On Baselworld 2014 we had a meeting at Girard-Perregaux, with Willy Schweizer amongst other things conservateur from the Girard-Perregaux museum. In this article we take a look at the Girard-Perregaux Tri-Axial Tourbillon. Limited at 10 pieces you get a very special watch.
A complex mechanism aimed at optimizing chronometric precision, the tourbillon has been a specialty of Girard-Perregaux for over a century and a half. Once again, the Manufacture at La Chaux-de-Fonds demonstrates its mastery of the subject, taking its search for precision even further with the Tri-Axial Tourbillon.
This development embodies the quintessence of time measurement based on the physical principle of the elimination of disturbances, the first being the Earth’s gravitational pull. As it is designed on three planes instead of the traditional one, the Tri-Axial Tourbillon optimizes its performance and showcases a captivating spectacle.
The external parts therefore needed to be specially adapted in order to integrate this extraordinary caliber. The tourbillon’s triple cage required the integration of a domed lens that rests against the sapphire crystal in order to provide the necessary interior volume. With the Tri-Axial Tourbillon, Girard-Perregaux therefore delivers a brilliant demonstration of its expertise and its constant search for watchmaking excellence.
The Tri-Axial Tourbillon by Girard-Perregaux features a regulator on three separate axes. At its heart beats a traditional tourbillon. Its cage performs one rotation in one minute. It is integrated within a structure positioned on a second axis and performs a complete rotation in 30 seconds. Finally, both are inserted into a third system. The ensemble is placed on a third axis and performs one rotation in 2 minutes. The diameter of the ensemble comes to 13.78 mm.
With a total weight of 1.24 grams, the cage and the drive systems are made of steel. The support pillars are in titanium, or in pink gold to act as a counterweight where the kinetic balance required this. As for the balance, it integrates 16 pink gold adjustment micro-screws. It has an increased frequency of 3 Hz, or 21,600 vibrations per hour.
Complex sapphire crystal.
Crafted from pink gold, the case respects the design codes of Girard-Perregaux’s Haute Horlogerie collection with a beveled bezel, a rounded case-center and lugs that narrow out elegantly towards the exterior. The superior sapphire crystal presents a spectacular construction. At 9 o’clock, a domed sapphire crystal, designed to highlight the tourbillon’s three axes, is applied to the main crystal, which is first pierced to the required diameter. A toric-shaped sapphire crystal is also integrated into the side of the case at 9 o’clock in order to show this fascinating spectacle from another angle. Finally, the case-back, which is screwed and transparent, reveals the entire movement and, in particular, the satiny circular bridge engraved with the words “Tri-Axial” that supports the differential of the tourbillon system.
Case: pink gold
Diameter: 48.00 mm
Dial: gray anthracite
Crystal: anti-reflective sapphire with dome to cover the tourbillon
Case-back: anti-reflective domed sapphire crystal
Apertures on the side to reveal the movement / anti-reflective toric crystal
Water resistance: 30 meters (3 ATM)
Girard-Perregaux movement GP09300-0001
Mechanical, manual winding movement
Diameter: 36.10 mm (16 ”’)
Thickness: 16.83 mm
Frequency: 21,600 Vib/h – (3 Hz)
Power reserve: min. 52 hours
Number of components: whole movement: 317
Two-arrow Bridges: in pink gold
- Tourbillon cage: 140 components for 1.24 g
- 3 axes
- One rotation every 1 minute on the first axis, every 30 seconds on the second axis, every 2 minutes on the third axis.
- Poised upper and lower cages with pink gold counterpoise
- Beveled and hand-polished pallets bridge
- Balance wheel: variable inertia with pink gold setting screw
All components of the movement have hand finishing according to Haute Horlogerie criteria.
Functions: Tri-Axial tourbillon, hour, minute, power reserve indicator
Black alligator leather strap with hand stitches
Pink gold folding buckle
Source WatchInsight and Girard-Perregaux.
Photo’s WatchInsight and Girard-Perregaux.