If you thought that silicon was only useful for your computers and smartphones, you were wrong: silicon, on the other hand, is the most sought-after material for the construction of watch movements, and demonstrates all its qualities in this brand new movement by Baume et Mercier, the Baumatic, mounted inside the Clifton series, presented recently and reviewed by DDN Blog here.
The maison, belonging to the Richemont Group has always been in the shadow of giants like Cartier and IWC. Perhaps this is the reason why it was chosen to install and test the Group’s new in-house manufacture calibre, which will most likely be installed in other Richemont products.
This Baume et Mercier movement – the BM12-1975A – has many silicon components, specifically, pallet fork, escapement and balance-spring, made with TwinSpir technology, i.e., two layers of silicon orthogonal to each other insulated by a layer of silicon dioxide – a solution which makes the balance-spring highly resistant to temperature changes, thus improving the precision of the watch.
The use of non-ferrous materials has rendered this movement highly antimagnetic: the BM12-1975A resists magnetic fields of as much as 1500 Gauss, about a third more than traditional Faraday cage solutions adopted on watches such as the Rolex Milgauss. (which, in fact, supports 1000 Gauss).
The escapement has a new design, called Powerscape, which optimizes the transfer of the gear motion. The use of these two technologies, combined with a Nivaflex steel main spring, enabled the engineers to obtain this incredible 5-day full power reserve.
In addition to all this technology, there is no lack of impressive aesthetic solutions: the movement is beautiful and well decorated in all its components, visible through the sapphire crystal back. The Côtes de Génève striped rotor finish is visually amazing, as is its fine-grained perlage for the bridges. And the case also shows special care for the finishes, with a surface treatment both polished on the bezel and on the case profiles and satin on the sides of the case, elegant and really refined, especially for a watch that – in relation to a very interesting price – is an excellent expression of the concept of “affordable luxury”.
Info: Baume et Mercier