Freak X Desert Magma Piece Unique
Ulysse Nardin SPECIALLY FOR THE EVENT
A unique, attractive and highly unconventional titanium and carbon wristwatch from the famous Swiss watch brand Ulysse Nardin, founded in 1846. Made in 2022. Blackened titanium and layered carbon case, diameter 43 mm, 13.38 mm thick, sapphire caseback. Black sunburst dial with beige luminous indexes and hands. UN-230 caliber, self-winding, balance wheel, hairspring, escape wheel and anchor made of silicon, power reserve up to 72 hours. Functions – time display in hours and minutes, 1-hour orbital tourbillon. Black calfskin strap with beige stiches, Ulysse Nardin blackened titanium and black ceramic triple folding clasp. Unique piece.
The project of a watch with a central carousel was initiated in 1997–1998 by the owner of Ulysse Nardin, Rolf W. Schnyder. He decided to realize the idea of Carole Forestier, an up-and-coming inventor who had won the watchmakers competition in 1997 on the occasion of the 250th anniversary of A.-L. Breguet. According to Schnyder, the promised power reserve proved too low, so he handed the project over to Ludwig Oechslin, watchmaker, inventor, researcher and creative mind behind the brand. Oechslin completely reworked the original development of the Carole Forestier, proposing an unusual concept with rotating bridges and a gear train that served to indicate the minutes. He also equipped the caliber with a novel double impulse escapement, technically a further development of the L.-A. Breguet échappement naturel of 1789. Oechslin jokingly called the watch he invented Freak. The first-generation Freak version Ref. 016-88 in rose gold was launched by the brand in 2001 and caused a sensation.
The present Freak X Desert Magma is one of the few unique pieces in the Freak X collection and therefore of obvious collector interest. The distinctive feature of this watch’s design is a unique combination of blackened titanium and layered black and beige carbon sidewalls.
Since then, Ulysse Nardin has offered many versions of the Freak with different designs and movements. In 2019, the Freak X was introduced, the first model in the Freak collection based on the self-winding caliber UN -230 with traditional winding crown, used for the first time in the Freak collection and equipped with an orbital tourbillon with a new technical design, but still playing the role of a minute hand. Significant changes to the movement, the introduction of a proven automatic winding system with a full size central rotor and the adaptation of the winding crown control have made the watch much more practical than the Freaks of previous generations, with the ability to be worn as a daily watch and with a more aggressive price positioning.
Thus, since the launch of the collection in 2001, this model immediately became a bestseller for Freak and at the moment it’s estimated that it accounts for at least 60% of all Freak releases since 2001. In addition, Freak X is released in the largest number of references. Four years after the launch of Freak X, there are Freak X Marquetry with silicon marquetry dial (2019), Freak X ‘Qatar Watch Club’ Edition in black titanium (2020), Freak X Bucherer Blue Edition (2020) in black titanium and carbon, Freak X Ice (2020) in titanium with white dial, Freak X Magma (2020) in blackened titanium and carbon, Freak X Razzle Dazzle (2021) in blackened titanium, Freak X Aventurine (2022) in rose gold and blackened titanium appeared.
The present Freak X Desert Magma Ref. 2303-270LE-2A-BEIGE/0A is one of the few unique pieces in the Freak X collection and therefore of obvious collector interest. The distinctive feature of this watch’s design is a unique combination of blackened titanium and layered black and beige carbon sidewalls. This color combination is repeated on the dial, whose black background contrasts with the markers and hands, which are marked by an unusual beige phosphor.
The Ulysse Nardin Freak X Desert Magma Piece Unique Ref. 2303-270LE-2A-BEIGE/0A would appear to be an attractive purchase for collectors and connoisseurs of fine watchmaking due to its impressive and unusual design. It definitely belongs to the cornerstones and modern vanguards of creative watchmaking. Freak watches are considered a worthwhile area of research and collecting, especially the early references as well as the watches from the young Freak X collection, which already has several releases attractive to collectors, including the present lot, which was produced as a piece unique. It represents an extremely interesting page in the chronology of this collection, as it's a very nice collectible. The present watch has a strong and distinctive character and could attract a connoisseur of the art of watchmaking as an exceptional daily wearer.
|Case||Desert magama case, carbon fiber & titanuim paired, curved sapphire crystal, transparent caseback & a signed crown at 3 o'clock|
|Strap||Black calf leather strap with a titanium folding buckle, signed "Ulysse Nardin"|
|Dial||Black & brushed, open worked dial, with pierced hands and a "true hour Tourbillon"|
|Movement||Ruthenium plated & brushed automatic movement with a true hour silicon balance wheel tourbillon complication on the face side|
|Movement:||Very good, all functions working properly|
|Amplitude (Dial on top/Lift angle 52):||Approx 320°|
|Accuracy (Dial on top):||Approx +5 sec/day|
The company was founded in 1846 by the Swiss watchmaker Ulysse Nardin. From the very beginning, the master and his company had great success with the production of technical timepieces, especially marine and pocket chronometers. This activity was extremely successful. From 1861, when Ulysse Nardin began supplying its marine chronometers to the Geneva and Neuchâtel observatories for chronometer competitions, until 1975, when the Neuchâtel observatory decided to stop testing marine chronometers, Ulysse Nardin received 4,324 marine chronometer certificates out of 4,504 issued by the observatory during this period. In fact, Ulysse Nardin had a monopoly on classic large format hi-end marine chronometers.