WristWatch

Got time on your hands?

Urwerk 201 Collection

Posted by wristwatch on September 3, 2007


An innovative Revolving Satellite Complication displays time on the 201. Telescopic minute hands operate through three orbiting and revolving hour satellites. These telescopic hands precisely adjust their length following the minutes and then retract. Extended, they enable the 201 to display the time across a large easy-to-read, dial. Retracted, they allow for a shorter and more comfortable case.

A 50 hour Power Reserve indicator (left) and Day/Night indicator (right) complete the dial.

The Control Board on the back of the 201 features: an Oil Change indicator notifying the owner a service is due; a 100 year plus indicator, the worlds first horological odometer, keeping track of the total time of use for over a 100 years; and URWERK’s signature Fine Tuning screw allowing the wear to adjust the rate to suit their life style.


* Model: URWERK 201.
* Case: available in white gold, red gold, platinum and black PE-CVD platinum (platinum models in limited editions only).
* Movement: calibre UR 7.01 21,600bph/3Hz.
* Functions: revolving satellite complication with integral telescopic minute hands; 5 day power reserve; day/night indicator.
* Dimensions: 45.6 mm X 43.5mm X 15mm; micro sand blasted; satin finish; back in titanium.
* Dial: ARCAP P40. Carousel polished with a diamond milling-cutter. Rotating satellite hours. SuperLumiNova treatment on hour and minute markers.
* Indications: Dial featuring: hours and minutes indicated by orbital satellites with telescopic minute hands AM and PM indicator; power reserve indication. Control Board featuring: user adjustable fine-tuning function (+/- 30seconds day); “Oil Change” indicator; linear 100 year plus indicator – the world’s first horological odometer.

Dial Side
Time on the 201 is displayed using telescopic minute hands operating through the middle of three orbiting and revolving hour satellites. The telescopic minute hands precisely adjust their length to follow the three vectors marking the minutes: 0 -14, 15 – 44, 45 – 60. Extended, they enable the 201 to display the time across a large easy-to-read, dial. Retracted, they allow for a very wearable and comfortably sized case; thus providing the wearer with the best of both worlds!

This original feat of precision micro-engineering is achieved by means of ‘transporters’, one end of which follows a cam plotting the path of the minute indication, the other controlling the precise length of the minute hand

These transporters – hidden under the wings between the satellites- undergo a special MOVIC surface lubrification treatment eliminating the necessity for lubricating oils. In fact, as a result of URWERK’s research into lubrification techniques and metal surface treatments, no oil at all is necessary or is used in the entire orbital complication.

There are four hours on each of the three satellites: 1/4/7/10, 2/5/8/11 and 3/6/9/12. As the new hour moves to the start of the minute chapter, its hand extends to indicate the minutes. As the hour passes, the two other satellites, with minute hands retracted, are slowly rotating so that they are ready in turn to take the center stage.

The orientation of the hour satellites and frontal time indication are in keeping with URWERK’s tradition of crafting timepieces which are easy to read without having to turn the wrist. The shape of the hour satellites – angular truncated pyramids rather than square faced cubes – ensures that the time can be clearly and instinctively read side-on as well as from above.

Completing the indications on the dial are a 50 hour power reserve indicator on the left, balanced by a day/night indicator on the right.

Control Board
The Control Board on the back of the 201 was inspired by the gauges of a sport car; therefore, it is only fitting that the ingenious features and completely original indications displayed reflect that influence.

The ‘Oil Change’ indicator informs the owner that a service is due after three years of operation.

The linear 100 Year Plus indicator functions like a car’s odometer and is a completely new and totally original indication on a wristwatch. The 100 Year Plus indicator keeps track of the total hours of the movement’s operation for well over a century!

Ingeniously, neither the ‘Oil Change’ or ‘100 year plus’ indicators use any power from the mainspring. Both are operated directly from the winding of the crown; thus eliminating any effect on the timekeeping of the movement or a reduction in power reserve.

The Fine Tuning screw. An easy to use adjustment enabling the wearer to precisely tune the timing of the watch to his own specific life style.

