Today we announce a new Legacy Machine created by MB&F, the fifth in the collection: the LMSE. This may be a Special Edition, but ‘SE’ actually stands for ‘Split Escapement’: a very unconventional feature first developed by our Friend Stephen McDonnell for the previous LM Perpetual. The Split Escapement allows our signature flying balance wheel to exist in its purest form, on its own, floating high above the dial, while the rest of the escapement – anchor and escape wheel – is located on the opposite side of the movement. Connecting the two parts of this Split Escapement is what must be the longest escapement shaft in watchmaking – almost 12mm, a true challenge to both manufacture and assemble. Because the LM Perpetual introduced so many other innovations, at the time the Split Escapement did not really get the attention it deserved; with the LMSE, it becomes the star of the show.
Under the LMSE ‘s flying balance wheel, three sub-dials: the time, the power reserve (72 hours), and the date. But not just any date: a user-friendly and foolproof one. User-friendly because it takes into account an important insight: collectors own many watches, and when they wear a timepiece with a date… they don’t set the date! It’s just too troublesome to set when you’ll only be wearing the watch for a few days, before switching to another timepiece… The LMSE allows you to adjust the date quickly and easily thanks to a push-button located right next to the dial – you’re back on track in a few clicks. And the date is foolproof: the push-button is automatically deactivated around midnight, when adjustments should not be made to avoid damaging the movement.
Finally, to put the flying balance wheel and its three sub-dials in the best light, a sparkling stage of frosted metal. The face of the LMSE – which is actually the baseplate of the movement – is “frosted”, a traditional finishing technique crafted entirely by hand. The irregular surface is then coated in 4 different colours: blue, dark grey, red gold or yellow gold. Each edition is limited to just 18 pieces and is combined with a different movement finish. The case across all editions is 18K white gold.
But I have a confession to make… Sure, the LMSE features an unconventional, technically challenging Split Escapement. Yes, the innovative date function has been conceived for user-friendly and foolproof operation. And of course, the refined frosted finish is painstakingly crafted by hand. But to be totally honest, when we set about creating the LMSE, we had mainly one thing in mind: let’s make a beautiful Machine! I hope you like it.