About this project
WCCO CBS Channel 4 News is running a story on Padron Watch Company this coming Monday at 10PM. Here is a link to the promo: http://cbsloc.al/1nH0DN0
Several years ago I began Padron Watch Company as a restorer of vintage mechanical watches. With each watch I've restored, I was struck by the extraordinary craftsmanship and clever designs of these old timepieces. It was through my restoration work that I was inspired to develop my own line of watches, and with your support I was able to launch my first model, the Padron Vuelta here on Kickstarter, (which I was later honored to be voted by Wired Magazine as a Wired's Most Wanted staff pick.) The next year I created, the Tessera, the first watch to be built in Minneapolis since R.W. Sears left watchmaking over a hundred years ago.
I am proud to introduce the Padron Hennepin to you now. Named for the major commercial street in Minneapolis that runs by my office, the Hennepin is my third watch, and the end result of a long development process that had its origins right here.
Like the Vuelta, I've striven to make it an elemental and pointedly understated timepiece with a clean utilitarian look, yet strongly specified with the same hardened surgical grade stainless steel, sapphire optics, high water resistance, and quality components as my other products.
Hennepin will be my first watch to be available both as a Quartz design (Swiss Made), and as a mechanical-wind, with several available Automatic movements.
A word about what I do...
Through my business I am committed to making purpose built, capable (and beautiful) timepieces. Keeping this focus has let me deliver well made, strongly specified watches that compete with established brands that sell at four to six times my price. Hopefully you'll get one, agree, and even tell your friends about it. That's the best marketing any business can ever hope for!
I'm also as much a product designer as I am a watchmaker. Every part of the Hennepin is my original design, developed first in Solidworks which I then use to create my schematics. I then work closely with manufacturers to flesh out complete engineering documents, identify correct materials, processes and techniques that best fit the overall vision while also being production ready. In fact, balancing that fine line is my favorite part of the job.
Through my work I always strive to create rational, elegant designs that when you see it, you know exactly what it is and why. That the lines which define it be few, —not necessarily minimal— but decidedly rational. That's what I want the Padron Hennepin to be about: Let it be rational; let it be beautiful.
- Case Dimensions: 45MM x 45MM x 10.5MM
- Case Material: 316L Surgical Grade Stainless Steel
- Optics: Sapphire Crystal with Anti-reflective coating
- Water Resistant to 328 feet / 100 Meters (10 ATM)
- Superluminous hands and dial
- 20 MM Genuine Leather Band with Optional Deployment Clasp
- Choice of Movements (see further specs on movements below)
- Two Year Warranty
In designing the Hennepin crown, I add a central groove to let the fingers make better contact when changing crown positions. I also feel it lightens the look and harkens back to the thinner, coined edge crowns of the old vintages.
Recessed lugs and ridged case
The Hennepin, like the Vuelta and Tessera, also features recessed lugs, a feature I feel greatly unclutters the look of a watch.
Optional Ostrich grain band
A recent addition to our band selection. By adding $23 to your pledge, you will receive a honey ostrich grain leather band. In addition to edge stitching, the ostrich grain has a slight taper which looks graceful on smaller wrist sizes. It also perfectly complements with the orange sweep hand.
'Snow Emergency' caseback
For my first solid caseback design, I wanted to try something a bit different than the usual watch brand staples of yachting or aeronautics, and instead do something more in keeping with the name of the watch.
Minnesota has a well-deserved reputation for its winters, and like much of the U.S., this winter was a record setter and I found myself developing the Hennepin under a backdrop of constant snowfall. To the extent that I felt these circumstances deserve special focus.
If you're opting for the quartz movement, I have developed what I think is a pretty unconventional concept and I really hope you get a kick out of it. :-) Of course, with the automatic, you get a choice of a clear exhibition caseback or the solid version I've created here.
Optional Deployment Clasp
For an additional $12 to your pledge, you can upgrade the band with an optional butterfly deployment clasp.
The Hennepin is a 45mm diameter watch with 10.6mm thickness for a smart, contemporary look. The crown has also been offset to 45 degrees for comfort. The result is a contemporary style that goes great with anybody.
Exclusive to Kickstarter: Your Choice of Movement!
The ability to choose these movements will be exclusive to Kickstarter. The production model will be winnowed down to the two most selected.
How will your Kickstarter donation help?
Funds will be used to produce the movements, case, dial, hands, bands, and boxes. It will also help with shipping consumables such as packing foam, wrappers, labels, tape, tags, booklets, and other printed collateral. I've outlined several different pledge options that all help in this regard. Your support -- even if it's just moral support -- is hugely helpful!
