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Breguet - Tradition Chronographe Independant 7077

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The chronograph is one of the most popular complications available in modern timepieces but it is not a basic one. One of the main challenge is to avoid that the start of the chronograph function disturbs the main gear trains.

With the new Tradition Chronographe Independant 7077, recently showcased at Baselworld 2015, Breguet proposes a smart and innovative technical solution by equipping the hand-wound Calibre 580DR watch with two independent trains.

The first is the going train for the hours and minutes, regulated by a 3Hz balance with a power reserve of 50 hours. The second transmission, for the chronograph, has a 5Hz frequency to ensure a more precise reading of the elapsed time measure. This way, the two trains are entirely disconnected and the movement remains unaffected when the chronograph is started.

While you would expect to find a second barrel to provide the energy required by the chronograph, Breguet opted for a different solution. In fact, a second barrel would require more space and the necessity to wind up both the chronograph barrel and the going barrel. Instead, in the Tradition Chronographe Indépendant 7077 the energy required to drive the chronograph is provided by the user when operating the reset-to-zero function. Such energy is stored in a flexed blade spring whose special shape guarantees enough elasticity to provide extra energy when arming the spring. Although the power reserve stored in this way amounts to no more than 20 minutes, it is ideal for measuring short elapsed times. Whenever the user starts the chronograph, the energy will always be available and at its maximum.

It is interesting to mention that in order to have two balance wheels of the same size, despite their different frequencies, the chronograph balance-wheel (the one on the left) is made from titanium. In fact, the use of a lighter material makes possible to increase the diameter of the balance-wheel. The result is perfect symmetry, an important feature if you consider that these parts of the movement are visible on the baseplate.

Two screwed pushers control the chronograph operations. One pusher at 4 o'clock starts the measurement, the other at 8 o'clock stops and resets the chronograph to zero, an operation which also flexes and arms the blade spring as described before. The titanium balance-wheel is also flanked by two brakes that, working off a cam, free the balance-wheel when the chronograph is started.

The engine-turned dial in silvered gold showing the hours and minutes is offset at 12 o'clock, while the chronograph hand is fixed in the centre of the watch with the chronograph-activation indicator at 6 o'clock.

The two retrograde hands at 2 o'clock and 10 o'clock respectively indicate the power reserve of the watch and the chronograph minutes.

The 44 mm fluted case of the Breguet Tradition Chronographe Independant 7077 is available in white gold or rose gold with prices of Euro 73,200 / US$ 79,700 and Euro 72,000 / US$ 78,900 respectively.

Do not miss the video below to watch the chronograph in action.

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