Simply Abu Dhabi XX

9 3 S I M P LY A B U DH A B I A rnold & Son is a watchmaker in the ascendant. At the 2015 Baselworld the booth had doubled in size and the brand is on course to achieve the same level of expansion with watch production. The brand is currently producing around 1,000 pieces. A relatively small brand, it works alongside the movement maker Manufacture La Joux-Perret, whose vast knowledge dates back to the mid-18th century. John Arnold set up shop in London’s Strand in 1762 and throughout his life was widely regarded as one of the most inventive watchmakers of his era. This great tradition is honoured and continued with the launch of the new Constant Force Tourbillon. A true manufacture – the French terminology for watch manufacturers who develop and produce their own movements in-house – Arnold & Son not only create their own mechanical movements, but are also distinguished from other watch manufacturers in that they create a newmovement for every single model, rather than using the same calibre for different models as many other brands do. Accordingly, an Arnold & Son timepiece is an assurance of hand-made artistry married with advanced technology. The Constant Force Tourbillon represents the pinnacle of this technological know- how. Part of the brand’s celebrated Royal Collection, the watch has been globally lauded and nominated in the second annual Dubai Salon des Grandes Complications. Now for the technical part, which is quite extraordinary as constant force is considered an almost unattainable goal in watchmaking. The difficulty in achieving constant force is keeping the release of energy unchanged. But if a timepiece is powered by the energy of a mainspring, which releases energy at a variable rate depending on the stages of being unwound (3/4 wound down and the energy release is slower), then how is perfect consistency achieved? How do you arrive at an escapement that keeps perfectly even time? There are several ways of keeping the flow of energy constant over the normal gear train between the mainspring and the escapement. One is a fusée-chain transmission system, often seen in pocket watches. Another method is to directly alter the balance, and the third choice, which Arnold & Son have opted for, is to deploy a remontoire – a secondary source of power that runs the timekeeping mechanism and is itself periodically rewound by the mainspring. The two mainspring barrels seen on the symmetrical, skeletonised layout of the Constant Force Tourbillon work together – one powers the gear train and the other provides a back-up store of energy. When the first barrel’s torque drops below a certain point of consistency, the second barrel restores it. This keeps the rate consistent through the 90 hours of the Constant Force Tourbillon’s power reserve. The patented constant force mechanism drives not only the new 60-second tourbillon but also the true-beat seconds hand. The tourbillon at 4:30 and the constant-force mechanism at 7:30 balance out the architecture of this watch and make for a complete and harmonious visual effect. The feel is reminiscent of the Arnold & Son predecessor, the TB88, which the brand first launched in 2011, while retaining its own singular appeal. The Executive Vice President, Phillipe Boven, has overseen a masterpiece in the creation of the Constant Force Tourbillon, and he has stated that the company’s growth will continue via more brand awareness through advertising, more marketing and new points of sale, and with distribution to more retailers. The Arnold & Son Constant Force Tourbillon is a limited edition of 28 pieces, all encased in rose gold with sapphire on both front and back. The new A&S 5119 movement is manually wound and contains 39 jewels. The glorious whole is presented on a suitably elegant brown alligator strap. (Retail Price is $197,500)