HYT - HYT SKULL POCKET
Luc Virginius / Chronopassion
HYT - HYT SKULL POCKET

HYT SKULL POCKET

HYT
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115'000 €

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See other pictures Luc Virginius / Chronopassion

HYT SKULL POCKET

HYT has unveiled its first ever pocket watch, the Skull Pocket. A new case, the first ever Skull and mechanical light source combination, exclusive finishes, and just 8 pieces available: the Skull Pocket marks a turning point in HYT's development. 
With the Skull Pocket, HYT is restating its desire to invent the watches of tomorrow, using the knowledge of the past and the science of today. The pocket watch, one of the most noble legacies of traditional watchmaking, has become a new playground and means of expression for HYT. It exudes an "art de vivre" which is both contemporary and unconventional, embodied by this rare, interactive piece. 
 
The fluid technology integrated in HYT's Skull Pocket sits perfectly with all the lines of the traditional mechanical watch, bringing these into the 21st century. This ability to take fine watchmaking far beyond its conventional horizons is one of the reasons why HYT has just joined the very exclusive circle of partner brands of the Fondation de la Haute Horlogerie. 
 
The Skull Pocket is available in a limited release of 8 pieces. It is one of HYT's richest creations. For the first time, the light source module developed for its Metropolis model has been combined with a Skull. 
 
This module has two LEDs positioned underneath the rider at 6 o'clock. The micro- generator which activates them has been integrated into the case. It works by converting mechanical power into electricity. A barrel spring is loaded when the dedicated push- button crown at 4:30 is turned. Pressing this push-button crown then releases the spring and turns the micro-generator at very high speeds, creating the electricity needed to activate the two LEDs. This bathes the Skull Pocket in a soft blue light, and gives the green liquid its fluorescent glow. 
The light lasts for around five seconds, after which the mechanism needs to be reinitialised. No batteries or electronics are required for this function as the process is completely mechanical. Developing this patented assembly, which comprises no fewer than 82 components, was a particularly painstaking task due to its extreme miniaturisation and its curved shape. 
 
Haute couture exterior 
 
The assembly sits within a 59 mm case which was specially created for the Skull Pocket, made from titanium and black DLC titanium. In place of the lugs, HYT has developed an exclusive cover system to protect the dial. Articulated by a hinge at 12 o'clock, it is triggered by the iconic rider at 6 o'clock, which has become one of the brand's aesthetic hallmarks. The cover features an engraved pattern with leather inserts, and can be fully customised. 
When pressed gently downwards, this rider releases the cover, unveiling the Skull Pocket dial. For the first time, the skull is completely faceted in a contemporary design, subtly reflecting the light in an echo of the Clous de Paris stud finish which surrounds it. 
At night, the light emanates instantly, producing a soft blue glow which floods the case and causes the coloured liquid charged with fluorescent dye to react. The time can be read intuitively around the circumference of the skull, via indices with Arabic numerals filled with SuperLuminova. The seconds are displayed in the left eye and the power reserve in the right eye. The piece is attached to a titanium chain specially designed for the Skull Pocket. Its faceted structure, which alternates polished and satin finishes, was designed to evoke the aesthetic of the skull, in a tangible extension of its spirit.

Technical specifications

Functions: green retrograde fluidic hours, seconds 
Case: titanium and black DLC titanium with a customisable, leather-embossed cover 
-  diameter: 59 mm 

-  height: 20.6 mm 

-  two titanium screw-on crowns sheathed in black rubber at 2:30 and 4:30 

-  titanium dome with integrated cover release system at 6 o'clock 

-  side plate (3 o'clock/9 o'clock) with black DLC Clous de Paris decoration 

-  domed sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating on the dial side 

-  metallised screw-on sapphire case-back 

-  water-resistant up to 50 metres 
Movement: mechanical with manual winding, exclusive HYT calibre 

-  28,800 Vph, 4 Hz, 35 jewels 

-  hand-bevelled bridges adorned with Côtes de Genève 

-  65-hour power reserve. 
HYT's exclusive patented micro-fluidic module: 

-  Two multi-layer metal bellows 

-  Capillary tube in medical grade glass, with interior nano-coating 

-  Two immiscible liquids; one transparent and the other coloured with a highly resistant 
dye 

-  Thermal compensator with dedicated bellows containing a special liquid 

-  Ceramic fluid restrictors 
Light mechanical module: 

-  system activation and winding function with push-button crown at 4:30 

-  micro-generator system triggered by pressing the push-button crown at 4:30. 
Dial: unstructured, with black PVD Clous de Paris stud pattern, grey rhodium-plated indices, hours indicated by a fluid 

-  faceted skull with PVD treatment 

-  black hour dial with grey indices 

-  seconds disc (left eye) 

-  power reserve indicator (right eye) 
Chain: titanium, with HYT customisation
Swivel clasps: titanium, with HYT customisation Ref: 159-TD-49-GF-CH; 8-piece limited edition 


Who's who

They are both as unpredictable and unruly as one another, and never happier than when the entire industry voices its doubts about their choices. In the end, what brings together Vincent Perriard and Laurent Picciotto is perhaps their insatiable curiosity, driving them where no-one else has even dreamed of going. Not merely out of a desire to be provocative, but simply from a constant yearning to liven up the art of watchmaking.
Even if it is always preferable to appraise a brand over time rather than judge it on the basis of a one-off, the power of its ambition can nonetheless be gauged by its first timepiece. At HYT, Vincent Perriard formed the opinion that traditional watch mechanisms might be all well and good, but that fluid mechanics were even better. This led to the idea of displaying the time using a liquid. 
“Right from the start, when Vincent came to see me with this somewhat crazy idea, I found the approach to be very ingenious,” recalls Laurent Picciotto. “However, I immediately warned him against a merely stylistic exercise without any real future; he needed to display the genuine art of watchmaking – the only thing that could win him the esteem of his peers.”
For its co-founder, the practical outworking of this advice for the up-and-coming brand was to develop a purebred watch mechanism – a genuine in-house movement that added the full weight of credibility to the fluid time display. 
“I must admit that I still had some reservations until I finally saw the movement that was to support the concept,” says Laurent Picciotto. And that’s when all doubt was dispelled – completely new mechanics, a view from the back displaying two incredible pistons, and a front face revealing traditional watch workings.
Did that provide enough reassurance for knowledgeable watch lovers? Definitely. But the retailer looks a little further. “I also took the teams and their backgrounds into consideration. What I saw at HYT was people from the medical sector, researchers, committed guys who were keen to succeed,” continues Laurent Picciotto. “I’m confident about the way they see things. They have the right resources – and the right methods.” 
As 2012 draws to a close, the first HYTs have of course found a home at Chronopassion – probably for a very short space of time, given that demand is already far outstripping supply. However, this is a brand that we’ll be seeing plenty more of. “HYT will find its cruising speed and make its mark in the long term. It’s also a brand that’s likely to become a source of inspiration for many other independent watchmakers,” concludes Laurent Picciotto. 
 
Journalist : Olivier Müller
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