Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Kelys & Chirp

Presented by MB&F -
Courtesy of MB&F
One of the things I really like about MB&F is their holistic approach.  Yes, mechanical watches are showcases for elaborate and complex workings, but these walking turtles (with singing birds) are wonderful creations.

As you'd expect with all things MB&F is involved with, this is a collaboration first between a turtle - Kelys, and a song bird - Chirp.  According to the folks art MB&F, the name given to the turtle of the team, Kelys is inspired by the Greek chelone or chelys for tortoise.  Chirp is the more musical of the pair.

Courtesy of MB&F

But there is another partnership at work here, that being music box masters Reuge and Nicolas Court, one of Switzerland's best known automaton experts.

Limited to 18 pieces in each version.

Available in blue, yellow, ochre -

Courtesy of MB&F
 and green -
Courtesy of MB&F

Here are the pertinents, straight from MB&F -


Kelys & Chirp is available in 4 limited editions of 18 pieces each in blue, green, yellow or ochre

The tortoise walks, the bird opens from back, moves and sings.
For 10-12 seconds, the bird flaps its wings, moves its tail, opens its beak in time to the bird song, then as if
magically disappears.
The tortoise moves its legs in a realistically intermittent gait, its head moves.
Average tortoise speed: 0.03 m/s (0.06 mph).

Generally rhodium plated brass, stainless steel and 18K white gold for the bird.
Tortoise scales: handmade leathering with coloured calfskin.

Number of components: 480
100% hand assembled

Materials: 18K polished white gold, eyes in sapphire
Number of components (bird alone): 30
Number of components (bellows): 90
Mainspring: twin-cam spring barrel
Power reserve: 3 cycles of turtle walking and bird singing
Bellows: double bellows system (bi-directional air pushing)
Security mechanism: if the bird or cover are pushed down while the bird is singing, the bird automatically retreats

Material: grained, satin and polish finishing, rhodium-plated brass, eyes in black onyx gems

Shell: 12 leather scales with individual polished edges
Mechanism for turtle automaton is driven by the Singing Bird movement

Number of components: 100, all rhodium or satin finished

Gear train: elliptical gearing with max/min 1.3/0.8 ratio enables the turtle to advance with a realistically non-regular gait.

Table/desk edge detector: turtle automatically stops when reaching the edge of the surface.

Tail switch: world first tail indication; with the turtle’s tail up it rests in place while the bird sings; with the turtle’s tail down
it walks and the bird sings.
Security friction clutch

Circular stainless steel winding key located on tortoise’s belly.

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