Turn the complex into simple Greubel Forsey’s new watch opens up a new horizon The perpetual calendar is one of the oldest complex watch functions, and Goppelfuss has carried out a revolutionary interpretation of this function, thus opening up a whole new horizon. The creative watchmakers of La Chaux-de-Fonds also incorporated the astronomical time difference function in their timepieces, showing how to add complication while simplifying this complication with clarity and ease of operation. .
With more than 6 major inventions, the pioneering tilting tourbillon is the focus of research and development, and the watchmaking industry has pushed the watchmaking industry beyond its unprecedented limits. We need to re-invent and re-create the “complex watch function” to return to the original meaning of this term, and at the same time prove that in the same field, the watchmaking industry is also in a state of permanent evolution-now is a good one opportunity! Both the innovative 35-degree dual balance wheel and the Universal Time (GMT), both technically and ergonomically, these two inventions provide a powerful springboard for the rejuvenation of the historic perpetual calendar function.
The perpetual calendar has always been one of the most representative and the longest history of complex clock functions. In the past, clergy used computus (Latin: calculation) to determine the religious and seasonal festivals of each quarter, and the ancient mechanical perpetual calendar, the “direct descendant” of computus, was an important tool for the beginning of rural society in the early Middle Ages. The astronomical clock of Strasbourg Cathedral is a typical example.
Comfort and simplicity
When reinvented this time, the astronomical time difference function was added to the perpetual calendar, and a variety of practical new functions and displays were incorporated to make the watch more concise and clear. The most important thing is to simplify all display functions, and use the bidirectional winding crown to set the perpetual calendar more easily. Although it has a complete display and function, the mechanical calculation device with astronomical time difference function is as simple as the ordinary date display function.
Today, we no longer need to read obscure instructions or use special tools to operate numerous buttons. If the high quality watch has been stopped for a few days and we just need to catch a flight right away, then you just need to pull out the crown and check the selection indicator near 2 o’clock. Turn the crown back and forth to change the calendar, and all other displays will change by themselves. If the set date is much beyond the current date, just go back until the correct date is displayed. Everything is so simple, direct and fun.
In order to overcome this technical challenge, Koppelfors developed a sophisticated coding device: a mechanical computing device that has obtained three patents. A set of cams with moving “fingers” change the display of the front and rear dials of the watch, and the entire mechanism can be fitted into the movement just right, without expanding the movement size. The cam responsible for the month displays the month through a window on the front, while moving the astronomical time difference scale on the back. The year cam controls the leap year display on the front and the season display on the back. The development of this encoding device not only subverts the traditional setting method of display functions, but also displays them on the front and back dials at the same time.
We only need to look at the small dial at 3 o’clock to clearly read the day of the week, date and month. These three windows line up here. The large date display makes the calendar extremely clear and easy to read.
Astronomical time difference
The astronomical time difference is worthy of our further explanation. The purpose of a timepiece is to measure time as regularly as possible; however, the orbit of the earth around the sun is elliptical. As the earth gets closer and closer to the sun, the speed is getting faster and faster, so the length of the interval between the two adjacent highest points of the sun, or the length of the solar day, will also change. This will cause an error of a few seconds between the length of the true solar day and the average solar day, which can accumulate up to 16 minutes in a year. Astronomical time difference is a conversion factor between true solar time and average solar time. If you want to read the true sun, you can check the small dial on the back to read the astronomical time difference of the currently displayed date.
In the spirit of “Universal Time”, Gao Peifusi continued to improve the time display function; the back of the watch was not only used to show exquisite craftsmanship, but also provided a new way of displaying time. The most frequently viewed calendar information, such as the day of the week, date, and month, is displayed in a straight line on the front dial; the less viewed information is displayed on the back of the watch. In this way, the front of the watch is used to display information that is frequently viewed, while the back is used to display information that is not frequently viewed, complementing each other.
On the back of the equation perpetual calendar, we will see the astronomical time difference, the season and the current year in four digits.
The information on the back is displayed on two overlapping transparent synthetic sapphire crystal glass plates. The first disc is driven by a date wheel, scaled in minutes, and is responsible for indicating the error between true solar time and average solar time.
The second dial rotates once a year and looks like a “devil fish”, divided into four red and blue areas, used to show whether the astronomical time difference is positive or negative. To understand the positive and negative conditions, check whether the red line (positive error) or the blue line (negative error) crosses the scale. This astronomical time difference display function is unprecedented, allowing us to more clearly interpret the earth’s elliptical orbit around the sun and the spring/autumn equinox and winter/summer solstice seasons.
The Formula Perpetual Platinum watch has a diameter of 43.5 mm and a thickness of 16 mm. This watch incorporates our fourth patented invention-a 24 second tourbillon tilted at 25 degrees. The balance wheel vibrates at a frequency of 21,600 vibrations per hour, and two rapidly rotating stacked barrels provide 72 hours of power storage and prevent excessive tension. This leaves room for the installation of a large balance with a card-free hairspring. The movement has a diameter of 37 mm (16.41 Leoni), a thickness of 9.55 mm, and is composed of 570 parts and 65 gems.