Cyrus Make the Tourbillon Work for Them
We’ve reached saturation with tourbillons by now. They’re everywhere. Everywhere. They pretty much shorthand for haute horology which means every watchmaker and their sister uses them. It takes a lot for a tourbillon watch to stand out – which is what makes Cyrus’ Kelpcys Vertical Tourbillon so special.
The key word here is ‘vertical’. If you’re up on your watch history you’ll know that tourbillons were originally built for pocket watches, which laid upright in your pocket. The mechanism, therefore, turned on a vertical axis, offsetting the effects of gravity on the balance. Hopefully. Then it was shoved into a wristwatch, which is horizontal.
I’m not saying that those kind of tourbillons are useless but it’s not how they were designed to work. The way to solve that issue? Turn it 90 degrees, which is precisely what Cyrus has done in their new watch.
Now they’re not the first to find a solution; double-axis and gyro-tourbillons are a thing. But it’s impressive nonetheless and there are scarce few that have made a vertical tourbillon quite this stunning. And they know it’s stunning, too.
In fact, they’ve given the tourbillon the stage pretty much to itself. Rather than keeping it at six o’clock as is standard, they’ve instead opted for two retrograde indicators either side, hours on the left, minutes on the right.
This leaves the entire centre of the dial free, allowing the wearer to see right into that vertical tourbillon jutting out of the middle. The only thing in the way is an elegant curved bridge across the middle, without which the complication could just come rolling out. There’s also a 100 hours power reserve indicator at 12 o’clock; well they had to put something there to balance out the logo at 6.
Balance, in fact, is a hallmark of the Kelpcys Vertical Tourbillon. As well as the dual retrograde indicators, there are a pair of crowns. The usual 3 o’clock crown is for time adjustment and winding as per usual. The left-hand crown though, at 9 is a pusher to jump the hour. It makes life easier when setting – especially for different time zones – but more importantly, it aesthetically balances the entire piece.
Of course, it’s not a small watch, but 44mm is compact for a timepiece of this type. There’s no rotor which might go some way to explaining how they fit two retrograde indicators and a tourbillon in there, but it still managed a decent 96-hour power reserve with all that going on.
It comes in three versions: rose gold, DLC and the bastard lovechild of the two. Personally, it’s the latter I prefer; the touches of gold offset the engraved dial nicely without being too flashy and, let’s be honest, heavy. In solid gold even a slim 44mm watch can get uncomfortably weighty; the Klepcys is not slim.
It’s easy to knock tourbillons as passé tinkering with the usefulness of a moon phase on mars, but that’s just because they take some effort to make work. Cyrus has managed to not only do that but create a beautifully unique watch around it. Come November’s Watchmaker’s Club event, I’ll be making a beeline straight for the Kelpcys. If you want to try it on, you’ll have to fight me for it.
Actually please don’t. I bruise easy.