Why it’s good to be complicated for Mühle Glashütte

September 2016

The special edition Zeigerdatum timepiece by the German brand honours its founder with a rare complication from the good old days: the date hand.

Robert Mühle founded his watchmaking company back in 1869, and with that he helped place the German town of Glashütte on the map as one of the premier watchmaking locations.

This year, he would have been celebrating his 175th birthday, and to commemorate his work the brand that now now carries his name released the special edition Robert Mühle Zeigerdatum wristwatch.

Why it's good to be complicated for Mühle Glashütte

As we’ve grown to appreciate from the brand’s other watches, the Zeigerdatum also boasts maximum precision and excellent readability. Of course, it also houses the company’s patented woodpecker neck regulation, which makes it all the more durable.

But the standout feature of this wristwatch is a new complication in the form of date hand, which is located in the second third of the module plate. The complication was first used in a pocket watch back in 1793, and it’s definitely a rare sight these days thanks to the popular date window. The throwback complication is a nice touch to the company founder, who would have appreciated that the watch looks like a proper “time measuring instrument”.

Why it's good to be complicated for Mühle Glashütte

For the curious watch aficionados out there, the date function is powered by the hour wheel. When the hour wheel rotates, it activates a ratchet wheel, which controls the date hand and makes one revolution around its own axis every 24 hours. Once every 24 hours, a cam on the ratchet wheel locks into the teeth of the hand wheel and moves the date by one day, a distance of exactly 11.61290 degrees.

This well-executed complication comes by way of the in-house RMK 03 movement, which is based on the previous RMK 01 calibre but now boasts an additional 35 components to make it all happen.

The small-second display at the 6 o’clock position adds balance to the dial layout, which is complemented perfectly by the brushed and polished stainless steel 44 mm case. And in keeping with the Glashütte watchmaking tradition, the new movement is additionally adorned with screwed gold chatons and a finely engraved balance cock, which can be appreciated from through the sapphire case back.

Why it's good to be complicated for Mühle Glashütte

They’ve decided to limit the Zeigerdatum to just 100 pieces and priced it at $8,599, which I reckon is rather reasonable given everything on offer. If you ask me, a 175 piece release would have made more sense for the occasion, but I’m sure the brand has already worked out the math before releasing the watch.

Technical information

  • Movement: RMK 03, hand-wound. Ø 36.60 mm; H 8.35 mm. 180 components. 33 jewels, three of which are set in screwed gold chatons. Glucydur balance with a Nivarox spring, 21,600 A/h. Stop-second. Hand date with fast correction. 56-hour power reserve with up/down display. Engraved balance cock with patented woodpecker neck regulation. Three-fifth plate with Glashütte long-slot click.
  • Case: Brushed/polished stainless steel. Ø 44.00 mm; H 12.56 mm. Water- resistant to 10 bars. Anti-glare sapphire crystal. Transparent case back made of sapphire crystal.
  • Strap: Crocodile leather strap with a stainless steel folding clasp.
  • Dial: Anthracite. Applied hour numerals and hour indices. Hands: Polished stainless steel.
  • Price: $8,599
  • Limited edition: 100 units