Pre-SIHH 2017: Baume & Mercier Clifton Perpetual Calendar

Pre-SIHH 2017: Baume & Mercier Clifton Perpetual Calendar

A fascinating mechanical achievement

Each year the Clifton Collection offers an exclusive timepiece. A watchmaking exercise Baume & Mercier is committed to achieve within the fascinating universe of complex timekeeping complications.


The new Clifton Perpetual Calendar now enriches this collection—a collection already composed of remarkable watches like the ying tourbillon or the 5-minute repeater. Complex and fascinating, this complication perfectly expresses the brand’s legacy and traditional craftsmanship.

In 1830, when laying the foundations of Baume & Mercier—one of the oldest currently in business watchmaking brands—the Baume brothers were driven by a single desire: “accept only perfection, only manufacture watches of the highest quality.” Precision, reliability and know-how—assets which have distinguished Baume & Mercier watches throughout its entire history. With this other key feature: the brand’s creations have always remained accessible to all enthusiasts of fine mechanical watches. Companions for life, these timepieces reflect life’s important moments.


Firmly connected to its traditional roots, the Baume & Mercier brand confidently perpetuates an expertise developed over 186 years. This expertise is founded on the principle of établissage, a concept that involves the in-house mastery of all stages of a watch’s development as well as the manufacture of the watch by assembling its various component parts: a true commitment by the brand and a symbol of excellence offered to its customers, thus guaranteeing the highest quality. The precept involves selecting the best experts from each eld and therefore seeking out the most finely-honed skills. This time-honored vocation of craftsmanship at Baume & Mercier relies upon the design and conception of products imagined and developed at the brand’s headquarters in Geneva as well as the établissage completed in its workshops in Les Brenets, in Switzerland’s Jura region. Centralizing watch production in Switzerland ensures Baume & Mercier’s Customer Service around the world and makes it possible to offer the restoration of very old watches. Relying on the very best, to assure the finest quality and the respect of traditions: a deliberate and assiduous choice which has been Baume & Mercier’s strong point from the very beginning.


In its quest for this vocation, Baume & Mercier was also able to meet the challenge of watchmaking complications, the highly technical functions which make timekeeping an art. There is nothing more legitimate for a brand which has, decade after decade, sufficiently demonstrated its mastery of this exacting domain by creating landmark historic watches. Today Baume & Mercier continues this expertise with watches inspired by the company’s roots in order to better appeal to a public of enlightened connoisseurs. In its Clifton collection, Baume & Mercier thus offers a reinterpretation of the great watchmaking complications, with models that are as technical as they are elegant. Classic in spirit, this collection ts within the great watchmaking tradition of turning a watch into a display of expert craftsmanship.

An homage to astronomical observation and the beauty of celestial mechanics, the new Clifton Perpetual Calendar embodies one of the most successful and fascinating complications of distinguished watchmaking. What other instrument better connects humanity with the universe? Nestled within a stunning 18K red gold case, this subtle mechanism negotiates all the particularities of the Gregorian calendar with its 31, 30 or 28-day months and the periodic return of February 29th. A truly mechanical challenge for watchmakers, the perpetual calendar is a symbol of human ingenuity for tracking the earth and its moon as they orbit within the solar system. By indicating the date, the day of the week, the month and the phases of the moon, and by automatically keeping track of the variable length of each month and the cycle of leap years, this Clifton Perpetual Calendar establishes it- self within the lineage of the most complicated date-tracking watches, those which do not require any date correction before the 1st of March 2100, a non leap year that appears three centuries out of four.


A great classic of watchmaking complications, the perpetual calendar represents a challenge of construction and miniaturization. The programming and reproduction of celestial mechanics is the most successful of the so-called «astronomical» complications. To keep track of all the variations of the calendar, the Clifton Perpetual Calendar is thus endowed with a «mechanical memory» of 1461 days, the equivalent of four years, which animates the self-winding Vaucher 5401 movement within the watch, designed from a Dubois Depraz 5100 Module. Always with respect to the art of watchmaking, the elegant nishings of the calibre include the Côtes de Genève on the bridges and stippling on the bottom plate as well as blued steel screws. The micro-rotor, which makes it possible to pare down the movement for a case that is barely 4.2 mm thick, is decorated with the brand’s Phi symbol and a snailed décor.

Ticking away at 21,600 vibrations/hour for a power reserve of 48 hours, this finely finished calibre can be admired through the sapphire crystal back of the elegant 42 mm case in 18K red gold with carefully drawn curves. Display side, the new Clifton Perpetual Calendar captivates by its simplicity: topped with a sapphire “chevé” crystal for better readability, its silvered opaline domed dial is stylish and classic, complemented by numerals and stamped indexes in 18K red gold, while the blued hands indicate the watch’s calendar functions. The date appears at 3 o’clock, the days of the week at 9 o’clock while the months and the leap years appear at 12 o’clock. The timeless elegance of this Clifton Perpetual Calendar extends to its black alligator strap with a pin buckle in 18K red gold. In line with Baume & Mercier’s philosophy of offering accessible timepieces, including those which boast complex watchmaking complications, this model was designed with a care and an attention to detail worthy of the finest watchmaking.

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