While the alarm watch could well date back to the 15th century, the oldest-known alarm wristwatch is said to be ornamental one that was made in 1876, according to Michael Philip Horlbeck in his book, The Alarm Wristwatch.
What was alarming (pun definitely intended) was how the wearer was notified by the alarm. In the oldest-known alarm wristwatch elaborately set with gems with a dial that has a decorative cover, it is said that a pin will pass through the base of the watch and prick the wearer’s skin upon the set alarm time.
Thankfully, that “sadomasochistic” archaic system is no longer in use today. There are only but a few brands these days that equip their mechanical wristwatches with the alarm function.
Cyrus Watches is one of the few. The brand’s Klepcys Réveil features not just a new and more refined sporty case but the alarm function, one that is stated to last for 16 seconds after being fully wound. The alarm will not prick the wearer but is sounded with hammer strikes.
What is striking (pun intended) is that the hammer can be seen on the dial side. The off-centred 24-hour dial between four and five o’clock is used for setting the alarm time.
Based on our hands-on experience with the Cyrus Klepcys Réveil, the alarm sounded for around 19 seconds. Perhaps the weaker strikes (as the power winds down) towards the end are not counted.
We actually recorded the alarm of the Cyrus Klepcys Réveil at the Cyrus booth during the 2015 BaselWorld watch fair. Despite the background noise, the Cyrus alarm was very audible.
To listen, turn up the volume and play the audio below. Cyrus Watches Managing Director Ruben Mira can be heard and he was the one who activated the alarm. Reference the timer on the left of the audio play to check the alarm strike time.
Another feature is the day and night display which is located at the 11 o’clock position.
The Cyrus movement, the CYR1280, was made in partnership with Jean-François Mojon.
Other related articles from www.timewerke.com that may be of interest:
i. Hublot Big Bang Alarm Repeater: Simple programming
ii. Cyrus Klepcys Chronograph: How it works