Sapphire meets Hublot with Epic results
Once again, Hublot have added another first to their innovation and expertise with materials to their history of watchmaking. By transforming the ‘savoir-faire,’ Hublot has developed a way of manufacturing very hard and unique materials, such as Magic Gold, the world’s only scratch-resistant gold. Now Hublot has now created the Big Bang Unico Sapphire model with a case cut straight from sapphire, without losing sapphire’s unique and rare character which will be released in a limited run and not your normal 5-10 pieces Hublot are releasing 500 of these.
Ricardo Guadalupe, CEO of Hublot is quoted as saying
“Through the Art of Fusion, Hublot reveals all. A transparent case that reveals the soul of the watch — the Unico movement – and an absolute transparency extending to the strap, which has become invisible. Beyond the symbolism and the play on words, the Big Bang is laying itself bare. It has nothing to hide and everything to show.”
First and foremost the case is sapphire which as a material is almost as hard and scratch resistance as diamonds (9 on Mohs scale as opposed to 10 for diamonds) I’m sure some of you reading are already shouting “it looks plastic” and yes from a distance some may mistake it for inexpensive plastic but in truth this is very hard sapphire crystal which is extremely difficult to machine and defiantly not for the faint hearted. The three-part case (case middle, bezel and back) apart from being sapphire and featuring some unique transparent elements has its DNA heavily set in the Big Bang UNICO collection which means a case size of 45mm. Apart from the movement, only a few pieces that form the spine of the watch are not made of sapphire but instead made of titanium: the screws, the crown which is over moulded with silicon to add time setting ease and the deployment clasp are all made from titanium.
Dial & Movement
If you like skeletonized movements and dials you will love this as the in-house made Hublot calibre HUB 1242 Unico movements has been skeletonized beautifully and lets the wearer peer into the beating heart, exquisitely revealing its gears and wonderful finish. All the hands are transparent apart from the small parts that are coated with Superluminova to aid and preserve legibility but still in keeping with the transparency theme which does take some getting used to reading the time at a glance. The skeleton dial which is made from transparent resin gives the feeling that you are looking at an x-ray of the Hublot movement and not actually peering into what seems like a floating movement.
Hublot carry on the transparent theme with its strap made of rubber but highly translucent letting the wearer see their skin through it while wearing, if this isn’t for you then you are in luck as Hublot have added their tool-less quick release system to the strap which means you can easily fit whatever strap you wise BUT it has to be bought from Hublot as no after-market straps will fit the strap connection system.
Price is a relevant bargain for an all sapphire case coming in at just under $60,000 when it’s released.
Reference 411.JX.4802.RT – Limited to 500 pieces
Diameter 45mm made from polished sapphire crystal
Polished sapphire crystal
6 H-shaped Titanium screws, countersunk, polished & locked
Sapphire with interior/exterior anti-reflective coating and Hublot logo
Polished transparent composite resin
Transparent silicone and satin-finished Titanium
Polished sapphire crystal
5 ATM, i.e. approx. 50 metres
Polished transparent composite resin skeleton dial
Appliques & Hands White Luminescent
HUB 1242 UNICO movement with black PVD treatment, developed and manufactured in-house by Hublot Automatic flyback chronograph with column wheel and double clutch visible on the dial side. Power reserve – approximately 72 hours.
Window at 3 o’clock
Transparent structured lined strap
Titanium deployant buckle
Price $57,900 US