Corum – Hands-on with the new Admiral Legend 42 automatic

Corum Admiral Legend

It is an automatic movement which relies on a micro-rotor for twisting. The micro-rotor features the Corum key in 18k red gold. Power reserve is a really respectable 72 hours, and the movement beats in 3Hz. After all, the Corum Bubble 47 Flying Tourbillon is a fairly unusual watch. But, Corum’s boldness to go against the grain and its almost reckless attitude toward layout also makes it rather cool, especially for watch lovers who appreciate a few quirkiness and individualism. The simple fact that it is a unique piece is simply the cherry on the cake. The Corum Bubble 47 Flying Tourbillon watch is priced at 103,000 Swiss francs (approximately US $100,500). Corum may not be the first brand that pops into your mind when searching for a unique piece, but the launch of this newest Corum Bubble watches warrants their name being on the list of brands to consider. The daring, totally cohesive approach to the look of this modern classic guarantees that this iteration of this Corum Bubble will polarise opinion in the race to get wrist space as it did upon its début. It’s certainly not for everybody, but there’s more to the generation of bubbles than meets the eye. In the following article, I’ll take a brief look at three distinct models, all of which are confined to only 350 pieces each. The Corum Bubble Sphere2, the Corum Bubble Drop, and the Corum Bubble Paiste have arrived.The Corum Bubble view was first released at Baselworld, way back in the year 2000. Although only fifteen years has passed since that time, the landscape of the luxury watch market has changed beyond recognition. The initial Bubble was 44mm wide, which made it an outlier in those days. In addition to that, the design was fairly unusual. Watch collectors were not quite so used to risks as they are today, but nevertheless, the Corum Bubble found favour amongst a dedicated demographic. It will be intriguing to see how the re-release of the Corum Bubble is greeted by a consumer base that is much savvier than it was in the turn of the century.

In a similar stroke of good fortune that allowed me to shoot a German watch in the Swiss Alps, the new Corum Admiral Legend 42mm automatic watch arrived at the office a couple of days before I finally got to take my “summer” holidays… in October. As temperatures in Switzerland plummeted as low as 5 degrees Celsius, I was relaxing by the pool in a much more balmy 36 degrees on the coast at Ras Al-Khaimah. But the beach was about as close as I got to the environment from which the Corum Admiral Legend takes its inspiration.

The choice of name for this new collection, which covers the full range of desires, from 32mm jewellery pieces for women up to a 47mm world time model, was wise, since Corum Watch Snob have decided to drop the “Admiral’s Cup”. Corum’s Admiral’s Cup collection had existed in parallel with the unofficial world championships of offshore sailing ever since 1960, but the last Admiral’s Cup race was held in 2003 (after a four-year hiatus) and there is currently no indication of a come-back.

Corum Admiral Legend

With the watch strapped on to my wrist with the leather strap, I did not test the 50-metre water resistance claims, either in the air-conditioned pool or the jacuzzi-like temperatures of the Arabian sea. Instead, the Admiral Legend became my distinguished evening accessory for dinner at the hotel and on my daytime excursions, as you can see from the photo above.

One of the first riddles I had to solve was that of the indications on the dial. Just what do those nautical pennants on the dial mean? After a little bit of Googling, I should have known better: they are simply the nautical flags that represent 1-9, with the flags at 10, 11 and 12 o’clock being a combined flag made up of the individual digits. No doubt self-evident for the seasoned sailor, but they were few and far between in the dunes surrounding the Bedouin oasis camp. Once you have your bearings, however, it’s easy to read the time thanks to generously-proportioned hands with SuperLuminova inserts, as well as a small seconds subdial at 6 o’clock with indications in the style of those of a compass.


The case of the Admiral Legend is distinctive for two reasons, the first being the dodecagonal case that matches the bezel, the second is the uniform polished finish across the case and bezel. The faceting on the case extends slightly in the 3 o’clock position to act as a form of crown protection. Power comes from the CO 395 self-winding calibre (visible through a sapphire crystal case back) with a 42-hour power reserve, more than enough to stay on time when kept safely in the hotel safe to be brought out as and when required.

This particular model is available with a choice of blue or white dials, with an additional black dial available for the chronograph. But the entire collection is vast – please refer to our watchfinder for an overview.