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Mechanical

The Black Pearl was unveiled at the Bigtwin Bike Show in Rosmalen, Holland, next to a poster of Captain Jack Sparrow. But unlike the legendary sea vessel of the silver screen, this Black Pearl is a land vehicle powered by a steam engine. Constructed by Dutch company Revatu Customs, the two-wheeled locomotive is a fully functioning motorcycle, albeit a slow one. Read More

As a child, Brooklyn-based metal sculptor Adrian Landon played with Lego a lot. He also learned about horses from his polo-playing dad, who in turn learned about them from his father, who was an equine veterinarian. That background set the stage for Landon's latest work of art, a stainless steel life-size Mechanical Horse that gallops in slow motion at the press of a button. Read More

You're blowing down the freeway in your convertible and your speedometer suddenly fails; what can you do? If you're wearing a Breva Génie 03 wristwatch, you stick it out the window and carry on, as the latest in the Breva line is claimed to be the first watch to include a pop-up mechanical speedometer. Read More
If you want the functionality of a smartwatch, but don't want to give up your old wrist timepiece, you can always settle for an add-on module or a smartband, but they don't offer much for the haute horlogerie market – until now. The TimeWalker Urban Speed e-Strap series by Montblanc bills itself as the "first luxury brand to combine wearable technology with fine watchmaking." Read More
Since its discovery over a century ago, the Antikythera Mechanism has had scholars scratching their heads over how the Greeks managed to build a mechanical computer a hundred years before the birth of Christ and thousands of years before anything similar. But now things have become even stranger as researchers claim that it's over a hundred years older than previously believed and may have been built by a famous hand. Read More
When watchmaking collides with childhood memories, it usually ends with something along the lines of Mickey Mouse. But when Maximilian Büsse of MB&F was inspired by the 1970s cartoon character Captain Future, the result was Horological Machine No.6 (HM6) "Space Pirate." This luxury bit of haute horlogerie not only reflects the style of an outer space adventurer’s ship, but is also piece of high-tech mechanical watchmaking with 475 components – 80 in the case alone. Read More

How can an upmarket analog watch compete in a digital world? Pierre DeRoche’s answer is its TNT Royal Rétro 43, which is based on the idea that if one second hand is good, six is better. Instead of one hand taking the tiresome journey around the entire dial, the TNT Royal Retro 43 has six; each measuring a 10-second interval before passing the job off to the next in a neat bit of mechanical choreography. Read More

In a conventional camera lens, the iris consists of a set of overlapping mechanical blades that control the amount of light entering the camera. As efficient as this mechanical system is, it is too bulky and too difficult to miniaturize to be incorporated in smartphones and other compact devices. To address this, a team of researchers has used "smart glass" to create a micro-sized electronic iris that may bring much greater image quality and flexibility to smartphone cameras. Read More
Imagine owning an upmarket, 25-jewel, Swiss-movement mechanical watch. Now imagine one that that can display text messages, notify you of incoming calls and let you remotely control your smartphone or tablet. That may seem a bit farfetched, but Kairos Watches aims to combine a luxury mechanical watch with the functionality of a smartwatch in one seamless device. Read More
It’s easy to get dismissive of upmarket astronomical watches in this age of cheap digital apps, but it’s still impressive to see what can achieved with mechanical movements – and how that can still sometimes put the apps to shame. For example, we got a look at Swiss watch maker Antoine Martin’s Tourbillon Astronomique watch at Baselworld this week, which can not only tell what time the Sun will rise and set at, but even has a few tricks that you won’t find at the app store. Read More
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