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Zenith - Academy Georges Favre-Jacot

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Founded in 1865 by Georges Favre-Jacot, a 22 years old native of the Le Locle village in the Neuchâtel mountains, Zenith will celebrate 150 years next year.

To mark this exceptional anniversary, Zenith  has introduced a new model dedicated to the man which started a Manufacture which achieved impressive records including: 300 patents, 600 movement variations and 2,333 prizes in the field of chronometry (precision timekeeping).

A watch dedicated to the founder of one of the symbols of Haute Horlogerie could not be an ordinary one and, in fact, the new Zenith Academy Georges Favre-Jacot features a fusée and chain transmission, a highly complex system that ensures constant force to the regulating organ.

Generally, a watch movement experiences a progressive loss of amplitude as it winds down and the barrel reduces its force.

With a fusée and chain mechanism, the mainspring transmits its energy to the fusée via the chain which coils around the barrel. By adjusting the variations in tension thanks to its helical shape, the fusée regularises the force distributed to the going train and then to the silicon escape-wheel.

The upper dial opening of the Academy Georges Favre-Jacot reveals the barrel between 10 and 11 o’clock and the fusée around which the chain wraps itself between 1 and 2 o’clock.

While the movement takes more than 50 hours to unwind, meaning for the chain to coil around the barrel, a few seconds of winding are enough to see the fusée and barrel turning counter-clockwise to the running direction in order for the chain to once again wrap around the fusée.

Two bridges screwed to the mainplate support the arbors of the barrel, engraved with the inscriptions Zenith/Manufacture Le Locle, and the fusée.

The chain ensuring transmission between the barrel and the fusée comprises 575 parts and measures 18 cm long. Double links alternate with intermediate links to create a structure that enables the chain, once rewound, to withstand an over three-kilo traction force.

The 45 mm rose gold case of the Academy Georges Favre-Jacot houses a high-frequency hand-wound El Primero 4810 movement beating at 36,000 vibrations per hour (5 Hz). The power-reserve display, positioned between 4 and 5 o’clock, gives indication of the 50-hour power reserve. Blued steel hands for hours, minutes, seconds and power reserve indicator create a nice contrast with the grained silver-toned dial. The total thickness of the watch is 14.35 mm.

The Zenith Academy Georges Favre-Jacot will be released in a 150-piece limited edition in 2015 at a price of approximately Euro 66,000 / US$ 82,700.

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