No one ever asked T.E. Lawrence, Douglas MacArthur or Clark Gable if they were “man enough” to wear a small watch. All of these men wore watches that would today be considered “petite” — 36mm or smaller. So what is it about modern man that requires watches the size of dinner plates? NOMOS Glashütte, that iconoclastic “little watch brand that could” from Eastern Germany, thinks it’s high time to bring the smaller watch back. So much so that it has confidently named its new 35.5mm timepiece the Minimatik.
NOMOS is so committed to the sanely proportioned watch that they’ve created an all-new movement to keep dimensions slim. The in-house calibre DUW 3001 is a sliver-thin 3.2mm in stack height, even while winding itself. With its modest diameter, it makes for a watch that would have fit well under the sleeve of a 1940s gentleman while the broad white dial and narrow bezel keep it from looking like a toy on the wrist. NOMOS’s trademark Bauhaus design is again present in the playful dial font, clean profile and dash of color. This is a German watch that doesn’t take itself too seriously.
The significance of the Minimatik isn’t merely limited to its size and look, though. The DUW 3001 movement contains NOMOS’s Swing System escapement, the regulating organ that the majority of watch companies big and small outsource to a monopolizing single supplier. By designing and building its own escapement, NOMOS makes a statement of independence while showing off its watchmaking know-how. It was a bold move for a small brand, putting others on notice and leaving only one question: are you man enough to wear it?
Movement: Self-winding mechanical calibre DUW 3001
Case: Stainless steel 35.5mm
Water resistance: 30m
Functions: Hours, minutes, seconds
Strap: Shell Cordovan with pin buckle