By John Galt
The new Harry Winston Histoire de Tourbillon 6 is the most complex yet, created to demonstrate to the horology world their continued pursuit of complex innovation, the tourbillon series is a collection of highly complicated pieces dedicated solely to the craftsmanship of the tourbillon and what an absolute stunner it is. Let’s take a look at this slightly mad and definitely not shy piece from Harry Winston.
Let’s first start with the case, it’s made from 18k white gold and measures 55mm by 49mm so it is on the large size but looks like the original case was meant to be a curved cushion shaped case until the two complications on the left-hand side tried to escape from the case pushing it out to make two circular pods.
Let’s start from the 8 O’clock position on the watch and work round as there is so much going on, the triple-axis tourbillon dominates here, isolated but still in full view under a sapphire crystal with an arched bridge securing the entire mechanism. The innermost carriage of the tourbillon contains the balance wheel and the escapement pinion which has a 45-second rotation cycle, the middle carriage has a 75-second rotation cycle, while the outer carriage takes 300 seconds to make a full rotation. This means that it takes 15 minutes for the balance wheel to return to its original position. The tourbillon is made up of 141 different parts and weighs 1.85 grams which are actually very heavy considering the tourbillon in a Richard Lange Tourbillon watch is under a gram.
Above the tourbillon is the hours and minutes displayed in the second of the rounded protrusions on the case with its own crown and regulated by the tri-axial tourbillon. At 12 O’clock is the power reserve indicator that shows up to a mammoth 80 hours of reserve.
Following round the dial at 1 O’clock is an exposed carousel housing another tourbillon but this time a single one that makes a full rotation in 30 seconds as opposed to the normal 1 minute.
Below that is another dial showing the second time display with skeletonised hands and blue indices; however Harry Winston being who they are this is not all as it seems. By using the a blue ceramic pusher at the 2 o’clock position of the case, both the hour and minute hands can be reset to zero, thus allowing the second display to be used as a chronograph while there are no seconds displayed other than the carousel itself which rotates in 30 seconds. Just below the second dial is another power reserve that shows the reserve solely for the second time zone/chronograph.
Turning the piece over you are greeted to a huge extremely complicated in-house movement and I mean huge, it measures 40mm by 45mm which is bigger than most timepieces! The mainplate and bridge are made from titanium in order to reduce the weight. The complete movement is made up of 683 components with two sets of twin barrels that are fast-rotating which guarantee a power reserve of 80 hours for the tri-axial tourbillon and 70 hours reserve for the carrousel. Harry Winston will only produce 20 of the Histoire de Tourbillon 6 with prices set to be around the €550,00 euro.
Where to start? Well, this is a monster of a piece and definitely carries on where the Tourbillon 5 finished with its huge tourbillon. I personally really like this piece with its two rounded extensions of the case, that exposed carrousel all adding to the theatrics that are Harry Winston timepieces.
For more info, please visit harrywinston.com
JOHN GALT – CONTRIBUTING EDITOR
John Galt caught the horology bug back in 2010 on his first visit to a London watch show and has snowballed since; John has become an avid writer and blogger of timepieces of all kinds, from everyday timepieces to modern Luxury HauteHorology, his favorite brands being HYT and GreubelForsey that push the boundaries of modern watch-making. John keeps a keen interest in the UK watch scene with their many emerging brands and timepieces. John Galt currently contributes watch related articles for online publications in the UK and USA. You can follow him on Twitter Read his articles here