How we develop our watches

Jan 17 , 2021

How we develop our watches

In this article I will explain how our watches are developed, the research behind a new model and the production process to give you an understanding about the watch you are buying and how we try to create value to the buyer.

Our vision is to make watches inspired by different fighter jets to connect the people who love these amazing machines.

As a watch lover and a former aircraft mechanic in the Royal Danish Air Force with experience on F-16 I got the idea to make watches inspired by fighter jets three years ago in early 2018.

With my experience on the F-16 our logo became the F-16 combined with a watch and crown.

I have also an degree in multimediadesign together with a production technologist with 3D Solidworks experience and production development, and from when I was younger a stainless smith education. All this combined give me a good understanding of materials to use, surface finish and how to make it.

Later In the air force I changed to the rescue helicopters S-61 and Lynx, where i spcialized in structure repair and got a good understanding of aluminum and frame building and repair.

The name PITOT, is inspired by the the French guy Henri Pitot who invented the PITOT tube that are installed on all airplanes to measure static and dynamique air pressure for use in the cockpit to display airspeed and height etc.

pitot tube f-16 roskilde airshow pitot watches

Research
The first watch we designed, was naturally the F-16 watch since my experience with this fighter jet, I did a lot of research and combined my knowledge of the F-16 and made a lot of moodboards and pinpointed the keyfeatures that we would like to incorporate in the new watch, it had to be keyfeatures that was easy to recognize and make the F-16 the model it is.

 Moodboard and research pitot watches

The F-16 became very complex and we decided to move on with a more conservative design since the cost and complexity for a first watch would be to much. We decided design a new watch based on another fighter jet and redesign the F-16 later because i really want the F-16 to be amazing.

Since I'm a big fan of Top Gun, we started looking at the F-14 Tomcat and decided to make a watch inspired by this fighter jet since it's very popular and is a big part of the US Navy history and the personell who served with this fighter jet.

Later we gonna redesign the F-16 and try again to put it in production, but first we gonna end the ongoing work with the F-14 and the F/A-18 Hornet inspired watch, in blue and yellow Blue Angels color.

 

2D sketches
So the first step is a lot of research, then we work close with designers to make sketches in 2D with paper and pen, where the task is to incorporate the keyfeatures we found and want to be a part of the design.

After being presented by several different designs, we choose one to move on with and smaller changes will be corrected before we are ready to draw the watch in 2D photoshop/Illustrator.

The next step after 2D design is to present our design to a focus group we have chosen to get feedback from. The focus group representing watch fans and have great experience in watches over many years.

 2D sketches pitot watches

 

2D design
With a chosen design we can make it in photoshop with dimensions, color and details, materials and finish. It will be very close to the final design.

2D design f-14 pitot watches

 

3D
After maybe small corrections the 2D design is approved and we start to make the watch in 3D using Solidworks. This is a great software I have been using a lot when drawing chocolate machinery and process equipment. 

The 3D sketch is made in 1:1 and each part is made in 3D sketch before it is all transferred to one assembly. Each part can be colored and material can be assigned together with material type and finish to give you the look you had in mind. The final output after render look very close to real.

3D design in solidworks pitot watches

3D print
A very fast way to get an idea of shape and dimension is to make a 3D print. it doesnt cost much and can be done very fast, the value of the feedback is very high since it is the first real feedback on your wrist. If anything need to change in size or shape, this is the last step before the 3D work is being sent to the factory for prototype production.  

3D print f-14 pitot watches

 

First prototype
Because we define the watch in all parts from our own company in 3D Solidworks, the final outcome look very close to the 3D design. That means we can control the design and production better and the factory know exactly what we want and if any obstacles they will always contact us to make a decision if needed in the production, sometimes a radius can not be obtained with the tool they have f.ex.

first prototype f-14 pitot watches

custom f-14 tomcat rotor pitot watches

With the prototype in hand, any final decisions can be made before mass production starts. In this case we decided to change the movement from a Miyota to the more well known and reliable Seiko NH 35A. With a change like that new tools need to be made to make the case and it can be costly, but in the long run the watch will increase in value for the customer, and it need to be good quality that are reliable like the fighter jets itself.

Our future watches will primary concist of swiss made movements that fit the vision of our watches with a high standard in design, finish and mechanical parts.

 

Watch box
A good watch box to represent the watch is very important we feel. We been playing around to design a very unique watch box, but it became to costly and as a new watch brand we need to establish ourselves with good watches before we play around to much. The first watch prototype box looked good, but the paperbox didnt quite fit to our standard, and a new watch box from another company in black leather with a high finish in details was chosen to this project.