Ressence - Type 3 S
Luc Virginius / Chronopassion
Ressence - Type 3 S

Type 3 S

Ressence

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See other pictures Luc Virginius / Chronopassion

RESSENCE’s vision of contemporary fine watchmaking

Less is more

The philosophy behind the development of the TYPE 3 is based on RESSENCE's quest for the essential beginning in 2010 with the introduction of the ZERO SERIES. It is characterized by purity and modernism.
This quest for timeless design includes the process of reconsidering the watch as we know it; a process illustrated by the elimination of the traditional hands, the removal of the crown and by the use of invisible fluid technology. Only a fresh eye rooted in industrial design could envision those pioneer ideas for fine watchmaking. 

The new TYPE 3 consolidates RESSENCE’s expertise in the field of innovation by introducing an oil temperature gauge that indicates precisely the ideal temperature range for the watch. 

Genuine Innovation - ROCS 

The TYPE 3 capitalises on the advanced technology of the ROCS patent. ROCS stands for Ressence Orbital Convex System and is a state-of-the-art complex mechanism composed of 158 parts, 35 gears and 52 jewels. For antimagnetic and lightweight purposes, all components are in titanium grade 5 with the exception of the gears. 

Its entire development process was governed by three words – precision, creativity and readability. 

One of the main ROCS characteristics is the unique approach for displaying the time: discs replace traditional hands. Sub-discs continually revolve, as does the main disc. The face of the watch is therefore constantly changing. The convex discs are displaying hours, minutes, runner (360 seconds), days of the week, oil temperature, and the date. They may be seen as the dial in a traditional watch but are in fact the ROCS’s bridges (as the top of an iceberg). The only information needed from the movement for the ROCS to generate and regulate all the functions of the watch is the minute. 

Architecture 

The TYPE 3 architecture consists of three main elements: the central section made from a titanium grade 5 plate that integrates the lugs for the bracelet; the upper section with the ROCS submerged in oil; and the lower section housing the movement and the winding/setting mechanism. 

Minute information is transmitted from the movement to the ROCS via micro-magnetic fields as it is completely sealed and physically separated from the lower section by a hermetic titanium grade 5 membrane. An anti-magnetic cage (acting as a Faraday cage) protects the movement from the magnetic fields. 

Furthermore, the back of the TYPE 3 illustrates the RESSENCE philosophy. Instead of a crown, the whole sapphire caseback can rotate within a ball-bearing cage. The self-winding movement 

can be hand-wound by turning the caseback clockwise. Setting the day can be done by turning it anti-clocking wise. Time can be set in either direction. 

Water Drop Effect / Pebble-like-Piece 

The information discs and the date ring bathing in oil appear to be mysteriously displayed directly onto the glass. This unique water drop effect is due to the elimination of light refraction between the discs and the sapphire crystal. The brain is tricked and loses the impression of depth. Moreover, information can be read from very shallow angles as the whole surface of the anti-reflective sapphire crystal is used. 

The water drop effect is reinforced by the distinctive RESSENCE’s aesthetic: TYPE 3s are curvy. They are pebble-like pieces in opposition to the sharp edged traditional fine watchmaking. The discs of the ROCS as the whole case itself have a 125mm radius sphere shape and require specific know-how and tools to be produced. The watch, made of titanium grade 5, weights only 75 grams. Comfort on the wrist and enjoyable touch were key priorities during TYPE 3’s development. 

Invisible Fluid Technology with Oil Temperature Gauge 

The TYPE 3 upper half is filled with 35.2 ml of oil for a never-seen-before visual effect. Oil has remarkable properties but is sensible to temperature variations. The TYPE 3 includes therefore seven bellows that compensate for oil’s expansion or contraction. A mechanical thermal gauge has been added to inform precisely when the watch is performing at its best. The 0.5 mm bi- metal spiral is mounted 0.1 mm under the discs to captures the slightest temperature change inside the oil, ranging from -5 degrees to +55 degrees Celsius. 

