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Review: Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Square Tourbillon

by  on May 29, 2016
Overview
Brand

Laurent Ferrier

Complication / Type of Watch

Galet Classic Square Tourbillon with Sector Dial

Recommended Retail Price

S$ 298,000 with GST.

Positives

Subtle yet impactful revisions made to the dial design, adds a form of differentiation from past models

Makes the Laurent Ferrier tourbillon in the square case format

Excellent job in preserving the Galet spirit with its unique design

Negatives

No major changes or revamp. Some may see this as boring and harbor the feeling that Laurent Ferrier is either being complacent or getting highly pressured commercially.

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Movement
Overall Finishing
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Bottom Line

This edition of the Galet Classic would be a cool addition especially if one is an avid collector of Laurent Ferrier given the new square profile and finishes applied. However, as previously mentioned, no major changes from previous models released by the brand.

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In Baselworld 2016, Laurent Ferrier presented a re-interpretation of the Galet Classic Tourbillon Double Balance Spring in the form of adopting a new shape, the Square. Designed to reflect the values and codes of the Galet. The unveiling of the Galet Classic Square – Tourbillon Double Balance-Spring Sector Dial presents a design inspired by early 19th century pocket watches.

 

Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Square Tourbillon with Sector Dial.

Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Square Tourbillon with Sector Dial.

 

Laurent Ferrier presented his first watch model back in 2010 and shared that his watch designs embody his horological values that of simplicity, precision and pure, uncluttered beauty. Over the years, we can see these values being infused into his collections such as the Galet Classic where simplicity meets elegance amidst all the complex construction that goes into the movement.

 

Background reading: Announcement of the Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Square Tourbillon.

One of the main challenges for Laurent Ferrier is having to preserve the characteristics of its previous models where they are shaped to create the impression of holding a pebble in one’s hand. By changing the design to a square profile, Laurent Ferrier had to find a way to maintain the spirit of the Galet and we can see hints of it in the form of smooth curvatures along the edges of the casing. The square profile was first seen in the Galet Square shown in 2015. The shape is interesting as it is not a classical square, but rather one with a round bezel, and a square case which has rounded sides. The shape is rather similar to the Vacheron Constantin Harmony series, also unveiled in 2015.

 

Laurent Ferrier Galet Classic Square Tourbillon

Case, Dial and Hands

The Galet Classic Square Double Balance Spring comes in a 41.5 mm case in 18K white gold and this model distinguishes itself from previous interpretations through certain striking features such as a refreshing square-shaped design and the circular satin-brushed chapter ring that helps increase the legibility of the hour markers. The center of the watch is silver toned with an opaline-finish that help add to the contrast of textures. Similar to previous models, both hands are ruthenium-treated white gold hands and “assegai-shaped”.

 

 

Dial detail of the Galet Square Tourbillon.

Dial detail of the Galet Square Tourbillon.

 

One of the prominent characteristics of the watch are the hour markers that resembles a “teardrop” and the 12-hour mark is now demarcated with two “teardrops” as opposed to one in previous models. In addition, we also noticed a revamp of the seconds display at the 6 o’clock position of the watch. The seconds display has been enlarged and now we see a contrasting finish in the display whereby the seconds markers are now situated in an outer circle. The inner circle captivates us with its spiral-like groove design which presents a very sharp contrasting effect. Likewise, the seconds display also features ruthenium-treated white gold hands.

 

The Watch Movement LF 619.01

 

The watch is powered by the Laurent Ferrier 619.01 movement; a hand-wound movement that is chronometer-certified. The watch operates at a frequency of 3Hz or the equivalent of 21,600 bph and it runs a power reserve of 80 hours. The key differentiating feature of the tourbillon is two head-to-tail mounted balance-spring in the center of the balance. This double spirale arrangement was also originally seen in the Galet Tourbillon. The intent is to hold the center of the balance on the axis while it compensates for the effects of gravity on the watch thus ensuring reliability of the regulating system.

The Double Spirale system is supplied to Laurent Ferrier by H. Moser’s manufacturing facility in Neuhausen. It was also originally used in many Moser models. Recently Moser only uses the Double Spirale in their higher end models as the system is expensive to manufacture.

 

The movement. Remains the same as the one found in the first Galet Tourbillon. The movement is round in a square/cushioned shaped case.

The movement. Remains the same as the one found in the first Galet Tourbillon. The movement is round in a square/cushioned shaped case.

 

Interestingly and of note, Laurent Ferrier also chose to go along with a long-blade type ratchet pawl system for the click. This blade is given a black polish finish. This demonstrates a level of virtuosity in the design and finishing.

 

 

Movement finishing remains top drawer.

Movement finishing remains top drawer.

 

Laurent Ferrier differentiates itself from other brands through its high quality finishing and the Galet Classic Square is no exception. The finishes applied to the watches are being performed by very experienced watchmakers and all works are done in accordance to the highest standards of traditional haute horlogerie. The bridges in the movement are adorned with a Côtes de Genève motif, the baseplate is circular-grained, the sharp edges and the interior angles in the movement are all hand-polished. This also includes the screw heads in the movement.
From the various features of the movement, we can see that Laurent Ferrier wants to acknowledge the watchmaking traditions of the 19th and 20th century chronometry models through his movement design and he has done an excellent job in incorporating those traditions into it.

 

Concluding Remarks

 

The Galet Classic Square Tourbillon is certainly captivating and what’s so impressive about this new iteration of the Galet Classic is its ability to preserve Laurent Ferrier’s horological values of simplicity, precision and pure, uncluttered beauty. We see subtle refinements being made in this new model as it seeks to maintain simplicity in design. Although the changes are subtle in nature, the modifications are cleverly placed to give users a new feel to the watch in terms of its design and appearance. The watch also pays homage to the watchmaking traditions back in the 19th and 20th century as can be seen in the characteristics of the watch movement.

 

On the wrist, the watch feels comfortable. The square shape is rounded and almost morphs into a cushion shape, and looks rather attractive.

On the wrist, the watch feels comfortable. The square shape is rounded and almost morphs into a cushion shape, and looks rather attractive.

 

By embracing the old traditions of watchmaking, Laurent Ferrier was able to reinterpret and find newer ways to contribute to the precision and beauty of the watch. Be sure to check it out upon its release and we are sure you will be impressed by what Laurent Ferrier has to offer!

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