The first perpetual mechanical timepiece: Cabestan Sol Invictus

This is quite the amazing timepiece. The Sol Invictus puts a modern spin on the perpetual motion machine, using micromotors, solar cells, and a chain system to create an incredibly complicated (and incredibly cool looking) timepiece. The is the first watch to combine a chain & fusée with drums and vertical tourbillon in a watch, and the result is stunning.

Designed by Jean-François Ruchonnet, who was working with Marc Alfieri to put a vertical display movement into the center. The designer then put solar cells at both ends of the timepiece, and concealed micro-motors and batteries under the cells. The end result is an steampunk-esque combination of gears and drums, proudly displayed via the front crystal as well as a see through back. Each one is hand made by swiss gnomes after the customer orders it, and for good reason. Retail on this timepiece will set you back $563,624.56 US. Now THAT’S a big boy watch.

[via Hodinkee]



  • Drums? That’s cool. Now add some bagpipes and you’ll REALLY have a killer watch! But the case would have to be black, wouldn’t it?

  • Ben

    Please provide a larger photo!

  • Joe

    As usual, its always the early adopters who pay more. Won’t they be surprised when there’s a $100 credit issued to buyers who wait until next month?

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  • randall

    Joe, That’s actually a very funny comment. I like your sense of humor.

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  • What’s _really_ funny are the 56 cents tagged on the end LOL

  • yes please provide a bigger photo i suddenly got interested with your post ! thnx mate!!

  • Wow what a beautiful watch. Like everyone else said we could use a bigger photo, other than this was great!

  • Please provide a larger photo!