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BASELNEWS 2010The Magnificent Inheritor - DeWitt Tourbillon Force Constante à Chaîne

The Tourbillon Force Constante à Chaîne most definitely belongs to the exclusive circle of highly complicated masterpieces. A success story with a bright future, as DeWitt introduces in 2010 a most pleasant and eye-catching declination, combining 18-carat rose gold with DeWitt’s emblematic chocolate-colour. This creation releases a truly warm and reassuring ambiance; the perfect atmosphere to peacefully observe the mechanical wonders of this work of art.

Tourbillon Force Constante: The Glorious Pioneer

When it was launched in 2006, the Tourbillon Force Constante represented a landmark development in watchmaking history, providing the answer to a question as old as the mechanical movement itself: how can one ensure the perfectly regular transmission of energy to the mechanism?

This apparently simple question calls for a technically complex response. Between a fully wound and a depleted power-reserve, the barrel-spring supplies a steadily diminishing amount of energy as it uncoils. This difference naturally affects a watch's regularity and precision. This specific concern has been the subject of endless research since the 17th century, but no concept has resolved the problem as brilliantly as the DeWitt Tourbillon Force Constante.

DeWitt's solution involves inserting an additional mechanism into a traditional mechanical movement in order to exchange a motive power, which may be variable or irregular (effort of gear-train or barrel-spring), for another, perfectly constant force – whatever the degree of winding of the barrel. In other words, the device is designed to transmit impulses whose energy remains identical and regular, however taut the barrel-spring, thanks to three additional wheels: one to ensure correct gear operation; and two intermediate wheels between the motive force (barrel) and the regulator (Tourbillon).

This solution absorbs the force generated by the barrel once every second, and redistributes it to the Tourbillon every 10 seconds. To see how the system operates, watch the elegant inertia weight of the constant force device (in the shape of a cross with its four arms ending a hammer) as it completes 6 revolutions per minute. The device also features its own balance-spring. This enables the mainspring to be constantly supplied with a level of energy superior to that required by the Tourbillon regulator (DeWitt Patent).

Tourbillon Force Constante à Chaîne: The Magnificent Inheritor

By designing a system that relays energy to the power-reserve indicator, DeWitt has introduced a landmark innovation to the Tourbillon Force Constante. Rotating the crown when winding the barrel-spring drives a miniature chain consisting of 192 hand-crafted elements, which uses an intermediate wheel to activate the power-reserve indicator sliding on a worm screw. If the pointer is in the red zone, the power-reserve is close to zero; when it is in the green zone, it means the barrel-spring is sufficiently wound.

This ingenious mechanism (the patented, mechanical manually-wound Calibre DW 8050) is a marvel in itself – and has aesthetic panache to match. Dial openings reveal the complexity of the mechanism and its various devices. The chain provides amazing balance. The visual harmony extends beyond mere mechanics. There is a density and personality about this timepiece that is truly exceptional.

The Tourbillon Force Constante à Chaine embodies the finest values of DeWitt: over and above its technical sophistication, it provides a bridge between a glorious past and a future rich in promise – a vision of authentic luxury that takes innovation to heights beyond a dream.