URWERK’s departures from its signature theme of wandering-hour indications have always been spectacular, and the selfwinding UR-111C is no exception. This latest exercise in complex micromechanics is a worthy rival to the brand’s other “Special Projects” line, in both originality and mechanical virtuosity. For the independent company’s 17 dedicated team members, the UR-111C proved a fiendishly difficult puzzle to solve. In the URWERK tradition, none of the indications of this UR-111C watch are conventional: The minutes are shown in two different ways – linearly for eyes pleasure.
Felix Baumgartner and Martin Frei, the co-founders of Urwerk, 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 case on the new Urwerk UR-111C measures 42 mm wide x 46 mm long and 15 mm in thickness.The new Urwerk UR-111C is available in two 25-piece limited editions, one in polished steel and the other in a gunmetal finish.
Priced @ approximately $130,000 USD