With the new TYPE 3, RESSENCE shares its vision of fine watchmaking by pushing existing boundaries and creating timepieces at the forefront of innovation.

Technical specifications

Technical Specifications 

FUNCTIONS: CASE: 

DIAL: MOVEMENT: 

COMPONENTS: WEIGHT: BUCKLE/STRAP: 

Hours, minutes, runner (360 seconds), date and day of the week, oil temperature
Polished titanium grade 5 or matt titanium grade 5 with DLC coating
Domed sapphire crystal top and bottom with both sides anti-reflective coating 44mm (diameter) x 15mm (thickness) 

3 ATM water-resistant
Convex titanium grade 5 dial (125mm radius) with four eccentric biaxial satellites inclined at 3° (hours), 4.75° (thermal gauge and day) and 6.25° (runner)
Engraved and Super-LumiNova filled indexes
Patented ROCS3.2 (Ressence Orbital Convex System)
Oil immersion, micro-magnetic fields, bellows, thermal gauge
Crownless winding and date/day/time setting mechanism
Self-winding
36 hours power reserve
28,800 vibrations per hour
77 jewels
44 gears
347
75 grams
22mm titanium grade 5 pin buckle
Barenia leather 

RESSENCE #BEYOND HANDS 

Founded in 2010 by Benoît Mintiens, RESSENCE is a unique horological start-up creating and manufacturing innovative contemporary mechanical timepieces. They are designed in Antwerp and made in Switzerland. 

International Awards 

2013 - Grand Prix d'Horlogerie de Genève - Horological Revelation 2013 - Passion des Montres - Men’s Watch of the Year
2014 - Spiral Awards - Best Design & Concept
2014/15 - Watchstars - Design Star 

 

Who's who

Benoît Mintiens, founder of Ressence, is neither a watchmaker, nor Swiss, but in fact a Belgian designer. Is that where his appeal lay for Laurent Picciotto? Well, yes – and no. “Of course, he doesn’t exactly have a run-of-the-mill profile for this line of business,” admits the boss of Chronopassion. “I think the main point of attraction for me was the way in which the watch told the time” – a set of rotating disks, without hands, flush with the dial and in constant motion.

Ressence – a contraction of “Renaissance de l’Essentiel” – is indeed a renaissance of all that is essential. The watch is based on a tried and tested movement, adding a fun and original feature in the way it displays the time. There are none of the usual ostentatious design features that scream “Swiss made” or “limited edition”, or any huge brand logo across the dial – that’s not the Ressence way. Even the brand name is to be found only on the underside of the casing. The approach is simple and minimalist, giving pride of place to the very essence of the object – telling the time.

Was Laurent Picciotto won over right from the outset? Yes, but with a certain degree of caution nonetheless: “You come across a lot of brands at Basel one year only to find they have disappeared the next. I took Ressence’s first design to test out its approach, then waited for the next one. I found it to be a serious brand that was single-minded and very attentive.”

Today, Ressence is very much at home at the Rue Saint Honoré shop. Although it has a loyal following,  Laurent Picciotto stops short of putting Ressence fans into a precise category: “There are many different types of customer. As a whole, Ressence appeals to people who have already been into watches for some time, looking for an unusual timepiece to add a new twist to a well-established collection. Then again you get the occasional mum wanting a Ressence as a gift for one of their children!”

Following on from these encouraging beginnings, Laurent Picciotto is naturally – spontaneously, almost inevitably – looking to the future. When asked if he has any idea of what lies ahead for the brand, he responds with a smile which brooks no doubt. Could he possibly say a word – just one – to give connoisseurs a hint of what might be in store? He duly lets slip a single word: “Devastating.” And then his lips are sealed – at least for the time being.

Make no mistake, the winds of change in watchmaking may well be blowing… from Belgium. 

Journalist : Olivier Müller

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