What it takes to keep your watch running
ASK ANY MAN with an automatic watch about the way he powers it up and you’re bound to see some odd dance movements by way of reply. There’s the man who puts his watch through three sharp shakes to get the rotor running, and the man who prefers strapping it on and then swinging his hands wildly. Whatever it is, it becomes a funny quirk and one that keeps our watches ever closer to our hearts.
The actual power reserve of any man’s timepiece is a personal matter though. Once you’ve handled your own watch for long enough, you can usually gauge the amount of power remaining in the reserve. Over the years, the figure usually drops but that’s to be expected with wear and tear ‒ nothing a little servicing can’t fix.
Straight from the box, the average power reserve of most mechanical timepieces tends to fall at around 40 hours. It’s a decent amount of time, given the average man usually takes his watch off at the end of the day and isn’t too fussed about winding it the next day or having it a little off.
So why then do brands painstakingly invest more money into research and development for longer power reserves in their timepieces?
GOING THE GUINNESS WAY
For the mad scientists at Hublot, the power reserve race has long been won. In 2013, the brand introduced the MP05 La Ferrari, a timepiece that broke the record for the largest power reserve on a wristwatch with 50 days. Yes, 50 days, not 50 hours. The La Ferrari showed off Hublot’s watchmaking finesse and proved that the brand wasn’t only ingenious with the use of materials but could battle with the best in terms of watchmaking.
While most brands create a longer power reserve by introducing larger barrels, Hublot just inserted more barrels; 11 to be exact. With such a generous number, winding time became an obvious obstacle. The brand overcame it by providing a power tool that helps to wind the watch.
KEY TO THE PAST