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Urwerk 202 Hammerhead Automatic at 2008 SIHH

From Urwerk's presentation of the new UR-202 Twin Turbine-->Link

UR202 Promotional Video-->Link

The UR-202 is the world’s first watch with the winding rate regulated by fluid dynamics.

As long ago as the 18th century, clockmakers were using air friction to regulate the speed of chiming clocks, and their techniques evolved to become the preferred method of regulating the rate of chimes on minute-repeaters.

With the UR-202, URWERK have taken the traditional idea of using air friction and refined it to control the rate of automatic winding.
The traditional rotating vanes of the past have been replaced by cutting-edge miniature twin turbines - miniature air compressors - which can be seen spinning on the back of the watch.


Urwerk turbines

The UR-202’s twin turbines are coupled with the winding rotor. According to the position of the selector lever, the turbines act as shock absorbers.
In normal activity they cushion sharp movements of the rotor. This reduces wear and increases the lifespan of the movement.
While the selector position is continuously variable, the three principal positions are: normal activity, where the turbines spin freely; vigorous activity, where the air pressure generated by the turbines reduces the winding rate by approximately 35%; and extreme activity, where the turbines and rotor are fully blocked.


The turbine system is totally self-contained within the waterproof case. The air flows from under the turbines and is channeled up past them under a sapphire plate and down through holes leading to a tiny air chamber.

The turbines are controlled by a 3-position selector switch. This functions by adjusting the level of air compression the turbines generate by selectively regulating the amount of air flowing from inside the case.

The spinning turbines force air through holes into a tiny air chamber. The selector switch controls the amount of air escaping from the turbines.
By restricting the airflow, it increases the air pressure and slows down the turbines and the winding rotor.


The UR-202 also features URWERK’s patented Revolving Satellite Complication with telescopic minutes hands.

The Revolving Satellite Complication displays time using telescopic minutes hands operating through the middle of three orbiting and revolving hours satellites. The telescopic minutes hands precisely adjust their length to follow the three sectors marking the minutes: 0-14, 15-44, 45-60.

Extended, they enable the UR-202 to display the time across a large, easy-to-read dial. Retracted, they allow for a very wearable and comfortably sized case.


Photo->Link


Related Posts;
ALL URWERK STORIES-->Link

See Also;
Urwerk Website->Link
Ian Skellern's (R)Evolution of Urwerk->Link
Horomundi's Complete Urwerk Story->Link



Urwerk's first model, the Nightwatch Wandering Hour



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Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08

Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08
Thanks to Ian, the moderator of the Urwerk Forum at Horomundi for this latest unveiling and information!

The TiAlN coated URWERK 103.08 - Harder than Steel!

TiAlN - Titanium Aluminum Nitride - treatment is well-known in industry for its exceptional properties. A TiAlN coating less than 4 microns thick has the effect of multiplying the resistance of the underlying metal to scratches, shocks, oxidation and even acids.

Its colour is dependant on the Titanium/Aluminium ratio and can range from melting bronze to stormy black.


Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08
For the very first time URWERK present their iconic 103 with a steel case and and not just any steel an incredibly hard TiAlN-coated steel. With this new model, URWERK blurs the frontier between horological art and cutting-edge technology. The coat of the steel 103.08 is the hardest yet known in the world of haute horlogerie.

Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08
"The TiAlN appears to have the gift of endowing supernatural properties to common metals like steel." Felix Baumgartner, master watchmaker and co-founder of URWERK

"TiAlN is a hard material which can be used as protective coating to enhance the lifetime of a variety of work pieces against mechanical or chemical attacks. The hardness of TiAlN is often between 30 and 40 GOa. In comparison, the hardness of DLC (diamond like carbon) is 20-25 GPa"
. Dr Ayat Karimi, Institute of Complex Matter Physics, EPFL, Lausanne.

While the 103.08 will not be a limited edition, only the first 50 watches will have the angular shaped crystal pictured here. After those first 50 'Launch Pieces', the shape of the crystal will revert to the standard curved shape.

Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08
Urwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08
All Posts Urwerk Related-->Link


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Horolographer Harry Tan & The Opus V

Horolographer Harry Tan & The Opus V

Harry Tan of Watching Horology has just posted a gallery of his really impressive Opus V photos here-->LINK
(watch provided by Bernard Cheong)


Related Posts;
Urwerk Hammerhead
Martin Frei of Urwerk
The Birth of Modern Horological Art
History of the Wandering Hour
Opus 7 Video
Opus 7 by Andreas Strehler
Opus 6 by Gruebel Forsey
Opus Time Bandit
Horological Machine #2
HM1
Independent Watchmakers
Haute Horology



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The Meandering History of Wandering Hours

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursThe Wandering Hour display (also known as a Floating Hour or Chronoscope) has been around four centuries. In 1656 the Campanus brothers had built a night clock for Pope Alexander XII. In a total innovation, they replaced the then conventional hands with hour figures on rotating discs, which performed a semicircular arc across the clock face. The correct figure appeared at the start of each new hour. It then moved clockwise across the arc of the dial and, depending on its progress, simultaneously marked the quarter or half-hour, which had just passed. Alexander's night pendulum clock was illuminated by an oil lamp so that the pope could see the time in the dark. The concept is that the moving hour display keeps an almost metaphorical count of the passing minutes rising and setting along the hourly arc.

