Topping the pyramid of Blancpain’s Basel 2010 new releases is the Carrousel Répétition Minutes Le Brassus. This grand complication, for the first time in watchmaking history, combines a flying one-minute carrousel and a cathedral gong minute repeater.
The Le Brassus grand complication builds upon Blancpain’s exclusive flying one minute carrousel which debuted two years ago and which established a host of world firsts. Only a very few watch brands are capable of producing a 100% in house minute repeater movement. Blancpain stands completely alone in having developed not only an entirely new cathedral gong minute repeater mechanism, but marrying it with its one minute flying carrousel. In the creation of this pioneering movement, Blancpain has created several key innovations for the repeater, including a system for fixing the cathedral gong rings to the inside of the case to produce extraordinary sound and a system which fully protects the movement from damage if the crown is turned while the repeater is running. As befits such a complicated movement, the red gold movement bridges and mainplate are individually hand engraved.
Few in the watchmaking industry are able to offer the minute repeater complication and of those only a handful have developed their own minute repeater movement. Since the late 80s, Blancpain has developed and steadily produced not one but two different minute repeater movements. In 2010, Blancpain changes that total to three, with the introduction of the Carrousel Répétition Minutes Le Brassus.
This entirely new grand complication showcases a host of exclusive Blancpain innovations. The minute repeater features a cathedral gong striking mechanism, meaning that its sounding rings are extra long, circling the movement one and a half times to produce superior richness in the sound. The transmission of sound from the movement through the case remains a classic challenge for minute repeater developers. Blancpain has met that challenge by attaching the cathedral gong rings to the inside of the case, a solution which achieves industry leading volume and clarity. Further enhancing the performance of the repeater, Blancpain has developed a special flying regulator for the movement.
Historically repeaters have been vulnerable to damage if the owner attempts to change the time while the repeater is engaged and sounding. An innovation addresses this problem; actuation of the repeater disconnects the mechanism from the crown, thus eliminating the risk of damage if the crown is manipulated. As befits such a complicated movement, the red gold movement bridges and mainplate are individually hand engraved.
The heart of this new Le Brassus timepiece is Blancpain’s one minute flying carrousel, which established a multitude of world firsts when it was introduced two years ago, including the world’s first one minute carrousel, first flying carrousel and first carrousel in a wristwatch.
This unique combination of carrousel and minute repeater debuts in a 45mm red gold case with a brushed white gold chapter ring and red gold applied numerals. The combination of an opened dial center and sapphire case back allows a perfect view of the complex minute repeater mechanism and hand carving of the movement bridges.