One of the most difficult things for a brand must be to get punters to part with their hard earned cash. This feat requires enormous ingenuity and skill especially in the current climate. When I speak to retailers around the world they all say it is a particularly tough market. Nevertheless I believe if you have a well-designed product then buyers will follow. Probably one of the best examples is luxury watchmaker MB & F (Maximilian Büsser and Friends).
Since his days at Harry Winston, Maximilian Büsser has pushed the boundaries of modern watchmaking. For watch writers like myself it is always a pleasure to write about his creations. Recently he has diversified into different areas with some pretty astonishing results. The collaboration with Swiss clock maker L’Epée (Starfleet Machine ‘Light’ Edition) was extraordinary and the Musicmachine is a work of art. However these indulgences haven’t detracted from the company’s core business, which is selling exclusive watches. Due to the nature of these timepieces Maximilian Büsser’s main priority is finding suitable global retail partners.
Back in May, Maximilian Büsser told me about the imminent release of a pretty phenomenal new watch. His emphasis on the word ‘new’ really stimulated my interest. Finally on November 3rd the big day arrived with images and specifications of the wonderful new Horological Machine No°6 ‘Space Pirate’. With dimensions measuring 49.5 mm x 52.3 mm x 20.4 mm, the timepiece is designed to make a bold statement. Certainly as admirer of really large watches I love these masculine proportions and know it will appeal to MB & F purists. Even though I haven’t been fortunate to wear this sensational watch I can imagine it would sit comfortably on the wrist. Ultimately this is down to the innovative case design and use of lightweight Grade 5 titanium in production.
Visually the Horological Machine No°6 ‘Space Pirate’ is spectacular and in my opinion one of MB & F’s most accomplished creations. Japanese sci-fi cartoons of the 1970’s inspired the overall composition. Certainly the appearance of this exquisite timepiece is completely exaggerated and that is integral to the success of the design. Idiosyncratic details like the ten domed sapphire crystal windows reinforce this point. In a nutshell, telling time on this device is almost secondary as it is a wonderful piece of performance art.
Beneath the revolutionary façade lies an exceptionally complicated self-winding movement devised by MB&F with David Candaux Horlogerie Créative. This twin turbine caliber comprises 68-jewels and oscillates at a frequency of 18,000 vibrations per hour (2.5Hz). Each of the mechanisms’ 475 components including the 950 Platinum rotor and flying tourbillon has been meticulously finished by hand. Functionally the Horological Machine No°6 ‘Space Pirate’ features hours and minutes via separate semi-spherical aluminium indications. The timepiece also has a power reserve of 72-hours and is water resistant to a depth of 30 metres.
The Horological Machine No°6 ‘Space Pirate’ has a hand-stitched black calfskin strap with matching titanium folding buckle.