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H.P Hercules

H.P Hercules

The First Watch to Conquer the "Killer Mountain"

In 1953, Austrian mountaineer Hermann Buhl became the first to reach the summit of the Nanga Parbat (8’126M) otherwise know as "The Killer Mountain" due to the 31 lives lost before Buhl's successful climb.

Buhl and his expedition crew required a reliable and robust watch and were equipped with Hercules timepieces made by the watchmaking atelier Henzi & Pfaff.

The watches proved to be reliable, robust, and precise timekeepers during their adventure. After none of the experimental clocks failed, Henzi & Pfaff placed the proven reliability under extreme weather conditions at the centre of everything they did.

A Brief History of Henzi & Pfaff (H.P)

  • 1920's: Robert Pfaff founded the manufactory in Pforzheim 
  • After WWII: Robert Henzi joined as a partner and founded the new company.
  • 1952: the Caliber 101 was developed. Henzi & Pfaff employed more than 200 people in their manufactory in Stein Germany
  • 1957: HP added the Cal 102 and 103 to their catalog,
  • 1953: Sales surpass 1 million pieces.
  • 1953: HP is chosen by Hermann Buhl for his attempt to summit the Nanga Prabat in the Himalayan range for the first time. This new line of watches were branded "Hercules" to convey an image of strength & reliability
  • 1960: The Pfaff family fell into a financial crisis and Robert Henzi took over the company on his own. 
  • 1972: with the assault of the quartz crisis, the company folded and ceased operations.
  • 2022: HP Hercules is revived by a young Dutch Watchmaker Adriaan Trampe
  • 2023: Hercules is available at The Independent Collective in Australia and Hong Kong

HP Hercules Today

It took three years to create a bespoke, unique movement especially made for Hercules. The new models are Fully developed and hand made in the Swiss Jura mountains, a small nod to their alpinist heritage.

Through the caseback you can see the engraved height lines of the Nanga Parbat mountains. All are filled with Swiss BGW9 SuperLuminova, creating a magical effect in the dark.

After being assembled by hand, the complete watch is tested by Timelab in Switzerland for an official “Observatoire Chronométrique+” certification. When the watch passes this test it can be called a “Chronometer”. Furthermore, the extra-large barrel and mainspring ensure a long power reserve of more than 70 hours.

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