Laurent Favre, has re-launched a brand that, according to documents in the Neuchâtel State Archives, dates back to the early 1700s (beginning with his ancestor Abraham Favre). It is unclear when the name A. Favre & fils actually came into use, but the last Abraham Favre was known to have signed the brand name on timepieces he created. As a heritage to his forbears, Laurent Favre, a 10th generation watchmaker, has learned the art of fine watchmaking through his studies and experience working at a major Swiss watch brand.
He has made it to the point were he has the know-how required to create his own line of timepieces. The first timepiece introduced, under the resurrected A. Favre & fils name, is the Phoenix 10.1: Quantième à Grand Affichage Rotatif.
This new timepiece is both aesthetically and technically appealing. Aesthetically, the movement is intricately finished using numerous techniques including: chamfering, drawing, circular graining, sinks entirely by hand, and a “Rayons de la Gloire” (Rays of Glory) machine finish on bridges (also called sun ray).
Technically, the hand wound movement runs at a high rate of 28,800 vph (this rate is unusually high for a manual wind movement). Parallel twin barrels offer up to 84 hours of power reserve (40 hours is common among single barrel mechanical movements). And the most important technical aspect, is a patented big date, which is displayed on the right third of the dial. The Quantième à Grand Affichage Rotatif was designed to optimize the number of parts, therefore increasing reliability, by reducing the number of moving parts to, only two.
The Phoenix 10.1 : Quantième à Grand Affichage Rotatif
The Quantième à Grand Affichage Rotatif is a quest of mechanical purity, liberated from any unnecessary artifice and keeping only the essential. At the crossroads of high technology and fine watchmaking tradition, it was designed using the principles of the sacred geometry discovered in the Antiquity by Pythagoras.
The case of the Phoenix collection combines modern and classical design in an obvious yet deceitful simplicity. Its angular shapes give it a very contemporary and aggressive design, playing with contrasts and perspectives. It is a complex assembly with lugs mechanically fitted in its middle-part to give it a unique finish.
It has been designed using the principles of the Golden Ratio (ϕ) and the Golden Number (7). These principles came from the Pythagorean School: since the antiquity, thinkers, artists and architects have used the Golden Ratio in their quest for harmony. For Pythagoras, the number seven represents the law of evolution. It is the number of the Great Initiates and signifies the union of men and divinity.
Fig. 1 – The first golden rectangle (1) (= using the golden ratio) goes through the dial aperture and defines the length of the lugs in proportion to the case diameter.
Fig. 2 – The second golden rectangle (2) defines the width of the lug, the third and fourth (3&4) provide the coordinates for the angle of the lug.
Fig. 3 – The number 7 is the angle given to the case middle-part in order to create the illusion that the case is thinner than it actually is when looked from a ¾ perspective.
Inside, the in-house calibre DB 1334/1 HENRY (a tribute to Henry A. Favre, 8th generation of the Favre watchmakers) combines the best technology available with traditional and ancestral watchmaking arts in terms of finishing and decoration: the shape of bridges (rounded “apple” heads), the double click winding mechanism with wolf teeth ratchet-wheel, screwed-in jewel settings, end-stone plates, “swan neck” index-adjuster and a fixed balance-spring stud.
This movement has a diameter of 13 ¾ ´´´ (lines) and its heart beats at 28,800 variations per hour, the best compromise between precision and reliability. Its parallel twin barrels with direct depth offer up to 84 hours of power reserve. A power reserve indicator is visible through the sapphire case-back.
The Quantième à Grand Affichage Rotatif is an original and patented big date development. The purpose of this system is to optimize the number of components, therefore increasing reliability, by reducing the number of moving parts to the minimum: only two in this case.
Each movement undergoes a fine watchmaking finishing: chamfering, drawing, circular graining, sinks entirely done by hand, and a “Rayons de la Gloire” (Rays of Glory) machine finish on bridges.
18K White gold, Palladium 150 (comparable to Platinum)
Calibre: DB 1334/1 HENRY, Twin parallel barrels, manual winding, 28,800 vibrations per hour, 84 hour power reserve
Hours, minutes, central second, big date
30 meters (100 feet)
Source: A Favre & fils