Recently, I was invited to join the presentation of HYT watches at a very fine restaurant hosted by one of the top jewelers in The Netherlands, Pijnenburg in Eindhoven. A mixture of press and clients of Pijnenburg were invited to see the HYT collection and meet with Vincent Perriard (CEO of HYT watches). A perfect reminder that we still had some photos of the initial presentation of the HYT H2 watches earlier this year when we met with Vincent Perriard.
Perhaps my bad, but when I first saw the HYT H1 I didn’t realize that it is actually not that awkward to have a fluid in your mechanical watch. A fine wrist watch is so often being compared to a car and a movement to an engine. As you know, an engine had cylinders and needs coolant to perform. Or to keep performing that is. Although the application of fluid in the HYT timepieces are a bit different than in an engine, the two bellows, reservoirs, fluid and the rest of the mechanical movement (let’s not forget the oil) starts to get a lot of similar ingredients.
As you can see on the photo above, at 9 o’clock there is an indicator for the temperature of the fluid. Just like in a car, it should be neutral. If it is not, depending hot or cold, you should at least make sure the watch is on your wrist to come to ‘body temperature’. On the other side, at 3 o’clock, you find an indicator for the crown function. Winding mode, neutral or setting mode. Quite useful and we’ve seen it before at Grönefeld’s One Hertz piece for example.
The bellows are in V-position, like engines have (although I prefer a straight-six over a V6 personally). On top of these flexible bellows you see two reservoirs, one compresses and the other expands and vice versa. This keeps the fluid going and in combination with the mechanical movement above the ‘cylinders’, indicating hours and minutes on the dial.
Telling time is a completely different story than on most other watches you see here on FW. As you can see, the jumping minute hand moves over a 30 minute scale. This also means leaps forward as soon as it hits 30. The fluid scale, like in the H1 version, is a retrograde. The fluid will go back into the reservoir, pushed by a transparent fluid from the other reservoir. A very cool process to observe when wearing this HYT H2 timepiece, or the H1 for that matter. Personally I think this is one of the nicest and most innovative watches I’ve seen from the independent watchmakers in the last few years.
For a 48.8mm diameter watch, I have to say that it sits particularly well on your wrist. Or at least on my wrist. The use of titanium has a lot of influence on this I might add, as I can imagine that it would be one heavy guy when crafted out of gold (or platinum). As you can see, with a little effort I would be able to hide the (17.9mm) thick watch under my cuff. But if you have a HYT watch, why would you exactly?
The HYT H2 is packed with little details that make it a joy to admire. What about the sapphire minute ring under the (sapphire) crystal? Or the beautiful black bridges? These bridges are made out of titanium and treated with a black PVD coating. HYT uses an exclusive mechanical caliber that has a 192 hour (8-day) power reserve.
A price tag well over 100,000.- CHF seems justified. For those who have a smaller budget, the H1 is approximately half that amount and still a very cool timepiece. Go to the official HYT website and see the ‘demonstration’ of the watch here.
A big thanks to Pijnenburg, Bagijn and of course HYT for the invitation and nice evening.
Ever since he was a young child, Robert-Jan was drawn to watches, even though it were digital Casio and quartz Swatch models at the time. In the mid-1990s, his interest increased when he started to read about mechanical watches in... read more