300 years of matchmaking and chronometers around your wrist, the measured extravagance of François Paul Journe.
In the Souverain family, I ask for the Chronometer, Grand prix d'Horlogerie de Genève in 2005.
And why this model ?
For it represents the quintessence of tradition and watchmaker savoir-faire, in a whirl of passion and impressive attention to details that make this chronometer irresistible.
Let's start with the dial.
At the first glance, we recognize the usual codes: fine silver engine turned dial, railroad, blue-stained hands, subsidiary seconds.
All this is embellished with a little complication: the power reserve.
At the second glance, a terrifying observation...
Everything is here but nothing is at the right place:
- the subsidiary seconds has drifted between the digits 7 and 8,
- the power reserve's axis is above the crown's axis: the two stems seem to overlap,
- the marker's figures reduce themselves covertly to go under the subsidiary seconds, without being cut as often,
- and, depending on their positions, the hands sometime take the shape of a nice duck's profile thanks to their pyriform figure...
Maybe you have not noticed yet that the power reserve does not count the remaining hours but the spent hours before the wind up to be planned : when the spring is at its maximum, the power reserve indicates zero, like the former navy chronometers...
Concerning the caliber, we enter a world of subtle excessiveness.
Further than the fact that it is totally gold, than its double serial barrel, than the quality chamfers, than its precision, than its 13 diameter, which is the one of every monsters of chronometry, an enigma remains : how does the transmission between the escapement and the remaining gear wheel happen ?
Even with a closer look, we cannot see it : there is a hidden gear wheel which cross under the bottom plate, only for the pleasure's sake.
Yes, a mystery caliber that add itself to the stroke of genius of the two axis crown / power reserve.
This movement is a watch-making dream in its pureness and its plainness.
But do not be afraid, François Paul Journe trains watchmakers and forms stocks of spare parts in order that the dream does not become a nightmare in the future.
What else to add ?
Yes, the 38mm diameter is largely enough as the opening of the dial is huge and the thinness of the box emphasizes this impression.
And for the materials, let's be foolish, let's go on, let's choose platinum, which, with its practical color, emphasizes again the feeling of having a magic tool around the wrist.
The + :
- its comfort and presence
- its exclusivity
- its precision
The – :
- a weak waterproofness to be taken to the beach
- a dial that can be seen on some Octa
Further information :
- journalist's wrist size = 17,5 cm