H Moser & Cie - H.Moser unique piece
Luc Virginius / Chronopassion
H Moser & Cie - H.Moser unique piece

H.Moser unique piece

H Moser & Cie

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Unique piece for Unique Collector

See other pictures Luc Virginius / Chronopassion

H.Moser unique piece

A SAPPHIRE CASE FOR AN UNCONVENTIONAL TOURBILLON 

In 2015, H. Moser & Cie. is making a statement. Bold and irreverent, the Neuhausen Manufacture is proud to unveil a masterpiece, one which combines an unprecedented skeleton movement, a case made entirely from sapphire crystal and a strap created using 3D printing – a world first. The Venturer Tourbillon Dual Time Sapphire Skeleton, with a combination of three innovations, is a remarkably winning overture. 

For its talking piece this year, H. Moser & Cie. has selected the Venturer collection, which boasts elegant and refined, sensual curves. The exception being that this version will have a case created entirely in sapphire crystal. The finish to the profile of the case with its unusual shapes, the exquisite bezel, the curve of the dial and the crystal, and the proportions which echo the convex forms of the 1960s: the beauty of all these features is amplified by the transparency of the sapphire crystal case. The solid sapphire case was created using a technique that very few people in the world have mastered: the Kyropoulos method. Starting with aluminium oxide, this revolutionary crystallisation process is used to create large ingots of sapphire crystal which are highly uniform and of an excellent quality. The sapphire crystal is then cut and worked with the greatest of care. To obtain such a result, H. Moser & Cie. has accomplished a feat of technical prowess. This transparent sapphire case highlights the beauty of the HMC 803 calibre, which is entirely skeletonised. The bidirectional rotor, made from 22-carat solid red gold, is also open-worked. Fascinating and hypnotic, its oscillations set off the various materials and surfaces. Playing with surprising contrasts, H. Moser & Cie. uses this setting to showcase a most traditional and exceptional watchmaking complication, the tourbillon, giving it a contemporary twist with both lightness and subtlety. 

The Manufacture opted for a movement in nickel silver (or German silver, which is a brass alloy enriched with nickel), a choice dictated by history. Before the use of solid brass, all calibres were created from this alloy of copper, nickel and zinc. More complex and difficult to work, this alloy is, however, more beautiful and possesses a highly symbolic value. The alloy oxidises slightly before stabilising completely, ensuring the mechanism exudes an eternal beauty. H. Moser & Cie. takes this approach to its extreme with the superlative appeal of the Venturer Tourbillon Dual Time Sapphire Skeleton. The entire surface of the HMC 803 calibre is carved with a decoration that took almost 100 hours of work, and which further reinforces the unique nature of this exceptional watch. Finally, the Manufacture is equipping its masterpiece with a second time zone, indicated by a rhodium-plated hand, which can be easily distinguished from the blued steel hour and minute hands, and, of course, an Moser interchangeable minute tourbillon, boasting an original Straumann Double Hairspring®. This stroke of genius for a watch is intended to make watchmaking history and transcends the advantages of a simple tourbillon. 

The strap fitted to the sapphire lugs of the Venturer Tourbillon Dual Time Sapphire Skeleton features a delicate structure, like interwoven lace; abstract, almost organic, forms appear and disappear amongst each other. Ethereal, playing with transparency, this strap is one-of-a-kind and was printed using 3D technology, a world-first in watchmaking. It would actually be impossible to produce this incredibly complex structure using traditional methods. Incredibly lightweight, with dimensions as compact as possible, this strap reveals new perspectives and hitherto unimagined possibilities of production with rubber. Its beauty complements this unconventional model with a bold, innovative and slightly provocative design. Never has a tourbillon been any less conventional!

Technical specifications

TECHNICAL FEATURES
Reference 2803-1000, sapphire crystal model, unique piece for 2015 

Case
Solid 3-piece sapphire crystal case
Diameter: 41.5 mm
Height: 14.3 mm
Curved sapphire crystal and see-through sapphire crystal case-back Sapphire crystal screw-in crown engraved with an “M” 

Dial
Flange with bezel, which is part of the solid 3-piece sapphire crystal case Midnight blue indices 

Movement
In-house automatic skeletonised HMC 803 calibre
Diameter: 34.0 mm or 15 lignes
Height: 6.5 mm
Frequency: 21,600 Vib/h
Bi-directional pawl winding system
Solid 22-carat red gold skeletonised rotor engraved with the H. Moser & Cie. hallmark Power reserve: minimum 3 days
Moser teeth for all wheels and pinions
Original Straumann Double Hairspring®
Moser interchangeable minute tourbillon at 6 o'clock with skeletonised bridges 

Functions
Hours and minutes
Second hour hand can be hidden when not in use 

Strap
Rubber strap with a complex structure featuring organic shapes, created using 3D printing or hand -sewn alligator strap 

 

Who's who

H. Moser & Cie is probably the least well-known of the great manufactories – one of the hidden pearls of top watch-making beloved of Laurent Picciotto. How many people know that as early as 1840, H. Moser & Cie had a dominant position on the watch market – in Japan, China, Persia, Turkistan and Russia? And how many know that the manufactory produced no fewer than 70 in-house calibers? Heinrich Moser was not only a watch-maker but above all a visionary and entrepreneur. Like all free thinkers, he was ahead of his time, initially rejected by his home town of Schaffhouse – although paradoxically enough, it was to become a leading watch-making centre with IWC! “Contrary to what you might expect, Mosers are watches that don’t reveal everything at first glance,” emphasises Laurent Picciotto. In the same way, Heinrich Moser’s personality is not easy to delve into. Although he was deeply attached to Schaffhouse, he began his career in Saint-Petersburg. He didn’t set up a manufactory straight away, but as was the custom at that time, founded a trading post for watches produced by him or by other manufacturers. When he decided to develop the use of his own movements, he settled in Locle, rather than Schaffhouse. And his output was aimed not at the European market, but at Nijni Novgorod and Irbit! These two cities hosted the major trade fairs at that time, ensuring rapid commercial development, and leading to him hiring 50 employees. Still going against the flow, at a time when the most famous watchmakers were Swiss and French, Heinrich Moser used German, Russian, Italian and Swedish watchmakers. At the same time, the entrepreneur returned to his home town and began industrialising the region, building things like railways and dams – still in use in 2012! In the end – still in keeping with the somewhat atypical journey of the brand – despite Heinrich Moser having built a great empire with amazing potential for growth, when he died in 1874, his family decided to sell everything. The watchmaking part of the business was disbanded, but Heinrich Moser had nonetheless ensured that the brand name “H. Moser & Cie” remained attached to any watch production based on the fundamentals he had established. And so it was that the brand passed down through the decades (with varying degrees of success) until 2002, when Dr Jürgen Lange filed the original brand name of the founder internationally. It was time for the company Moser Schaffhausen AG to come to life again, reincorporating the Moser line. Today, Heinrich Moser’s great-grandson, Roger Nicholas Balsiger, is honorary chairman. In autumn 2005, at the time of the bicentenary of its founder, Heinrich Moser, the company was making a comeback on the international watchmaking scene. “Today they are subtle, rational pieces,” explains Laurent Picciotto. “We’ve given the brand time to find its feet. The approach is certainly Germanic, but offbeat, with traditional yet uncommon tones and basic functions, concealing high-class workings – large date, retrograde display, 7-day power reserve, and so on. Today’s timepieces really do correspond to precise specifications – a purist’s approach, aimed at strong personalities.”

Journalist : Olivier Müller

 
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