Pre Basel 2014: Introducing the Nemo SUB I by Thomas Prescher
Thomas Prescher’s Nemo journey enters a third year and a third timepiece. After having started with the Nemo Sailor in 2012, Prescher treated us with his brilliant triple axis tourbillon in the Nemo Captain. This year’s novelty features a tourbillon with just two axis, however with a new movement in an unparalleled new case. Steampunk at its best: the Nemo SUB I by Thomas Prescher.
For now we can only show you some computer renderings, however what we can already see very well, is that this is going to be one very extraordinary timepiece. It immediately reminds us why a certain segment of what the watch industry produces, should be called Artisan Watchmaking. What Thomas Prescher shows here is exactly that. If this were a recipe, it would read: add one part of horology and one part of art, and gently mix the two.
The Nemo SUB I is a steampunk submariner inspired mechanical watch, with an automatic‐winding bi‐axial tourbillon. All this comes in a triple‐piece case that is produced from 18K red gold, palladium and from precision machined synthetic sapphire crystal. The case is divided into three main pieces that includes a larger central tube, as well as two smaller peripheral tubes on each side. Inside these peripheral side tubes are rollers that indicate the hours and minutes, which are connected to the cylindrical mechanical movement that is placed inside the larger main tube.
This is perhaps the ultimate exhibition case and movement, with the double-axis tourbillon facing the wearer. The movement is build up from eight different segments:
- Section one is the tourbillon, visible through the domed sapphire facing the wearer
- Section two is a reduction gear
- Section three is the time indication gear
- Section four is the main spring barrel
- Section five is the automatic gear
- Section six is the oscillation weight
- Section seven is the propeller gear
- Section eight is gyroscopic oscillating weight for the propeller system, which is visible through the domed sapphire on the opposite side of the tourbillon
The oscillating weight rotates in either direction, and powers the single main spring barrel with a power reserve of approx. 40 hours.
The hour and minute indication system operates with two spiral turning bars, with engraved numbers. After three full turns, all hours (or minutes) have been shown, and a hidden mechanic uncouples and the bar jumps back in its starting position. This is geared through a double 90° inclined gear, which is hidden in the connection in the frame from the central tube to time indication tubes. Also the propellers are powered in a similar way, by means of a hidden connection in the frame from central tube to the side tubes.
The two portholes on top of the Nemo SUB I case, are actually two porthole-style crowns that are used to either set the time or wind the mechanical movement.
The Nemo SUB I will be part of a limited edition of only five pieces, all of them hand-made by Thomas Prescher himself. The first piece will be produced in 2014, while the remaining four pieces will be ready for delivery from 2015.