The Grande and Petite Sonnerie have a special place in the world of Haute Horlogerie. Only a handful of watchmakers are able to manufacture (and present in their catalogs) such works of art, often regarded as the pinnacle of complex watchmaking. Robert Greubel and Stephen Forsey had been thinking about this major move for years, beginning an 11-year research and development effort that culminated in their own interpretation of the complication, which A “self-contained” creation is undoubtedly one of the highlights of SIHH 2017.
The Grande Sonnerie is one of the most complex watch mechanisms (for more on chiming watches, read our Technical Viewpoint). Both the grande sonnerie and the petite sonnerie strike the time and quarters at the same time, but only the grande sonnerie repeats the time every quarter of an hour. Not surprisingly, Greubel Forsey’s interpretation of this complication – the dynamic duo’s first striking watch – is unlike any other in the history of horology: it is a A masterpiece, with a super-complex movement composed of 855 parts (with several noteworthy innovations), first-class craftsmanship, excellent acoustics and unparalleled Greubel Forsey style.
The GreubelFors Grande Sonnerie is equipped with mode selectors GS (Grand Sonnerie), PS (Small Sonnerie) and SL (Silent), all operated by a pusher at 4 o’clock. It is also a minute repeater, able to tell the time by pressing a button in the crown. In such mechanisms, the management of functionality and power is crucial so that all parts can interact simultaneously and tell the time perfectly, while managing energy consumption. The movement is powered by two energy sources: the first energy source is used for the chronograph part of the movement, with two coaxial series quick-rotating barrels (one of which has a sliding spring – 72 hours power reserve).
Although the Review fashion watch is water resistant to 30m, the sound quality of the chime is excellent, loud and pure. The case is made of titanium, which has good resonance properties. The hammer strikes the steel gong of the cathedral. The silent governor eliminates any unsightly background noise. The chimes are optimized without pauses, eliminating the usually perceptible tiny silence between the chimes of the hours and minutes.
Another notable and useful feat is the addition of 11 safety features. For example, when the timekeeping is in progress, the time setting is disconnected, and the timekeeping cannot be sounded during the time setting. In fact, striking watches need to be handled with care, as improper handling can damage the movement… and repairing such a mechanism is a long and complicated process (the assembly of the movement takes months)!
To enhance the timekeeping performance of the watch, Greubel Forsey added a 24-second tilting tourbillon to its impressive Grande Sonnerie. Of course, it’s up to the standard you’d expect from a brand: 86 perfectly handcrafted parts, weighing just 0.37 grams in total, light alloy cage struts, titanium cage bridges, gold counterweights, variable inertia pendulum with gold screws Wheel, hairspring with Philips terminal curve and Geneva-style studs…running at 21,600 vibrations/hour, inclined at 25° angle, and making one revolution every 24 seconds.
In traditional luxury Greubel Forsey style, the multi-layered black dial shows the hours and minutes by the brand’s skeletonized gold hands with arrow-shaped luminous tips. All applied indicators/markers are gold. Around the dial, small seconds at 6.30, chronograph power reserve at 5, chiming power reserve at 2 and chime mode selector at 3. The hollow position allows easy observation of the hammer and gong.
Despite its mechanical complexity, the watch is enduring because Greubel Forsey housed all 855 parts of the movement in its signature asymmetrical case measuring 43.5 mm in diameter and 16.13 mm high (relatively compact) middle. Crafted in titanium, it features a hand-finished case and a side window that reveals the tourbillon and steel cathedral gongs.
As always, the movement finishing is top notch. Bridge in nickel silver, brushed with embossed inscriptions, micro-rotor in black finish (also with embossed inscriptions), black-polished hammers, olive dome jewel set in gold-tone rhinestones.
The Greubel Forsey Grande Sonnerie is fitted with a black hand-stitched alligator strap secured by a titanium folding clasp. wholesale watches replica
Technical specifications of the Greubel Forsey Grande Sonnerie
Case: 43.5mm x 16.13mm – Titanium – Front and back sapphire crystal – Sapphire side windows – 30m water resistance
Movement: 36.40 mm x 11.13 mm – Manual winding – 72 hours power reserve – 21,600 vibrations/hour – 85 jewels – Hours, minutes, small seconds, small sonnerie, minute repeater, chime mode selection, tilting tourbillon 24 Seconds, movement power reserve indicator, chiming power reserve indicator.
Strap: Hand-stitched alligator leather with titanium folding clasp