The Solid Watch
I joined the solid watch project as a backer way back when. More than a year ago it was finally funded – at over $100,000 raised. The designs looked really interesting, so I took a chance.
I didn’t realize at the time that it would be over a year before it was completed. That’s a long time! Worse, Henry wasn’t keen on lots of communication via the kickstarter project page, and when he did it was often terse. Understandably, backers were frustrated with the lack of updates and pace of the project. Equally understandably, Henry was likely frustrated with the attitude of some of the backers (and this might have led, in part, to some of Kickstarters changes to their ToS).
I, too, was impatient, but when i started seeing a few pictures from backers who received their watches, there was a little glimmer of hope.
Having now laid hands on it – the pictures on Kickstarter didn’t do it justice. It is much bigger than I realized – by diameter as well as in thickness. And the winding mechanism is, in a word, huge.
But the rawness of the metalwork and leather strap are perfect. the exposed movement looks beautiful. It will take a little getting used to – I feel like it will bump into every doorway I walk through for the next few days. But it sure is a conversation starter and the look is spectacular.
What I love about Kickstarter is that it enables projects like this, with some real craftsmanship. I wish we could convince people like Henry to communicate as much as the people behind the Cosmonaut project (they wrote volumes about their travails as they attempted to get the stylus “just right”). But it isn’t shopping – the estimated delivery dates should be treated as fantasy for the hardware projects.
And yet. These projects would never happen without a funding source like Kickstarter. So I’ll be careful which projects I back, and how much I’m backing them for. But I’ll probably keep dabbling in Kickstarter because it is where ideas get a chance to live as real products you can touch and hold.
If you have patience you could order a solid watch from www.henrywatch.com. I think you’ll be pleased with the product, but you may be frustrated by the wait at current production schedule. Still, as pebble watch backers are finding, apparently a good watch is not easy to make quickly! Actually any good hardware may take some additional process refinement to make efficiently at a reasonable scale.