Stock Up On Time: 11 "long-playing" Hours

Stock Up On Time: 11 "long-playing" Hours
Stock Up On Time: 11 "long-playing" Hours

Video: Stock Up On Time: 11 "long-playing" Hours

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How long can a mechanical watch last after the mainspring has been fully wound? And without additional crown rotation. This determines the power reserve - a technical characteristic, which is worth talking about exclusively in a practical sense. How convenient is it to use the watch? The overwhelming majority of mechanical watches sold today are equipped with an automatic winding system - according to common sense, the reserve of energy in the barrel should at least be enough so that the watch, having spent the night on the nightstand, does not stop by the morning. This basic requirement must always be met, and it is generally met. Usually the "mechanics" have a power reserve of 40 to 50 hours - this is more than enough for an automatic watch.

The three-day factory is considered even more convenient: it allows you to leave the clock on the weekend, and on Monday morning it will tick regularly. Therefore, in recent years, many watch brands have been trying to switch to mechanisms with just such a factory. For example, all new Rolex calibers, including the Daytona chronograph movement, as well as the in- house Breitling chronographs, Swatch's Sistem51 and Tissot's Powermatic 80 are built.

Anything beyond a week's power reserve might be considered a quirk, but it is where technical overkill is involved that we are dealing with art, not practical necessity. When developing "long-playing" mechanisms of wristwatches, engineers began to increase the number of barrels. Two or even three today will not surprise anyone. Over 15 years ago, Chopard introduced the LUC Quattro, a four -barrel movement, while Hublot has an 11-barrel MP-05 caliber with a 50-day power reserve. In early 2016, the Vaucher Manufacture Fleurier movement factorypresented to the public the conceptual Selfine movement with a silicon-based regulator - despite a single barrel, the caliber provides a 70-day power reserve. I would also like to recall the wonderful watchmaker and researcher of chronometry Anthony Randall, who in 1973, by order of the founder of the Chicago Watch Museum Time Museum (in 1999, the museum was closed), made a 58 mm pocket watch with an annual winding, and without the use of silicon technologies.

knows at least 10 modern “long-playing” watches, whose power reserve goes beyond the standard eight-day range.

Royal Oak Concept Tourbillon Chronograph, Audemars Piguet

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21600 vph), two barrels.

The 10-day winding Caliber 2941 is powered by two barrels. In principle, the power reserve of this movement could be 12 days, but the designers “cut off” one day with the maximum winding and one with the minimum, leaving a 10-day (to be precise, the company gives 237 hours) “plateau” when the variation spring tension remains within reasonable limits. The power reserve indicator required for a manual-winding model is complemented in this watch by a tourbillon and a chronograph with a linear minute counter.

Artelier Caliber 112, Oris

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21,600 vph), one barrel.

For the past three years, Oris has been developing its own ten-day winding movements based on a single large barrel design. The Artelier Caliber 112, new this year, is powered by the third generation Caliber 112. The watch is equipped with a proprietary non-linear power reserve indicator (as the energy of the mainspring dries up, the power reserve indicator hand moves faster), and also displays the time of the second time zone.

Radiomir 10 Days GMT Automatic, Panerai

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Automatic winding, balance frequency 4 Hz (28800 vph), three barrels.

To date, the Paneraevskiy Caliber P.2003 is the longest-playing movement with an automatic winding. The rare design with three barrels is complemented by another mechanical exotic: a linear power reserve indicator and a system that resets the seconds hand when the hands are eyed.

Patrimony Traditionnelle 14-Day Tourbillon, Vacheron Constantin

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Manual winding, balance frequency 2.5 Hz (18,000 vph), four barrels.

From the looks of this watch, you would never guess that it has a hefty level of power reserve. Especially if you have an exquisite skeletonized version with carved and engraved details of the mechanism. Of the necessary functions, they have a power reserve indicator, and of the "excesses" - the signature Vacheron tourbillon with a carriage in the form of a Maltese cross and the Geneva stamp, which makes mechanisms (and watches) to be made correctly and beautifully.

Master Grande Tradition Répétition Minutes, Jaeger-LeCoultre

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21600 vph), two barrels.

