Heartbeat: Horological Machine No. 6 By MB&F
by Ian Skellern
I am a big fan of MB&F’s crazy Horological Machines and think that they make world of watchmaking much richer.
While I admire those who wear the wildest Machines (the watches don’t seem to look at all as crazy on the wrist as off), I couldn’t imagine one on my own small, conservative wrist.
Well, I couldn’t imagine one on my own small conservative wrist until now.
Until Horological Machine No. 6, aka HM6. And here’s why:
1. Whereas previous Horological Machines have been very much high-tech, miniaturized machines and spaceships, the curved case and eye-like domes make HM6 feel organic and corporeal. . . a nice, friendly and (despite the metal case) soft animal. HM6 begs to be touched. I wouldn’t be at all surprised that if you stroked HM6 gently, it would purr (okay, that’s an exaggeration; if it did purr I’d fall off my seat!).
2. HM6 is incredibly comfortable. The titanium case makes it relatively light, but mainly it’s the fact that those three-dimensional domes in each corner wrap snugly around the wrist.
3. It’s easy to read the time on HM6 from nearly any angle. The generous domes allow for large, highly-legible numerals.
4. There is always visual interest when wearing HM6 because those twin turbines (driven from the winding rotor) are continually spinning.
5. HM6 has a party trick: there is a crown-operated (the left crown), retractable shield that slides over the central flying tourbillon. It has a technical purpose, too, in minimizing ultra-violet rays, which degrade the escapement’s lubricating oil. But, really, it just looks like a cool, winking eye.
In a nutshell, Horological Machine No. 6 is my favorite Horological Machine to date . . . and it is one insane machine I’d be very happy to wear.
Case: 49.5 x 52.3 x 20.4 mm, titanium, 10 sapphire crystals
Movement: automatic with flying tourbillon
Functions: hours and minutes on separate domes, retractable regulator shield, twin turbines (no further function than to look cool)
Price: $230,000 (without applicable taxes)