By Mike Espindle
With at least five years of careful development to bring to the market, the new constant escapement function from Girard Perregaux is nothing short of a first-of-its-kind. An escapement transfers power from a watch’s main spring barrel to the balance wheel that determines the rhythm of how a watch actually tells time. In a normal escapement, that power transfer starts to lag once the power reserve starts to drop, and you begin to lose accuracy. Imagine a spinning playground merry-go-round. You can start it off and it will spin and spin but without an occasional push, the rotation will slow down.
Using the innate flexion of a tiny silicon blade, the new escapement delivers a constant, symmetrical and efficient “push” to the whole power transfer process. If you pinch a credit card lengthwise between your thumb and forefinger with the bend facing out from your hand and then release the pinch so the card quicken straightens out and then flexes back, but facing into your hand this time, you might get a sense of how the new technology works.