Montblanc and the Metamorphosis Concept
In 2010, after five years of research and development, Montblanc presented the Metamorphosis Concept, which revealed two different faces on one unique timepiece.
This year, at SIHH, Montblanc unveils the Metamorphosis concept in a brand-new execution in its Star Legacy product line. Comprised of 718 components, the timepiece offers a different way of appreciating the time and the celestial stars. The Montblanc Star Legacy Metamorphosis Limited Edition 8 combines the patented Exo Tourbillon, held by a sapphire crystal bridge, together with a new kind of three-dimensional realistic moon display on an aventurine disc that turns around a Northern Hemisphere globe.
Classical Watchmaking Origins
The Montblanc Star Legacy Collection takes its inspiration from Minerva’s heritage and the company’s pocket watches that were made during the late 19th century and early 20th century. These timepieces were the height of innovation for the time as they featured a patented crown system, leading the company to an early and immediate global success. In the spirit of formal elegance, the Montblanc Star Legacy timepieces showcase classic design codes such as round, pebble-shaped cases; horns with steps on the side; onion-shaped crowns with the recognisable Montblanc emblem; and eye-catching dials featuring the iconic exploding star guilloché pattern.
The Montblanc Star Legacy Metamorphosis Limited Edition 8
Paying tribute to Minerva’s rich 161-year heritage, Montblanc is introducing the Montblanc Star Legacy Metamorphosis Limited Edition 8 that marks a new chapter in its history. This innovative timepiece, developed and produced entirely by Montblanc’s engineers and master watchmakers, literally transforms itself by revealing two different faces. A number of fine watchmaking complications come into play, which are driven by the Manufacture’s hand-crafted calibre MB M67.60, a highly complicated movement that took three years to develop.
The complex mechanism is activated by a sliding lever on the side of the case (similar to that of a minute repeater mechanism) that is connected to a dial. This one is comprised of a fixed part and moveable shutters, which can be opened and closed, offering its owner different ways to enjoy the time and also the Earth and Moon system. When the shutters are closed, the watch’s face displays a worldtime function at six o’clock in the form of a turning, domed Northern-Hemisphere globe. The globe is surrounded by a 24-hour scale and a day/night indication. At 12 o’clock, the rhodium-coated balance wheel with blued hairspring and 18 screws, beats at the traditional frequency of 18,000 oscillations per hour. A steel second hand is fixed on the blued tourbillon cage.
When its shutters are opened, the dial reveals the beauty of Montblanc’s patented one-minute Exo Tourbillon (previously hidden) that represents the sun at 12 o’clock. This was feasible thanks to the Exo Tourbillon construction, which allows the balance wheel to be positioned outside of the cage. The tourbillon is held in place by a sapphire crystal bridge. Around the Exo Tourbillon, a jumping date disc, with a part to hide the other numbers, is visible.
At six o’clock a brand-new complication reveals a realistic moon with its exact position in the sky as viewed from Earth. This jumping, three-dimensional moon turns constantly around the globe in a gyroscopic way as it would make its journey around the Earth. The moon is presented on a backdrop of aventurine that shimmers like a starry night sky. The astronomical moonphase complication is highly precise and only needs to be adjusted by one day every 122 years.
The process of the metamorphosis is reversible, and the opposite movement is initiated when the control device is activated again, meaning that the sliding shutters at the top and bottom of the dial are re-deployed.
The transformation between the two faces is highly complex and involves more than 320 individual components, all of them meticulously crafted by hand, and which move at the same time. In addition to this, the Exo Tourbillon construction contains more than 100 components on its own. In total, the timepiece is comprised of 718 components, including the shutters, the globe, the moon and the aventurine disc, attesting to its complexity and sophistication.
One of the most innovative, technical characteristics of the Star Legacy Metamorphosis is its ability to permanently retain all of its functions irrespective of the chosen face. The hour, minute, second, worldtime and moonphases remain active independently of the watch face.
Setting the timepiece is easy. The home time is set on the globe via the crown in position zero (this also turns the date), while the local time is changed using the pusher inside the crown. In position one of the crown, all the indications turn simultaneously. The date can be adjusted thanks to a corrector at two o’clock (the date is linked to local time) and another corrector at four o’clock adjusts the moonphase.
Montblanc Star Legacy Metamorphosis Limited Edition 8
Movement: Montblanc Manufacture Calibre MB M67.60
Type of movement: Mechanical movement with manual winding mechanism, patented one-minute Exo Tourbillon, worldtime and realistic moonphase indication
Dimensions: Diameter = 45 mm; height = 12.87 mm
Number of components: 718
Number of rubies: 61
Power Reserve: Approx. 50 hours
Balance: Balance wheel, diameter = 14.5 mm; moment of inertia = 59 mgcm²
Frequency: 18,800 A/h (2.5 Hz)
Hairspring: Blued, flat
Plate: Rhodium-coated with circular graining
Bridges: Rhodium-coated with “Côtes de Genève”
Going train: Special toothing for more efficient power transmission
Displays: Off-centre hour- and minute-hands, small seconds at 12 o’clock,
Closed face: worldtime with Northern Hemisphere globe surrounded by a 24-hour scale and day/night indication
Open face: one-minute patented Exo Tourbillon, Northern Hemisphere globe surrounded by the sky on an aventurine disc showing the stars and the realistic moon phases, date display at 12 o’clock
Case: 18 K white gold, polished case
Crystal: Scratch-resistant, domed sapphire crystal with double anti-reflective coating
Back: 18 K white gold with inset pane of sapphire crystal
Dimensions: Diameter = 50 mm; Height = 18.9 mm
Water-resistance: 3 bar (30 m)
Crown: 18 K white gold with mother-of-pearl Montblanc emblem
Dial Anthracite base with hand-made “grain d’orge” guilloché pattern in places, rhodium-coated Arabic numerals, 18 K white gold hour and minute-hands, stainless steel second hand, filet sauté guilloché around the dial, hand-engraved and hand-painted three-dimensional northern hemisphere globe showing the continents and oceans, aventurine disc representing the sky with the moon and stars
Wristband: Grey Sfumato alligator-skin strap with 18 K white gold triple folding clasp