The Senator collection by Glashütte Original is the repository of some of the most august and complicated models showcasing the traditional Saxon watchmaking style. An evolution of the 2020 Senator Chronometer Tourbillon with its flying tourbillon with stop-seconds, zero reset and minute detent, the latest Senator continues its pursuit of hyper-precision settings but radically changes the scenery. Instead of the ornate decorative flourishes of its predecessor, the new Senator Chronometer Tourbillon dons a far more contemporary face and is fitted with a new day/night indicator.
While everybody associates the tourbillon with Abraham-Louis Breguet, flying tourbillons are a distinctive Glashütte product developed by Alfred Helwig in 1920. Honouring the tradition established by Helwig, Glashütte Original has endowed the flying tourbillon with a braking device and a zero-reset mechanism to achieve the highest level of precision when setting the time. In addition to these two devices, a third one governs the minute hand.
The device that stops the tourbillon mid-flight is the stop-seconds. Activated by pulling out the crown, it deploys a vertical clutch that halts the balance and locks the tourbillon cage in place. The next step involves the zero-reset function. This is also activated by pulling the crown to the next position, forcing the tourbillon cage to swing up smoothly until the seconds hand on the tip of the cage stops at the zero marker. As the seconds hand on the tourbillon returns to zero, the third mechanism, known as the minute detent, kicks in and simultaneously advances the minute hand to the next index. The synchronisation of the seconds and minute hands ensures precision time settings.
Although the brand has renamed the Flying Tourbillon a Flyback Tourbillon because of the way the seconds hand flies back to the zero marker, it has, in essence, the same technical specifications as the 2020 model. Sharing the same 42mm platinum case with a thickness of 12.6mm, the only novelty here is the blue lacquered on the crown. However, the dial of the new model diverges quite radically.
Composed of stepped levels, the off-centred hours and minutes dial at noon has an engraved globe in its centre, surmounted by the Sun and the Moon. The two heavenly bodies orbit on a spherical axis every 24 hours providing a day/night indicator. Blue hour markers are applied to the chapter ring and indicated by blued hands with a strip of luminescence.
The bridges are no longer decorated with Glashütte stripes or elaborate hand engravings; instead, they are now engraved by laser with a raised Clous de Paris texture for a more contemporary look. Like the elevated dial, the flying tourbillon rises from the background on supporting columns, allowing a close-up view of the mesmerising spectacle. Not just the spectacle of a flying tourbillon, but stopping it and watching the blue-tipped seconds hand return to zero as the minute hand advances.
The reverse side reveals a series of laser-engraved bridges and some components of the manual-winding calibre 58-06. Running at a frequency of 21,600vph and providing a power reserve of 70 hours (indicator on dial at 9 o’clock), the movement has a silicon balance spring to protect it from magnetic fields and changes in temperature. Certified by the Thuringian Weights and Measures Office, the movement is chronometer certified.
Availability & Price
The Senator Chronometer Tourbillon is a limited edition of 50 pieces worldwide. It is now available in all Glashütte Original Boutiques and select retailers worldwide and retails for EUR 186,600 (incl. tax) For more information, please consult glashuette-original.com.