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SIHH 2015: Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art Arca Table Clocks

by Nick Gould on February 2, 2015

 2015 heralds a new rendezvous with history. The Vacheron Constantin Manufacture can now look back on 260 years of uninterrupted creative activity and is celebrating this milestone by a sparkling tribute to the decorative arts that have significantly contributed to its enduring success. A collection of 12 unique crystal table clocks resembling luminous arches is one of the means by which Vacheron Constantin is demonstrating the twin mastery of Haute Horlogerie and artistic crafts for which it has become a prominent ambassador over successive generations.

Inspired by a model dating back to 1933, Vacheron Constantin has chosen to explore the many facets of crystal: translucent crystal for its purity that lends itself admirably to being enhanced by artistic crafts; and rock crystal for its natural rarity and its mineral richness.

99900-001-b034-r-877684-1

Vacheron Constantin Métiers d’Art Arca Table Clock

While the 12 table clocks each beat to the pace of the same movement, each crystal arch reveals a unique expression. Four of them celebrate the natural beauty of rock crystal, evoking a “mineral” architecture shaped by the Earth across endless ages.

The eight other table clocks, in translucent crystal, revisit a variety of architectural movements: Orientalism, Art Nouveau, Art Deco, Op Art, Post-Modernism, Deconstructivism, Green Architecture and Utopianism. These decorative themes adorn the crystal arch of the table clock.

Above and beyond the work on the crystal, two decorative techniques are particularly in the spotlight on the chapter ring and the feet of each table clock: Grand Feu enamelling and guillochage. The 12 satin-brushed silver Roman numerals have been individually crafted and then coated with black Grand Feu enamel. This delicate stage requires finely controlled operations, since the melting point of enamel is 860°C, whereas that of silver is 900°C

The motor organ of Caliber 9260 is composed of two barrels, each with an over one-metre long spring, so as to guarantee an almost one-month power reserve. This endurance is optimised by the meticulous finishing of the components, reducing friction and thus wear. A power-reserve indicator at 6 o’clock on a sapphire crystal makes it easy to monitor the table clock’s level of energy over 30 days.

9260-r-877681

The Caliber 926 with constant force mechanism

The constant-force mechanism of Caliber 9260 endows the table clock with remarkable rating precision corresponding to less than a one-minute deviation per week: an impressive feat for a caliber with such a low frequency (2.5 Hz) and that requires winding just once a month.

Definitely a stunning piece to have on the mantle!

Specifications from Press Release

Reference 99900/001-B034 – Rock crystal

Only available in Vacheron Constantin Boutiques

Movement
Caliber 9260 – Vacheron Constantin caliber
Mechanical, manual-winding (with a winding key)
106 mm x 131.1 mm x 58.7 mm (L x H x D)
Constant-force device
Approximately 720 hours (30 days) of power reserve
2.5 Hz (18,000 vibrations/hour)
106 components
41 jewels
Indications: Hours Minutes Power reserve
Cabinet

Exterior arch in rock crystal; Frosted crystal base below the caliber
Silver structure
Two silver bases decorated with unique patterns in hand-guilloché
and translucent Grand Feu enamelling
Obsidian base with silver border
202 mm x 219 mm x 105 mm (L x H x D)
Dial  Grand Feu enamelled Roman numerals on a silver base
Lacquered metal hands
Presentation box: Dedicated table clock presentation box in wood

Accessory: Delivered with a magnifying glass, a pair of gloves and two winding keys
One-of-a-kind model from a collection of 12 unique creations
“Pièce unique” inscription engraved beneath the base of the table clock

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