Urwerk is a brand that has been pushing boundaries since inception and will continue to do so because it is their foundation.A mechanical watch to this brand is a shell that challenges them in terms of design and innovation each time they go to create another.Founders Martin Frei and Felix Baumgartner use their solid watchmaking foundation to meet critical aspects of a timepiece, while breathing new life into the mechanics and design aspects.Their history of horological creations is a fuel for them as they burn their way to the next brilliant creation.The UR-111C watch is the latest for the brand and has taken their creativity to a new level.
The timepiece uses a completely new kind of time display that departs from the orbital satellite system the brand has been known for.This watch on the front has two conical displays, showcasing jumping hours on the left and running minutes on the right.A unique helix-shaped minutes indicator sits in the center and also has a retrograde function, in addition there is a jumping digital seconds display on the top of the timepiece that utilizes an array of optical fibers in order to project the numbers upward to the sapphire crystal window.It might sound crazy, but it is remarkable.
This timepiece is a descendant of the UR-CC1 King Cobra, yet different in a number of ways, the brand intended the watch to function as a avant-garde drivers watch.Positioning the hour and pair of minute indicators on the front side, hours are displayed digitally on the truncated cone on the left, a skeletonized helix/cylinder displays the minutes linearly and diagonally stretches across the face of the timepiece.On the right is the second minute display sitting on its own truncated crown and showcases the time digitally for enhanced precision.The seconds are in five-second intervals via two rotating plates that are set deep within the movement and are brought to the face of the watch with an image conduit constructed from optical fibers.
For the first time in horological history, a roller set on the watch’s case performs the duty of the crown.Urwerk always strives for unique and the UR-111C watch is no exception.So rather than using a crown that is attached to a stem, the roller is placed parallel to the winding stem and so all one has to do is push the fluted roller similar to a rolling pin.To adjust the time, a lever set adjacent to the roller on the indented side of the case is pulled out and then you can set time forward or backward.Also a horological first is the seconds opening.There are two rotating discs, each weighs only 0.0018 grams and are constructed with miniature lacework using the LIGA process.Urwerk used optical fibers borrowed from medical engineering to set the discs deep within the movement and appear to be flush with the crystal.Unlike anything seen before this process certainly will be used in the future.
The timepieces are limited to two 25 piece editions constructed in stainless steel or stainless steel with a gunmetal gray finish, and future releases could be crafted with other materials.The sizes of the timepieces are set at 42mm by 46mm with 15mm thickness and come finished with a black crocodile leather strap.While this timepiece is exquisite, extremely unique and rare, the complexity of the watch’s construction will limit the ability of the brand to produce.The expectations from the brand are three per month and that means they will be quite hard to acquire.If you want to be sure you see this timepiece in person, don’t wait, it is one that every collector will want to hold on to.