November 2, 2016
by Kenny Yeo
Harry Winston’s Project Z collection has been around for over a decade now, and the famed jeweler and watch maker has recently shown off the 10th watch in the collection. Dubbed very simply the Harry Winston Project Z10 watch, this watch, like its predecessors, features the use of Zalium and is heavily influenced by engineering and architecture.
If the Harry Winston Project Z is unfamiliar to you, here’s a brief recap. In 2004, Harry Winston embarked on the Project Z collection. The Z refers to Zalium, an exclusive zirconium-based alloy developed by Ron Winston, the son of Harry Winston, who also happened to be a rather gifted chemical engineer who did a lot of work with rocket propellants.
He soon realized that the properties of zirconium were ideal for watchmaking. Not only was it extremely resistant to corrosion, it was also hypoallergenic, very strong, and light. Ron then created a special zirconium alloy and named it Zalium. In 2004, the first Harry Winston Project Z watch was launched and this was the beginning of the collection.
Fast forward 12 years and we have the 10th watch in the collection – the Harry Winston Project Z10 watch. Like the rest of the Project Z watches that preceded it, the Harry Winston Project Z10 watch has a case made of Zalium. The case is 42.2mm wide and features a chunky design with very pronounced crown guards. The case is also filled with details, which is impressive considering how hard it is to work with Zalium due to its hardness. It’s harder than stainless steel and even titanium. The Harry Winston Project Z10 watch is also water resistant to 100 meters, which is fitting for its sporty design.
The Harry Winston Project Z10 features an off-center main dial that consists of a black grid with a black satin-finished chapter ring and rhodium hour markers. Elsewhere, there are more grids and lattices rendered in blue anodized aluminum that adorn the dial, and it draws you to its two retrograde displays. At four o’clock is a retrograde day display, while at the opposite side at 8 o’clock is a retrograde seconds display. Finally, at 6 o’clock there’s a date display.
According to the brand, the inspiration behind the Harry Winston Project Z10 watch comes from the iconic Manhattan Bridge, which is appropriate, considering the brand is headquartered in New York. This also explains the grid and latticework that adorns the dial.
The movement is Harry Winston’s automatic caliber HW3305. It’s made up of 312 components, beats at 28,800bph, features a silicon balance spring, and a power reserve of 65 hours. It also has an 18k gold skeletonized rotor, circular Côtes de Genève on the bridges, and snailing on the plate.
What’s also interesting about the watch is the strap. Harry Winston calls it a “dual strap” and it is a blend of blue alligator and rubber. Rubber is used to line the back of the alligator strap and that should increase the wearing comfort. The strap is also marked with a shuriken motif.
The Harry Winston Project Z10 is a much welcomed new addition to one of the more interesting collections from Harry Winston. And although it isn’t quite as complicated nor as flamboyant as its forebears, its simpler design has allowed it to be more legible and also practical. The Harry Winston Project Z10 watch will be limited to just 300 pieces, and it is priced at $22,100. harrywinston.com