Thursday, April 23, 2015

UR-105TA - Lemony Fresh!

I am never 100% sure how I feel about Urwerk.  But with this latest offering, the team from Geneva have got my attention again.
Courtesy of Urwerk
This is the UR-105TA also known as the Black Lemon.  It is one of several new versions of the UR-105TA.  While I realize it might be poor form to talk bout someone else's creation (and I say this as praise to Urwerk) it reminds me of the watches we saw from Lionel Ladoire back in the good old days.  I love the pop of color!

Courtesy of Urwerk
But on to more pragmatic matters - getting beneath the surface we can see that in the case of the UR-105TA beauty is more than skin deep.  I am going to let the folks from Urwerk take it from here -

The UR-105 TA (TA for Turbine Automatic) isn't round, has no hands, and no tourbillon: It is 100% pure URWERK. It is the watch that the team had the most fun in designing, the most pleasure in developing its mechanisms, and the most satisfaction in its hand finishing and assembly. The UR-105 TA is a real watchmaker's watch that explodes with creativity with a palette of zesty colors thanks to URWERK’s unconventional chief designer Martin Frei.

The UR-105 TA revisits URWERK's iconic satellite indication, which has been an emblematic and instantly recognizable signature element of the brand for 18 years. Four satellites, each bearing three hour numerals, successively reveal themselves from under a sublime guilloche black cover in PEEK (polyetheretherketone) as they parade past the minute rail to display the time. Everything exudes precision and refinement, from the carrousel chassis to the dial, from the touches that are invisible to those on full display through the large sapphire crystal. For example, the hidden ARCAP satellite carrousel has been treated with ruthenium then micro bead blasted to a finish meeting the very highest standards of haute horlogerie.

“With the UR-105 TA we wanted to get the best of two worlds. We have enjoyed demonstrating the extent of our savoir-faire, from the micron-precision mastery of our CNC machines, to the superb hand finishing carried out in our ateliers. It is a piece that delights the eye. Observed under the loupe, it reveals all the little subtleties that we have incorporated into it,” says Felix Baumgartner, and URWERK co-founder and chief watchmaker.

The UR-105 TA also embodies all the years of research invested into URWERK’s wandering hour satellites. Here, the ingenuity of this mechanism lies in the invisible carousel responsible for the operation of the satellite hours. The carousel operates precisely, silently, subtly and in harmony with the rest of the timepiece.

“With our previous timepieces, our satellites were supported by an orbital cross at the top. We rethought this concept and made some refinements. The fruits of this can now be felt when setting the time on the UR-105 TA: There is virtually no friction, no jerking movement, just the ballet of satellites. It is the fluidity of the gears that quietly reveals all our hard work,” continues Felix Baumgartner.

The “TA” of the UR-105 TA stands for “Turbine Automatic”. That is because the movement’s automatic winding is optimally regulated by dual air turbines on full show on the back. These turbines are bead-blasted, satin-finished and treated with black PVD for perfect aesthetics. The winding mode is selected by a small lever.

In the “FULL” position, only the slightest movement is needed to wind up the mainspring. "RED." (for “REDUCED”) moderates the winding so as to minimize excessive tension on the mainspring. On "STOP" mode, the winding system is disabled and the UR-105 TA can then be hand-wound if necessary by the crown.

UR-105 TA a.k.a. "URWERK Knights"


5.02 UR automatic winding regulated by a double turbine


28,800v / h – 4 Hz

Power reserve:                                     
48 hours

Satellite hours driven by Geneva crosses in beryllium bronze;
Orbital structure of PEEK (polyetheretherketone)
Carrousel and triple mainplates in ARCAP

Surface finishes:                
Perlage, bead-blasting, satin-finishing
Beveled screw heads

Satellite hours; minutes – hour and minute markers treated with Super-LumiNova


UR-105 TA "Black Lemon" – titanium case, black PVD steel bezel
Dimensions: width: 39.50mm; length: 53mm; height: 16.80 mm
Crystal: Sapphire Crystal
Water Resistance: Pressure tested to 30m / 3ATM

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