Astbury & Kent Tourbillon watch, only 295 ever to be made!
The new Stellaris AK735, a 27 Jewel flying tourbillon timepiece from tourbillon designer Terrence Ray... IT'S TIME TO STAND OUT!
Astbury & Kent Tourbillon watch, only 295 ever to be made!
The new Stellaris AK735, a 27 Jewel flying tourbillon timepiece from tourbillon designer Terrence Ray... IT'S TIME TO STAND OUT!
This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by Wed, June 12 2019 4:24 PM UTC +00:00.
Millionaire watches are no longer out of our reach
It is no secret that in the world of watches, owning a tourbillon is somewhat like owning a Rolls Royce, it represents a pinnacle of watch-making. Not only is it a thing of beauty and a wonder to behold, but it also says to the world, “I know and appreciate fine watches.”
For helping us to reach our goal you will receive a Astbury & Kent AK735 Tourbillon Watch limited collectors edition for a founder member’s price.
The story so far
Terrence Ray is a well know tourbillon watch designer, who has already created some outstanding timepieces for companies and individuals around the world.
We are going to make these high-end tourbillon timepieces; we are going to make the tourbillon timepiece accessible to all. We have some great perks lined up, so check them out and see what our founder members will be getting.
⦁ For watch lovers, here is your chance to own the most exclusive watch movement in the world, the Tourbillon, and, not only that, with your help we are going to launch right here on Kickstarter
⦁ You can be the owner of one of the new limited collectors’ editions of the Astbury & Kent timepiece at an incredible supporter member’s price.
We all want a luxury watch, however put a tourbillon movement into any watch and the price increase seven fold or much more ! So it can be said that the worlds most expensive watches are the tourbillon type, and for good reason as there are only a small HANDFUL OF watch makers who are able make a genuine tourbillon timepiece !
And with between 80-120 hours going into the creation of each timepiece the prices are always going to be high.
And lets be honest here, most tourbillons are not the most nicest looking timepieces !
Most do tend to have that candelabra look about them. But not everyone likes that vintage or dated look; many would love a more contemporary look & feel. All too often the makers keep it that way to try and justify the high cost.
At the same time, the world has spun us a yarn into thinking that a luxury watch with a cheap mechanical movement such as a Miyota movement is a luxury timepiece, but the truth of the matter is, you are paying $275 for a fabricated story while getting a $20 movement for your money.
It is the same story for the celebrity endorsed minimalist watches which cost $9 to make and sold to you for $149, that isn't giving you luxury but rather just robbing you!
Tourbillon watches are beautiful. I mean, this kind of mechanism is simply astounding, And there is no point in denying that - it is marvellously intricate, and is bound to attract a lot of attention if you happen to show it - and tourbillon watches are made to show it big time.
For most of the time the price of Tourbillon timepieces were keeps artificially high, and they would keep the price high because they could, excluding the average person form being able to own one.
But not any longer.
So lets look at why they always will remain more pricey than a typical non-tourbillon mechanical watch.
Creating the movement.
There are only a small HANDFUL OF watch makers in the entire WORLD who are able make a genuine tourbillon timepiece due to the complexity and equipment needed.
In order to create a tourbillon multi million dollar CNC equipment is used for the case, bezel and inner cage etc.....
The making of a tourbillon movement.
High-end watch parts can only be achieved by using high-end precision machinery.
100,s of hours go into the intricate parts, many of which are achieved in hand crafted detail!
Only the top watchmakers are able to master the process of assembling a tourbillon timepieces. With dedicated precision these master craftsmen are artisans personified !
The end result is a movement which has been described as the "Rolls Royce" of all watch making !
Pushing up the price
Remember how we said earlier " the price of Tourbillon timepieces are keeps artificially high, and they would keep the price high because they can, excluding the average person form being able to wear one.
If you want a tourbillon, watchmakers (traditionally Swiss ) had you over a barrel, either pay the $30,000 price tag or go without. As the luxury brands often control the market there is was much you could do !
Introducing the new Stellaris limited edition collectors range form tourbillon watch designer Terrence Ray who is about to launch his new brand ASTBURY & KENT here on Kickstarter.
So bottom line is this, you either have a Swiss made tourbillon watch at around £30,000 and up, or you have a tourbillon made outside Switzerland at a more reasonable price of around £2,500, look at it this way "not everyone can afford a Rolls Royce but many can afford a BMW or a Jaguar" !
