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One aspect of watch collecting that many enthusiasts enjoy is experiencing watches with unique complications, methods of displaying the time, or even construction methods. Swiss watch brand DWISS (Design Watch Independent Switzerland) aims at providing just that to its customers. Its past limited-edition offerings include Swiss tourbillions, wandering hours, and even exotic materials like Niobium (used on a watch that earned an International Design Award). The latest iteration in its M series, first debuted in 2011 with the M1 model, followed by the M2 in 2016, the M3 continues this unique display tradition with its “displaced hours” time display.

As the name implies, the displaced hours display replaces a traditional hour hand with a hand that moves the hour display to the outer circumference of the dial. The brand says it did this because the hours in a day take longer to pass. The minute track, supported by four stanchions emerging from the hour track, appears to float over the lower dial. The minute “hand” is moved inward to a smaller three-pointed hand display (one of the pointers is filled in white to indicate the current time in minutes). A yet smaller rotating disc at the center displays running seconds. The date display is also unique and is indicated by a red oval that rotates around the lowest tier of the deep, multi-level dial.

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The M3 collection is available in three dial colors: black with white indices, blue with white indices, and white with black indices. Super-LumiNova illuminates the display at night. The M3 uses blue BG-W9 and BL black NL for the black markers on white dial models.

The multi-piece 42mm stainless steel case of the M3 is also made in Switzerland. It features deep recesses on the case sides and hex screws that flank the crown guards. Sharp edges separate brushed and polished surfaces. This includes the brushed bezel that surrounds the sapphire crystal with an anti-reflective coating. A screw-down crown and screw-down transparent caseback provide the M3 with 200m of water resistance. Considering the depth of the dial and automatic movement, the M3 is quite thin at just 11.7mm-thick. The aesthetic is reminiscent of the currently very popular integrated bracelet sport watch category.

Speaking of bracelet integration, the case on the M3 features built-in spring-loaded pins. This creates a quick-change system to allow wearers to easily swap out straps, which can completely change the look of one’s M3. A stainless steel bracelet closed by a butterfly clasp or a silicone rubber strap is available with all dial colors of the M3.

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Powering the M3 and its displaced hours display is an ETA 2824-2 Elabore grade. The automatic movement is, of course, Swiss-made. It features Incabloc shock protection and 25 jewels. Operating at a frequency of 28,800 vph (8 beats per second), it provides a power reserve of approximately 42 hours.

In addition to offering a unique design, DWISS has also changed the design process with the M3. Having previously achieved success with its previous models, the multi-design-awarded company decided to try something different with the M3. Founder and designer Rafael Miranda did not design the watch himself, as he did with previous DWISS watches. In this case, 100 members of its 2020 watch design club gave input. Members paid a monthly fee that covered the cost of a watch. In return, they receive one of the watches at the culmination of the project.

Participants first selected among a number of case designs. Then, then chose the size of the case and suggested a number of case details. Choosing the dial display, of course, resulted in the displaced hours that you see on these pages. Finally, smaller details like colors and strap options were selected, and members were presented with a number of detailed renderings and augmented reality files. They were also (virtually) present throughout the prototyping process.

If you’re interested in an M3 but missed out on joining the club, don’t worry. The M3 is available to non-members in a limited series of 500 pieces. It is priced at $1,590 USD on the stainless steel bracelet and $1,390 USD on a rubber strap. At these prices, the DWISS M3 costs less than one might expect for a Swiss-made watch with such a unique display and elaborate case construction. If you’d like to learn more or would like to purchase one of 500 M3 timepieces that will be made, check out the brand’s website.

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