As Max Büsser and the MB&F team acknowledge with this latest launch – “the situation is unusual to say the least. Is it right to launch a new timepiece in this context?”
For small brands, for small firms (in the luxury sector or otherwise), the need to keep the business going and to keep people employed (not to mention the supply chains) is a particularly acute one, and especially so in highly specialised fields and industries. In this year, with watch fairs cancelled but watches still having been manufactured and their release planned well ahead of what has unfolded, the choice is a difficult one.
With the world simultaneously dealing with an identical problem, in different ways and at different stages, the answer to this question is, of course, individual, and subject to animated discussion.
The influence of MB&F and Max Büsser on the watch industry and in the broader ‘watch world’ has been far beyond that just of ‘a brand’, so not delaying the launch of their latest Horological Machine is at a minimum an important signifier.
So, to the watch. This new HM No.10 is about curves, and although it may look ‘small’ in the photos, it measures 54mm x 45mm x 24mm, with a water resistance of 50m.
The unusual naming of this Horological Machine, after a breed of which I am personally fond is, to put it mildly, esoteric. It harks back to a Narita Airport journey by Max Büsser five years ago, where the combination of travel weariness and the lights of Tokyo manifested themselves, almost Murakami-like (but dogs rather than sheep or cats) into a watch with a canine influence. But then again there’s been a Frog (not to mention the aquatic creates also in the MB&F family), so why not a dog?
The HM10 Bulldog has a pair of thin light (0.5g) aluminum rotating domed ‘eyes’ that display the time (with Super-LumiNova), with hours on the left dome and minutes on the right. There is also a vertical power reserve indicator below the middle of the case in the form of jaws that open when fully wound, and gradually close as the power reserve reduces. The elongated articulated lugs are the four ‘legs’, attached to a calf strap. The Bulldog’s ‘brain’ is the new manually wound movement that incorporates features a Legacy Machine-style large (14mm) suspended balance wheel, beats at 18,00 VPH, and has a power reserve of 45 hours.
The moving power reserve system is inspired by the LM1 Xia Hang Performance Art piece, and of course the aluminum domes from the aforementioned HM3 Frog.
There are two crowns – the one at 1 o’clock is to set the watch and the one at 11 o’clock, to wind it.
Apart from the ‘Bulldog’ name, there is also an engraving on the case back – “Forget the dog, beware of the owner.” As Bulldogs are quite an amiable breed, this is perhaps a rather appropriate warning.
A final ‘topical’ note – in addition to some very happy animals who have found themselves getting more attention than they usually get, I’ve been hearing about some rather tired dogs that have suddenly found themselves being taken on more/ longer walks than they are used to, by quarantined humans…
The launch editions of the HM10 Bulldog are in Grade 5 titanium or 18k 5N+ red gold and titanium. The Ti is CHF 106,000 (including taxes) and the RT, CHF 121,000 (including taxes).
[Photo credit : MB&F]