Saturday, August 30, 2014

Girard Perregaux & The Constant Escapement

It has been a long time since a significant development has hit the world of horology and with the Constant Escapement, I believe Girard Perregaux has hit the mark!

The Hour Glass hosted a lunch with Girard Perregaux and present was Stefano Macaluso who heads up the Product Development at GP. The luncheon was to showcase the Constant Escapement and a few new watches from the brand.

Stefano started by explaining how the Constant Escapement works and why this is a significant achievement in the world of horology. The idea came to the inventor while he was in a train and playing with a business card. For more on the tech specs, please visit the GP Website.
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The first Constant Escapement timepiece is a large 47mm timepiece largely due to the size of the escapement as well as the use of a double barrel to provide 6 days of power reserve. Well made as one would expect from GP for a watch like that. It is expected that the escapement will revolutionize watchmaking in quite a significant way.
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Unlike normal escapement, the constant escapement "releases" energy to the "heart" of the watch at a constant rate thereby ensuring a higher rate of accuracy whether the watch is fully wound or when it is coming to the end of its 6 days of power reserve.
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The escapement is made from Silicium and the lip-shaped or some call it butterfly-shaped escapement can be made smaller. At the back, you can also see the double twin barrel providing 8 days of power reserve. The back of the watch is amazing - the balance wheel held in place by the iconic bridges.
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Presented at the lunch were several iconic pieces from the Three Bridges Tourbillon collections. The Three Bridges Tourbillon is the icon of the brand and comes in several iterations. The most striking one I saw must be the Neo Tourbillon.
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The bridges are made from titanium coated with DLC and with the deeper case, the bridge extends over like an arch giving the watch a three dimensional look and feel. The black bridges also put a more sporty feel to this classic.
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The back of the watch revealing the prototype.
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A close up of the tourbillon. Pardon the pictures - all taken in restaurant lighting.
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Up next the Three Bridges Tourbillon in a Vintage 1945 case. The bridges in this one is straight unlike their earlier models which used the iconic bridge structure.
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A very handsome piece I must say. Well proportioned and a nice twist to the three bridges.
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The case is nicely curved so the watch sits well on the wrist - even for my small wrist, the watch wears very comfortably.
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Last but not least is the "regular" Three Bridges Tourbillon - iconic to the brand. In the very familiar round case.
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And the case back. You may not be able to see it, but the finishing on these timepieces are top notch.
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Presented at the luncheon was also the Triple Axis Tourbillon from GP but I shall leave it to another post for that.

I love the the Three Bridges Tourbillon in any fashion and it is definitely on my list of dream watches - actually on the list that says "beyond reach". Hopefully I get a chance one day to acquire one at an affordable price. Till then, I will continue dreaming about it. Thanks to the Hour Glass for hosting the luncheon.

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