NEWS : MB&F’s Legacy Machine 2 and what is resonance anyway?


Prior to MB&F’s launch of their first Legacy Machine, the air of anticipation in the watch world was both widespread. Its arrival proved the eager anticipation was not unfounded. The combination of history, modernity and that MB&F touch has turned out to be a critical and commercial winner.

The launch of the Legacy Machine 2 has inspired equal buzz, and this new LM, in the same case as the LM1, is a special horological reinvention. Its aesthetics are in keeping with LM1, but this time the historical influences are Ferdinand Berthoud (1727-1807), Antide Janvier (1751-1835), Abraham-Louis Breguet (1747-1823), and their work with dual regulators and resonance. Janvier is credited with the fabrication of the first double-pendulum resonance clock.

Resonance occurs when two suspended pendulums of the same frequency swing in the same plane. This technical achievement has pride of place in the new Legacy Machine. The two independent escapements and flying balance wheels float in the Legacy Machine arc, the differential transmitting the average rates of the two balances to a single gear train, which then transfers the power to the time display.

The use of a classic white lacquer dial at 12 o’clock with the blued hour and minute hands, so appealing in the LM1, have thankfully been kept. In this new piece it is balanced by the raised differential at 6 o’clock.

Although with its roots in the 18th century, it wasn’t until 1996 that the first wristwatch with this dual regulator (two balances joined by a differential) was introduced by Philippe Dufour via his Duality, and Max Busser acknowledges this piece as the inspiration to pursue a similar goal.

The movement of the LM2 has been developed by Jean-François Mojon and Kari Voutilainen. Mojon was awarded with the best watchmaker award at the 2010 Grand Prix d’Horlogerie de Geneve. In keeping with MB&F’s spirit of acknowledging of the ‘friends’ with whom they collaborate, the names of the two men responsible for the movement are hand engraved on the back. The movement itself is hand-finished with gold chatons, beautiful mirror-polished bevels and Geneva waves.

So what is mechanical resonance? As mentioned earlier, it is the phenomenon whereby a mechanical system exhibits its greatest amplitude when coupled oscillators are tuned at the same frequency. In theory, this provides for much greater stability of rate because they balance each other out. Here is a video posted on youtube by Gregory Pons called “Resonance for Dummies” which rather neatly shows it in action.

The concept of realising resonance in watches is more complex than I can explain in anything other than a very basic way, but there is more than one way to do it, and of those very few modern watchmakers who have attempted it apart from Dufour, F.P. Journe has used a more ‘organic’ way, relying on the physical laws of air movement around the wheels to sychronise (i.e. not mechanical coupling), and Beat Haldimann has coupled two oscillators through the movement of hairsprings, inspired by resonance pendulum clocks.

The Legacy Machine 2 is in a 44mm round case with quite a decent height of 20mm.  It is available in 18k red gold, 18k white gold and a limited edition of 18 pieces in platinum 950 that features a striking sky-blue dial.


Three-dimensional horological movement developed exclusively for MB&F by Jean-François Mojon at Chronode, and Kari Voutilainen
Manual winding with single mainspring barrel
Power reserve: 45 hours
Differential: Planetary differential comprising 3 gears and 5 pinions
Balance wheels: Two bespoke 1mm balance wheels with four traditional regulating screws floating above the movement and dials
Balance spring: traditional Breguet curve terminating with stud holder Balance frequency: 18,000bph/2.5Hz
Number of components: 241
Number of jewels: 44
Chatons: gold chatons with polished countersinks

Categories: Limited Editions, MB&F, News, Platinum, Watch movements, Watch Profile, watches

6 replies

  1. Funky youtube!!!

    From: HOROLOGIUM Reply-To: HOROLOGIUM Date: Wed, 4 Sep 2013 14:04:56 +0000 To: J H Subject: [New post] NEWS : MB&Fs Legacy Machine 2 and what is resonance anyway?

    horologium posted: ” Prior to MB&Fs launch of their first Legacy Machine, the air of anticipation in the watch world was both widespread and infectious. Its arrival proved that the eager anticipation was not unfounded. The combination of history, modernity and that spe”


  2. that youtube video is amazing!!! i think that’s a very easy way to explain resonance. the guy looked awkward. as if he’s thinking, man how long is it going to take these metronomes to sync up!!


  3. Amazing piece from MB&F (again)…what a work of art! Love the video!


  4. Fantastic! So, all we have to do is set all of our watches onto beer cans. Sorted!



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