Most tourbillons are very candelabra looking and a bit dated for many, that is why we have gone for a NEW more modern look using bold colours and a simple minimalist design. The all new AK735 model takes many references from Terrence Ray's other passion, that of "physics" especially in connection to the cosmos. So you will see little bits of inspiration taken form the the cosmos as Terrence's passion for "LIGHT, GRAVITY & TIME" are linked in one way or another. The overall look is reminiscent of the dark but bold colours of the cosmos, together with the subtle look of the hour markers.
Minimalist does not mean "cheap" as 90% of the value of a tourbillon is in the movement.
Many luxury producers are moving more towards a more updated modern look such as Bentley & Jaguar.....
The AK735 with its open heart flying tourbillon
Below is a video of one of the actual prototypes in action showcasing the balance wheel in a graceful motion.
So what is a tourbillon?
A tourbillon is a mechanism found in certain high-end mechanical watches. It is both hypnotic and fascinating to observe, and watches with tourbillons are usually expensive compared to watches without them. They are not the most common complication that you'll find in a watch, but certainly one of the most entertaining.
If we take a step back and look closer into its history, the tourbillon was patented in 1801 by legendary watchmaker Abraham Louis Breguet. Due to gravitational forces, the escapement acts slightly differently depending on its positioning. If a watch is stuck in the same position for an extended period of time – say, held vertically in a pocket – the cumulative effect of gravity will alter its motion. For this reason, watches needed to be regulated regularly.
Here is an article which goes into a fair amount of detail explaining more about the tourbillon movement in a more easy-to-understand way. https://www.prestigetime.com/blog/what-is-a-tourbillon.html
Making a Tourbillon Affordable
As we are already in the industry and have been designing watches for many years and for the last several years have designed a number of tourbillons, working alongside several of the tourbillon watchmaking companies, have forged strong bonds and so can cut out the middle men who add their 300% or more and can create these striking looking timepieces at a price which is not going to break the bank!
So with our already forged relationships and contacts within the small tourbillon watchmaking arena it's from the watchmaking house direct to YOU ! Now couple that with the fact that we are going outside Switzerland who inflate the prices themselves, we are then able to create a tourbillon movement watch at a more affordable price !
Terrence Ray is a designer who was responsible for the Aston Martin tourbillon timepiece, a celebratory tourbillon which was designed to celebrate the launch of the new Aston Martin Valkyrie super car. (see the about us profile for a image of this watch)
The AK735 Movement
A 27 Jewel flying tourbillon movement.......when you get to 25 Jewels and above you know that you really are moving into a quality movement. The AK735 has 27 Jewels in total, two of which can be seen in the movement below.
The mechanisms sits behind a sapphire glass lens, there is also a sapphire glass lens at the back of the watch.
A specially made 316 42mm stainless steel case houses the watch movement.
The Hands & Dial
The dial for the AK735 is finished in a special process known as "sun-ray" which when moved in different shades of light gives off a iridescent effect which is lovely under different levels of light.
Also with the hands, which has coated in a lustrous polished coating also giving a iridescent colour change when viewed in changing light.
This is one a several references to the cosmos and how light can alter under differing circumstances.
The AK735 watch strap is a most luxurious AA+ Alligator skin with branded triple folding clasp. We decided on giving our customers the very best in leather straps. This type of strap alone can cost up to $145 !
Firstly I made the concept drawings for the new Stellaris range.
Then we had the 3D CAD (computer assisted design) drawings made. It was important that the 3D CAD design were as close to how we wanted our timepiece to look and feel, so used a very professional design house, they were a delight to work with.
Creating the Timepiece
Next we took the CAD images to the watchmaking house that we chose to create the new Stellaris timepiece for us .........
Laser pinpoint accuracy with CNC machining was used to create the main plate.
We took delivery of the prototypes in Sep 2018 and tested for a number of months. We are glad to say that the tourbillon watchmakers whom we used for the AK735 models were exceptional. We were very particular and gave a lot of attention to detail so that we would get the prototypes right "first time" and they certainly delivered !
The movement operates at 4Hz (28,800 bph), which is both welcome and even uncommon in many tourbillons (that mostly operate at 3Hz). This means better accuracy, and I think we can all agree that is important in a watch like this. The movement further uses 27 jewels and is comprised of 197 parts. The tourbillon itself is a flying tourbillon (nice), and it is rather large in diameter, making for a nice visual experience.
