Thursday, April 8, 2010

F.P. Journe- Sonnerie Souveraine

All you really need to know about this watch is that it costs half a million bucks and has a waiting list of two to three years. Requiring ten patents and six years of development (as you can see in the right photo there's some really crazy stuff happening on the inside), the F.P. Journe Sonnerie Souveraine ($560,000) is a grand-strike clockwatch and minute repeater. What does this mean? Basically, it sounds the hours and quarters — like dong, dong, dong... ding-dong, ding-dong for 3:30. This might not sound like a big deal, but it's apparently huge in real watchmaking.

Journe’s Sonnerie Souveraine is much more than ‘simply’ a grand sonnerie; it is a grand et petite sonnerie plus a minute repeater. A sonnerie is a clockwatch; that means that it sounds the time (hours and quarters) in passing - just like an old grandfather clock: although a grandfather clock is likely to strike only the hours or perhaps half hours. A grand sonnerie (full strike) sounds the hours and the quarters at each quarter (every 15 minutes), i.e. at 4.45 we would hear four dongs (hours) and three ding-dongs (quarters). A petite sonnerie (small strike) sounds only the hour at the hour the quarters at the quarters, i.e. at 4.45 we would hear only the three ding-dongs of the quarter hours."

Technical Data:
Calibre 1505: Manually wound. 40 jewels. 400+ pieces in movement
Movement Dimensions: 35mm x 7.8mm
Balance: 4 adjustable weights. 21,600 v/h. Free-sprung.
Power Reserve: 120 hours/5 days without chime. 48 hours with grand strike. 24 hours of autonomy after strike runs down.
Case: Steel. 42mm x 12.25mm

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