Greubel Forsey’s first ever grande sonnerie watch was 11 years in the making, required two patents and represents a culmination of watchmaking excellence; it is the watchmaker’s most complex creation to date.
For any watchmaker, a grande sonnerie remains a true pinnacle of achievement. It’s one of the most fiendishly difficult complications to master – so challenging that, a little like summiting Everest, for the rarefied few who achieve it there are countless more who can only dream about it or whose attempts have ended in defeat and ignominy.
The pure, rich sound is enhanced by an acoustic resonance cage made from titanium.
For Greubel Forsey, 2017 will always be remembered as a year of standing on a metaphorical peak, as over a decade’s worth of research, development, not to mention tears and challenges, has culminated in the achievement of this elusive, devilish complication. Because it’s such a tough mountain to climb, few horological adventurers will telegraph their punches when it comes to speaking about such a project and so it was with Stephen Forsey and Robert Greubel, who worked in utmost secrecy to assemble the 935 parts of this timepiece, striving to achieve harmony between the movement, exterior and of course the acoustics. This has been achieved inside a case measuring 43.55mm and 16.13mm high – the watch has a manually wound movement but the delicate striking mechanism is self-wound, and has about 20 hours of power reserve in grande sonnerie mode.
The watch has three modes to choose from: grande sonnerie (which strikes the hours and the quarters in passing), petite sonnerie (which strikes the full hours in passing) and Silence (which does not strike in passing). The pure, rich sound is enhanced by an acoustic resonance cage made from titanium. Just five to eight pieces will be realised each year, making the owner of a Greubel Forsey Grande Sonnerie part of an exclusive circle of connoisseurs as rarefied as those that have scaled the world’s greatest peaks.
Hand-wound movement with patented tourbillon. Full striking-mechanism with automatic winding.
In titanium with asymmetrical convex synthetic sapphire crystal, 43.5mm.
Hand-sewn alligator. Titanium folding clasp, engraved with the Greubel Forsey logo.