A quick release spring bar mechanism is also a part of the watch strap, a quick release spring bar allows you to quickly change watch straps without any tools.
The AK735B...........LIMITED EDITION TO ONLY 100 PIECES !
The AK735S...........LIMITED EDITION TO ONLY 100 PIECES !
Upgrade to the Gold & Diamond AK735G "Effulgent" version...........LIMITED EDITION TO ONLY 95 PIECES !
This is a most stunning design for a super dress watch. A solid gold bezel with 12 genuine diamonds set into the hour markers, a real head turner!
Unique "Case Back" Engraving
Each timepiece will have a unique serial number engraved onto the case back between 00010 and 00295. So for example, if you were to order the AKB735 you would end up with a serial number which could be anywhere between AK735B-00001 to AK735B-00100
Early Bird pledges are guaranteed a limited edition serial number between 00001 & 00012
Presentation Box & Certificate or Authenticity
The presentation box is a mahogany wooden watch case, for the production we may well switch to either a black mahogany or a black poplar wood case as this is in keeping with our colour scheme. The Certificate of Authenticity will come signed with the limited serial number of your watch.
So why do mechanical Watches have Jewels in them ?
Jewels serve two purposes in a watch. Firstly, reduced friction can increase accuracy. Friction in the wheel train bearings and the escapement causes slight variations in the impulses applied to the balance wheel, causing variations in the rate of timekeeping. The low, predictable friction of jewel surfaces reduces these variations. Second, they can increase the life of the bearings. In non-jewel bearings, the pivots of the watch's wheels rotate in holes in the plates supporting the movement.
Specifications at a Glance
- Flying Tourbillon movement, 28,800 vph
- AAA Grade
- 27 Jewels
- Zircon gem crown
- Anti reflective Sapphire glass lens (front & back)
- 316 all stainless Steel
- 72h Power reserve indicator
- Dial: 360︒ rotating Tourbillon (6H), power reserve indicator (9H)
- 5ATM water resistant
- AA+ Alligator leather strap
- Case diameter 42.5 millimeters
- Thickness: 12 mm
- Movement Mechanical Self-Wind
- Display Type Analog
- Clasp Stainless Steel Deployment Butterfly Buckle
- Case material Stainless Steel, Screw down caseback
- Band width 22 millimeters
- Wooden presentation box
- Limited edition of only 295 pieces to be made
- Unique serial number between 0001 - 00295
What some of the reviews say:
Yes that is correct, if we reach a target of £20,000 everyone will receive a second "Italian calf leather strap". This strap will also have the "quick release spring bar" which allows you to change from the blue Alligator skin strap to this calf skin strap in seconds. Use one for daily use and one for dress use, it's up to you ! So please share with your friends so that we can reach this target, and YOU get a second strap.
Watch designer Terrence Ray has been designing timepieces for a number of years and has worked in joint collaborations and designs with a number of watchmakers. Terrence was the designer for the Aston Martin tourbillon, designed as timepiece to celebrate the release of the new Aston Martin Valkyrie super car and presented to the design director of Aston Martin himself at their headquarters in Gaydon, Warwickshire.
Passionate about watches, Terrence Ray from a very early age had a keen interest in timepieces and at the age of just ten travelled half way across London on his own, taking 2 bus rides in order to purchase his first timepiece, and form that moment on Terrence became a bit of a collector of unique timepieces. So it goes without saying that Terrence later on in life became interested in Horology and subsequently gravitated towards designing watches himself.
With a keen interest in physics, ( especially quantum physics) Terrence became very interested in light, time and gravity and the relationship those forces have on each other, so it was no surprise that the very first model of Tourbillon which Terrence designed under the Astbury & Kent brand has a "stella" feel to it, reflecting his interest in light & time which can been seen in the design, colours and reflective surfaces used for the Stellaris range !
When Terrence Ray got together with businessman Tom McCulloch, the two came up with a business model for the new sleek design and brand ......
Terrence Ray has now launched the ASTBURY & KENT Tourbillon brand, with the release of the eagerly anticipated Stellaris Series.
Tom has been involved in the watch business for over 20 years now, and has been fascinated by watches from a very early age, his first watch was a mechanical Ingersol that he promptly took apart to the horror of his parents. In this period, he has been a distributor of watches for many prestigious brands in the UK including Junghans, Invicta, Maserati, Jacques Lemans and the Gevril Group. He has also run one of the UK ‘s premier watchmakers who facilitated the repairs for the likes of Harrods etc.
