Looking back to the 18th century for inspiration, Moritz Grossmann opted for a large weighted pendulum frame or "hammer" (hence the slightly clumsy name) that oscillates through a shallow arc around a single mounted point.
The frame itself is only slightly smaller than the 3Hz calibre 106.0 movement itself which puts the oscillator’s centre of gravity - a circular solid gold weight - and its pivot point on opposite sides of the movement. This is double the distance of that in a more conventional self-winding movement, which increases the amount of torque on offer. As a result, and thanks to the ratcheting and gearing involved, just five degrees of rotor movement in either direction will wind the mainspring. Moritz Grossmann has also allowed for a separate manual winding system too, a feature which disengages if automatic winding is taking place.
The frame itself features two elegantly curved anti-shock springs to protect it from impact when it approaches the extremities of its oscillations. Thanks to its skeletal design, you can enjoy a near unobstructed view of the movement below, which is certainly unconventional when compared to the three-quarter plate movements that, like gold chatons and blued screws, are a signature among Glashütte brands. Incidentally, while the other brands in the German watchmaking town seem to prefer heating their steel screws to a vivid blue shade, Grossmann’s own particular 'house hue' is a deep purple/brown, more often found in English watchmaking.
Aside from the unusual winding mechanism the prototype we were shown featured a dial with three cut-out sections supposed to reveal the unusual movement of the pendulum beneath. But so slight is the silhouette of the pendulum that all the cut-outs actually revealed most of the time were some rather pedestrian bits of dial-side mainplate, something we and a number of other journalists raised at the time.
As such, the brand opted to ditch the cut-outs and, in the process, created a beautifully executed solid silver dial with recessed hacking small seconds and a virtually perfect sense of proportion. It also boasts what must surely be the finest minute hand created in modern memory, something so thin it seems impossible. This astute bit of refinement has turned what could have been a fairly flashy gimmick into a refined and interested piece of watchmaking.
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