Indie brands Urwerk and De Bethune have unveiled the one-off timepiece that they developed together to present at the Only Watch 2019 Auction. The unique watch is called the Moon Satellite and has instantly recognizable design codes of both these avant-garde watch companies.
Held under the patronage of Prince Albert II of Monaco, the Only Watch Charity is organized by the Monegasque Association and is the world’s foremost charity auction entirely devoted to research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy. Since 2005, more than €25 million have been raised to finance fundamental and applied research in this field.
Signature De Bethune flourishes like skeletonized floating lugs, a mirror-polished titanium case, and the unique spherical moon phase indication are all here as are the unmistakably Urwerk details like the satellite time indication and the characteristic hood and crown at the 12 o’ clock position.
The watch has a polished grade 5 titanium that is 43 mm wide and 13.3 mm thick. It features De Bethune’s patented floating lugs and a grade 5 titanium caseback with a sapphire window. The case is fitted with an extremely scratch resistant sapphire crystal (1800 on the Vickers scale) with double anti-reflective coating. The brand’s spherical moon phase indication that sits on the dial is accurate to a degree of one lunar day every 122 years.
The watch is powered by a one-off movement, the Caliber DBUR2105, which uses De Bethune’s hand-cranked mechanical movement DB2105 as the base. Remember Urwerk uses Zenith’s Elite movement as the base on which it builds its unique satellite time indication. The three base plates that make up the satellite system are made from an alloy called ARCAP; a material that Urwerk has incorporated into its timepieces for years.
Since Caliber DB2105 acts as the base, the caseback could trick you into believing this is a De Bethune watch. The one-off movement comprises 336 parts and has a power reserve of 4 days (96 hours) thanks to a self-regulating twin barrel. The movement has a titanium balance wheel with white gold inserts and a silicon escape wheel, again all De Bethune signatures. Also visible through the caseback is De Bethune’s patented Triple pare-chute shock-absorbing system. The watch is fitted with alligator leather strap with alligator leather lining held together by a grade 5 titanium buckle. The watch has a pre-sale estimate of $120,000-150,000.