The latest Wilbur watch is out of this world.

While the Wilbur LEO is round and rests on the wrist like a traditional watch, its sculptural, multi-part titanium case does not enclose traditional hour, minute and seconds hands. The LEO instead displays the time in an unusual manner on a dial that looks like a satellite tumbling its way around Earths orbit.

The Wilbur LEO

At the center of this 48.5mm by 46mm titanium puzzle the LEO displays the hour prominently and digitally. 

The hour digit that appears in the LEO’s central aperture is actually a mash-up of two otherwise indecipherable symbols that meet once per hour.

One clear sapphire disks and another brushed-black sapphire disk rotate twice a day on either side of the hour display. When they meet, those ‘alien’ symbols form the correct hour digit at the dial’s center. 

To display minutes and seconds, the LEO returns to earth, displaying each at the end of fixed bridges that double as hands.

Wilbur’s other-worldly method of creating the hour digit is put into practice by Swiss movement engineering company Concepto, and is a global premiere.

Jason Wilbur, company founder and chief designer, explains that the LEO took him seven years to finalize. The idea originated from learning about the Roswell, NM, ‘alien’ stories.

Jason Wilbur in his design studio.

“I wanted to create something that sprang from learning in my youth about the Roswell incident with all its alien stuff,” he recalls. 

For the LEO, Wilbur created a type of coded language to feed the unusual jump hour display. 

“No one on Earth who saw those pieces would know what the Roswell symbols mean. So I created my own code. On the watch the hours come together with coded symbols,” he adds.

Limited Editions 

Wilbur will make fifty examples of the LEO in its initial JW 1.1 version, but he plans to eventually build three-hundred LEO watches in a variety of hues and with customized finishes and materials.

The LEO complements WILBUR’s existing lineup, which also includes the EXP watch and the Launch Edition, both of which are square-cased modular watches built with an artful mix of steel, ceramic and silicon components.

“We’ll make those in about 5,000 units per year,” he explains. “Two models are on the website now and two more are coming.” He notes that these modular designs offer him the creative leeway to create some ‘crazy’ Wilbur watches. 

The Wilbur LEO JW1.1 is priced starting at $32,500. 

Specifications: The Wilbur LEO JW1

Case: 48.50mm X 46.00mm X 16.50mm 8-part modular titanium (materials can vary by edition), sapphire crystals w/ anti-reflective coating, 30 meters of water resistance, hand finished , exhibition back.

Movement/Dial: In-house Engine One automatic jump-hour, made in Switzerland by Concepto,, hours displayed on proprietary sapphire & aluminum jump-hour disks shown under central window, minutes on hubless ring disc (fixed pointer on bridge) and seconds on small disc (fixed pointer on bridge). JW1 movement chassis,JW 1 rotor

Strap: Black silicone with Cordura option.

Base price: $32,500. 

California-based Wilbur expands its EXP collection with the EXP C-1, a new model encased in black ceramic and a customized gold alloy.

The new watch is the first edition of the eight-sided, nine-part EXP case Wilbur has built using a precious metal. The EXP-C1 joins two existing EXP offerings, one with a steel case and another with a ceramic/steel case.

The new gold model adds an option to collectors in search of a more luxurious version of the Wilbur EXP, a 41.5mm open-worked, three-hand watch with date.

“We fell in love with a set of champagne gold wheels on a Porsche GT2 and set out to replicate the color,” explains Wilbur founder Jason Wilbur. “We wanted a modern and futuristic gold not a traditional gold, so we developed our own.”

He notes that the contrast between the matte black ceramic case-core and the TechGold steel lugs and bezel makes for a “super modern and unique version of a gold watch.”

The new Wilbur EXP C-1.

The EXP fits into the Wilbur collection between the entry model called Launch Edition and the new, highly customized LEO. Like the other Wilbur designs, the EXP offers a futuristic three-dimensional architectural design that exposes its automatic movement, which appears to be floating within its skeletal case. The watch’s chapter ring seems to float above a semi-transparent dial that clears the view to the automatic movement. 

Like all EXP models, the C1 version is built in the United States using a Sellita automatic movement at its base, modified and regulated in-house by Wilbur. The watchmaker also makes a selection of colorful silicone straps for the EXP-C1, all of which can be quickly changed by the wearer.

Price: $7,125. 

Wilbur EXP silicone strap options.

Specifications: Wilbur EXP-C1

Case:  41.50mm by 41.50mm by 14.70mm ceramic & Tech Gold DLC (not including lugs & crown), 9-Part Modular Exo-Chassis, sapphire crystals with anti-reflective coating, 50 meters water resistance, hand finished, exhibition back.

Movement: Wilbur-modified, in-house regulated Sellita automatic with 38-hours of power reserve. 

Dial: Suspended, 3-D with hand-finished details, semi-transparent dial, floating chapter ring, time and date, EXP rotor. 

Straps: Standard straps or silicone quick-change in multiple colors, ballistic nylon and cordura options available, bolt-on buckle.