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Polished surfaces and matte finishesBASELWORLD 2015 Preview: The MB&F MEGAWIND Final Edition

One of the factors that make MB&F Machines so distinctive is the focus on contrast: polished surfaces and matte finishes; precious metals with hard-working steel and titanium; tradition and avant-garde; and bright colours against monochromatic tones. Strong contrasts both catch the eye and engage the mind.

With MEGAWIND Final Edition, the closing model in the HM3 series, MB&F present what may well be the ultimate in contrast: light and dark. The darkness of the black PVDtreated 18k gold case and blackened 22k gold and titanium rotor is punctuated in the dark by the bright green glow of Super-LumiNova. And the light emanating steadily from the indications is in contrast to the stroboscopic flash of light as the rotor covers/uncovers a bright band of lume at the top of the movement.

For this Final Edition, MB&F has called on the latest high-performance Super-LumiNova available on the market today: GL C3 Grade A. This is not only the brightest but also the purest form of the luminescent material, recognisable by its typical green hue; while Super-LumiNova comes in many colours, the active pigments are always green and other colours partially mask the green glow.

Derived from the iconic HM3 series, MB&F's most successful model to date, MEGAWIND Final Edition combines an oversized winding rotor dial side with highly-legible time indication cones rising up from the asymmetric case: hours are displayed on the left, minutes on the right. An exceptionally-skilled artisan painstakingly applies SuperLumiNova on these conical indications by hand, one numeral after the other, with a small syringe – consistently squeezing out just the right amount of the luminescent paste.

While the viewer’s gaze will naturally be attracted towards the three-dimensional sculptures housing the hours and minutes, it is likely to be the giant battle-axe shaped winding rotor that mesmerises the eye as it swings unhurriedly, but indomitably over the meticulously hand-finished movement. It's in the dark however when the rotor really comes alive with light.

MEGAWIND is powered by the beautifully engineered, Jean-Marc Wiederrecht-designed HM3 engine. Placing the rotor and regulator on the dial side required an inverted movement, which was only possible thanks to two large high-tech ceramic bearings – visible through the display back – that efficiently transmit time up to the revolving hour and minute cones above. Rotating domes of this size and shape posed several technical challenges. The hour and minute domes are machined from solid blocks of aluminium, chosen for its optimal strength-to-weight ratio; this keeps energy requirements to an absolute minimum.

Close inspection of the case – which comprises over 50 separate components – is rewarded with a myriad of carefully considered details, including the bevelled perimeter of the rotor display crystal that adds visual flair as the angles catch and reflect flashes of light; the bespoke clover-head gold screws; and the cleverly integrated lugs attaching the strap.