Hunter, cushion, barrel (tonneau): these are all everyday words that horology has adopted to describe the shapes of watch cases, but only the French term Galet (pebble) has become inextricably bound up with the Laurent Ferrier universe. Galet is the name of the first collection from the Manufacture, unveiled in 2010. Six years later, polished by time and shaped by experience, the ‘pebble’ is revealing a new facet. On the occasion of the Salon International de la Haute Horlogerie, Laurent Ferrier presents its new model: the Galet Square Boréal.
Its evolution has been gentle and gradual, like the curves of minerals polished by the waves. The pebble, stemming from centuries of the incessantly repeated work of nature, magnifies the softness and purity of shapes. For Laurent Ferrier, the Galet embodies the perfect integration of all case components, as if one were holding a pebble in one’s hand.
For this new model, Laurent Ferrier, revisits an Art Deco aesthetic while giving it a contemporary twist. This timepiece is intended to be resolutely original while complying with the brand’s signature design codes.
The dial is enhanced with harmoniously varied tones and textures through associating Superluminova for the chapter ring, a vertical satin-brushed finish on the dial, a snailed small seconds subdial, and a fine slate-grey transfer around the periphery. The small seconds picks up the central theme, thereby endowing this model with a fine aesthetic balance, in keeping with the principles of purity and legibility cherished by Laurent Ferrier. The dial is also graced with “arrow- shaped” hours and minutes hands enhanced with Superluminova, and a baton-shaped seconds hand.
The pure aesthetic codes of the Maison have been been maintained, but in this 41 x 41 mm size, the model is more powerfully present on the wrist than its predecessors. Fitted with a ball-shaped winding-crown ensuring pleasing handling, the back is equipped with a snap-on back ensuring that the movement remains easily accessible to watchmakers via the olivette.
The movement is a self-winding FBN 229.01 calibre, equipped with a unidirectional pawl-fitted micro-rotor and offering a three-day power reserve. This is the first exclusive in-house movement developed, assembled and adjusted in the Laurent Ferrier workshops. It is fitted with a silicon escapement featuring a double direct impulse on the balance. This technology developed by Laurent Ferrier enables the balance to be impelled twice per oscillation, a principle that requires two escape-wheels and an appropriately shaped lever. This innovative construction, combined with the use of cutting-edge materials, maximises energy efficiency, thereby guaranteeing a high amplitude of the balance. This in turn reduces the amount of mechanical force required to wind the mainspring and optimises winding.
The finishes reflect the high standards Laurent Ferrier imposes on all its creations. All are performed in keeping with the finest watchmaking traditions. Alongside the Côtes de Genève motif on the bridges and the circular graining on the mainplate, the wheel spokes are bevelled, the screw heads are chamfered and polished and the interior angles are hand-crafted. The sapphire crystal case-back provides a fascinating glimpse of this fine workmanship and reveals an attractively balanced structure stemming from a clever combination of lines and curves.
Laurent Ferrier reinvents the graphic composition of the Galet Square dial while preserving the distinctive aesthetic codes of its collection. For this new variation, this so-called “sector-type” dial typical of the late 1930s attractively combines a vintage touch with a highly contemporary appearance.