I have never been that interested in politics and am always disappointed at the outcome of general elections. Even though I was able to vote this time (as an Australian citizen) the result was virtually a foregone conclusion. Most countries including Australia are dominated by two major parties. That is why smaller independents (normally with better ideals) find it very hard to find a voice. The same comparison can be found in the world of horology, which is governed by a few groups. These corporate own a large majority of the overall marketing share It was that reason I developed a passion for smaller watchmakers like Kari Voutilainen.
Recently when I was doing a Skype interview (about my ‘Independent Watchmakers’ book) for the New York Times the journalist (Melanie Abrams) asked some very probing questions. She was fascinated by a young Finnish watchmaker called Antti Ronkko, who turned his hobby into a profession. However, it is Kari Voutilainen who paved the way for watchmakers like Ronkko and Stepan Sarpaneva (who worked in his atelier).
I have always been a huge admirer of Kari Voutilainen. That is why I featured him in both my ‘Limited Edition Watches’ and ‘Independent Watchmakers’ books. Recently he has unveiled a brilliant timepiece called the 28ti, which instantly became my personal favourite. Primarily the main reason is that the mechanical movement is perfectly showcased on the silver dial. This is a massive departure for Voutilainen who is normally associated with finely engraved dials.
Dimensionally the watch exudes classical proportions and has a polished titanium case measuring 39mm x 13.40mm. Beneath the refined façade lies a sophisticated in house hand-winding movement. This Calibre comprises 32-jewels and oscillates at a frequency 18,000 vibrations per hour. Every element of this exquisite mechanism is crafted and assembled in Voutilainen’s own workshops. It is also majestically showcased through the sapphire crystal exhibition case back. Functionally the 28ti features hours and minutes that displayed on beautifully formed gold hands.