Domed two-toned, salmon lacquered dial with grained hour ring and sunray finishing, the new Montblanc Heritage Small Seconds Limited Edition is equal parts vintage goodness as well as contemporarily on trend. Better yet, its remarkable visage is backed by a beating heart of impeccable provenance – original Minerva MB M62.00 calibres from 2003.
The Minerva manufacture was sold to new partners in 2000 but Italian financier Emilio Gnutti wisely kept the spirit and know-how while increasing investments in infrastructure and machinery and injecting fresh leadership in the form of Beppe Menaldo, and respected master watchmaker, Demetrio Cabiddu who still serves as Montblanc’s Technical Director at the Villeret manufacture. In 2003, Minerva presented four new manual-winding calibres – the chronographs, you might already be familiar but also two time-only movements – among them this Minerva MB M62.00, today used in the Montblanc Heritage Small Seconds Limited Edition.
The new Montblanc Heritage Small Seconds Limited Edition draws its lineage from the Pythagore 48
And the Calibre 48 itself was endowed with Minerva signature flourishes to create the MB calibre M62.00
Montblanc discovered a hidden box of original Minerva MB M62.00 calibres from 2003 with these 38 archive movements and taking inspiration from the stylishly appointed 1950s Minerva timepiece, the brand has decided to take advantage of their find and create the new Montblanc Heritage Small Second Limited Edition 38.
Topped with black rhodium dauphine hands and Arabic cardinal hour numerals as well as dot indexes, each element is accented with SuperLuminova for low-light functional practicality as well as aesthetic contrast; icing on cake the 38 piece Limited Edition Montblanc Heritage Small Seconds bears a rarity – the Minerva motif in the form of a secret signature, which the Manufacture assures us will only appear on this special model, making the new Montblanc Small Seconds Limited Edition a true Heritage timepiece for serious collectors and watch aficionados.
Revisiting Minerva’s Signature Flourish
The historical calibre MB M62.00 was itself inspired by the Pythagore calibre from 1948 with its very recognizable geometric shape. It was reinterpreted in 2003 with curved bridges and other classical flourishes in keeping with traditional Minerva movements.
The Minerva calibre M62.00 features a large low-frequency balance wheel beating at 18,000 vph, given its size, ample moment of inertia compensates for the low-beat. The regulating organ is equipped with a double adjustment system comprised of a hairspring positioning system with a stud that allows the watchmaker to center the hairspring by moving the entire balance system to the balance cock and a hairspring active length regulator index system (raquette), with a swan’s neck spring bearing the signature Minerva arrow or “devil’s tail” positioned on the end. The iconic Minerva arrow can also be found as an engraving on the main plate as well.
Possessed of peerless competence and eye for detail, the components, both seen and unseen, are hand-decorated with bevelling, chamfered edges, circular graining on both sides, and grained and polished surfaces. This know-how can be admired on the rhodium coated, German silver main plate that features circular graining and hand-chamfered edges; on the bridges which are decorated on all sides, beveled by hand and manually-embellished with Geneva stripes, and also on the wheels which are plated with gold and have faceted arms. Each timepiece is entirely crafted and assembled from beginning to end by the same master watchmaker at the Montblanc Manufacture in Villeret, making each timepiece truly unique.
Montblanc Heritage Small Seconds L.E. 38 Price and Specs
Movement Manual-wind N.O.S. Minerva caliber MB M62.00 with 50 hours power reserve
Case 39mm stainless steel with 50 meters water resistance
Strap Alligator Leather
Price SG$29,100 / EUR17,900