, I would suggest you to take into consideration Longines chronographs with Cal. 13 ZN and 30CH. The quality of those movements, all with fly back function (except a few very early 13ZN) is amazing. Hope to read you soon, Alfredo Tocchi

Friday, January 18, 2008 9:08:00 AM  
Anonymous Men's Watch Review said...

Unbelievable! Someone needs to tighten up over at Swatch Quality Control HQ.

-JP

Thursday, February 28, 2008 11:29:00 AM  

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