In 2005 I visited Baselworld a portable 20x magnification stereo microscope. Over a few days of examining hundreds of watches, there were only two that stood out as having dials that were flawless under the microscope’s intense scrutiny: one was the wild Harry Winston Opus V by a young brand called Urwerk that had yet to celebrate its tenth birthday. This year Urwerk celebrates its twentieth anniversary and what a 20 years it has been!
About Ian Skellern
I am the co-founder and technical editor of Quill & Pad. I am also a Swiss-based independent journalist specializing in high-end watches and founder of 'underthedial', a digital communication agency focusing on independent brands. I am also the author of 'Hands of Time,' a book celebrating the 25th anniversary of the AHCI (Académie Horlogère des Créateurs Indépendants).
Entries by Ian Skellern
Blast from the past! This post is a “reprint” of an article I wrote that was first published on The PuristS in 2005. This article is divided into four parts: Felix Baumgartner and Urwerk, Harry Winston Rare Timepieces and the Opus V, The Urwerk 103.03, and The Urwerk 103.03 user review.
I’m an expat Aussie who has now lived longer out of Australia than in, but in a few years my (Swiss) wife and I are planning on moving from Switzerland to Airlie Beach in North Queensland, Australia. In September 2016, I flew to the region for a week’s worth of face-to-face meetings to help lay the groundwork for our move.
It was a tight schedule, especially as I was sure to be suffering from jetlag, but it was doable. Especially with the Ulysse Nardin Dual Time on my wrist to help keep track of time there and at home.
Fine watch and fine whiskey, for many the two go together like single malt birds of a feather. Urwerk founders Felix Baumgartner and Martin Frei have been known to enjoy a smooth amber tipple or two, and as discerning gentlemen with discerning taste in haute horlogerie, it’s perhaps not surprising that Baumgartner and Frei also have discerning taste when it comes to whiskey: single malt by The Macallan.
The initial key concepts for the AgenGraphe chronograph included having the elapsed time indicators displaying around the center hole so that the indications were large and highly legible, and that the minute and hour displays jumped instantaneously so that there could be no confusion when reading elapsed time. But the new chronograph ended up offering much more than that. Much more!
It’s no exaggeration to say that here at Quill & Pad we are big fans of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso. And now Urwerk introduces its own, very robust version of a reversible watch: the UR-T8 “Transformer.”
The Time Aeon Foundation, driver of the Le Garde Temps, Naissance d’une Montre project, will present its second project at the 2017 edition of SIHH, which involves a collaboration with the recently announced boutique brand Oscillon.
This is part 3 of a three-part series about Derek Pratt’s reconstruction of John Harrison’s Longitude Prize-winning H4, which was the world’s first precision marine chronometer. This article was first published in ‘The Horological Journal’ (HJ) in April 2015, who we thank for graciously granting permission to republish on Quill & Pad.
Impressively, the cathedral chimes remained audible as Stephen Forsey closed his palm completely around the Greubel Forsey Grand Sonnerie in a (knowingly) futile attempt to silence the gongs.
But how? And what else does this exceptional timepiece, one that I might call the best in the world, hold in store?
Here we present the second part in a three-part series about the making of Derek Pratt’s reconstruction of John Harrison’s H4. This part was written by Carl Murray of Frodsham. This article was first published in ‘The Horological Journal’ (HJ) in March 2015, who we thank for permission to republish on Quill & Pad.