The minute repeater is a very correct additional function of the "long-playing" mechanism, since this device works from the energy obtained when the repeater trigger is cocked. The necessary power reserve indicator is complemented in this watch by a tension indicator supplied by two barrels: with its help the owner of the watch can assess whether the movement is operating in a favorable tension range or has gone beyond it.

Amadeo Fleurier Braveheart, Bovet

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Manual winding, balance frequency 2.5 Hz (18,000 vph), two barrels.

The exotic movement with two large barrels (the length of the spring providing the power reserve in each reaches 104 cm) corresponds to a non-trivial branded transformer case. Thanks to him, the Amadeo Fleurier Braveheart can be worn either side up (they show the time, respectively, on both), and also can be turned into a pocket or miniature table clock.

A high level of power reserve means a lot of force on the crown shaft, therefore, to reduce anticipated wear, Bovet's craftsmen have developed a possibly unprecedented design with a spherical differential gear, which can be seen in the specially made round aperture of the main dial. What is needed in this watch is a power reserve indicator with a 22-day scale, which is internally applied to a sapphire crystal. From the excess - the tourbillon.

Lange 31, A. Lange & Sohne

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21600 vph), two barrels.

Two huge barrels of this watch (each spring is 185 cm long) are placed one above the other: the developers from A. Lange & Sohne in this case did not fear excessively high tension. This is because energy is transmitted to the balance unit by a constant tension stroke, which feeds the intermediate spring every ten seconds. Since winding the watch with the crown to 31 days would be problematic, the company decided to make the model even more exotic by developing a unique key-operated winding system.

Quenttin Tourbillon, Jacob & Co.

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21,600 vph), seven barrels.

This watch is the earliest example of what can be called a "muscle car" in watchmaking. Developed by the now defunct movement factory BNB Concept, the seven - barrel movement has an unusual vertical arrangement, first used in a wristwatch by Parmigiani Fleurier (Bugatti Type 370 with a 10-day power reserve; no longer in production). From the necessary in the watch - the power reserve indicator, from the unnecessary - the side tourbillon. It takes two hundred turns of the crown to fully wind the movement. Since this presents certain difficulties for the owner of the watch, the product is offered in a box with a built-in electric motor for winding the watch.

T-1000, Rebellion

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Manual winding, balance frequency 2.5 Hz (18,000 vph), six barrels.

This watch, as its name implies, is designed to operate for a thousand hours from one complete winding of six drums, grouped in three on either side of the central part of the movement. Moreover, in each group, the barrels are connected through a chain drive. Like the Quenttin Tourbillon, this watch is made in a “monstrous” style, the layout of the movement is also vertical. The movement does not provide any technical means to compensate for variations in tension, so with a low degree of winding, this watch will apparently work as it should. You can wind up the watch using a special lever (bracket) built into the case.

MP-05 "LaFerrari" Sapphire, Hublot

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Manual winding, balance frequency 3 Hz (21,600 vph), eleven barrels.

This "monster" in a sapphire case is equipped with 11 barrels. It is unclear why there are not a dozen of them, which would be quite reasonable, given the link to the legendary car brand Ferrari. Obviously, winding up a 50-day watch mechanism is about the same as winding up a 12-cylinder Ferrari racing car: you need a special device to start. Therefore, Hublot's craftsmen have designed a special electrical device for winding, like the screwdriver that comes with the MP-05 watch. By the way, the first to come up with such a device, again in Parmigiani Fleurier - it was intended for the Bugatti Type 370 - so in watchmaking, the Bugatti brand was ahead of the Ferrari). Of the excesses, the MP-05 has only a tourbillon, of the necessary - a power reserve indicator.

Senfine, Parmigiani Fleurier

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Manual or automatic winding, balance frequency up to 16 Hz (115200 vph), one barrel.

So far, this is only a prototype, but its presentation at the Geneva SIHH exhibition in January 2016 made a splash. Indeed, the "grasshopper" move, realized by means of modern microelectronic technology, invented by the famous English watchmaker John Harrison in 1722, has significantly reduced friction losses. It seems that 70 days of power reserve for a normal movement in wristwatch format is far from the limit. The development of this topic will follow soon, probably already undertaken by developers of other brands: the company TAG Heuer, at least, is going to present something similar to the public (the details of the project are still classified) this summer.

We are looking forward to the continuation of the history of "long-playing" mechanisms, the topic turned out to be excitingly interesting.>

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