Introducing the URWERK UR-105 TTH “Tantalum Hull”By Revolution
Introduced first in 2017, to mark URWERK’s 20th anniversary, Felix Baumgartner and Martin Frei have just announced the end of series version of the UR-105CT, with UR-105 TTH “Tantalum Hull”. Why so? Simply put, for a watchmaking endeavor such as URWERK’s, which to this day produces a nominal 150 watches per year, some creations from within the fold must be brought to a conclusion, in order to make room for the next greater timepiece to forward the brand’s watchmaking story.
In its final form, the UR-105 CT has been given a tantalum shroud with less aggressive ribbing down its front, which somehow makes the watch more rounded than the original. Part of the reason why the UR-105 TTH has been given this lesser ribbed design could very simply be because of challenges involved in milling tantalum.
Says Martin, “Tantalum is a very special metal. Its name comes from Tantalus, one of Greek mythology’s bad boys. Tantalum is precious, rare, and extremely painful to machine and finish. We made an UR-110 out of tantalum a few years ago – a first that almost was the last. The team made me promise never to use it again because tantalum ‘eats’ our CNC machines’ bits. It destroys them, reducing their life by a factor of three. But I love its blue-gray luster. Pure magic!”
Seeing it in the pictures though, it has to be said that it’s almost criminal that more URWERK watches aren’t rendered in tantalum. But conceding to the difficulty, the UR-105 TTH will be produced in a limited run of just 12 pieces.
“Tantalum is a precious metal weighing approximately the same as platinum. It has a solid presence on the wrist,” adds Felix. “To machine it is a nightmare, but it has incomparable beauty. Tantalum is one of the most URWERK-ian metals I know of. It is dark, almost anthracite colored, a shade which is an integral part of URWERK’s aesthetic signature”
Movement: Caliber UR 5.03, automatic winding regulated by twin turbines; frequency 28,800 vph – 4Hz; power reserve 48 hours; satellite hour Geneva crosses in beryllium bronze; skeletonized carrousel in aluminum; skeletonized nickel-phosphorus LIGA digital seconds; carrousel and triple mainplate in ARCAP; finishing perlage, bead blasting, frosting; screw heads with polished bevels; hours and minute indexes hand-painted with Super-LumiNova©; indications: satellite hours; minutes, digital seconds; power reserve
Case: UR-105 CT “soap bar” case in titanium and tantalum; width: 39.5mm; length: 53mm; height: 17.8mm; sapphire crystal; water resistant to 30m
Strap: Vulcarbon© rubber reference “Kiska” with black DLC buckle
Price: CHF 77,000 (excluding tax)