Without a doubt one of our favorite watches at the SIHH 2016 Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, the new Greubel Forsey Double Balancier brings a stunning work of horological art to the table. Available in a limited edition of only 33 pieces in white gold the Double Balancier is the first Double Balancier à Différentiel Constant. This new mechanism redefines the limits of timekeeping with two inclined balance wheels in a stable position, while a constant spherical differential provides a more steady amplitude.
Aesthetically, this new Greubel Forsey timepiece catches the eye with its three-dimensional construction and multi-layer dial appearance. With more than two thirds of the dial open to the heart of its movement, the look of the new Greubel Forsey Double Balancier is simply out of this world. Its design, allows for one to contemplate its movement for hours and the way the different elements are laid out in it, makes you want to take each of the components out with your own hands. Built on many levels, it almost appears like a miniature city constructed between the balances inclined with capricious intent. Each element on the watch has been carefully placed in a very organized way and with enough separation that the inner workings can be better appreciated and enjoyed.
The multi-level gold silvered dial includes a 72-hour power reserve indicator between 1 and 3 o'clock and the traditional skeletonized hands typically used by Greubel Forsey with luminescent material on their tips. An elegant minute track and 'oven fired' enameled indexes —émail grand feu champlevé— complete the classic yet vanguardist look of the new Greubel Forsey Double Balancier. For those that like to keep track of the seconds, a running seconds indicator has been delicately placed at 4 o'clock on this exceptional timepiece.
The double balance wheels inclined at an angle of 30 degrees, are just mesmerizing and hypnotizing. The balance wheels oscillate rhythmically —each in different direction—, as if they were dancing to an horological symphony with no finale.
Their bridges perfectly polished refract like and reflect the surroundings like the glassy surface of a calm lake in the middle of the Spring. Located between 6 and 7 o'clock, one can appreciate the 4-minute constant differential rotation indicator.
Fitted with a display case back, one can admire the full nickel silver grey PVD main plate guarding the patented manual wound in-house calibre GF04 that powers the Greubel Forsey Double Balancier. The movement composed of 285 parts is fitted with 50 jewels in olive-domed gold chatons and with 30 parts for its constant differential. The movement provides a power reserve of 72 hours when fully wound while beating at a frequency of 21,600 vph. All bridges are nickel silver spotted with straight-grained flanks and with grey PVD treatment. The constant differential can also be admired from the back, through an opening on the main plate.
The case, measuring 43 mm in diameter and 13.38 mm in thickness is made of 18K white gold
and finished with alternating mirror polished satin-brushed areas. The bezel is mirror polished and the crystal is a convex sapphire crystal with anti-reflective treatment. The watch is water resistant to 30 meters, but who in its right mind would dare to get this masterpiece wet.
To round out the superb look of this masterpiece of horology, the Greubel Forsey Double Balancier is fitted with a very elegant and nicely hand-sewn black alligator strap. The strap is fitted with a comfortable and very easy to use deployant double-folding clasp in matching 18K white gold with the Greubel Forsey logo on the front of the clasp and with bead blasted sides.
On the wrist, the watch wears slightly bigger than its actual size and more like a 45 mm timepiece due to its high case profile. The watch has unparalleled wrist presence and its mesmerizing appearance will keep the wearer hypnotized for hours. Being in the presence of such a masterpiece of horology is one of those lifetime experiences we are eternally grateful. Kudos to Greubel Forsey for going the extra-mile once again and for making the SIHH 2016 even more exciting.
Sticker Price CHF 350,000 Swiss Francs. For more info on Greubel Forsey click here.