Padron Watch Company has delivered two Kickstarter projects to date in 2012 and 2013. I have spent the past two and a half years traveling overseas to identify strong suppliers and cultivate business relationships with a focus on the long term. I feel in this time I've assembled an extremely talented group of people who have helped me produce strong products.
The Hennepin production plan should roughly follow my experiences with my previous two projects. I will be sourcing new movements, which I have carved out three-four months to deliver. This will be done in parallel with the case set manufacture, bands and boxes.
The talented team that helped me develop the Tessera hands and dial will be taking on some of the assembly work for this watch. Depending on the success of this Kickstarter and overall volume, I anticipate integration to take 1-2 months.
A rough outline of all steps are shown below. Please assume a margin of a couple of months for these estimates.
Risks and challenges
Production delays are the most common risk to take into consideration. Both the Vuelta and the Tessera were delivered 2 months after schedule. In both cases the PVD coating process for black cases proves to be an unpredictable bottleneck, something I now factor into planning as a result. The best I can assure you is that with any challenge I do my very best to keep pledges informed and involved.
I've spent the past few years working hard to cultivate and develop strong supplier relationships including several overseas trips to meet my contacts and see their work in action. In that time, I've also focused more on quality oversight and strongly specified the production plan to deliver greater uniformity.
I've delivered two Kickstarter projects with excellent products and many happy customers. After these experiences I feel that I am now in an even better position today to deliver strong results. I also stand behind my work always and any quality issue I've ever encountered has always been 100% dealt with quickly and efficiently.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
I recently was asked this question and it's an important one to ask for any Kickstarter watch project. The most important in fact.
I am a watchmaker. For many years I've restored vintage mechanical watches, and I hand-build my watches. I also personally service all of them in my Minneapolis office. I've been selling and servicing my own watches for two years now and have many happy loyal customers.
I run a highly hands-on operation, and watches are a personal thing for me. This is important because often times when dealing with an unknown quantity, Service is something that is grossly overlooked. Producing a product is a totally different skill than supporting the same product. I am proud to say support to me is as important and central to my operations as is everything else; design, production, branding, etc.
To simplify pledge options, I decided to leave the color preferences to the survey feature. Hence, you will be sent a survey where you can select what colors you want for the case and band.
Please add $12 to your existing pledge. Please note that backers are reporting that the mobile version of Kickstarter doesn't let you change the amount. But the regular website will let you do this.
You can obtain it by adding $23 to your existing pledge then indicating it on your survey questionnaire.
Absolutely. It's a matter of combining the two additional pledge amounts and specifying it on the survey.
A quartz movement is the most abundant type of watch movement you see today. They are electronic devices that use battery current to pulse a quartz crystal, measuring its vibration and calculating time based on that. A combination of extremely low cost and high stability make it a common choice for watch manufacturers.
An Automatic movement is a mechanical watch movement with a self-winding device. Mechanical watch movements pre-date quartz movements, and are the old, traditional way of watchmaking. They are entirely gear-driven devices that are powered by the tension of a wound spring. The expression "wind a watch" comes from these designs. The key improvement of an Automatic is that if you wear the watch regularly, you seldom ever need to wind it. A weighted rotor in the back is designed to swing with your body movement and wind it for you. The other benefit is that mechanical watches have heirloom potential, because when periodically serviced, a mechanical movement can potentially last many generations longer than quartz. This is why you see 100 year old pocket watches that still tick.
First, review the chart I added which breaks down the benefit of each movement. But in the simplest possible terms, if you don't know, the quartz movement isn't a bad place to start. It's the best value proposition all around.
If you're daring and want something unique, consider either of the automatic movements. They cost more, but in exchange you get a watch that never needs a battery, and has a smooth uninterrupted second hand motion versus a "jumpy" motion. And because automatic watches are mechanical devices, they are immune to the chemical degradation that can restrict the life of a quartz movement to a couple decades. This is why mechanical watches such as old pocket watches still tick on after 100 years. Lastly, the exhibition caseback will let you see the beauty of the movement inside the watch.
Yes. Every single mechanical watch I personally adjust, and I usually aim for a range of +- 6 seconds a day. I'm happy to say many customers have taken a moment to remark on how pleased they are by the accuracy of my watches compared to similarly priced products.
Both are 28,800 bph (8 beats per second) which is a high beat standard and the mark of a quality watch. Both are jeweled movements (The 284 and Miyota have 25 and 24 jewels respectively) and both have a idle power reserve of around 40 hours.
I like the Snow Emergency caseback but I am getting an Automatic, not a quartz movement. Can I choose this caseback instead of the clear glass one?
Absolutely! Just specify your preference in the survey.
The Padron Hennepin is 45mm x 45mm x 10.5mm in size.
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