Instead of the energy from the mainspring flowing directly into the escapement, it must first pass through Arnold & Son’s continuous force mechanism. The regulated power supply charges a little hairspring, which releases a constant quantity of power to the tourbillon once per second. With this mechanism, there’ll nevertheless come a point when the energy released by the double barrels and the constant force mechanism drops below a stage that’s enough to keep up a regular output. While this happens, the watch stops rather than allowing an isochronal error to creep into the timekeeping.In accession to this intriguing solution, the Arnold & Son Continuous Force Tourbillon comes with a deadbeat seconds complication, which leads to the seconds hand to “tick” instead of sweep as you may expect in a mechanical timepiece. Outstanding consistency is attained as a result of the symmetry of the motion’s construction, as well as the fact that the continuous force escapement remains stationary throughout operation, whereas the tourbillon cage rotates once per minute. That is in an effort to reduce the influence of gravity on the escapement’s operation. Assuming, however, that this watch is not likely to be worn in the presence of strong magnetic fields (it’s barely acceptable for use on a construction site or while flying a helicopter, for instance), the complication perfectly matches the intended application.The Arnold & Son Constant Force Tourbillon watch is a limited edition of which only 28 will be made. It’s a 46mm 18ct rose gold case fitted using an anti-reflective sapphire crystal and a sapphire display back. The A&S5119 movement has 39 stones, a depth of 6mm, a 90-hour power reserve, and works at 21,600vph. The NAC grey mainplate as well as also the palladium-coated bridges are produced from nickel-silver and hand-finished with polished edges and brushed surfaces, gold screw-down chatons, and bevelled and polished screw heads. The movement is almost perfectly symmetrical, and each of the specialized components are observable on the dial-side. The three-dimensional movement architecture is designed to replicate the English heritage of marine chronometer structure. Cost is available on request.
Arnold & Son has a long and storied past filled with ornate complications that herald fine watchmaking and elegant design. In their newest addition to the Instrument Collection, the new Golden Wheel is updated from the previous model with touches like black numerals on the sapphire discs, a new outer ring on the dial, and a black ADLC dial plate. The Arnold & Son Golden Wheel Ref.1HVAR.M01A.C120A carries over the tradition of the Golden Wheel line, which was the first watch to have both wandering hours and true beat seconds complications together. A unique piece in an 18k red gold case, this watch looks as cool as ever.
The mother-of-pearl arc reaching from 10 to 2 provides a backdrop to the current hour that is displayed as a numeral that moves along a minute track, while the true or “dead” beat seconds are indicated by the central hand. The hours make their way to the top via three floating sapphire crystals that seem to hover above the dial with a simple arrow above each numeral to indicate the minutes. Wandering hours as a complication originates as far back as the 17th century, when it could be found in table clocks or those commissioned by such figures as Pope Alexander XII in 1656. Eventually, the craft made its way into pocket watches and as a result to modern wristwatches, which is quite a technical feat. Arnold & Son place a lot of emphasis on the fact that the Arnold & Son Golden Wheel is the world’s first wandering hour complication with true beat seconds in a wristwatch. True beat seconds, of course, create an effect in which the second hand “ticks” or “beats” each second rather than the customary sweeping motion typical of mechanical watches.
The new Arnold & Son Golden Wheel is housed in a 44mm 18k red-gold case with a 30-meter water-resistance and cambered sapphire crystals on the front and back. That’s not the only sapphire at work here, though. This new version features black numerals on the three sapphire discs as well as an ADLC treated dial plate with Côtes de Genève finishing and a newly designed outer ring, all of which promises to increase readability. The previous version featured golden numerals, so the black will surely ease the wearer’s eye here.
The Arnold & Son Golden Wheel is powered by the Arnold & Son manufacture self-winding A&S6018 that runs at 28,800vph and offers a 45-hour power reserve. Featuring hand-chamfered bridges, the movement is treated with palladium and has Côtes de Genève rayonnantes. The skeletonized weight is also palladium-treated and has smooth, brushed surfaces to create a fluid experience.
The update to the Arnold & Son Golden Wheel definitely increases the contrast and legibility of an already beautiful timepiece. I much prefer this variant to the previous for the inclusion of the black numerals on the sapphire discs alone. A wandering hours complication is rare, and Arnold & Son has managed to keep improving. It is always nice to see a brand not only take on the more complex complications, but pair them with special features such as the true beat seconds we have in this instance.
The Arnold & Son Golden Wheel comes paired with a dressy hand-stitched alligator leather strap in either brown or black. Pricing is $47,500. arnoldandson.com