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Review of the Greubel Forsey GMT: black titanium (new), white gold, red gold and platinum. With live photographs.

by Peter Chong on February 20, 2015

Greubel Forsey have been one of the leaders in the industry for a while. Both Robert Greubel and Stephen Forsey have been giants the watchmaking world, and their creations is usually nothing short of spectacular.

 

Greubel Forsey GMT in red gold.

Greubel Forsey GMT in white gold. The case has a golden hue due to reflection from the solid oak table it was photographed on. Photographed on location at Greubel Forsey.

 

I have covered a visit to their manufacturing premises last year. See that report here. The manufacture houses some 100 strong staff who churn out some 100 watches a year.  A very high watchmaker per watch ratio, but the same premises also house Complitime, a think tank created by Robert and Stephen to offer solutions to complicated watches used by other brands. Most of this kind of work is shrouded in secrecy, but in BaselWorld 2014, Harry Winston revealed that their Triple Axis Tourbillon is a creation in partnership with Complitime.

 

Greubel Forsey GMT. Shown here in platinum. Announced in 2014, it was originally made in white gold, red gold, and platinum. In SIHH 2015, GF announced an addition of the titanium version with black ADLC.

Greubel Forsey GMT. Shown here in platinum. Announced in 2014, it was originally made in white gold, red gold, and platinum. In SIHH 2015, GF announced an addition of the titanium version with black ADLC.

 

Also new in 2014, was a significant different approach taken by GF on their watches. A second complication makes its appearance. This manifested itself with the caliber GF05, featuring a GMT display.

 

Calbiber GF05: 36.4mm diameter, 9.8mm thick, 443 parts, 72 hours power reserve.

Calbiber GF05: 36.4mm diameter, 9.8mm thick, 443 parts, 72 hours power reserve. The back carries the data on a rotating disc marked with cities symbolising the 24 time zones, with summer time shown on an inner ring. The disc shows the cities which observe summer time with the city name on a light background, and those which do not use summer time on a black backfround.

 

The visual impact of GF watches are a given. All the watches are rather large, thick, to give the sense of space and layered dimensionality as one gazes into the dial. But the visual impact of the GMT goes further. At the corner of 8 o’clock, a brilliant 3 dimensional model of planet Earth is replicated. The spinning globe, made from royal blue oxidised titanium provides a real time reproduction of the Earth’s rotation. And offers an intuitive view of the time all over the world at a single glance. An opening in the side of the case just by the globe allows light to flood in, to symbolize daytime.

 

A close up to the globe. Details are particularly interesting. Note the window on the case band to allow light into the globe, symbolizing the sun's rays for daylight on the globe.

A close up to the globe. Details are particularly interesting. Note the window on the case band to allow light into the globe, symbolizing the sun’s rays for daylight on the globe.

 

A second timezone display is shown at 11 o’clock and a small seconds at 2 o’clock and power reserve at 3 o’clock.

 

The incline tourbillon at 25deg, rotating at 24 seconds a rotation is a treat to behold. Finishing is first rate. Flat black polished steel tourbillon bridge, hand bevelled.

The incline tourbillon at 25deg, rotating at 24 seconds a rotation is a treat to behold. Finishing is explemplary. Flat black polished steel tourbillon bridge, hand bevelled. Note the polished surface of the escape wheel. And the magnificent tourbillon carriage.

 

This SIHH 2015, they added a titanium cased version to the existing collection of white gold, red gold and platinum. The titanium case is finished with a treatment of vacuum deposited ADLC (amorphous diamind-like carbon) which gives the case a deep black coating. The striking appearance also provides the case with a surface hardness significantly greater than natural titanium,

 

The latest iteration in black titanium. both the dial and case is treated with ADLC which blackens the titanium, but also hardens it.

The latest iteration in black titanium. both the dial and case is treated with ADLC which blackens the titanium, but also hardens it.

The movement’s main plate and bridges are also black finished, bringing out a beautiful contrast of different textures and surface finishes. GF truly excel in this. The variety of the finishing as well as the level of excellence it is executed is one which sets it above most other offerings in the market. Add to that product mix, some rather interesting complications like inclined tourbillons, and quadruple tourbillons, makes this one brand which has carved a niche at the very top of haute horlogerie.

 

On the wrist, the case, measuring 43.5mm in diameter and 16.14mm thick is rather comfortable.

On the wrist, the case, measuring 43.5mm in diameter and 16.14mm thick is rather comfortable.

 

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