There is an expression that time and tide wait for no man. Two of the most powerful forces on earth: the passing of time and the movement of liquid are factors that could never be controlled nor harnessed; until now, thanks to a revolutionary new way of keeping time.
HYT Skull Bad Boy
Makers of time capture HYT Hydromechanical Horologist (in association with Audemars Piguet Renaud, and Giulio Papi) have re-invented the reverie of hybridisation by combining mechanics and fluid hydraulics within a timepiece. Masters of non-conformism, these Avant-Garde Alchemists referenced the time-honoured traditions of watchmaking and turned them around to face a new era in time prediction.
Having achieved worldwide success and critical acclaim in 2015, HYT´s limited edition timepieces allowed them to quickly achieve somewhat of a cult international status. This year looks to be no different. As well as smashing conformity and tradition, HYT look to break their own records of success as they will shortly open their first boutique in Kuala Lumpur as well as present their latest limited edition timepieces, which will be available at over 80 points of sale.
HYT tell us that ´there is more to the skull than meets the eye´ and their latest offering, the new Skull Bad Boy is indeed no ordinary offering. Not only does it function in black retrograde fluidic time (hours, minutes and seconds), but it also plays host to a harmonious fusion of style, technology and quality. A micro-blasted black 51mm DLC titanium case encapsulates a 50m water-resistant sapphire crystal anti-reflective coating, with the hallmark of this bad boy being the (Samurai sword utilised) Damascus steel skull embellishment. Its feature dial comprises two half-moons decorated with the classical ´Clous de Paris´ stud pattern, which is indexed in a Gothic font and a co-ordinating Velcro strap in slate grey to perfectly complement the DNA of the Skull Bad Boy’s hard rock look.
The genius of HYT´s 2016 mechanical offering lies in the interior. Two pliable chambers linked by capillaries house the contrasting liquids of black and transparent which are kept apart by the natural force of molecular repulsion. The result of this physical phenomenon allows the time (hours) to be indicated by a coloured liquid which is released from the integral reservoir and compressed into place by none other than a minuscule alloy piston which is located at the bottom area of the timepiece.
The philosophy is that the main coloured liquid passes through the capillary, pushing the transparent component back into its own reservoir before returning to its original position at six o’clock in what is referred to as a ‘retrograde manner’. If all this sounds rather complex, then chances are it possibly is.
“There were other solutions which would have made the piece visible at night, but if we wanted to play with the darkness inherent to the Skull Bad Boy, then we had to go all the way. The night is part of the world of shadows and darkness, so this is perfectly in tune with the spirit of the skull” – Vincent Perriard (CEO of HYT).
The primary location of the two reservoirs (at the 06:00 position) is the powerhouse of the energy transfer system. Fundamentally, these are composed of two bellows made of a highly resistant yet flexible alloy, both of which are controlled by a piston-driven movement.
The first reservoir compresses, causing the second to expand and vice-versa, which results in the fluid movement of liquid through the capillary, and as the hours go by, the coloured liquid progresses forward. The meniscal curve that retains the fluid within the watch still pays tribute to the traditional form of the ‘half-moon’ which scientifically marks the separation point with its other composite in the tube.
It is this specific detail which indicates the time, when finally at 18:00, the coloured liquid returns to its original position, which sees the process going back to start over again from another perspective.
If you want to be a part of the next generation of timepieces, then you can check out the watch in more detail by visiting the HYT website.
I partnered with the brand to write this article but every word is mine.