Recently I completed my 5th book for a renowned publisher about independent watchmakers. Most of the selections were exceptionally high end and in many cases bespoke 1/1 creations. However, I was able to include a few affordable options and even was fortunate enough to present my ‘Pure Carbon’. This timepiece took over two years to develop and I had to call in quite a few favours. In fact, without the assistance of Ben Birkett (watchmaker/restoration expert) there is no way this project would ever have materialized. This experience certainly is humbling because I can now appreciate how difficult it is to deliver a unique watch to the market. Sure there are many mass produced generic Chinese (Rolex inspired models) widely available. However, if you want something truly special at a realistic price then a designer like Mark Carson has the answer.
Previously I have written articles about Mark Carson and even featured his Ka La Koa in my ‘Limited Edition Watches’ book (published by Schiffer Books). Mark has worked a lot with Richard Paige on various projects like the Duo Face series and Crash of ‘29’ (which is one of my personal favourites). All of the designs have a glorious ‘Art Deco’ aesthetic that in my opinion has a timeless appeal. This theme is continued in a new distinctive timepiece that Mark has just unveiled called the Octagon.
Like all of Mark Carson’s creations a lot of consideration has gone into the design. I absolutely love the 42mm Octagonal 316L steel case that really gives it a distinctive appearance. Everything about this timepiece is pure class including the top mounted crown and ergonomic lugs. The multi layered blue dial with bold Roman numerals and small second indication is also very effective. This gives the recipient an intimate view of the BL-109 movement. Even though this caliber is a similar size to the Unitas 6497-1 it is different and operates at a higher frequency of 3Hz (21,600 vibrations per hour).
Within the Octagonal range there are 5 other ebauche color combinations to chose from (rose Gold, anthracite, rhodium, black, and yellow gold). The timepiece also is equipped with a variety of different leather straps.
Presently the Octagonal is available to purchase on Kickstarter at a very competitive 30% discounted introductory price of $1,400 (normally $2,000). My advice is to purchase one quickly because there are only 100 available and they are sure to sell quickly.