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Manufacture Fleury Revives the Legendary Lemania 2310 Chronograph Movement, with its Chronograph FXR-4

A modernised take on one of the greatest chronograph movements ever created.

| By Xavier Markl | 4 min read |

Social media can be a wonderful tool. When we discovered the initial pictures of the new chronograph movement from Manufacture Fleury a few weeks back, it immediately tickled our interest. Now that the dust from Watches and Wonders has settled, we have contacted Jean-Marc Fleury to find out more… A few days later, we hit the road to the outskirts of Geneva to visit his workshop and get our hands on several prototypes of his Chronograph FXR-4. And to check its movement, derived from one of the most beautiful calibres of all times: the Lemania 2310.

An experienced professional in the watch industry, Jean-Marc Fleury has been manufacturing watch parts since 2017 through his company Suisse Precision Composants. In his workshops based in Choulex, on the outskirts of Geneva, he produces components, meticulously crafted in small series, with an approach mostly tailored for independent watchmakers. Driven by an inherent passion for the craft, Fleury naturally gravitated towards the creation of his own movements and timepieces. The Chronograph FXR-4 stands as his second endeavour, succeeding the FM01, a 28mm hand-wound calibre.

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Above: the historic Omega Calibre 321, based on the Lemania 2310. Below: modern high-end takes by Vacheron Constantin and Breguet on the base of Lemania 2310 ébauches.

The starting point of the project was naturally the movement. For this, Jean-Marc Fleury drew inspiration from one of the greatest chronograph movements of all time, the Lemania 2310 with the support of watchmaking engineer Jean-Paul Duarte. Created by Albert Piguet and Jacques Reymond, this superb classic chronograph was introduced in the early 1940s. It features a traditional combination of a column wheel and a horizontal clutch. Among other watches, it was used by Omega as the calibre 321 – recently brought back to life. It has been the base for some of the nicest chronograph calibres, for instance from Patek Philippe (calibre CH-27-70 powering the reference 5070 before the brand moved to the 5170 and its in-house movement), Vacheron Constantin, Breguet or Roger Dubuis…

If the look is familiar at first sight, the hand-wound calibre FM04 is not a straightforward copy of the Lemania 2310. The architecture is clearly derived from this revered chronograph movement with its distinctive wishbone bridge, column-wheel and horizontal clutch. But it includes numerous modifications such as the chronograph lever. Notably, the dimensions are also larger and the two registers are slightly more spaced. Despite the use of a faster frequency (21,600 vibrations/hour versus 18,000 vibrations/hour) the power reserve has been beefed up to a comfortable 65-hour autonomy. With the higher frequency comes a slightly smaller balance wheel. The display has also been updated with a date and day-night indicator. 

The overall execution of the movement is beautiful throughout. Jean-Marc Fleury prides himself in using top-quality materials to craft his parts. Different options are proposed. We had the opportunity to see a sober decoration in dark tones from which stand out the steel parts, or, a raw German silver (maillechort) version adorned with stripes.

Let’s move to the watch itself, the Manufacture Fleury Chronograph FXR-4. And there again, things are fully manufactured in-house, except for a few parts such as the sapphire crystal of course. This beautiful movement is housed in a moderately sized 40mm case available in high-grade 1.4441 recycled steel, white gold or 4N pink gold. Its design features a sloping bezel, elongated lugs and rounded rectangular pushers. 

The dial opts for a modern look. It is satin-brushed brass with horizontal brushing for the larger part and circular brushing for the recessed registers. The geometric applied markers are in black polished steel. The caption “chronometer” present on the prototype dials will be removed or replaced. The hands are meticulously hand-crafted too. The hour and minute hands are rounded off (bercées) while the chronograph hands are coloured with lacquer. For the occasion, Fleury also adds a pointer date in a sub-dial at 6 o’clock as well as a day-night indicator.

The Manufacture Fleury Chronographe FXR-4 is released in limited editions of 11 pieces per material. It retails at CHF 91,000 in steel and CHF 96,000 in gold – which is certainly not cheap, but this is probably inherent to the small-scale production. These are made to order with first deliveries planned for early 2025. As Manufacture Fleury produces its watches and movements in small series, there is room for customization, including for the movement decoration.

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5 responses

  1. God damn that’s a beautiful movement. Thank you for covering this – wouldn’t have known about it otherwise.

  2. insane price for a very normal dial and a movement that looks worse than the alternatives.

    a part of the charm of these movements is the low frequency; if you have one, you know there’s nothing else like it.

    another is the large balance wheels, especially combined with the aforementioned low frequency.

    that would all still make sense, but then ask for Journe money? Mr Fleury surely jests.

  3. Beautiful chronograph …. no doubt. But I can’t see how one can justify a price tag at 23% above the flyback Patek Chrono 5980G for example.

  4. $100K for a movement with obviously mechanical anglage finishing? Hell to the no.

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