"It is a deceptively simple and elegant system, and it is literally as old as the combination of concentric hours and minutes hands to which we are so accustomed. -- The orbit of the elegantly simple planetary ring, and the epicyclic dance of hour numerals which surrounded it, remained hidden beneath a solid dial." (source)

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursCampani Brothers Tabernacle Night Clock
Late 17th Century --> Link

Below are samples of Wandering Hour watches over the past four centuries. Only during the past few decades have watchmakers realized the full beauty of this display and exposed their dials to reveal the symbolic inner workings as part of the design itself.

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursWatches with wandering hour dials first appeared in the 17th century. In England, they were often commissioned by the King, to be presented to visitors or in recognition of loyalty to the country. The watch above from 1710 is likely the portrait of Frederick I of Prussia (1657-1713) -->Link

One of the earliest watchmakers to adapt this style to a pocket watch was British watchmaker Joseph Windmills. Joseph Antram, watchmaker to the King of England also produced wandering hours like this one-->Link

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursA variation was the 'Sun and Moon' dial. A 1750 Dutch pocket watch by G.Knip (above). Within the inner half ring, a revolving disc is painted with the sun and moon rotating every 24 hours, thereby indicating not only the hour but whether it is day or night. A minute hand was used in the normal circular fashion. -->Link Another model-->Link

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursSideview of the 'Sun Moon' Wandering Hour

The Meandering History of Wandering Hours1820 Chronos Breguet Wandering Hour
Etablissement Mixte series

Typically, four digits appear on three disks, each rotating epicyloidally one quarter while out of view and advancing to the next corresponding hour. The minutes were easily approximated by the hour position within the arc.

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursBreguet Wandering Hour Wristwatch by Gubelin

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursThe Audemars Piguet "Star Wheel" reinvented this system in the early 1990s, creating many variations of wandering hour wristwatches. "Three transparent sapphire disks, or star wheels, are each inscribed with four hour indicators and attached to a rotating center wheel. As the assembly turns, the current hour indicator is rotated into view and then passed across a 120-degree minutes sector. The time is read by noting the visible hour pointing to the current minute." (source) Additional information-->Link

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursStar Wheel Sapphire Disks

Each disk is obscured until it rises into the arc where the background contrasts the digits into legibility.

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursLate 1990s "John Schaeffer Star Wheels"
With Minute Repeater

The Meandering History of Wandering Hours2000 Millenary Star Wheel
125th Anniversary Model

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursVincent Calabrese "Horus"

"The wandering dates conceived by Vincent Calabrese (above & below), The jumping hour hand is displayed in a small window that turns around the dial, showing the minutes passing. There is only one hand on the dial, that of the seconds. The same principle as it applies to the date is a world first." (source)

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursVincent Calabrese "Ottica"

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursAlain Silberstein Wandering Hour "Cyclops"

These orbiting satellite displays have had a few revivals over the past 300 years but only in wristwatches in the past few decades. The brand Urwerk (below) is taking this very old concept to interstellar levels. Their revolutionary wandering hour displays have become three dimensional, the numbers are placed on spinning conical discs or rotating cubes with retractable retrograde pointers.

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursUrwerk's original 101
Inspired by the Campanus Night Clocks
and the Millennium Falcon from Star Wars

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursUrwerk series 102 "Nightwatch"
also known as "Sputnik"

The Meandering History of Wandering Hours
The Urwerk wandering display was just too cool to keep covered.

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursUrwerk 103 series
Their first display with exposed hours

"The innovative rotating satellite complication is the heart and soul of the 103 series of watches. The orbital cross carries the four hour-satellites and an internal Geneva cross governs each of these satellites. Each of the satellite features three hour numbers four hours apart. As a satellite approaches the crown, its Geneva cross engages a pin and rotates the disk 120° for the new hour to take its position." (source)

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursThe Urwerk 201 'Hammerhead'

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursThe Urwerk team evolved their Wandering Hour into cubes and retrograde minutes for the Harry Winston "Opus V."

The Meandering History of Wandering HoursQP Magazine recently featured this public clock in London, The Newgate Clock, possibly the only public wandering hour clock in the world. It was created by horologist Joanna Migdal and inspired by Joseph Windmills original designs. See how it works here-->Link

"The innovation lies not only in the display which evokes the natural course of the sun on the horizon, but also on the original satellite mechanism whose future applications are yet to be discovered." (source)

Related Posts;
Jump Hour Watches
Mystery Dial Watches
Watch History
Retrograde Watches

Find other watches


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Urwerk 202 Hammerhead Automatic at 2008 SIHHUrwerk on Steroids - Titanium Aluminum Nitrade Coated 103.08Horolographer Harry Tan & The Opus VThe Meandering History of Wandering Hours

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