After three years of research and development in the production facilities of HAUTLENCE under utmost secrecy, now the La Chaux de Fonds based luxury watch brand unveils its novelty timepiece: HL2. This new timepiece is a revolutionary creation in the world of watchmaking that breaks away from the mechanisms of the past without forgoing historic regulation methods.
HL2 Collection features futuristic construction and the way in which it delivers the time make it unique. Thanks to the integration work of the manufacture calibre and to deep reflection, the shape of the gear teeth has been optimised, higher-quality oscillators have been created and the energy consumption of the various complications has been regulated. Through effort and constant research, HAUTLENCE is today able to unveil the second stage of its vision of innovative time display.
This mechanical masterpiece displays the hours in an aperture, on a 12-link chain moving in a controlled, regulated manner every 60 minutes in 4 seconds with out shocks. In this timepiece HAUTLENCE has separated the energy necessary for chronometry from that necessary for animation, with the addition of a second dedicated barrel to the complication. This was to obtain an optimal chronometric result without disturbance from the energy required for the complication and animation of the display, in a system that compensates for the effects of gravity.
This is initiated by the return to zero of the retrograde minutes, with a connecting-rod, sensor and spiral system (like the HL model) which frees the energy of the barrel of the complication. The speed of this barrel is controlled by a speed regulator (at the centre of the retrograde minutes). As for the chain, it is driven every hour by the barrel of the complication at the passing of the hour. It acts on the chain via the speed regulator, which ensures the gentleness of the movement, and via a mechanism that moves it forward one step every hour. This advancement of the chain then turns, by 60 degrees, the main plate that supports the regulating organ and some of the chronometry wheels. The operation has no torque effect on the chronometry.
This new milestone in terms of time display places HAUTLENCE among the brands bringing a new dynamic to the watchmaker’s art by breaking new ground in terms of display, giving the profession a new, three-dimensional vision of time.
The regulating organ is a set of gears that change position (60 degrees) every hour (like the tourbillon, which does this continuously). This new milestone in terms of time display places HAUTLENCE among the brands bringing a new dynamic to the watchmaker’s art by breaking new ground in terms of display, giving the profession a new, three-dimensional vision of time. Spectacularly architectured around a retrograde minute, the jumping hour comprises a 12-link chain triggered by a connecting rod system identical to those found in HL collections.
An ingenious system, unique in the world of wristwatches, allows the whole ensemble to be shifted in a controlled manner thanks to a speed regulator that preserves the components from any unwanted shocks caused by the workings of the timepiece. It features a dedicated barrel, the sole purpose of which is to provide enough energy for the entire system.
And in order to create a cinematic spectacle, HAUTLENCE has ensured that the movement of the chain allowing the hour to be changed in the aperture is accompanied by the 60º rotation of the regulating organ. This rotary motion taking place every 60 minutes allows the effects of gravity on the regulating organ to be statistically compensated for should the watch remain immobile.
Module 1: “Jumping” regulating organ
The HL2 is a bold watch designed around an ingenious mechanism allowing the regulating organ to be rotated together with some of the gears, once an hour. Driven by the movement of the hour every 60 minutes, the regulation group comprising the balance, the balance spring of the lever and the lever wheel but also the second and third wheels will occupy a new position, different from the previous one by precisely 60º. Finally, this ensemble performs a rotation on an axis parallel to that of the wrist.
This original, sophisticated construction allows the regulating organ to change position every hour. Like on a classic tourbillon, this rotating movement allows the balance to occupy all positions successively. Through this process, an average rate of vertical positions is obtained, the impact of which is therefore a clear improvement in the timing of the instrument. Put simply, the regulating group corrects the errors of equilibrium of the balance-spring system, the result of which is a statistical cancellation of the negative effects of gravity on the precision of an immobile watch.
Module 2: Hour with Jumping Chain
With this new watchmaking creation, HAUTLENCE has chosen to emphasise the aesthetics by creating a mechanical display system that allows the time to be read differently. Exploiting innovative mechanical solutions borrowed from other industrial fields, the HL2 has risen to the challenge of reinventing watch complications. The entire design of this new-generation timepiece revolves around the exploitation of a sort of chain, each link of which is moved forward hour by hour through successive jumps, the current hour being presented in an aperture.
This entire fine mechanism is driven by a speed-reduction train that accompanies the rotation for 4 seconds in order to protect the hour chain and the regulating organ from any shock from blows or butting. Every 60 minutes, the rotation of this mechanical ensemble therefore allows the wearer of the watch to observe the changing of the numerals indicating the hours in the aperture for those few seconds that the mechanical sequence lasts.
Module 3: Speed regulator
In order to successfully master the rotation of the chain and the simultaneous rotation of the regulating organ, the energy stored in the barrels has been controlled by a set of ingenious mechanisms. The energy in the barrel dedicated to the complication is delivered to the mechanism once that of the retrograde minutes has returned to zero. Through the intervention of its connecting rod serving as a sensor and to the star wheel, the complication group initiates a rotation of a single turn thanks to a cam plus slide system.
In order to master and optimise the kinetic energy present, an inertia speed-regulator has been fitted in order to limit the speed of rotation of the ensemble for four seconds. As the mechanical sequences follow one another, it is therefore possible for the chain to move gently in order to display the next hour without any collisions that could be detrimental to the correct functioning of the watch.
Module 4: Automatic Winding
HAUTLENCE’s in house developed self-winding mechanical movement features a high-performance gear system with an optimised gear-tooth shape. Based on a shrewd collaboration begun with Philippe Ruedin, HAUTLENCE’s external engineering consultant for many years, the idea of sharing the development of an “open-source” calibre has allowed many independent brands to have at their disposal components from a common base, which may be personalised as desired. This mechanical base, called ASXP 0300 in watchmaking jargon, has been thoroughly reworked in the HAUTLENCE design offices in order to create a new kind of calibre.
The complication’s high-energy needs forced the team of designers to re-think the calibre, giving it a self-winding mechanism in order to supply the main barrel, which serves to maintain the energy of the balance, and the second barrel, which serves to drive the complication. As one can imagine, it is continuously reloaded thanks to the presence of a gear train connected to the finishing gear train. Furthermore, in order to prevent the watch from stopping unexpectedly, HAUTLENCE has added a power-reserve indicator to its new model in order to check the charge level, designed to function for 45 hours without movement of the rotor.
45-hour power reserve
Water resistance: 30m
Guarantee: 3 years