URWERK 201: Innovations and Complications in depth

Revolving Satellite Complication
The (patented) Carousel is the critical component of the orbital complication. It is responsible for not only the rotation of the hour satellites but also the integral telescopic minute hands. This rotating central hub is an extremely complex part to manufacture due to the extreme precision and tight tolerances necessary. Many of the carousel’s intricacies have to be machined and finished to tolerances of 1/1000mm!

After the Carousel are satellites are milled, they are micro-sandblasted, carefully finished with fine cashmere brush, treated with a sophisticated PE-CVD treatment called ‘Blaktop’ which hardens, colours and lowers the coefficient of friction The back of the Carousel satiné, a process which leaves a distinctive light matt finish without removing material. The 90° edges of the satellites are beveled using a diamanté process resulting in perfect mirror finish angles.

There has been no detail spared in maximising both efficiency and readability of the hour satellites. Rather than being set perfectly perpendicular to the horizontal, they are slightly inclined at 85 degrees so that the wearer does not have to tilt the wrist to easily read the time. While technically it may have been easier to have the satellites rotate to the next hour in one step, URWERK have designed the complication so that they rotate over three stages ensuring a more constant use of power.

Transporters
The Transporters – one for each minute hand- allow the telescoping hands to precisely adjust its length to follow the vector of the minute marker. One end of the transporter follows a cam simulating the path of the three minute indication vectors, while the other controls the length of the minute hand. The cam’s shape was designed by plotting 380 points of reference to ensure precision in the length of the telescoping minute hands.

The Transporter measures 0.895mm (thickness) plus the lubricating surface treatment is 0.005mm, thus making the total thickness of the transporter 0.900mm. The dimension of the place in carousel where the transporters work is 0.905mm. A tolerance of just 0.005mm!

These transporters – hidden under the wings between the satellite- undergo a special MOVIC surface lubrification treatment to minimise the necessity for lubricating oils. MOVIC (think machine grade Teflon) is just one of many treatments URWERK’s tribology research found effective. The research and development of new lubrication processes enabled URWERK to virtzually eliminate the need to oil in the entire orbital complication!

Telescopic Minute Hands
The telescopic minute hands, when extended to their maximum length of 4.8mm enable the 201 to display the time on a large, easy-to-read dial. The minutes are shown over 3 straight line segments: each 15minute side has a length of 8.3mm while the central 30 minute segment is 16.6mm. When they are not passing across the minutes, the hands retract to their minimum length of 1.8mm allowing for a very wearable and comfortably sized case.

Inside the telescopic minute hands is a minuscule spring. The longer a spring is the more uniform its elasticity. As the overall length and diameter of the space for the spring is fixed, the only way to make it longer is to make the filament a finer diameter. URWERK had already pushed the boundaries of the lower limits of the diameter of springs down to 100 microns – the size of a human hair – with the revolutionary Opus V. With the 201, URWERK brings the size down even further to an incredible 70 microns (0.07mm). This technological advance has led to a considerable increase in power and efficiency.

Oil Change Indicator
The ‘Oil Change’ indicator informs the owner that a service is due after three years of operation when the dial changes from green to read. Powered directly from the winding of the crown, this indicator has absolutely no detrimental effect on either the timekeeping precision of the movement or the power reserve.

Fine Tuning Screw
While Abraham- Louis Breguet was one of the first to provide a facility allowing his clients to adjust the fine regulation of his pocket watches, URWERK were the first to incorporate this extremely useful function into a wristwatch. The fine tuning screw allow the user to easily and precisely regulate the timing of the watch to tailor it to their specific life style.

Linear 100 Year Plus Indicator
The 100 Year Plus indication is a completely new and original indication in a wristwatch. Inspired by the odometer of a car, the 100 Year Plus indicator keeps track of how many years the movement has been in operation. Powered directly from the winding of the crown (as is the Oil Change Indicator), this linear gauge has absolutely no detrimental effect on either the timekeeping precision of the movement or the power reserve. The linear indicator advances every six years up until a maximum of 118 years!

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