If there’s one booth, we look forward to visiting every Basel, it’s MB&F. After decades of conforming to the rules of corporate watchmaking, Maximilian Büsser, broke the chains and started a rebellion in 2005; a rebellion called MB&F – Maximilian Büsser & Friends. Reinterpreting traditional, high-quality watchmaking into three-dimensional kinetic sculptures, MB&F’s artistic concept laboratory is today in its 14th year of hyper-creativity.
At Baselworld 2019, MB&F presented its first three-dimensional horological art piece dedicated to women: Introducing The Legacy Machine FlyingT. The watch comes in three versions that are all white gold and set with diamonds: one with a black lacquer dial plate; one with a dial plate and case fully set with brilliant-cut diamonds; and one with a dial plate and case both fully set with baguette-cut diamonds.
The 38.5mm round case is constructed in white gold with a domed crystal that rises from the bezel. When viewed from the side you can really appreciate the exaggerated dome of the sapphire crystal. The steeply cambered bezel and slender elongated lugs are fully set with diamonds. An asymmetric ventricular opening in the dial plate frames the heart of the LM FlyingT engine. The flying tourbillon cage and movement sits in the center of the dial. The movement beats at a rate of 2.5Hz (18,000vph).
Unlike most modern watch movements, the LM FlyingT engine utilises a vertical layout. The cinematic flying tourbillon, which boldly projects beyond the dial-plate of the watch, is a visually stunning example of the rotating escapement and stands in stark contrast to other flying tourbillons, which usually do not venture past the confines of their surrounding watch dials. Flying tourbillons, as their name suggests, are anchored only at their base, with no stabilising bridge to restrict lateral motion at the top. This increased need for overall rigidity is what causes the conservative placement of most flying tourbillons within their movements. Legacy Machine FlyingT breaks free of this limiting need for movement security and confidently displays its flying tourbillon in all its glory.
An additional distinct challenge which arose in the construction of LM FlyingT was the shape of the upper tourbillon cage, which creates more mass on one side of the tourbillon than the other. In order to compensate and ensure that the mechanism remains balanced, a counterweight was hidden under the tourbillon carriage, on the opposite side of the upper tourbillon cage.
In order to display the time as precisely as possible on the 50° inclined dial, conical gears were employed to optimally transmit torque from one plane to another, a solution first used in HM6 and subsequently in HM9 Flow. The 280-component engine of Legacy Machine FlyingT has a power reserve of four days (100 hours), which is among the highest within MB&F, a testament to the growth of in-house expertise and experience.
Affixed to the top of the upper tourbillon cage is a single large diamond that rotates simultaneously with the flying tourbillon, emitting the brilliance of the very best quality stones. At the 7 o’clock position, is a dial made from black or white lacquer that displays the hours and minutes with a pair of elegant serpentine hands in blued gold. The dial is inclined at a 50° tilt so that the time can be read only by the wearer.
On the caseback, the automatic winding rotor takes the shape of a three-dimensional red gold sun with sculpted rays, providing the LM FlyingT with four days of power reserve.
The black lacquer dial version with brilliant-cut diamonds retails for CHF 108,000 excluding VAT, the baguette-cut diamonds version is CHF 298,000 excluding VAT and the brilliant-cut diamonds model is priced at CHF 135,000 excluding VAT. For more information, visit www.mbandf.com