My name is Marco Guarino, and I was born in Chieri, a city in the province of Turin, Italy, in 1973. I am a watchmaker, and I love designing astronomical complications. Although I have worked on many watch movements, I don’t have a passion for building them. In fact, I concentrate all my energy on calculating, designing and building astronomical complications.
Being passionate about astronomical clocks and having few financial resources to be able to buy certain models, I decided to build them instead. Not that it was easier, because I had to buy machines I didn’t have. So I took my savings and bought the essentials: a toolmaker’s lathe, a watchmaker’s lathe with wheel milling tools, and a bench cutter, all strictly for manual use.
The watches I build result from years of design and construction, often unique pieces for very demanding clients.
And even though the complications are not necessarily new, there are no similar models.
I decided to make cases with a diameter of 39mm when the trend was to have watches sized 41mm and over. Another thing that distinguishes my watches from the others is that you can customise the colour of the plates with yellow, pink, or white gilding.
The straps are also made in Italy, all with certified materials.
I am passionate about everything related to motions, revolutions and timekeeping related to astronomy. Sometimes a lunar phase is considered trivial, but to me, it isn’t. Synodic time, which is the time between two new moons, lasts 26.530588 days on average. Most watches, even expensive ones, have a gear train ratio of 1.59, which means there will be an error of more than 44 minutes per lunation. I wanted to calculate the transmission ratios to ensure the average time was as close to the astronomical data as possible. The basic moon phase watch I build starts from an error of 57 seconds in every lunar cycle, and the most complex one has an error of 0.26 seconds each cycle.
The calibres I use are an ETA 2824-2 or 2892-2 because of their excellent behaviour when supporting complications with multiple extra wheels. The duration of the power reserve is not affected much by the extra effort required by the gears. The second reason I use ETA calibers is the fact they can be repaired anywhere in the world. As far as the modules are concerned, we have never encountered wear, breakage, etc, as long as people follow the simple rules on properly adjusting the watches.
In the future, Marc & Darnò will continue to design complications and make ever more complex watches. Perhaps by associating all the complications in one single watch. In 2023, we want to build a clock that indicates the eclipses of the moon and sun with astronomical precision. An in-house movement is also being studied, but I can’t tell you much more about that just yet.