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Defying Gravity with Gears

Zenith Defy GravityThere's ridiculous and then there's Zenith ridiculous!


This was is all sorts of wonderful for watch tinkerers like myself. It has a cage at 6 o'clock but it does NOT hold a tourbillon. Think about that for a moment and let it sink in. So here's what it does contain - the balance wheel. That's it. Shock and horror at the simplicity? If you're not, then you should be as the kind of work that it takes from design to assembly to put together a balance wheel that is free hanging and turning in a cage is no joke. To put another way, the balance wheel has been turned into a gyroscope but a living, beating, spinning gyro.


Watch the video and take a closer look at the gear trains involved. At Baselworld, I shook this sucker around like I was walking at Carnival in Rio! I'll hand it to Zenith, the concept may be fragile but the implementation is a serious work in structural integrity. If you're dropping the few hundred thousand ringgit to put this piece in your collection, rest assured that it will not be some candy floss build on your wrist. Like most Zenith's I've encountered, this discretely sturdy beast while being visually appealing. The two don't always go together!





Just some specifications


The cage is fitted into a skeletonized version of Zenith’s high-frequency manual-winding El Primero 8812S calibre, oscillating at 5 Hz and self-regulated by the modernised “Gravity Control” module. This cancels the effects of gravity by maintaining the regulating organ and balance in a horizontal position. The spherical system is composed of 139 tiny components, which have been redesigned to reduce the module’s dimensions by 70%. So in plain English, the cage is 139 parts.


This enables it to fit between the two flat sapphire crystals of the Defy case. The 44mm case is brushed titanium. The whole watch is made up of 324 parts and the entire movement can keep a power of up to 50-hours.



Considering that the El Primero Anniversary is up next year, I'm thinking that this is merely a taster of an awesome collection in 2019!

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