By Ian Skellern
For most brands, a ‘wild’ timepiece would be something along the lines of any of MB&F’s Horological Machines. It speaks volumes regarding the impact that Maximilian Büsser’s horological creative lab has had in just a few short years that, while we have all come to “expect the unexpected” when it comes to the launch of a new model, MB&F has managed to shock-and-awe this time with what is their most “normal” watch to date. And it has a round case to boot!
Legacy Machine No.1 is the answer to this question Maximilian Büsser posed: “What would MB&F have created a century ago?” Absent would be the modern influences, like “Star Wars” or and supersonic jets, that have inspired MB&F’s Horological Machines to date. But there were Jules Verne novels, the Eiffel Tower and sensational pocket watches—the latter usually with large beautifully proportioned balance wheels.
From that, MB&F conceived Legacy Machine No.1, a three-dimensional Machine that would have been as daring a century ago as MB&F’s creations are today. Features include a monumental flying balance; completely independent dual time zones; the world’s first vertical power reserve; and an elegantly striking round case.
And what a dream team that helped to create it: Jean-François Mojon developed the stunning in-house movement, while Kari Voutilainen took responsibility for the aesthetic design and respect for tradition and finish.
MB&F’s crazy Machines are certainly not for everybody, but Legacy Machine No.1 is likely to broaden the appeal of this niche brand. Who would have ever expected a round watch from MB&F? That’s really taking ‘expect-the-unexpected’ to extreme limits. That’s MB&F. Available in red gold and white gold.
In fidelity to high-quality 19th century pocket watches, LM1 features a sedately oscillating (2.5 Hz), large diameter balance with traditional Breguet overcoil suspended from majestic twin arches; its enigmatic regulating mechanism in full view, but without apparent connection to the movement. Both the hours and the minutes on each of the two sub dials can be set completely independently of each other – dual time zone complications usually do not allow independent adjustment of the minutes – their domed dials further reinforcing visual references to the golden age of watchmaking (1780-1850). Looking like a miniature sextant, a world-first vertical power reserve indicator keeps track of available power while providing a visual three-dimensional counterpoint to the graceful arches supporting the balance.