I believe it won’t be long before the stars in the center of the watchmaking industry have nothing to show themselves except the ‘barest of bones’. But these ‘skeletons’ (both skeleton and hollow) are not terrible. On the contrary, under the watchmaker’s transformation, they have expanded a wider space for the interpretation of watchmaking technology. At the Geneva Haute Horlogerie Show in 2015, skeletonized watches made their strongest sound.
Parmigiani Tonda 1950 skeleton watch
Although the hollow-out process has a long history in the watchmaking industry, it is still tepid. It was not until more than ten years ago that with the advent of a large number of such new watches, it ushered in innovation and revival. The primary function of the hollowing-out process is purely broken decoration, but in fact, it has evolved and changed with the introduction of a new movement component manufacturing process, and this change is complete and thorough. The 2015 Geneva Haute Horlogerie Show has proven this to us: skeletonized movements can be excellent and trendy! To what extent? Watchmaking brands that have not mastered the hollow-out process of this movement also choose the dial hollow-out design, just to be able to add the name ‘skeletons’ to their watches.
A window of the movement component
Gone are the days when the substrate and plywood were decorated with hollow out, and now the movement is almost completely hollowed out. It is worth mentioning that a few old brands have transformed into the pioneers of this modern and bold watchmaking process, and as a result have regained their charm and radiance. During this period of adjustment and transformation, Roger Dubuis played a very significant role, and almost immediately decided to explore this path and transform the hollowed out process into a real brand logo. In fact, Roger Dubuis’ manufacturing process also subverts the concept of “hollowing out” and gives it a new definition. In the past, “hollowing out” refers to hollowing out existing molding movements (to ensure that its structure and Intensity); nowadays, it has been conceived and designed with the concept of a skeleton watch from the beginning of the creative process.
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Spider skeleton flying tourbillon diamond watch
This naturally gives the movement more flexibility in making, and can perfectly calculate the force exerted on the structure of the movement. In particular, the movement has realized visual production in the three-dimensional category. In summary, the traditional carving has been chamfered. And 3D views are replaced. The Excalibur Spider skeleton flying tourbillon diamond watch launched by Roger Dubuis at the 2015 Haute Horlogerie Show is a great example of focusing on this skeleton theme.
Richard Miller RM 51-02 Tourbillon Diamond
Other brands also contributed a lot to the current trend of architectural hollowed-out movements, especially to point out that Richard Miller. Continuing from the traditional hollow watch, it is the product of modern watchmaking and transparent design concepts. There is no need for gorgeous words, and the hollow movement mechanism can speak for itself. Somewhat paradoxically, the RM 51-02 tourbillon tourbillon watch released by Richard Miller at this year’s Geneva watch fair does show excellent transparency, but it has to be said that its brilliance is a luxury Covered by diamonds.
Hollow Ever-changing Honor
Since the beginning of the creation, the concept of hollow-out watches has been conceived. Cartier is also exploring the extensive application of hollow-out movement technology. The new Rotonde celestial tourbillon watch perfectly demonstrates this, with the hollow splint as the time scale, this concept is Cartier’s innovative feat.
Cartier Rotonde Tourbillon
Traditionally, the hollow-out process is mainly used in ultra-thin movements. To this day, some watchmaking brands still explore and innovate in this field, realizing the superb technique of inlaying gems on ultra-thin movements. Piaget is one of the best. Over the past few years, many such timepieces have been released, including the 1200D launched in 2013, the industry’s first ultra-thin skeleton automatic diamond movement.
Piaget Emperador Coussin 1270S ultra-thin skeleton automatic winding tourbillon watch
The design of the movement is already so complicated that the retouching process is also very different from the past. Spiral or other forms of curved patterns have given way to increasingly complex geometric shapes (including internal corners that are difficult to be chamfered). For detailed surface finishing details, it also gives the movement and models a unique personality charm. Piaget has also applied hollowwork to more complex watch designs, such as the Emperador Coussin 1270S ultra-thin self-winding tourbillon watch newly released this year.
Parmigiani Tonda 1950 skeleton women’s watch
Parmigiani launched two Tonda 1950 skeleton watches at the Geneva Watch Fair this year, which also proved that ultra-thin skeleton movements are the current trend. The women’s models are particularly eye-catching. The dial is frosted, exquisite and delicate, and the visual blurring creates a subtle and subtle beauty, leaving people with endless imagination.