The Dong Son Tourbillon features a red gold dial with centre intricately etched to leave a relief motif inspired by the prehistoric bronze drums of the ancient Dong Son people who lived in the Red River Delta of northern Vietnam between 600 BC and the 300 AD. The meticulously detailed dial is complemented by the drum-like 38 mm Piccadilly case in 18k red gold.
The traditional patterns and iconography of the Dong Son provide the inspiration for the highly-intricate dial motif of the Speake-Marin Dong Son Tourbillon. It features an outer ring of graceful egrets complemented by an inner ring featuring plumed warriors holding their weapons between the 12 points of the eye-catching starburst. These 12 points also form a neat horological reference for the central hands indicating hours, minutes and seconds.
It is not just the iconography of the Dong Son drum motif that gives the Dong Son dial its vitality, but also the spectacular precision of the etching in the 1.0mm thick 18 k gold dial.
“The precision of the etching to create the Dong Son dial motif was only made possible thanks to an extremely innovative chemical etching process,” says Peter Speake-Marin. “Such an astonishing level of detail couldn’t have been achieved by human hand.”
The precision-etched areas of the red gold dial are 0.3 mm deep, matte finishing emphasises the ‘all white’ dial treatment and provides a stunning contrast with the circular-grained, red gold motif.
The hand-finished tourbillon rotating at 6 o’clock is framed by its steel guard. The highly polished tourbillon bridge is made from Durnico steel, chosen for its superior strength.
The lower tourbillon cage is supported by a striking paddle-shaped bridge offering clear visual access to the surrounding gears below.
Turning the Dong Son Tourbillon over, the automatic movement SM/CDH Calibre SM3, featuring hand-finishing can be fully appreciated through the sapphire crystals. On top of the offset mainspring barrel is the noble platinum micro-rotor, its strong and sober aesthetic counter-balanced by the intricate complexity of the tourbillon.
The Dong Son Tourbillon comes in a limited edition of 8 pieces. It is worn on an alligator strap with 18k gold pin buckle.