If you ask the watch in recent years, which one is the most creative, HYT should be well deserved. If you have the opportunity to play with the watch yourself, it will definitely make you exclaim ‘how this is done’.
As early as 2002, Mr. Lucien Vouillamoz, one of the founders of HYT, proposed a watchmaking idea to his friends, designing a water watch in an area with three lakes and known as the Valley of Watches. However, the most critical issue in creating this watch is how to replace the gravitational energy used in leaky pots and water clocks, and to create a waterproof watch that can be placed on the wrist. This concept was shelved by the lack of technology at the time.
For the next few years, the idea remained in Lucien Vouillamoz’s mind. How can we achieve a small and portable time liquid indicator that can also be applied to different environments? To this end, he transformed different angles to find feasible methods. Finally, a new concept of watchmaking was framed, and two flexible water pumps were connected via conduits. This closed system is composed of different colors and immiscible liquids in the reservoir. When one of the reservoirs is compressed, the group of liquids stored therein will be forced to flow to the conduit and show time, while the other group of liquids will diffuse to the other reservoir. The separation of the two liquids is separated by the molecules of the positive and negative electrodes, which repel each other like a magnet, so there is no need to put a piston in the tube guide.
After registering this new watchmaking concept patent and finding partners, HYT officially entered the stage of identifying watchmaking experts and making watches. After a year of research and development, the first watch model was officially born. The surface glass is formed by two layers of plastic glass, and a rectangular tube of 1.7 / 03 mm runs through the center of the two layers of plastic glass and has a round shape, which can accurately display the time. The two flexible reservoirs are made of rolled film and placed in transparent cylinders. The force that propels liquid movement is transmitted by the cam, replacing the hour hand of a traditional watch. The birth of this model also proved that the new watchmaking concept of Lucien Vouillamoz is feasible.
By 2010, HYT and Mr. Vincent Perriard hit it off. Prior to this, Vincent Perriard had already used liquids in watches and was awarded the Design Watch Award at the 2008 Geneva Watchmaking Grand Prix. They improved the original watchmaking concept by replacing the rectangular tube guide that runs through the center of two layers of plastic glass with an independent tube guide made of 11 cm high borosilicate glass (the diameter of the inner ring is only 1 mm) to show the time. The liquid operation is replaced by a high-endurance, high-flexibility container such as a bellows box (this technology is used by NASA and also customized by the technology company) to replace the original container made of rolled film. A container like a bellows box acts as a piston, controlling the flow of liquid in the duct. From this, the H1 was finally born.
The H1 watch is mainly divided into two parts. The upper part is the mechanical movement and the lower part is the liquid display device. An eccentric minute dial is provided at 12:00. The 65-hour power reserve display is on the right, the small second dial is on the left, and the hour display is delivered by a transparent tube on the outer edge of the dial. There are two liquids in the catheter. The hour display is indicated by a colored fluorescent liquid. It starts to flow clockwise from the 6 o’clock position with the passage of time and forces the transparent liquid away. When the fluorescent liquid flows to the 6 o’clock position at the other end, it will flow back to the starting position in the reverse direction within ten seconds, and restart the timing, just like the retrograde indication of the pointer.
At 6 o’clock on the dial, there are two bellows-shaped compression containers, one containing a fluorescent liquid and the other containing a transparent liquid. The fluorescent liquid is connected to the movement, and a conch-like gear rotates the compression container every hour to make the silver liquid flow for one hour. H1’s manual winding movement was completed by Jean-François Mojon and his watchmaking team Chronode. After ten years of hard work, HYT also won the best creative watch concept award in 2012 GPHG with H1.
Since H1, HYT has successively launched H2, SKULL, H3 and H4. The movement is also produced by APRP, the most sophisticated and complex movement production team in Switzerland, and one of the founders of APRP, Dominique Renaud, has joined HYT, director of senior watchmaking.
SKULL is a more challenging watch from HYT. It is very difficult to make the hour tube into a non-circular skull shape and still keep the liquid in the tube accurately in each movement of the piston container. .
The previous round case design was changed to a rectangular case. The liquid indicates the time but the hour is changed to the 24-hour display. The weight rotates every 6 hours.
HYT H4 Metropolis
The latest H4 Metropolis has the same movement architecture as the first H1, completely hollowed out. Not only is the movement made hollow, but it also challenges the concept of watchmaking again. Applying a new idea, the H4 Metropolis is a watch equipped with light sources. At 6 o’clock on the dial, two LED lights are hidden, and an on button is added at 5 o’clock. The light source is activated at the push of a button, and its blue light illuminates the entire dial. At night, the green liquid showing hours is more visible under the light source. And without a battery, a small generator is hidden at 4 and 5 o’clock, and it can be charged by rotating the start button, which can provide 5 seconds of startup time each time. I am impressed that Van Cleef & Arpels has also used it on its watches at SIHH this year, but it is only in the research and development stage and has not yet been put into production.
H4 Metropolis with black DLC titanium bezel and titanium case is very light to use. Wouldn’t you like to have such an innovative watch? With more than 90,000 Swiss francs, this ‘magic’ watch can be taken into a bag.