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In the URWERK tradition, none of the indications of this UR-111C watch is conventional: The minutes are shown in two different ways - linearly for eyes pleasure (this new creation is a descendent of the UR-CC1 King Cobra watch and digitally for precision. Never has a roller on the case performed the functions of the crown, nor have the running seconds meandered across a cluster of optical fibres. Nor would it be an authentic URWERK watch if its case didn’t look as if it had been designed by a Sci-fi passionate.
Felix Baumgartner and Martin Frei URWERK's co-creators had to turn their intention into reality and create a new interface with the watch. So instead of the conventional crown at the end of the stem, they conceived a roller integrated into the top of the case above and parallel to the winding stem. Rolling the long fluted cylinder with your thumb to wind the watch is indeed a new sensation, but making it possible requires miniature gearing, complex articulations and intermediate wheels to connect the controls to the winding stem. The same applies to the original way of setting the time. Instead of pulling out a crown you swing out a lever from the side of the case and turn the roller in either direction.
The hours and two versions of the minutes are displayed within glass sapphire covers along the side of the case so that you can see them at a glance without turning your wrist or letting go of the steering wheel. Again, converting the horizontal movement to a vertical time display required precisely angled transmission with miniature bevel gears. The jumping digital hours and progressive minutes are displayed on rotating truncated cones left and right of the retrograde linear indication of the minutes. The seconds are brought to you by optical fibre.
The UR-111C’s digital seconds are mounted alternately on two tiny wheels. They appear alternately, transported into visual range by a dense cluster of precisely aligned optical fibres, known as an image conduit, positioned a tenth of a millimetre above the numerals. This is a world Première in the watchmaking area!
“Wearing a fine mechanical object is a source of pleasure and pride, there has to be a strong bond with a mechanism that merges into your wrist and communicates with you. A mechanical watch is like the first steps towards enhanced intelligence: a machine that becomes part of you and which gives you the information in return for energy. It’s an exchange. You take care of your watch and it will provide you with a lifelong service.”
This UR-111C Steel limited edition of just 25 pieces is currently available from our US West-Coast retailer Stephen Silver.