Still very active, he has gone on to develop his own watch and jewellery repair business, as well as a thriving watch distribution hub and as a presenter on one of the UK's top online retail channels. Tom has also featured on national UK television as a guest presenter watch expert, whereby he explained the function and form of some very complex timepieces. He was also a key figure in brand and product development within a small start up brand, so understands well the financial and engineering challenges that watches can present, as well as the servicing and after sales.
Astbury and Kent, a brand Kickstarter project that when first presented to Tom by Terrence, immediately caught his imagination and interest, as it promotes accessibility to the ordinary watch collector of a dream complication that not only looks fantastic but is so intricate and complex in its construction, which fascinates and excites, drawing the eye with its hypnotic precision. Tom Is a true watch-nut and is so excited to see this project to fruition.
It has been a long journey but now lets make it a reality, if you show your support you will be assured of a quality product that not only looks fantastic but will come with a stellar after sales service, and the knowledge that you are part of a journey that will see a brand develop into a true watch lovers project.
Our partnered manufacturer follows strict procedures to ensure the quality of the watches they produce. Generally, those procedures can be divided into three parts: Technical Control Check, Quality Assurance Check and Final Quality Check.
For the Quality Assurance Check, the QA engineer will ensure that the dimensions of each individual component are 100% identical to the technical drawings and that all components pass the QA test, e.g. drop test and movement test. For the Final Quality Check, the final QC engineer will rigorously test all watches.
Caring For Your New Astbury & Kent timepiece
1. Keep your watch wound. Winding keeps the watch working, spreads the lubricants and the accuracy should be best with a fully wound watch.
2. Please avoid any Bumps and Shocks of the watches. Shocks can damage any watch mechanism, scratches to the case or break the minor. Remember your watch is a mechanical watch consisted of more than hundreds tiny parts.
3. Cleaning. If your watch has become dirty, the best way to clean it is with a soft damp cloth.
4. 5ATM Water resistance . Your watch can withstand splashes, shower and is suitable for swimming in a swimming pool. It is not suitable for water sports, pool-side diving or sea diving.
All of our watches will come with a 2 year international warranty. The 2 year warranty will cover against manufacturer defects, for which your timepiece will be repaired or exchanged free of charge.
What about servicing for my watch?
We're pleased to announce that we have secured agreements with some world-class horologists that have agreed to service our watches when they are needed.
All you need to do is to contact us and we will arrange for servicing to be carried out.
We expect to ship the orders from August/Sep 2019. While we will make every effort to ship your orders on time, we ask for your understanding that slight delays in production may be possible. We will keep you informed of any changes as they arise.
Free anywhere in the world.
We are already working on the preliminary drawings for the next Astbury & Kent model, which is going to be classic F1 inspired watch, with a carbon fibre dial Ferrari red hands and matching stitching for the soft leather strap. It is going to be a STUNNING timepiece! Most of our timepieces will be limited collectors editions and our loyalty will always be to our founders member who will be the first to get a crack at owning our new models !
Please feel free to contact us at (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will always be here to answer any questions you may have.
Risks and challenges
We take great pride in offering millionaires timepieces for a fraction of what is being charged by the over inflated prices that those who hold a monopoly charge, and although we already have the experience and connections to ensure all goes well there are always unforeseen issues which may crop up form time to time, however we do not see any problems as we have been in this arena for many years now and the strong partnerships we have forged with the professional watchmaking house we deal with will always ensure to help minimise any potential risks.
All quality control and testing has already been done on the 4 prototypes and our partners are professional enough to ensure all runs like clockwork (pardon the pun)
As we have dealt over the years with most of the handful of watchmaking houses who can make tourbillon watches, we spent a lot of time choosing the right company to make the Astbury & Kent timepiece.
If we ended up with many more orders that expected then they may be a slight delay for the ones who order later on in the campaign, however it will be only a slight delay, and we will keep you informed every step of the way. So to avid any possible delay then please be one of the first to put in your order as we will issue on a "first come first server" basis. There is also another good reason to order sooner, at that is, you will get a lower number on the serial numbers engraved onto the back of the watch case.
A huge hank you to everyone who has supported the project from the start and to all our backers!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter