True to English watchmaking heritage, Arnold & Son unveils
the TES Blue Tourbillon, with the hand-finished A&S8100 calibre
with sapphire barrel bridge and blue main plate. This defining
timepiece is part of the Royal Collection which combines classic
styling with leading-edge technology.
The tourbillon movement, one of the most elegant complications
in the world of horology, has played a crucial role in Arnold &
Son's history. An exceptional watchmaker, John Arnold was an active
participant in one of the most extraordinary partnerships in the
world of innovative horology. Indeed, both he and A.-L. Breguet
worked closely, sharing both their knowledge and passion. Evidence
of their partnership is A.-L. Breguet's first ever tourbillon
mounted in John Arnold's No. 11 movement, a watch that can be found
today in London's British Museum.
Aesthetically what sets Arnold & Son's new TES Blue
Tourbillon apart is its modern take on the distinguished "English"
movement design: the barrel bridge for instance has the traditional
English wave-form but is made out of sapphire to allow a maximum
view on the openworked barrel, wheels and the blue main plate. The
tourbillon and motion-work bridges are classically triangular but
are skeletonised. The combination of sapphire and open-worked
bridges gives an incredible depth and three-dimensional effect to
the watch and thus a modern look. The contemporary aspect is
further underscored by the vibrant blue of the main plate.
The unique Arnold & Son design is also reflected by the
three-spoke wheels. This same three-spoke design can also be found
in the tourbillon cage and the openings in the main plate. The
decoration of the main plate is a reminiscence of an old guilloché
pattern found on the cases of antique Arnold & Son pocket
watches. The main plate is also skeletonised around the barrel and
the tourbillon carriage allowing to look through the movement and
therefore through the watch itself.
When compared to more conventional tourbillons found today, the
TES Blue model is said to be "inverted", that is to say most
technical elements and visually interesting features are shown on
the dial side, when those would normally be hidden on the reverse
of the dial. Other typically English technical idiosyncrasies will
seduce even the most demanding watch connoisseurs. Take, for
instance, the solid gold chatons or the symmetrical layout of the
movement; to achieve such a feat requires overcoming a number of
technical challenges. Thus the barrel spring and the tourbillon
cage are centred along the watch's longitudinal axis. When
examining the winding system and the gear train, one notes the
traditional construction, which uses wheels with asymmetrical and
curved tooth known as "wolf's teeth", used to improve the
smoothness of the overall movement.
It goes without saying that every finishing touch on this
striking piece, with such movement decoration as hand-chamfered
bridges and, even more demanding, hand-chamfered wheels with
polished edges has been done by hand by Arnold & Son's master
watchmakers, hence bringing more brilliance and depth to each
This unique timepiece will be produced in a limited edition of
25 pieces, in a 44 mm 18-karat white gold case with a blue CVD main
plate, a sapphire barrel bridge and palladium treated bridges,
individually numbered and engraved.