Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Full Sapphire: A FEAT OF PURE SAPPHIRE
It is true that sometimes less is more – perhaps a lot more. With the Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Full Sapphire, Hublot has taken its Art of Fusion to its ultimate conclusion. A new integral bracelet and case custom-made from sapphire: this feat affirms yet again the technical proficiency and the exceptional expertise that Hublot has acquired in the working of sapphire.
For some, this will seem a natural development. For others, it will be a total disconnect. The final result is a little of each. The Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Full Sapphire is the fruit of a long tradition. It is rooted in 2016, and the Big Bang Unico Sapphire, the first sapphire watch.
With this piece, Hublot translated the expertise it had developed in machining very hard materials to create an exceptional series of sapphire watches. Today, Hublot is pushing these boundaries even further: the first Big Bang with an integrated case and bracelet, both of which are made from sapphire. A natural (r)evolution and a highly technical feat in equal measure.
“For such an exceptional creation, we opted for the new Automatic Tourbillon calibre with its sapphire bridges, the transparency of which creates a stunning spectacle. The act of creating an integrated case and bracelet from sapphire was, however, deemed impossible. But we were the first brand to gain perfect mastery of sapphire, industrialising it and making it reproducible in series production. It took us five years to bring our first sapphire cases to life – and almost as long for the bracelet. Producing both from sapphire and integrating them together is the pinnacle of the in-depth work undertaken by all of Hublot's teams. We are proud to be the ones writing the first lines in this new chapter in the history of materials.”
Watchmakers are sometimes the only ones to know certain details of their watches. With a case and bracelet made entirely from sapphire, all secrets are revealed: the movement and casing fuse, and every aspect is visible.
The case of this new Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Full Sapphire has been reconstructed in its entirety to house the Automatic Tourbillon movement. The goal: to remove almost all of the visible screws, overhaul the general geometry of the case to integrate it with the sapphire bracelet, develop a new case profile to house the sapphire bracelet, and rework the bridges and main plates to give them the illusion of being suspended in space. Hublot also developed inserts and attachments which were reduced to their simplest expression, to allow light through every component. The case is thus composed of no fewer than 37 components, five of which are made solely from sapphire.
The bracelet was also a complex challenge: it alone comprises 165 components, 22 of which are made from sapphire. Each component had its own industrial process. A third of these were specially designed to provide unique harmony with the transparency of the case, and to offer fluidity and flexibility. Of particular note are the titanium inserts Hublot developed, ultra-reduced to ensure they do not protrude either side of each bracelet link – a first for the manufacture, and probably for watchmaking.
In terms of the movement, the HUB6035 automatic manufacture calibre, entirely designed and manufactured in-house, is the beating heart of the piece. It demonstrates a perfect balance between the micro-rotor at 12 o'clock and the tourbillon at 6 o'clock, and also with its three transparent sapphire bridges, exclusive to this new Big Bang. The components appear to be literally suspended in space. Each gear train is not only penetrated by light coming in from the dial side and passing through the skeleton movement on the other side: now, and for the first time, light enters the heart of the Big Bang Integral Tourbillon Full Sapphire from all directions. It is diffused, refracted, reflected, twisted and twirled – a fragment of light encapsulated on the wrist.