The new Millenary Minute Repeater model perpetuates a line of complicated, oval-shaped Audemars Piguet wristwatches, already boasting such exceptional pieces as the Tradition d’ Excellence No. 5, the MC12 and the Carbon One.
Cased in pink gold for the first time, this complicated watch – like its illustrious forebears – is an exquisite blend of technical sophistication, innovative materials and watchmaking savoir-faire, featuring, of course, that most romantic of complications : the minute repeater.
Much like every great invention, the minute repeater was born of necessity, long before mankind enjoyed the convenience of electricity, solving an apparently simple yet long-standing conundrum: how to tell the time in the dark.
Ever since its founding in 1875, Audemars Piguet has marked the art of the striking minute repeater and it has long been regarded as a significant part of the company’s heritage. It made the first minute-repeater wristwatch in 1892 – a masterpiece of miniaturisation – and Audemars Piguet became one of the first manufacturers to revive the art of the minute repeater in the late 1980s after it had been overlooked for decades.
What is therefore a long-standing tradition is now continued in the new AP Millenary Minute Repeater watch in pink gold: an exceptional, hand-wound wristwatch with an oval case and three-dimensional architecture that complements a sophisticated movement featuring Audemars Piguet’s own escapement, double balance spring, striking mechanism and gongs.
Furthermore, the repeater mechanism’s winding system has been purpose built for this watch, with the sliding trigger at 9 o’clock as usual, but the striking barrel at 2 o’clock.
Its distinctively shaped case and enamel sub dials beg closer inspection of the remarkable mechanism ticking within, regulated by Audemars Piguet’s proprietary ‘AP Escapement’. Inspired by the work of French, 18th century clockmaker Robert Robin, the assembly combines the high efficiency of a direct-impulse escapement with the reliability of a traditional, Swiss lever escapement, while eliminating the need to lubricate the pallet stones.
What’s more, the escapement’s regulating organ is composed not just of one balance spring, but of two placed top to tail. This flat, opposite-facing double spring system ensures automatic compensation for potential poising flaws and eliminates the need for the ‘overcoil’ terminal curves.
All in all, the double balance spring arrangement, combined with the singleimpulse mode of action on the balance wheel ensure reduced perturbation to the regulating organ and therefore more efficiency and precision.
The oval-shaped Millenary case of brushed pink gold and polished pink gold bezel frame an openworked dial, revealing a wealth of hand-bevelled edges and interior angles as well as the overall anthracite-coloured, galvanic treatment.
The beautifully ‘blued’ gong of the minute repeater which is visible from the top as it curves elegantly around the circumference of the case; truly a calling card of Audemars Piguet’s complication maestros.
Model: Audemars Piguet Millenary Minute Repeater in Pink Gold
Hand-wound manufacture Calibre 2928
Total dimensions: 32.90 x 37.90 mm (14½ x 16¾ lines)
Total Thickness: 10.05 mm
Number of jewels: 40
Number of parts: 443
Minimal guaranteed power reserve: 165 h
Frequency of balance wheel: 3Hz (21,600 vibrations/hour)
18-carat pink gold case, sapphire crystal caseback, not water-resistant
Total Thickness: 15.79 mm
Gold white enamel dial and small seconds counter, black Roman numerals, blued hands.
Hand-stitched ‘large square scales’ brown alligator strap with 18-carat pink gold AP folding clasp
AP escapement, double balance-spring