Arnold & Son True Beat Tourbillon Escapement Reviewed by Tim Mosso: The Best Tourbillon that You are Unlikely to have Heard Of

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Reversing TBTE reveals a second heartbeat in the form of: Second kill escapement. Ever since the historical John Arnold built marine watches, TBTE has adopted an anchor-type counterweight on his deadbeat lever.

Behind the scenes of the Arnold & Son True Beat Tourbillon Escapement

This small steel component is finished with skilled hands and impressive details. Although small, the fine chamfers and the sharp convergence of the chamfered edges are impressive.

Behind the scenes of the Arnold & Son True Beat Tourbillon Escapement

LJP’s engineers rely heavily on the skeletonized center bridge that carries the deadbeat, the underside of the drivetrain, and part of the keyless mechanism. Arnold’s designers installed graceful, blade-like tension springs that arc out from the sides to act on his deadbeat pallets.

Winding and setting mechanism of the Arnold & Son True Beat Tourbillon Escapement

The keyless mechanism setting lever, clutch, and spring are visible below the crown. Like the Deadbeat counterweight, the keyless set is nicely finished, keeping the small facets straight and sharp, and the contrast of polish turning to satin.

Finishing the Arnold & Son True Beat Tourbillon Escapement with perlage

Like the dial side, the base plate is also anthracite colored and decorated with a guilloché pattern. A small recess for keyless adds a micro effect.Perlage engine rotation. The battle-axe-like multi-bridge in the center is reminiscent of his MB&F signature, but nothing else about the TBTE feels off-brand.

A huge amount of time was spent completing this movement. With virtually all top and bottom components exposed, TBTE leaves no room for manufacturers to rest.

flat luxury watches The brand is notorious for curtailing its decorative ambitions, with heavy dials, large bridges, and complication modules obscuring the hardware. The only obvious compromise with the A&S8503 is that there are no sharp interior corners where the bevel converges.

The internal corners of the tourbillon escapement bridges are polished and rounded, rather than sharp.

These “inner angles” are often used as a litmus test for a watch’s finish, but there is too much that is true about TBTE to ignore it because of that one omission.


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