Perhaps the most exciting variation, however, is the flying tourbillon. Designed way back in 1920 by Alfred Helwig, the flying tourbillon differed from its more “normal” cousins in that it wasn’t supported at both top and bottom ends, but cantilevered. It is inherently much more complex and technically considered as a complication built onto the tourbillon complication. Of course, some people thought that wasn’t nearly complex enough: In 2003, Thomas Prescher, father of the triple axis tourbillon, came up with the flying double axis tourbillon. Unsurprisingly, the company has since released a triple axis flying tourbillon.
“The flying tourbillon is inherently much more complex and technically considered as a complication built onto the tourbillon complication”
Of course, there are plenty other tourbillons representing the twenty-tens. The Excalibur Spider Skeleton Double Flying Tourbillon from Roger Dubuis, for example, has a mesmerizing display of two whirlwinds occupying the bottom half of the display. Jager-LeCoultre’s Duomètre Sphérotourbillon changes things up with a multi-axis tourbillon.
At this year’s Baselworld, Girard-Perregaux presented the Vintage 1945 Tourbillon with Three Gold Bridges “70th Anniversary Edition” for a heady mix of history and technical wonder. Another showstopper at Baselworld was the Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon, noted as having the world’s thinnest tourbillon. Meanwhile, for the more contemporary-minded watch connoisseur, perhaps TAG Heuer’s Monaco V4 Tourbillon—the first of its kind to use micro-belts instead of gears to drive the cage—will be a much more attractive option. Or take the TAG Heuer Carrera Mikrotourbillons which has two independent tourbillons where one powers a chronograph that’s impressively accurate to 1/100th of a second.
Rotonde de Cartier Mysterious Double Tourbillon
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