IO Automatic Manufacture : Hysek's ode to simplicity
July 30, 2018
Simply put, IO Automatic Manufacture is the name of Hysek’s new basic caliber – an automatic with three hands. Its apparent simplicity actually took several years to develop; its mechanical ingenuity will allow it to be used as a foundation for the firm’s forthcoming collections.
Hysek has built up its brand notoriety around grandes complications and the art of extreme skeletonization. Today, the firm has moved into a field that is wholly new for it: the simplicity of a three-hand caliber.
This new exercise for Hysek comes in response to demand from collectors keen to extend their collections by including timepieces dedicated to everyday uses. That represented quite a challenge for the manufacture: creating a timepiece with the same level of technology and finish as the collections that have earned the brand its reputation – without any additional flourishes or complications.
A highly creative dial
The result is the new IO Automatic Manufacture. The timepiece displays the hours and minutes and features a small seconds hand at 6 o’clock, along with the firm’s signature hallmarks: large, luminous, spear-shaped hands; hour markers at 1, 5, 7, and 11 o’clock only; and highly stylised Arabic numerals – applied on a dial featuring especially intricate motifs.
These motifs draw inspiration from graphite. Its hexagonal molecule, interlinked by a three-way bond, forms a honeycomb pattern whose use here is unique in the world of watchmaking. The IO Automatic Manufacture’s dial thus provides both relief and depth, catching the light in constantly changing fashion.
Experienced collectors will also notice the work done on the lugs. These are made in-house, formed from a solid block. They come in several types of finish (polished, satin, and sand-blasted), providing a degree of creativity rarely seen for this positioning. The same is true of the movement, visible from the rear: each of the components is individually finished, with polishing, rounded angles, pearling, and so on. Lastly, Hysek has chosen to add a lug infill on its new IO to match the timepiece’s four different types (gold or titanium, 41mm or 43mm). The straps are fitted with spring bars, allowing them to be changed quickly with no tools required.