MB&F unveils an eight kilo robot table clock which is crafted from steel, bronze and brass, and completely finished with beautiful Haute Horlogerie details. This massive table clock sizes 40 cm (about 16 inches) in height and it weight 8.2kg (18 pounds). The clock is developed jointly by MB&F and L’Epée.
The latest robot-themed clock from the house of MB&F is dubbed the Balthazar Robot Clock and it consists of 618 individual components. It is named by its creator, a Swiss horological entrepreneur Maximilian Büsser. This horological cyborg is the latest evolution of the brand’s prior robotic offerings, each of which were apparently inspired by the last 50 years of robots in cinema.
To create this 16-inch robot clock, MB&F once again teamed up with a clockmaker L’Epée. This highly respective manufacturer has nearly two centuries of experience in making music boxes, clocks, and watch parts near the Swiss-France border.
The beating heart of the Balthazar Robot Clock is the in-house designed and manufactured movement by L’Epée which consists of 405 parts, mainly contained in the torso, though the beating heart of the mechanism is in the head, with the balance wheel visible under a polished glass dome. The movement parts are finished by hand including polishing, blasting, and satin finishing of each component. The larger surface area yields a much greater challenge for watchmakers trained in traditional Geneva finishing.
The exceptional mechanism is capable to store enough energy to keep the clock ticking for at least 35 days (thanks to five barrels) and provides the usual functions of time with slow-jumping hours and sweeping-minutes, as well as retrograde seconds and a double hemisphere moon-phase indication. The robot clock is wound and set with a key that is the part of its shield.
The Balthazar is a two-faced clock. From one side, there is a friendly looking robot which displays jumping hours and sweep minutes on a pair of disks located on his chest, together with a power reserve indication which is set a little further below in his belly area. Seconds are displayed in Balthazar’s eyes in 20-second retrograde increments. The other side, or “dark side” of the clock, instead of the grinning face displays a skull and the eyes recall the Terminator. The chest on this side displays a dual-hemisphere moonphase indication, with each of the two faces occupying one of the moons.
The manufacturer calls the Balthazar the big brother to Melchior, the robot clock that was first launched at the Baselworld 2015. Both clocks have the same basic structure, each with discs for the time and the escapement in the dome on the robot’s head, but there are several important differences between them. The most evident was the adding a moonphase complication without entirely sapping the power reserve. Besides, Balthazar is 30% taller than Melchior. Therefore, the additional gear train is integrated in order to connect all the way up to the regulator in his domed head.
The new robot-themed clock is available with four different colors of armor – black, silver, blue, and green. Each of them is produced in the limited quantity of 50 pieces. The price is 52,000 Swiss francs before taxes, which is approximately $53,100.