Corum Admiral's Cup Seafender 47 tourbillon Chronograph

New Corum’s tourbillon : really for a daily wear ?

by Olivier Müller
Corum, Over $30,000

Corum tackles a complex equation in its new Corum Admiral’s Cup Seafender 47 Tourbillon Chronograph. Its tourbillon is powered by an automatic caliber – in itself a rarity for this complication – that in addition beats at a high frequency of 4 Hz as compared with 3 Hz for most tourbillons.

The CO 398 caliber beating at the heart of the piece harbors still other feats. It’s an integrated chronograph, such as the Kantharos of Christophe Claret unveiled at Baselworld 2013. Then, it is controlled by a column-wheel. It’s far more complex than modern cam-type calibers. This architecture is in keeping with horological traditions and ensures a gentle mode of activation.

The CO 398 movement has each component hand-polished and chamfered. What’s the concrete consequence ? Since polishing involves removing tiny micro-millimetric quantities of matter, the rough parts were made slighter larger than their functional size. While the process is complex, it avoids the risk of removing too much matter and ending up with an overly diminished size might be detrimental to the perfect interaction of the finished parts – and thus to the smooth running and precision of the movement.

Corum Admiral's Cup Seafender 47 tourbillon Chronograph

Corum Admiral’s Cup Seafender 47 tourbillon Chronograph

According to Corum, this Admiral’s Cup Seafender 47 Tourbillon Chronograph is designed for a daily wear. Well, it might not be the daily routine of the mass ! First, because of the size of the piece : 47 mm. It’s a massive construction, usually seen on military pieces – or modern « things ».

Corum Admiral’s Cup Seafender 47 Tourbillon Chronograph – Meet MAO

However, Corum has gone quite far in R&D to build a scratch-resistant case for this « daily wear ». The brand adopted the MAO (micro-arc oxidation) technique invented in Germany in the 1960s, but not industrialized until 2006 thanks to computerization and technological advances in the domain of equipment.

The treatment used by Corum is accomplished by an electrical, physical and chemical transformation of aluminum immersed in a water bath. This patented ecological method makes the watchcase feature a number of advantages. The ceramization technique gives aluminum a ten-times longer lifespan by making it harder than steel. It is also anti-abrasive and protects against corrosion, while lending an aesthetic touch and a pleasant feel.

Corum Admiral's Cup Seafender 47 tourbillon Chronograph

Corum Admiral’s Cup Seafender 47 tourbillon Chronograph

But again, a daily use of this piece is still not recommended, as long as it comes with gem-set variations ! Available in an 5N 18kt red gold version, the case of this Admiral’s Cup Seafender is proposed in three gem-set jewelry versions. While all features a 60-minute counter and small seconds subdial paved with 88 round diamonds (approx. 0.13 carats) and 9 baguette-cut diamonds (approx. 0.04 carats) as index, the differences between the models relate to the case. On the first, the bezel, lugs and pushpiece guards has 204 round diamonds (approx. 2.13 carats); while the second adopts the same 144 round diamonds (approx. 0.63 carats) on its lugs and pushpiece guards, while opting to light up the bezel with 36 baguette-cut stones (approx. 4.71 carats). The baguette cut is featured yet more strongly on the third jewelry version with its 60 baguette-cut diamonds (approx. 6.01 carats) set on the bezel and lugs, while the pushpiece guards sparkle with 36 round diamonds (approx. 0.05 carats).

    Author Bio

    Articles by Olivier Müller


    Olivier Müller is a professional journalist specialising in horology. He divides his time between Geneva and Paris, covering horology-related topics for a dozen or so magazines and specialist websites in Europe. He is also a regular speaker at various events. In 2008, Olivier Müller set up Delos Communications to manage the writing side of his business, spanning five European countries. Delos Communications also provides consultancy services for horological communication, helping brands as they define and implement their strategy in terms of positioning, messages and audience. In addition to the world’s two largest watchmaking groups, Delos Communications’ clients include a broad range of emerging independent brands, as well as public-sector bodies keen to promote their local watchmaking heritage. Five people work for the agency, including a journalist, a photographer, a community manager and a translator, all with expertise in the world of watchmaking.