As the month of July flies by, we continue to explore the different watches that charity auction Only Watch 2017 has to offer. We have already seen some impressive watches, exclusively developed to help research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy – and it’s not over yet. One of the 48 brands participating is Frederique Constant, who have decided to tweak their flagship watch, the Manufacture Perpetual Calendar, by giving it a unique meteorite dial… And, what was the most affordable QP on the market will certainly (and hopefully) lose its title with this edition.
We already knew that Frederique Constant, an integrated manufacture for now over a decade, was capable of creating interesting watches, powered by their own movements, and yet with accessible prices. In other words, elegance, discretion and mechanical pleasure for a reasonable amount. However, back in 2016, the industry received an electroshock. Frederique Constant showed that they can do much more than simple 3-hand automatic movements. Indeed, they entered the closed circle of manufactures by having their own internally-developed perpetual calendar, one of the classical complications. Already sounding promising, the final hammer hit was the price… The so-called “Manufacture Perpetual Calendar” watch was the most accessible perpetual calendar available on the market, with a price of around EUR 8,000 – and yes, it is Swiss Made, yes, it really is a QP with all the required functions, no it’s not an ETA-based calibre, and no it’s not a externally sourced QP module.
To complete this Manufacture Perpetual Calendar, Frederique Constant has simplified the perpetual calendar mechanism to make it easy to assemble and free from most of the adjustment processes. Thus, labour-cost has been drastically reduced, directly impacting on the final price of the watch. Yet, this doesn’t mean that this QP gives less than what it should. It displays the same indication as a 50k perpetual calendar from certain century-old Geneva-based manufactures – meaning that it won’t require any adjustment for the coming 100 years; that it takes into account the leap years, and that you’ll also find on its dial the date, the day of the week, the month and the year. It has just had a bit less hand-finishing and decoration on its movement – but that doesn’t affect the mechanics…
For Only Watch 2017, Frederique Constant comes with a unique version of this Manufacture Perpetual Calendar. Mechanically, there is no difference when compared to the standard version. For the look, it relies on a luxurious 18k rose gold 42mm case, with sapphire caseback to reveal the movement. Yet, the main attraction is a meteorite stone dial, exclusive to this version. The variety used for this unique piece was uncovered in the desert of Namibia and it shows a dark metallic grey tone, to contrast with the warm gold color of the case, hands and indexes. This material is as perpetual as the movement in this watch…
Only Watch is a biennial fundraiser for research on Duchenne muscular dystrophy – Association Monégasque contre les Myopathies (AMM). Organized under the patronage of HSH Albert II de Monaco, the 7th edition gathers a record 48 participants. Only Watch 2017 will be auctioned by Christie’s in Geneva in November 2017. For more information, please visit www.onlywatch.com.
Specifications – Frederique Constant Manufacture Perpetual Calendar Meteorite Dial Only Watch 2017
- Case: 42mm diameter – 18K rose gold polished 3-parts case – sapphire crystal on both sides – 30m water resistant
- Dial: Meteorite dial, with applied rose gold-plated indexes – Hand-polished rose gold-plated hours & minutes hands
- Movement: FC-775 Manufacture caliber – automatic – 38 hours power reserve – 4Hz frequency – hours, minutes and perpetual calendar
- Strap: Dark grey alligator strap, 18k rose gold folding buckle
- Reference: FC-775MT4S9
- Unique Piece for Only Watch 2017
- Estimate: CHF 22,000