The two young watchmakers, Michael Manßhardt and Sven Kurzidim, are seated next to each other at the master class. While one is passionate about wristwatches, the other prefers to study centuries-old timepieces and their history. Since 2015, this synergy has resulted in a unique concept in clock repair: Michael and Sven have been repairing all types of clocks – from tower clocks to pocket watches – under one roof. Once a hard-working team of two, their watch studio has now grown to a team of six with two locations. "You have to develop a feeling for the consistency of the craft and at the same time stay up to date in methodology and choice of materials" they say. "That is the great challenge of our work.”Read the full interview
Michael: Both of us attended watchmaking schools in Germany, we met during our apprenticeship. His specialty is constructing intricate wristwatches. I am fascinated by antique timepieces – particularly those dating from the 18th century. In order to become a watchmaker, you should be very keen on thinking your way through very complex technical processes.How do you combine tradition and innovation in your work?
Michael: Despite what you may think, many of our work steps are the same as they were 400 years ago. However, the industry has of course developed. In restoration and repair, we can use new technology in the form of gears or springs. But also improved oil formulations can support the longevity of the watches.
Sven: We are inspired by pretty much everything that lands on our workbenches. We also enjoy sharing creative ideas with other watchmakers, blacksmiths and other artisans, both in person and online. In the near future, we plan to build our own watches using the many ideas we have collected.Is there anything about your job that people usually don't know?
Sven: The amount of time it takes to do our job well may not be obvious to everyone. Studying a clock carefully until you figure it out is like solving a riddle. But sometimes they even have their own minds!