BaselWorld 2018: The Swiss Alp Watch Minute Repeater Tourbillon from H. Moser

BaselWorld 2018: The Swiss Alp Watch Minute Repeater Tourbillon from H. Moser

March 23, 2018

A minute repeater and a tourbillon in a rectangular case that looks like a smart watch. The Swiss Alp Watch Minute Repeater Tourbillon by H. Moser & Cie. dares to contrast the two.

The Schaffhausen-based manufacture pairs the contemporary design of the case with a complex flying tourbillon movement, fitted with one of the most challenging complications to produce: a minute repeater. It serves as an elegant reminder of the H. Moser philosophy: “We’re not straying into the realm of smart watches, we’re remaining true to the tradition of mechanical watchmaking.”

Restoring the watch to its rightful place as an instrument for measuring time rather than consuming it, H. Moser & Cie. returns to the fundamentals of traditional watchmaking, when timepieces clocked hours instead of notifications. The Swiss Alp Watch Minute Repeater Tourbillon is available in several references, all of which are different and unique pieces.

Manufactures that possess the expertise required to create minute repeaters are few and far between. Since 2005, H. Moser & Cie. have been designing, developing and producing their 13th movement, the C 901 hand-wound caliber. In their challenging quest to combine a perfect harmony with a strong sound, H. Moser & Cie. called upon the expertise of those in the field, specifically MHC Manufactures Hautes Complications SA.

This movement is a true piece of jewelry that not only combines a minute repeater and a tourbillon, a rare feat in watchmaking, but goes further and adds to its complexity with the addition of a shaped caliber. Nestled at the heart of the Swiss Alp Watch’s rectangular case with its rounded corners, the C 901 movement is equipped with two gongs that required extreme dexterity to join them; making it very rare indeed. With constraints not only regarding the angles of the gongs but also those of the case, H. Moser & Cie. Were faced with a complex challenge.

The case underwent extensive work, the case middle had to be widened to the maximum in order to obtain enough space to create a large soundbox. This amplifies the ring of hours, quarters and minutes emitted by two gongs, onto which fall two hammers that are raised based on information provided by different feeler-spindles. Notwithstanding the fact that this was already a technical feat as regards the minute repeater mechanism, it also required perfect understanding of the subject to achieve a beautiful sound that combines amplitude, a certain length and a pure note.

The minute flying tourbillon at 6 o’clock is certainly eye-catching. Visible behind a skeleton bridge, it is fitted to a bearing that improves the precision and chronometry. Resolutely contemporary and in line with modern times, the tourbillon appears to float weightlessly on the dial stripped of both logo and indices.

Moser & Cie. has developed a new aesthetic for this unique piece that is the first of its kind. The dial is reminiscent of a mosaic composed of shades of blue. Alternating surfaces and a play on finishes are an abstract and contemporary nod to the famed H. Moser & Cie. Funky Blue dial. The Swiss Alp Watch Minute Repeater Tourbillon will be produced in several references, all of which are unique pieces.