IO « Hysek sends time into orbit – twice »
March 06, 2019
The Hysek IO Double Orbitale marks a resurgence of the firm’s creative fibre at its best. A new, fully manufacture-made movement has allowed Hysek to create a display that’s literally revolutionary, with both minutes and seconds travelling in orbit. Simply breath-taking.
The Double Orbitale is the latest addition to Hysek’s IO collection, based on a fully manufacture-made movement: the HW63 caliber.
The hours are displayed in a window at 12 o’clock, while the minutes and seconds appear on an orbital display, resulting in the watch’s name – “Double Orbitale”.
The minutes are displayed in a module that completes a full revolution around the dial. This orbital module includes a central hand that points inwards to the minute display: this takes the form of two semi-circles showing minutes 05 to 25 and 35 to 55: the time shown on the photo is thus 23.25.
The seconds are embedded within the minutes module itself. They are marked out by a smaller, more discreet hand, positioned beneath the minutes hand and pointing to another semi-circular display.
The piece comes in four configurations, combining a case in titanium or rose gold with either of two dial variations.
Reinventing tradition; disruptive creativity; unashamedly contemporary aesthetics – never have so many superlatives been in order in the field of mechanical watchmaking. The fact is that there are few ‘creations’ really deserving of the term; such watches must ‘create’ a genuinely new horological artefact: a complication, a display, a material, or some other, similar ‘creation’.
Hysek has pulled off such a feat more than once, notably with the Colossal, unveiled last year: the first perpetual calendar in the world to use only rollers. This year, the brand’s done it again with the IO Double Orbitale.
One creation, two revolutions
Hysek is one of the last remaining fully-independent manufactures, and as such enjoys complete stylistic and technical freedom – as its new IO Double Orbitale amply demonstrates. It is indeed an authentic watchmaking ‘creation’, featuring an unprecedented dual orbital display for both minutes and seconds.
For this new timepiece, powered by the HW63 manufacture caliber, the minutes display is not powered from the centre: instead, it rotates around the inner edge of the bezel in a module mounted on an external arc, linked to a gear arrangement concealed beneath the bezel. This puts the module in orbit around the outside of the dial, guided by the gear system.
Within the module itself, a broad openwork hand marks out the minutes by pointing towards two central arcs featuring graduations from 05 to 25 and from 35 to 55. True Hysek connoisseurs will spot that the arcs are fixed to the dial at the 1, 5, 7, and 11 positions on the hour track – a nod to one of the firm’s signature touches.
The seconds module is embedded within the minutes module, which thus form a single unit. They rotate around the dial together: hence the “Double Orbitale” name of this IO.
The seconds are shown by a hand located beneath the minutes hand. This sweeps over another semi-circular section featuring engraved markers. From a technical point of view, the seconds satellite is geared to the revolutions of the minutes satellite, multiplying them to indicate the seconds.
The piece also features 24 jumping hours at twelve o’clock – another Hysek speciality. The window displaying them opens onto a surface coated with Super-LumiNova, making it easy to read the skeletonised hours at any time of day or night.
One piece, four finishes
From an aesthetic point of view, the design of the minutes and seconds module recalls the bridge used on Hysek’s Kilada line. Previously, this contemporary design also inspired the first tourbillon bridges, when Hysek originally began to develop this kind of complication. It has now become another of the firm’s hallmarks.
The dial will come in two versions that reveal the movement: one openwork, another made from sapphire crystal, bearing a laser engraving of a motif already used by the firm on its IO Manufacture – a stylised representation of a graphite molecule.
The timepiece will be available in the second quarter of 2019, on offer with a 43-millimetre titanium or rose gold case, and fitted with the integrated HW63 manufacture caliber – boasting a 56-hour power reserve and a total of 265 components.