Micro roundup : Mercer Watch Co. and Vortic Watches

In this micro roundup, I’m going to introduce you to two interesting project currently being funded on Kickstarter: Mercer Watch Co. presenting a superb piece, with a nice blend of dressiness with sportiness and Vortic Watches that is proposing custom made wristwatches based on early 1900s American pocket watch movements.

Mercer Watch Co. “The Brigadier”

Mercer Watch Co.'s debut piece, "The Brigadier"

Mercer Watch Co.’s debut piece, “The Brigadier”

Mercer Watch Co. was started by Scott Vuocolo, in the historic central New Jersey. The brand got his name from Brigadier General Hugh Mercer, a soldier and a physician, a fallen hero of the American Revolution.

“The Brigadier”, the debut piece of Mercer Watch co., was recently launched as a Kickstarter campaign, looking to raise $35,000.

The 42 mm wide and 12 mm thick stainless steel watch has a rather modern allure, featuring thick lugs that brings out the contrast between the polished and brushed surfaces of the case.

The dial is covered by a domed sapphire crystal, the see trough back is also protected by sapphire crystal.

I am particularly found of the black dial, judging by the pictures, it has much better contrast than the white version. The blued sweeping second hand is really beautiful and works well with the rest, I’de say it is the cherry on top of the cake.

Inside “The Brigadier”, you’ll find the usual Miyota 9015 automatic caliber that I hope it will receive some attention from Mercer Watch Co., at least a small engraved logo would make it a lot more interesting and it would justify the see-trough back.

Pros: I really the design and the choice of good materials. It has all the necessary ingredients of a great watch.

Cons: I’m a bit worried about the relatively high target of this debut project; I hope it will reach it, as “The Brigadier” is a really handsome piece.

For more information about Mercer Watch Co. and “The Brigadier” head over to Kickstarter.

Vortic Watches – Made in USA

Vortic Watches brings back to life an old Waltham piece.

Vortic Watches brings back to life an old Waltham piece.

When it comes to micro brands, I often hear the critics complaining about the watches being actually made in Asia. Well, with Vortic Watches, their flak doesn’t hold any water as everything is made in America.

Just as in the time when soldiers of WWI started wearing their pocket watches on their wrist, Vortic is using pocket watch movements made by legendary American watchmaking companies in the early 1900s. They use Elgin, Waltham and Hamilton movements that were auctioned off in large batches as their original case was scraped for their gold and silver value.

Vortic hired professional watchmakers to tune up these old movements and give them a second life in a patent pending 3d-printed case. It’s quite an interesting blend of technologies, almost a time travel, using more than 100 year-old movements in cutting-edge metal 3d-printed cases, while the old dial is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass.

Each piece is custom made, Vortic offering a plethora of choices to make you happy. For example, you can even chose — just a few are still left — to have the watch in time for Christmas.

Pros & Cons: A very cool way of blending together yesterday’s craft with today’s technology. I’m putting this as both a plus and a minus, as this is really a question of taste and mind-frame.

Check out this project on Kickstarter:

As a graphic designer, I'm fascinated by the crossroads between technology and aesthetics. Horology is one of these crafts, where art and engineering come together to produce mechanical wonders that grace the eye. WatchPaper was born from the desire to create an online tool where I can share my passion for watches.