The saga continues: Introducing the new URWERK UR-100 GOLD
Hello. I don’t believe we have been introduced. Watch Lovers? A pleasure to meet you. I am UR-100 « C-3PO », Human and Satellite-geared watch relations.
URWERK, a brand that is notorious for not making traditional looking watches, is the king of space themed watches. Say what you may about their polarising designs, but in a mundane sea of dive watches, their offerings truly cover new shores. The new URWERK UR-100 GOLD is no exception. It’s a golden futuristic watch that has its design seeds sown not only in the brand’s SpaceTime models but also in the Star Wars saga.
Ever wanted your personal C-3PO? Now you can have it. Introducing the new URWERK UR-100 GOLD « C-3PO ».
The saga continues.
May The Force Be With You
You know it’s not very often that people can defy Einstein. But proving him wrong are Frei and Baumgartner, the Forces behind URWERK.
Albert Einstein once said, “Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the universe.”
To put this new release into context, it appears URWERK takes its own spin on this quote and launches a new watch that deals with the concept of space and universe but proves that not all humans are stupid. Some can actually come up with cool new concepts like this new URWERK UR-100 GOLD.
Let’s tease this for a bit more before we head into the details.
Yesterday was the 4th of May. Hearts of sci-watch aficionados must have been alight with a thousand firecrackers.
Seeing fit, URWERK announced the fourth episode —first one was in steel, second in black-coated steel, third in titanium and stainless steel with a GunMetal PVD finish — in the UR-100 intergalactic saga, an atypical time instrument written, produced, and directed by the horological studio URWERK that has been inspired by Star Wars.
This golden model continues the genesis of the collection that URWERK that included the launch of UR-100 GunMetal earlier this year.
While that was devoted to the concept of ‘sun’ and how the sun acts as our celestial clock and a point of reference, this new version takes this concept further by horological daring and disruptive watchmaking that pushes the boundaries of technology, design, indications, and functionality.
Seems like I would have to refer to Albert Einstein a lot more in this review that I would have liked to, but here goes: “Logic will get you from A to Z; imagination will get you everywhere.”
The new URWERK UR-100 GOLD is all imagination that leaves the logical three-handed hour, minutes and seconds dials far behind.
The watch is an astrophysics wonder, where the brand has made use of rotating satellites discs to display the hours and minutes where uniformly recurring revolutions depict the minutes as they traverse 120 degrees across the bright green scale on the dial.
Making this dance of intergalactic time surprisingly legible is the bold red arrowhead that marks the meeting of hours and minutes.
An astronomical wristwatch with a difference, the simple way to understand this dial would be to study the discreet spacetime indications featured on each side of the top of the dome’s periphery.
When the minutes hand on the new UR-100 GOLD has completed its 60-minute journey, it reappears on a 20-minute scale of 555 kilometres at 9’o clock.
This is the distance mankind would travel in 20 minutes standing on the equator of our rotating planet. The opposite scale at 3’o clock tracks the journey through space around the sun: 35,740km every 20 minutes.
In a nut-shell, the ultra high-tech dial shows the following indications:
- Satellite hours and minutes
- Rotational distance at the Equator in 20 minutes
- Orbital distance in 20 minutes
The Star Wars Connection
The new URWERK UR-100 GOLD features a few nods that have been influenced by the Star Wars franchise.
“Science fiction has been an inexhaustible source of inspiration since the creation of URWERK,” explains co-founder Martin Frei.
- The design is an extra-flat slim watch with angular contours and an elongated octagon with three notched sides that uses the subtle asymmetry from Han Solo’s Millennium Falcon
- The material used is 2N yellow gold with its surface satin-finished to the same pale shine as the Star Wars C-3PO
“I have been a sci-fi geek since childhood. My father was an engineer and worked on incredible projects, including the Apollo Lunar Rover. He was my hero and left me his love of the cosmos and his dreams,” adds Frei.
Force against the Dark Side
Like the C-3PO fights alongside the Force against the tyranny of the Dark Side, the new URWERK UR-100 GOLD « C-3PO » will help fight the dark side of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The watches are being released in limited numbers of 25 only, and the first piece will be auctioned off to raise money for fight against Covid-19. The brand is terming this campaign as “Fight C-19”, and will select in partnership with the successful bidder of the No. 1 gold UR-100 “Fight C-19” which organisations will be fighting against Covid-19.
The auction will begin at 4 pm GVA time on Friday the 8th of May, 2020, and will run over two days. For more information and/or to participate in the auction, please visit the link : https://bit.ly/2xn9uAf.
The heart used — calibre UR 12.01 — is a mechanical automatic winding movement with a bi-directional self-winding rotor that is governed by a profiled airscrew known as the Windfänger.
URWERK’s proprietary Windfänger system with helical and planetary gearing prevents the winding system from being overloaded by limiting the speed of rotation of the rotor which in turn minimises both excessive winding and wear and also maximises reliability and lifespan.
The movement drives the carousel carrying the hours on three satellites that travel in succession along a 60-minute scale. Each is forged from anodised aluminium then sanded and shot-blasted. The satellite screws are each circular sanded. The satellites rest on an aluminium carousel while the structure on top of the hours display is in sanded and shot-blasted aluminium.
It is very similar to the UR-111C TT reviewed here and the UR-100 Gunmetal. All of these beat at the same frequency of 4 Hz (28’800 V/h), feature a water resistance of 30m (3 ATM) and the same 48 hours power reserve. The number of jewels in the UR-100 GOLD are the same as the GunMetal version — 39 jewels — but feature an increase of two compared to the UR-111C TT.
All this is encased inside an overall bold and big watch made from satin-finished 18k 2N yellow gold that measures in at: width 41mm x length 49.7mm x thickness 14mm.
The brand has worked with other precious metals such as red gold on watches like the UR-110 and UR-103, but the use of yellow gold here not only brings in a certain amount of class and elegance to the piece, it also works nicely with the idea of making the watch look akin to the colouring and finishing of C-3PO.
Visually appealing, the watch has contrasting surface finishes including circular graining and sanding (again like the UR-111C TT), chamfered screw heads, and hours / minutes index painted in SuperLumiNova.
Watch Ya Gonna Do About It
We are all in this industry because we marvel at the idea of time. Perfection of it then, is one of the supreme goals. Neil deGrasse Tyson once said, “It turns out that the history of astrophysics is where we perfected time keeping”.
URWERK with their new astrophysics wonder watch does just that.
The new URWERK UR-100 GOLD is a complicated wrist machine that symbolically trails our journey into the galaxies far, far away. For any avid collector or a Star Wars buff, it’s hard to beat the charm of this space time travel inspired timepiece. Limited to only 25 pieces — and costing 58’000 CHF sans taxes or 60’000 USD — this new gold offering is your chance to have your personal C-3PO.
The new UR-100 « C-3PO » is the brand’s latest satellite-geared watch that might as well be telling other traditional watches (in C-3PO’s words), “Don’t you call me a mindless philosopher you overweight glob of grease!”
The saga continues.
For more information on this watch and other URWERK watches, head to their website here.