With timepieces that reference its English watchmaking heritage, Arnold & Son unveils a limited version of its famous TB88 which pays tribute to the old English gunsmith tradition. England has not only offered the world some of the best watchmakers ever but is also the cradle of the finest gunsmith craftsmanship. Conceived, designed and manufactured in-house, this superbly engineered wristwatch is part of the Royal Collection that combines classical styling with leading-edge technology.
Measuring 46 millimeters in diameter, the case of the TB88 is characterized by its unique English style: discreet opulence offset by the elegance of a double-step bezel and lugs, gently flowing contours and soft curves. The new sober gunmetal coating of the case further highlight the mechanical complexity and haute horlogerie finishing of these magnificent timepieces. The gunmetal coating also pays tribute to the old English fine gunsmith tradition which is closely related to ancient watchmaking and share many common technics.
The TB88 is proof that the company has lost none of its appetite for innovative technology or precision timekeeping. The A&S5003 calibre brings together all the technical and aesthetic characteristics of a classical John Arnold chronometer. The letters ‘TB’ stand for ‘true beat’ (or ‘dead beat’), a complication that alludes to the precision timekeeping required for navigation at sea. Unlike conventional mechanical watches, a true beat movement measures out time in complete seconds rather than fractions dependent on the balance frequency. This is useful for determining the exact time and, consequently, longitude, and makes it invaluable at sea.
The TB88 is also a tribute to John Arnold’s earliest known pocket watch, of which the original case bears the number ‘88’. The number is replicated by the design of the movement, with its perfectly symmetrical layout featuring the twin barrels at the top, the balance wheel between 4 and 5 o’clock and the true beat seconds indicator between 7 and 8. But the feature that unquestionably sets Arnold & Son’s new TB88 apart is its unique ‘English’ movement design, as expressed through features like the straight-cut bridges. Each of the pivoting elements in the movement is mounted on its own bridge, 16 in total! Compared to usual movements, the TB88’s movement is partly ‘inverted’, which means that the technically and aesthetically interesting features are on the dial side of the movement instead of being hidden away on the reverse. The front showcases the two barrels, which generate a minimum of 100 hours power reserve when fully wound, the gear train and the balance wheel with its Breguet overcoil spring. Bending and fitting such a spring by hand is a delicate and highly skilled operation mastered by a precious few watchmakers.
The TB88 is water-resistant to 30 meters and secured to the wearer’s wrist by a black Cordura strap with calf leather lining that gives an amazing sporty look to the watch. This special tribute to the fine old English gunsmith tradition is limited to just five timepieces, exclusively for the Americas.
Retail Price: $41,500 USD, for more info. on Arnold & Son, Click Here.
Calibre: A&S5003 Arnold & Son manufacture movement, hand-wound, 32 jewels, diameter 37.80 mm, thickness 5.90 mm, power reserve 100 h, two barrels, 18,000 vibrations/h, Breguet spring.
Functions: Hours, minutes and true beat seconds at 8 o’clock.
Movement Decorations: Nickel-silver movement, NAC grey treated bridges and main plate with Haute Horlogerie finishing: manually chamfered bridges and steel parts with polished edges and brushed surfaces, chamfered and circular satin-finished wheels, screws with bevelled and mirror-polished heads.
Case: Sandblasted stainless steel with dark grey DLC (“gunmetal”) coating, diameter 46 mm, cambered sapphire with anti- reflective coating on both sides, case back see-through sapphire, water-resistant to 30 m.
Strap: Cordura 1100 with calf leather lining.
Limited Edition: 5 Pieces, exclusively for the Americas.