Swiss perfection in every detailPreview Baselworld 2018: The EPOS 3435 Verso
To create the EPOS 3435 Verso, the engineers of EPOS have taken the historical and renowned ETA 6497 hand-wound caliber and modified in a way so that it now exposes all wonders of a mechanical caliber on the dial side of the timepiece.
The mesmerizing tick-tocking of the large golden balance wheel at the lower left of the dial along with the tirelessly turning wheels above it make for a remarkable spectacle. The hand-wound ETA 6497 caliber serves as the trusted base for this clever modification. Wrapped in a 42.5mm wide stainless steel case that is 50 metres water resistant, the EPOS 3435 Verso promises to provide a timelessly elegant, yet unique way of telling the time. The pulsometer on the case-back is a most welcome and rare added functionality that neatly supplements the lavishly decorated aesthetic.
How it all started
The origins of the EPOS Company date back to 1925. In that year, James Aubert formed his watch company in the Vallée de Joux, known as the centre of the mechanical watch world. James Aubert was an enthusiastic mechanical watch engineer, who dedicated his life to developing new watch mechanisms. James Aubert was a master of his art and spent most of his efforts focusing on technical developments of chronographs and minute repeaters. He had first acquired his skills working as an engineer for the former watch movement manufacturers “Valjoux” and “Landeron“. In the true watchmakers’ tradition, he handed down his knowledge to his nephew Jean Aubert and his son-in-law, Jean Fillon, who is still today the EPOS’ watch engineer in chief. In his workshop many of EPOS’ own developments for complicated watches were created in close cooperation with EPOS watchmakers. A few that could be named are the jumping hour, the power reserve indication, the big date, the regulator and the regulator with the phases of the moon.
A special characteristic of many EPOS models is their well decorated movements: pearl-finish, “Côtes de Genève”, engraving and blued steel screws – the pride and joy of every watch lover.
In the early 80s, the success story of the traditional Swiss watch came to a standstill. The new quartz technology radically changed the face of the watch industry. Nobody wanted to produce mechanical watches any longer, with the notable exception of a few luxury brands. Peter Hofer, a long-established expert in Swiss watchmaking, was one of the few who still believed in the future of the mechanical watch. With this vision, he and his wife Erna decided to form their own company in 1983: Montres EPOS SA. Their main assets were a passion for mechanical watches and a technical know-how in this field. Personal contacts with key people in watch workshops both in the Jura Mountains and the Vallée de Joux, as well as a vast knowledge of the global watch market, enabled Peter Hofer to quickly develop his own brand. From the very beginning, EPOS has been a mechanical brand with interesting innovations. For 20 years he remained faithful to his vision, developing stunning collections incorporating fascinating mechanisms, always in close cooperation with Jean Fillon. In 2002 Peter Hofer looked for a successor who shared his passion for mechanical watches and was willing to take over and develop the EPOS business. Ursula Forster, who came from a watchmakers’ family, and her husband Tamdi, who also had great experience in the Swiss watchmaking industry, seemed to be the ideal solution.
Swiss perfection in every detail
Switzerland has gained a unique worldwide reputation over centuries, thanks to the pioneering spirit and sense of perfection of its watchmakers. EPOS’ mission is to be a guardian of these traditional values and high standards. EPOS watches are designed and developed with passion, manufactured with precision in the Jura Mountains and the Vallée de Joux workshops, and assembled with care in Grenchen, areas which have always been the most famous in the watchmaking heritage. The heart of each EPOS watch is its mechanical movement. The basic mechanisms come from renowned Swiss manufacturers, which are then transformed by the EPOS watchmakers, who add special functions and stunning decorations. The new creations manufactured in Jean Fillon’s workshop, James Aubert SA, are based on historical vintage movements, which are no longer in production. Once completed, the movement is very carefully decorated, often by hand. Nearly all the EPOS models are equipped with a crystal caseback to allow its owner to admire the work. As a result, EPOS collections are greatly sought after by collectors and watch lovers. EPOS offers high-quality mechanical watches with interesting functions but still at an affordable price. Finished with loving care, according to the traditional Swiss watchmakers’ heritage, they deserve to be called „Artistry in Watchmaking“.
EPOS is especially proud of its in-house innovations. For instance, special functions such as the power reserve indication, the big date or the regulator with the phases of the moon were developed in Jean Fillon’s workshop, James Aubert SA. Such complicated mechanisms require considerable watchmaking skills, which turn each watch into a work of art.
These in-house creations are made constructed either on basic calibres from Unitas or on the no longer produced movements from Peseux. Finally, the movement finish is individually made and often includes a hand-made engraving.