Announced today and five years after unveiling the X-TREM-1 timepiece, high-end atelier Christoph Claret joins forces with American luxury brand StingHD in launching a mechanical “memento mori”, issued in an 8-piece limited edition. The watch features an inclined flying tourbillon with a retrograde hours and minutes display system based on magnetic fields. Endowed with a black PVD-treated titanium case, a skull on the tourbillon carriage, and a stingray leather or personalized strap, the new X-TREM-1 x StingHD sees Christophe Claret move to the dark side.
The new X-TREM-1 has been produced in collaboration with StingHD, specializing in the production of accessories and high-end jewelry in leather and other materials. New York based StingHD create luxury and finely tailored workmanship with s 50-year pedigree.
First released in 2012, the X-TREM-1 introduced a magnetic field – the arch enemy of horological mechanisms – into the heart of a watch. Two small steel spheres, hollowed to make them lighter and encased within two sapphire tubes placed to the right and left of the caseband, are controlled by precision magnetic fields generated by two miniature magnets moved by cables. The cables are highly flexible, made from hundreds of Dyneema nanofibers all contained within an ultra-high-strength polyethylene gel, capable of withstanding tensile forces of up to a kilo. The entire thread is thinner than a human hair (4 hundredths of a mm in diameter).
The resistance of the thread has been tested in the Manufacture Claret on an accelerated-wear simulator corresponding to six years of operation. The spheres have no mechanical connection with the movement, with each one floating inside the two tubes and creating outstanding horological magic. This technology was developed with the School of Business and Engineering Vaud (HEIG-VD) in Yverdon-les-Bains, and a team headed by Professor Besson.
Ultra-light titanium was used for the three-dimensional curvex mainplate and the bridges. The flying tourbillon is fitted with double ceramic bearings to enhance its shock-resistance. It is inclined at a 30-degree angle in order to make it even more clearly visible to the wearer. The hand-wound watch draws its energy from two barrels enabling the use of a sophisticated display without disturbing the rate of the tourbillon, and thus the accuracy of the watch. The first barrel is reserved for the tourbillon, the second for the hours and minutes.
The watch has a large inclined tourbillon placed at 6 o’clock adorned with a black chrome-plated aluminum skull designed by StingHD. To create the ruby-eyed skull within the tourbillon required the creation of a new tourbillon cage. The pure sapphire tubes previously framing the case of the X-TREM-1 and housing the steel hours and minutes spheres have been replaced by black PVD-treated stainless steel ring-bound tubes, creating a technical look echoed by red lacquered numerals.
The sapphire crystal has a special treatment that reveals a toothy skull when breathed upon. The model comes with two straps designed by StingHD: one in black stingray leather, and the other which can be personalized by its owner. In addition, the presentation box includes a matching, handcrafted bracelet adorned with a black diamond encrusted skull with ruby eyes. Only eight owners of the X-TREM-1 – StingHD will ever get to wear it.