F. P. Journe
Chronomètre à Résonance | rose gold
This 38mm, rose gold Chronomètre à Résonance is one of the first series of Resonance watches produced by F. P. Journe. First introduced in 1999, the Chronomètre à Résonance was only the second serial production watch by François-Paul Journe. It has since become synonymous with the watchmaker, as one of his most ingenious and recognised inventions.
The first series of Chronomètre à Resonance watches are understood to only have been made in platinum and rose gold, with the latter being rarer. This is also the case for the earliest Tourbillion Souverain examples. A small handful of two-tone Resonance watches were also produced during the brass movement period, combining the two materials.
CHRONOMÈTRE À RÉSONANCE
The Chronomètre à Résonance movement 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. Initially, unsuccessfully attempted in a pocket watch in 1983, Journe was able to hone the phenomenon of acoustic resonance in a wristwatch some fifteen years later, with the prototypes displayed at his first Basel Fair in 1999. Ever since, the model has gained a cult status among collectors. As Rexhep Rexhepi, an independent watchmaker who previously worked for Journe, put it, “When I think of Francois-Paul Journe, I think of the Resonance.”
The Chronomètre à Résonance is quintessentially an F.P Journe, in both its design language and movement. Housed in a 38mm rose gold case, it's made distinctive by a number of signature elements throughout. The white-gold dial is delicately textured, transitioning to a champagne tone from different angles. It 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’or more literally 'Designed and built by F.P. Journe') 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 movement is rhodium-plated brass, with Côtes de Genève, 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 synchronise the seconds’ hands.
In 2004, Journe switched to manufacturing movements from 18-carat gold, having developed the brand sufficiently to further the manufacturing process. Interestingly, it is François-Paul Journe's earliest brass-movement pieces that command more interest from collectors. It is estimated that only 2000 brass movements were ever produced, across all lines, and were manufactured exclusively between 2001 and circa 2004. These earlier pieces are now highly-sought after, owing to their unique placement in the brand's history and rarity. The combination of a rose gold case and white gold dial (with a brass movement) in the earliest examples of the Chronomètre à Résonance, is thought to have been made in less than 40 examples, only adding to this appeal.
This F.P. Journe Chronomètre à Résonance comes with an original F.P Journe, alligator strap, a Valletta light tan nubuck strap with curved ends (measuring 20 x 19mm) and corresponding rose gold F.P. Journe deployant clasp. It's also accompanied by newly updated inner and outer boxes, along with a Certificate of Authenticity from F.P. Journe.
Viewings are currently suspended for the time being.
|Brand:||F. P. Journe|
|Model:||Chronomètre à Résonance|
|Movement:||mechanical manual-winding Cal. 1499 rhodium-plated brass|
|Functions:||date, duel hours, minutes, sub-seconds|
|Features:||twin independent movement, guilloché hours/mins, display-back, power-reserve display|
|Case:||38mm rose gold|
|Crystal:||sapphire front, back|
|Strap:||Valletta nubuck leather strap; F. P Journe alligator strap with rose gold deployant clasp|
|Box & papers:||inner and outer boxes, Certificate of Authenticity|
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