De Bethune DB Kind of Grande Complication - Watches & Wonders 2024 #WatchesAndWonders2024 | SENATUS

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De Bethune DB Kind of Grande Complication - Watches & Wonders 2024 #WatchesAndWonders2024
By SENATUS Editor | 8 April 2024

After many years of design and development at De Bethune, watchmaker Denis Flageollet has at last brought it to life by drawing on all the resources and philosophy of the Manufacture, which perpetuates the innovative spirit of the great classical watchmaking achievements characterising the Age of Enlightenment.

The choice of a reversible double-sided case was entirely natural, since it not only unites a large number of complications, but also allows provides scope for free-spirited aesthetic expression through the dual display of the various functions.

The case is also interesting in that it incorporates a rotation system (a novel feature introduced in 2021) mounted on floating lugs which – by means of an ingenious micro-mechanism – enable the case to pivot around its central axis in a smooth, accurate swivelling movement. More than 60 components – 50 of which relate to the water-resistant part and are therefore perfectly rustproof – are involved in positioning the dial on either side. A cam-operated indexing system ensures perfect alignment of the case with the floating lugs that follow the curves of the wrist.

The rounded design of its classically inspired case with its crown at 12 o'clock on the contemporary side (6 o'clock on the traditional side) conceals the technical challenges of a double case complexified by a multiple display of several functions and the combination within a single calibre of eight different horological complications: perpetual calendar, spherical moon-phase indication, retrograde age of the Moon and leap years, ultra-light tourbillon in blued titanium, jumping seconds, power reserve as well as the double display of hours and minutes.

Integrating each of the 751 components involved in its exterior and movement required much more thought than assembling the various complications separately. Rethinking the calibre as a functional whole so that each complication interacts in perfect harmony is a technical feat that would be inconceivable without total technical mastery of all the innovations and patents involved in the Manufacture's 32 calibres.

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