F. P. Journe
Chronomètre à Résonance | Gold Movement | Platinum
In 2004, Journe, the brand, began manufacturing movements from 18-carat gold, having developed the brand sufficiently to further the manufacturing process. The Chronomètre à Résonance Calibre 1499.2 in this example is comprised of two balance wheels, inspired by a natural phenomenon called resonance. The complication is explained by François-Paul thusly;
“In a watch, never mind which, there is energy which dissipates. When you listen to a watch, the tic-tac of the balance is dissipating energy. In a resonance chronometer, there are two balance wheels which are placed sufficiently close to one another, and the dissipated energy of each is caught by the other, leading to a unique type of frequency regulation.”
The discovery is said to have been made in 1665, by Dutch mathematician Christiaan Hygens, who reported that two pendulum clocks, hanging from the same mounting beam, would beat in such perfect duplicity, that the sound of the escapements were indistinguishable from one another. The concept was later researched and developed by Antide Janvier, to be refined by Abraham-Louis Breguet. Early sceptics suggested that air-resistance played a role, however, extensive testing by Breguet (the first to test a dual-train resonance watch with a double-balance system, placing rings around the balance wheels, to negate the effects of air), and more recently by François-Paul, proved this to be untrue. Whilst the concept was long established, the term ‘resonance’ was in fact coined by Monsieur Journe himself, likening the phenomenon to that of a stringed musical instrument, which resonates.
The Chronomètre à Résonance is quintessentially an F.P Journe, in both its design language and movement. Housed in a classical 40mm dress watch case, it is made distinctive by F.P. Journe’s signature ‘flat crown’ with a rope-like pattern. The white-gold dial is delicately textured, and displays two separate silver guilloché dials for the hours and minutes (the two opposing dials capable of displaying multiple time zones). The words ‘Invenit et Fecit’ are inscribed below the two subsidiary seconds (Latin for 'Invented and Made') in classic F.P Journe style - a nod to signing conventions of a century ago. The signature hands form a distinct contrast to the silver and grey dial. At 12 o’clock is a power reserve indicator of 40 hours. Overall, the dial layout is clean and highly legible.
Interestingly, the power reserve indicator of this Chronomètre à Résonance is reversed from the norm, beginning at 40 and progressing to 0. This was deliberate by F.P. Journe, who borrowed this from marine chronometer clocks. The reasoning behind this lies in the idea that the power reserve indicator of the Chronomètre à Résonance is not meant to display how many hours are left, but instead how many hours have passed since the watch was wound.
This manual-winding, F.P. Journe caliber 1499.2 movement is 18k rose-gold, with fausses-côtes embellishments, constructed with 36 jewels. It features a resonance-controlled, twin independent gear-train, straight-line lever escapement, monometallic 4-arm balance with 4 timing weights, self-compensating free-sprung flat balance spring, oscillating at a rate of 21,600 vibrations per hour. Further to this, a winding crown at 12 o’clock adjusts both time-zones, with a crown at 4 o’clock to synchronize the seconds’ hands.
With the introduction of the “Gold-Era” in late 2004, F.P. Journe introduced a slightly updated Chronomètre à Résonance with a new reference, RN (Resonance Nouveau), or 'New Resonance'. With this introduction, all existing calibers carried over were issued with new caliber codes. In the case of the Chronomètre à Résonance ref. RN, the caliber was referred to as 1499.2; indicating the second version of the movement. The ref. RN used two movements; caliber 1499.2 (seen in this example), showing the shift to rose-gold and later the 1499.3, which indicated a new power-reserve. It's believed that very few of the 1499.2 movements were made during a short transitional period between 2005 to 2006 - consequently, making them rarer than first generation, brass-movement pieces. You can read more about this in the The Journe Guy’s in-depth study.
The earliest works of François-Paul Journe, effortlessly blend traditional 19th-century watchmaking with modern haute-horology. Housed in a 40mm platinum case, this F.P. Journe Chronomètre à Résonance represents a modern take on Journe's original, inspired design. Monsieur Journe’s mastery is evident in the look, feel, and romance of his craftsmanship - inspired by his immediate works after graduation, restoring 18th and 19th century marine chronometers and pocket watches.
This F.P. Journe Chronomètre à Résonance comes as a full-set, with an original F.P Journe, black alligator strap; a dark grey Helsinki nubuck leather strap with curved ends (measuring 20 x 19mm); corresponding platinum tang buckle, its accompanying box, guarantee card and paperwork. It’s numbered #8 of the series, corresponding with the original guarantee and sales receipt, from Japan-based retailer Kamine.
Viewings can be arranged in Central London by appointment.
|Brand:||F. P. Journe|
|Model:||Chronomètre à Résonance Second Series RN|
|Movement:||mechanical manual-winding Cal. 1499.2|
|Functions:||date, multiple time zones, hours, minutes, sub-seconds|
|Features:||twin independent movement, guilloché hours/mins, display-back, power-reserve display|
|Crystal:||sapphire front, back|
|Strap:||dark-grey Helsinki nubuck leather strap; F. P Journe alligator strap with tang buckle|
|Box & papers:||full-set, box, warranty card, papers, original sales receipt|
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