Every year we witness the birth of new independent watchmaking brands. Some of them go almost unnoticed, but some of them conquer our attention. This is the case of Vault watches. They have a great idea and the help of another horological master to start something magical. This year in November, the Vault V1 will be the release Salon QP. Here is the introduction to this new watch.
Who is Vault Watches?
We asked Mark Schwarz, the founder and CEO of Vault, how it all started. The straight answer was: “Nothing, but a dream!” In 2013, understanding that he wants something new and challenging in his life, Mark Schwarz asked his good friend Philippe Schmid to join him in the creation of a unique timepiece. In 2014, they discussed the idea with the horological master and independent creator Andreas Strehler.
To create the V1 needed three years of development. Besides Mark as CEO and Philippe as technical manager, and Andreas as the movement specialist, the team was fortified with talented designer Laurent Auberson as design manager. The boys also enlisted the help of Gianfranco Ritschel as watchmaking consultant and instructor. Andreas’s company, Uhrteil AG, responsible for building the new watch. The result is the Vault V1 – a timepiece that shares similarities with a bank safe.
The Vault V1 watches
The V1 is a rectangular watch with 39mm width, 46.7mm length and 15mm thickness. The case is available in steel, titanium, 18K rose gold, 18k white gold and platinum. The solid case back comes in the same selection of materials as the case body.
The case has curved sides with vertically brushed finishes, while most of the case features a warm satin finish. The complex case is a lovely design and covered with a matching sapphire crystal with anti-reflective coating.
But the most interesting visual aspect is the dial. The only conventional feature is the minutes’ hand.
The hours are shown by a rotating sapphire crystal disk, which is partially darkened. As it traverses the dial, it reveals the hour as it rotates over the numbers showing the hours. The numbers are themselves mounted on discs which rotate around the dial, as well as a system to keep the numerals upright at all times.
A complex system of gears is used to achieve this, and this is visible in the center of the dial, reminiscent of the wheels of a complicated safe mechanism. The idea of the bank safe comes from the individual perception of the passing time. The time is precious, uncontrollable and the V1 is trying to catch it for you and deliver it in a personal way.
The mechanical automatic movement used is manufactured exclusively for Vault by Andreas Strehler’s company Uhrteil AG. The calibre V01 displays hours and minutes in a way that permits a good visibility to the movement itself. The view is beautiful and interesting. Using a 3Hz balance wheel, the V01 offers almost 50 hours of power reserve. An interesting mechanical feature is the way the time is set by rotating the complete movement.
The Vault V1 will be launched in November at Salon QP in London. The release price will be CHF60,000 for the V1 Rose Gold, limited to 66 pieces. The V1 Titanium and V1 Steel will be limited to 99 pieces each version and will have a price tag of CHF50,000.
More information can be found on the Vault Watches Website. We will bring you soon more information about the movement and the Vault V1 launch.