Perhaps one of the most beloved independent watchmakers out there, MB&F has grown from Max Büsser's passion project following his successful Opus collection with Harry Winston into one of the biggest names in independent horology since brands like F.P. Journe, Daniel Roth, and Franck Muller burst onto the scene in the 1990s. Taking a collaborative approach to horology like what he championed with Harry Winston, Max Büsser & Friends – hence MB&F, has developed into a brand that creates timepieces celebrating Max's talents as a creative leader and watchmakers from across the globe.
Much in the same vein, the MB&F HM3 Sidewinder (launched in 2009) is a collaborative project undertaken by MB&F and Jean-Marc Wiederrecht's Atelier Genevois d'Horlogerie, or AGENHOR as it is called. Founded in 1997, AGENHOR focuses on developing particularly exceptional movements in terms of their aesthetic design, technical specifications, and physical architecture. As such, the HM3 Sidewinder is an avant-garde timepiece that takes inspiration from the shape of a spacecraft – something that is abundantly clear with just a quick glance of its 18ct white gold case.
With portions of its case explicitly designed to showcase its intriguing mechanisms, the HM3 Sidewinder features a sizeable semi-circular aperture on the top of its construction that displays the Sidewinder's 22kt gold battle axe-shaped winding rotor. With 304 parts, the Sidewinder's movement is set into the watch upside-down and uses two cones that lie perpendicular to the wrist to display the hours, minutes, and day/night indicator. Using the semi-circular periphery of the winding rotor, the Sidewinder also utilizes a date wheel to show the date as it rotates past an arrow engraved into the case at the 11 o'clock position next to the winding crown at 9 o'clock.
A technically impressive timepiece, the Sidewinder uses two ball bearings to send enough torque to the movement to power its rather unusually designed functions. A uniquely styled watch thanks to its rather unconventional inspiration, the HM3 Sidewinder is a large watch with its unique case design coming in at 50mm x 47mm. Carrying impressive wrist presence through its design, the Sidewinder's hidden lugs allow it to wear tight the wrist and more petite than one might assume from the onset. Distinctive, unique, and full of character, the HM3 Sidewinder showcases exactly what MB&F is all about as it marries external technical expertise with Max's vivacious design language to create a watch that few other brands would have the creative control to even dream of.