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Ferdinand Berthoud - Chronometrie FB 1

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Chronométrie Ferdinand Berthoud is a new Haute Horlogerie brand created by the Chopard group to tribute the exceptional watchmaker and chronometer-maker who created exceptional timepieces, including the 18th century Marine Clocks that guided the vessels of the King of France.

Reinterpreting the watchmaking legacy of Ferdinand Berthoud from a contemporary point of view, the new brand is positioned at the very high-end segment of the market.

The first timepiece presented by the new Val-de-Travers based manufacture is the Chronométrie FB 1 which features a tourbillon with central seconds and an innovative suspended fusée–chain regulating system.

The fusée–chain mechanism ensures that the driving force remains entirely stable throughout the duration of the power reserve so delivering exceptional precision to the timepiece.

As Ferdinand Berthoud explained in his Essai sur l’horlogerie in 1763, “the characteristic of a fusee is to help maintaining an even action of the spring on the gear train thanks to the changing size of the radius building the spiral."

Housed in an octagonal white gold or rose gold case (44 mm x 13 mm) with four watertight lateral portholes, the new Ferdinand Berthoud Chronomètre FB 1 is equipped with an mechanical hand-wound movement comprising more than 1,120 components entirely designed, developed and produced in-house.

Equipped with a low-frequency (3 Hz or 21,600 vph) tourbillon with central seconds, this exceptional movement also features the constant-force regulating device with suspended fusée–chain transmission that we described above, a differential-based winding system, as well as a power-reserve mechanism called a “suspended mobile cone” which guarantees 53 hours of autonomy. Patents have been filed for several of the mechanisms composing this new calibre.

The architecture of the movement, visible through the transparent case, highlights the symmetry between three key elements: barrel, fusée and tourbillon.

The movement is also characterised by the polished titanium pillars which secures the bridges to the mainplate while offering a glimpse to the heart of the movement.

The entirely hand-decorated half-bridges are satin-finished and bevelled with straight-grained flanks, while the jewels are set in finely polished and chamfered chatons.

The result of almost three years of research and development, this movement delivers exceptional precision and rating regularity that was certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC).

The technical dial is proposed with a black satin-brushed or ruthenium background depending on the case material in contrast with the white-lacquered off-set hours and minutes subdial at 12 o’clock.

The central opening with carefully chamfered contours reveals the seconds wheel-and-pinion and the driving wheel of the tourbillon carriage.

At 9 o'clock, the power reserve is indicated  by an arrow which points to the words “Haut” or “Bas” – the French terms for high and low written in the native language of Ferdinand Berthoud. The scale is directly engraved on the mainplate.

The design of the hands is a reinterpretation of various hand shapes used by Ferdinand Berthoud in his timepieces.

The Ferdinand Berthoud Chronometrie FB 1 will be produced in two limited editions of 50 pieces each: white gold case with titanium inter-horn elements and rose gold crown inlay or rose gold case with ceramic inter-horn elements and ceramic crown inlay.

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