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Baselworld 2018: Futuristic Novelties from Rebellion Timepieces

DESIGN

Baselworld 2018: Futuristic Novelties from Rebellion Timepieces

Wristwatches that defy traditional time-telling language and function

by David Graver
on 23 March 2018

If their name lacks recognition, it can be blamed on their youth (a spritely 11 years young in a landscape of centuries-old Swiss brands) or their limited production (just 300 watches per style), but Rebellion Timepieces is not a small brand. In fact, it's a division of Lemo, a larger corporation that has manufactured a variety of proprietary push-pull connectors since 1946 (as well as robotics). They also produced an award-winning endurance champion race car that's staffed by world-class talent. And it's important to know all of this for one reason: when you look at their collections, as we did at Baselworld, it's evident that many of the ideas infusing each wristwatch came from outside traditional horology. Inspecting their highest-end releases reveals

Whether or not most consumers are aware, watchmaking is highly competitive regarding technical innovations. Of Rebellion's marquee pieces, the T2M actually sets a world record. This mechanical watch carries a 1400-hour power reserve, meaning it continues without winding for the equivalent of two months. This is basically unheard of. Production of the watch is limited to 10, all of which can be customized within and atop the angular, oversized titanium case (machined from one block). The sapphire crystal reveals a world of cylinders and components in a riveting, patented energy distribution movement.

The Re-Volt is no ordinary skeleton. The 38.5mm by 40.35mm titanium case is smaller than other models they've put out—and there's certainly a motorsport-inspired visual language. It's a high-performing piece, but the real innovation here is their mesmerizing "in-house" calibre. Sapphire crystal on the front and back completes the window into and out of the mechanical world.

Rebellion's Weap-One is more than a wristwatch—and let's be honest, it doesn't look like one at first glance. The surprisingly easy-to-read time-telling module can be removed from the strap and inserted into a holster for a desk at home or in a car. The brand actually plans on developing more accessories to hold the tube. More than an aesthetic advancement, the watch sports a very unique complication: an asymmetrical, 60-second flying tourbillon that rotates on multiple axes. It is suspended between the platinum hour and minute rollers. It's all inspired by race car suspensions, and the exclusive manufacture movement was developed in collaboration with Concepto.

From the forged carbon of the RE1 2.0 Chronographe to the use of ceramics in the Predator S—and the distinct honeycomb dial patterning on both—material developments and their visual translations are everywhere. These are far from average Swiss-made pieces. And while their design makes that evident, there are just as many advancements from the future inside.

Images courtesy of Rebellion Timepieces

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