Radioactive watch is really radioactive …but safe.

Design submitted by Sam from Germany.

Sam Says: I was experimenting with hexagon based numbers that are derived from the classic 7-segment-digits everybody knows. There were many ways to do it and one of them strongly resembled the radioactive sign. I played around with the time display and saw, displaying all four numbers next to each other doesn’t look good and would take the iconic expression away from them. So I decided to use a phased display like the Denshoku, displaying one number at a time. That way, each number comes into it’s own.

On a separate consideration, I thought about how to properly implement tritium gas tubes into a watch concept. Those are already popular in watch design, giving certain details a low-light-visibility. Tritium is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen which sends out beta-rays. Encased with a phosphorescent illuminant in a non-hydrogen-permeable borosilicate tube, tritium becomes a safe “always on” light source. Well not really always on. Tritium has a half-life of 12 years. The gas tubes can easily be replaced.

At the press of a button, the phased display starts showing the four digits of the time, then a separator symbol (the radioactive sign) followed by the four digits of the date. It’s like causing a chain reaction… Automatic pulsing animations let the watch look like an autonomic (and atomic) device.

I’m playing with the radioactivity theme here… The tritium is really harmless and one cannot ignore, the radioactive sign has a striking appearance. Combining both elements into one watch is a cool thing I think and definitely a communication starter.

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Radioactive watch is really radioactive ...but safe., 4.4 out of 5 based on 105 ratings

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26 Responses to “Radioactive watch is really radioactive …but safe.”

  1. avatar Gabriel_BB says:

    great work Sam. I like the concept a lot. I love tritium tubes and plan to buy a tritium watch.

    My point is …… do you think the tritium tubes can be seen easily in the direct light ? I know that they glow nicely in the dark, but how about in the middle of the day ?

    Once again, awesome concept !!!!! 5 stars and yes.

    • avatar Samukun says:

      Thank you Gabriel for the input!

      They are seen but don’t stand out in a special way almng daytime. But that’s ok, it’s icon time then. The cool thing is the night time, you take the watch off, place it on your little night table and it stays active while you doze off slowly ;)

  2. avatar Firdaus says:

    Awesomest! Can’t resist! *****

  3. avatar Laszlo says:

    Wow! Amazing concept! I like the numbers, i like the design i like the whole!
    Great work Sam, congrats! Sign me up for this! Instant ignition, cash burner!

  4. avatar Andrew Joy says:

    I previous submitted a drawing of a design based on a Radioactive Symbol which I called: Isotope. However this this concept was not published & I was unsure of whether to resubmit my Isotope Design because, of the recent Japanese Earthquake, Tsunami & Nuclear power plant crisis. For Fear of my design would insult the Japanese People. So Well done for Getting this published.

    • avatar Samukun says:

      Oh that’s tough Andrew.
      Shortly after the incident in Fukushima, an alternative design of the Active Reactor watch got posted. The concept was by a japanese. I think Tokyoflash didn’t actively deny your concept. There have been some changes in the past, maybe the design got lost. I would suggest to resubmit it. I did it with some of my concepts too. Good luck!

  5. avatar dzign555 says:

    Arrgh…I’m running away…from my own wrist!

    :) 5*

  6. avatar Pete says:

    Nice one Sam! Loving the numbers, works well and looks cool! 5/Y Best of luck Sir! :D

  7. avatar Patrick says:

    This Watch requires a training for its reading, to memorize the symbols corresponding to numbers.
    Otherwise the idea is brilliant simplment, as Habit.
    With all its magnificent projects, Sam could open a store all by himself!
    5 * / Yes.

    • avatar dzign555 says:

      Yeah, with these type of watches, even if you understand the code, it still takes a while to be able to read the time quickly. With my Hanko watch, I still get a bit bamboozled. Curious. (Not a criticism, just an observation.)


  8. avatar Matt says:

    Love this idea. The way to read the numbers is quite simple and easy, and doesn’t take time to memorize. It would be cool to wear a radioactive symbol right on my wrist!

  9. avatar Samukun says:

    @ Fir: Thanks Master Fir!
    @ Laszlo: Thanks alot Laszlo, very nice comment :D
    @ Patrick: It’s cool you like it! Oh yes please use the number overview for the training. You can see, every segment is taken from the classical numbers. Hm, I should do something with my concepts indeed… Merci Patrick!
    @ Matt: Yeah I thought the recognition would be rather intuitive – good that it works for you!

  10. avatar Heather says:

    LOVE those digits! 5*

  11. avatar David says:

    How much is tritium?…hehe….

    • avatar Samukun says:

      Oh it’s affordable. There are watches that cost 100$ and they use 15 little tritium tube markers (12 for the hours, 3 for the hands). Keychains with bigger vials are around 25 bucks, depending on the size. Cool stuff :)

  12. avatar Samukun says:



  13. avatar Mr.Taco says:

    Looks Awesome!

  14. avatar Mr.Taco says:

    Great but I just wish the number 1 was just the top and bottom lit up other than that good job!

    • avatar Samukun says:

      Thanks for the input Taco!! I see your point. But I think, this would look closer to an 8. Actually I’m using such an 8 in another concept, while the 1 of the same concept looks like the one from Beta Decay. I must admit, the 8 here does not look like an 8 but all numbers follow one rule and that’s the key to learning them.

      Cool, that you do watch hopping and share your thoughts with the blog :)

  15. avatar Makkovik says:

    an amazing watch, even if I don’t like the 4 segments to tell the time. ( on all watch ) I might buy, even if it was only for my personal collection.

    • avatar Samukun says:

      Fair enough Makko :D I can see that the time telling method is a bit uncomfortable. In order to keep the sign and numbers clean, I split time into phases… Always pro and contra :) Thank you for the comment Makko!

  16. avatar Samukun says:

    Wow this ended quickly… shorter half-life than expected ;)

    Yeah this was fun! I see the little issues, this concept has for some of you, but it’s cool how the watch was recieved generally. Thank you all for your input and support!

    Radiating regards,
    Sam from Germany