Urwerk and MB&F are two stalwarts of contemporary watchmaking with, superficially at least, much in common. Here Ian Skellern shares what he thinks are the significant similarities and differences between these two leaders in modern independent watchmaking.
It’s no surprise that MB&F would create a special limited series of Legacy Machines honoring Jules Verne and the type of retro-futurism found within his novels. Yet this project is also the artistic child of master engraver Eddy Jaquet who has worked with MB&F for the last decade and was the driver behind the focus of each piece on and how to realize it. The results of these eight unique timepieces are simply spectacular.
Sometimes you just want to be festive without being “too much,” right? Well, Elizabeth Doerr has got just the six watches for your wearing pleasure this holiday season – all of which would look great and proportionate on every wrist regardless of gender. And all of which do not go overboard on the sparkle, yet do not fall short in radiant elegance.
Halloween, a word contracted from “All Hallow’s Eve,” is a predominately American celebration whose traditions come from late nineteenth-century Celtic origins. And along comes a modern mechanical time-telling spider in celebration, the MB&F Arachnophobia – a realistic-looking arachnid made of metal and other materials traditionally used in watchmaking. Look upon it if you dare!
The Mechanical Exception category features men’s or ladies’ watches with a special mechanism such as an innovative or sophisticated display, an automaton, a belt-driven movement, a striking or other acoustic function, or any other original and/or exceptional horological concept. And we surely have an intriguing set of finalists in the Mechanical Exception category this year: everything from a tumbling triple-axis tourbillon to an electronically controlled hybrid timepiece to a paper-thin mechanical watch and an automaton minutely replicating a 16-cylinder engine. And even more!
In the GPHG Chronometry category, we find mechanical watches that contain at least one tourbillon, and/or a special escapement, and/or another development improving precision timekeeping. What we don’t find, though, is much hard data regarding precision like timing test results or in most cases even a second hand. Precision watches without a second hand? Despite that, our panel predicts a clear winner.
I’m all for evolution, especially continual evolution in watchmaking. However, from time to time we need revolution as well as evolution, and the former is severely lacking. While MB&F’s Legacy Machine Perpetual looks to all intents and purposes like one of the least radical timepieces created in the brand’s ten-year history, make no mistake: it is revolution, not evolution.
Inspired by a bulldog, MB&F’s Horological Machine No. 10 features a rounded, stocky body; the time display forms its eyes; and the stout legs form the lugs, hugging its owner fiercely and loyally. But what is more likely to attract your eye are the wildly canine jaws with teeth that open and shut according to the amount of tension in the mainspring. The Watches TV takes a close look (but not too close – woof!).
TriPod designer Maximilian Maertens says that for him MB&F is a love story. He also says that nobody else is as positively crazy as MB&F founder Maximilan Büsser. Maertens knows that most of his pieces are too extroverted and too crazy for most. Luckily for us the two Maxes work together. And now let’s welcome TriPod.
For Martin Green, the MB&F L’Épée 1839 Massena Lab T-Rex Bronze seems more raw and animalistic than its predecessors, as though you can smell the scent of this top predator moving through dense vegetation. He thinks that the true T-Rex variation has landed, and here he explains why.