Moritz Grossmann Introduces (Finally) the Hamatic Hammer Automatic

An intricate winding mechanism.
Moritz Grossmann Hamatic watch 6

Announce last year but delayed because the movement needed tweaking, the Moritz Grossmann Hamatic has finally made it to market – and minus the unappealing dial cutouts found on the prototype.

The Hamatic is a self-winding watch that contains an unusual “hammer”, or “bumper”, winding mechanism that relies on a swinging weight to wind the mainspring. Similar mechanisms were invented in the late 18th century by several watchmakers, including Abraham-Louis Breguet with his Perpétuelle watch.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic watch 3

The uber-automatic

Moritz Grossmann took inspiration from these early automatics for the construction of the cal. 106.0 inside the Hamatic, creating the most interesting self-winding movement of late.

Although hammer automatics were historically inefficient, hence the predominance of rotor winding – and the reason for the delayed launch – Moritz Grossmann says the Hamatic winds as efficiently as an ordinary movement.

That’s because the centre of gravity of the hammer is far from its pivot, spanning almost the entire movement, or double that of an ordinary rotor. The result is increased leverage and torque, so even a five degree movement of the hammer winds the mainspring. When fully wound, the Hamatic will run for 72 hours.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic cal 106.0

The hammer takes the form of large, oval frame with a circular, solid gold weight at its tip. It swings side to side like a pendulum, winding the mainspring in both directions via two pawls. Each pawl rotates its own click wheel, which in turn drive a reduction wheel that turns the barrel ratchet wheel.

Within the hammer frame sits two elegantly curved springs that act as shock absorbers, damping excess or violent motion of the hammer.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic cal 106.0 detail

The solid gold weight at bottom right, with the shock absorbing spring to the left

Equally elaborate is the manual winding mechanism, which sits under a separate bridge that is invisible from the back. The yoke winder disengages the manual winding mechanism when the automatic winding is happening, but switches to disengage the reduction gear once manual winding is in progress.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic watch 1

The pawls and click wheels

And like other Moritz Grossmann movements, the cal. 106.0 also has a hacking seconds that uses a lever to halt the balance wheel once the crown is pulled to set the time. It does not, however, have the patented button-operated release mechanism to restart the balance found on most hand-wound Moritz Grossman watches.

The whole movement is finished to the brand’s high standards, even the hammer, which has a straight grained top surface, as well as polished, bevelled edges.

The exterior bits

Although the prototype from 2018 had a dial with apertures to show the movement of the hammer, Moritz Grossmann has smartly done away with that gimmick.

Conservatively styled, the dial is solid silver and based on 19th century Moritz Grossmann pocket watch dials. Though old fashioned it uses the company’s modern day logo, which is slightly out of place with the styling.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic watch 4

The hands are also inspired by antique pocket watches. Like all Moritz Grossmann hands, they are produced by hand and incredible delicate. Here they are spade-shaped, instead of the brand’s usual lance-shape, but the Hamatic hands are still heat treated to a brown-violet that’s the brand’s signature.

The case is identical in size to other time-only Moritz Grossmann models, measuring 41mm in diameter and 11.35mm high.

Moritz Grossmann Hamatic watch 5

Key Facts

Diameter: 41mm
Height: 11.35mm
Material: White or rose gold
Water resistance: 30m

Movement: Hand-wound cal. 106.0
Frequency: 21,600bph, or 3Hz
Power reserve: 72 hours

Strap: Alligator with pin buckle

Price and availability

The Hamatic is available in rose gold (ref. MG-002302) or white gold (ref. MG-002303), both priced at €37,600 before taxes. It’ll be available starting October 2019.


 

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