The FFC origins, look and works have been described and defined, and the brand new manufacturing timepiece differs barely in presentation. Nonetheless, shortly highlighting the important factors seems like a good suggestion. In 2021, the FFC Blue prototype was bought on the Solely Watch public sale to profit Duchenne muscular dystrophy analysis for CHF 4,5 million, greater than ten instances over the estimate, setting a report for an F.P. Journe watch and fairly probably for any auctioned watch produced by an impartial watchmaker. The big sum of cash drew public consideration, and the watch was fascinating, with a lot of tales to inform. In 2023 the small manufacturing sequence of the FFC was introduced by the a number of award-winning F.P. Journe. Not too long ago, we have been glad to expertise the ingenious finger-counting-time-telling piece up shut and gladly share our ideas with you.
In 2009 Mrs Eleonor Coppola gifted an F.P. Journe Chronomètre à Résonance to her husband, Mr Francis Ford Coppola (FFC), the filmmaker, for his birthday. FFC was “delighted with the present” and instantly invited François-Paul Journe (FPJ), the watchmaker, to go to him at his Inglenook vineyard in Napa Valley. FPJ, a “wine fanatic” himself (please attempt Château Seguin F.P Journe Cuvee Speciale Invenit et Fecit), accepted, and the 2 nice males met in 2012. At that assembly, FFC and FPJ mentioned time-keeping and methods to point the time, and the subject of finger-counting got here up. Reportedly, the filmmaker, additionally an automatons admirer, requested the watchmaker if he had ever thought-about a time show the traditional means – utilizing fingers. François-Paul Journe was intrigued by the thought and is alleged to have began considering a imaginative and prescient of a mechanical hand two years after, which led to the prototyping of the watch to be later named FFC Blue.
Finger-counting or dactylonomy is certainly a really previous trick. If utilizing 5 fingers to point hours one to 12 is tough, think about finger positions to rely as much as 9999. Throughout time and between the cultures, there have been totally different dactylonomy methods; the unfold of numerals didn’t eradicate the necessity for guide communication and hand signalling. Even right this moment, numbers are gestured by merchants on the ground of the American Inventory Change. Additionally, cultural custom nonetheless exists in how individuals rely in several elements of the world. For many of us in Europe, the place to begin, the “1”, would be the thumb. For an American, it’s often the index finger; for the Center East, counting begins with the little pinky. Bear in mind this whenever you see how the FFC watch signifies hours (numbers).
The time indication is fairly easy. On the mark, the mechanical hand in an armoured glove that occupies the center of the dial involves life and alerts the hour with twelve distinctive finger combos programmed and displayed, with the change occurring immediately. One hour AM or PM will probably be communicated by a closed hand with an index finger out – as an American would do it. The minutes will be learn on the outer ring that rotates counterclockwise, indicated by a triangular pointer at 12 o’clock. It’s fairly simple to recollect all of the twelve hourly positions, and I’m moderately positive homeowners of the FFC could have no hassle having fun with this mesmerizing timepiece and studying time for which the FFC was invented.
We’ll get to how the FFC’s mechanical hand works in a bit, however it’s important first to say the supply of inspiration. F.P. Journe factors us towards Ambroise Paré, a French genius who lived within the sixteenth century and is taken into account a Father of contemporary surgical procedure. Other than many different medical exploits, Paré invented ingenious synthetic limbs, extremely technical, out of concern for the well-being of his sufferers. He created mechanically complicated prosthetic legs and arms – Paré’s prosthetic hand mechanism made the fingers open when a button was pressed with springs returning them to their authentic place, all in a really pure movement. This precept could be very a lot what constitutes the premise of how the FFC’s titanium gauntlet acts.
The FFC’s revolutionary “digital” leaping hour show mechanism is complicated, with power drawn from a single barrel of the underlying Octa 1300 manufacture motion with 5 days energy reserve. François-Paul Journe talked about that from the start, he needed to make the thought work utilizing this calibre with out including an additional mainspring. For correct functioning of the armoured fingers, a “remontoir d’égalité” between the first gear practice and the show is wound by the motion each hour for forty minutes.
Each hour on the hour, an escapement type of mechanism acts to launch power collected from the barrel, and a delegated fork prompts the ten cams chargeable for the “digital” show operation. You see these cams on the left aspect of the dial; they’re put in on a big flat ball bearing and make a full circle in 12 hours. Every cam manipulates springs and switches to make the fingers lengthen or retract with virtually no friction. Naturally, this technique is created in order to not have an effect on the chronometric qualities of the watch.
The platinum case sits comfortably on the wrist, and the watch’s aesthetics are spectacular. Amazingly, the gauntlet with transferring fingers and the intricate mechanism that enables the show of hours and minutes is packed right into a 42mm case simply 10.7mm thick, making the FFC no extra outstanding than every other F.P. Journe watch with an Octa 1300 calibre. Additionally, not like the presentation of many timepieces with animated shows that includes jacquemarts, the FFC appears to be like and appears like a standard watch to be worn every day. The ending of the case and motion is of the best grade, and the gloved hand is engraved and could be very sensible. The titanium bridges acquired Titalyt remedy that gives darkish gray colouring and additional enhances materials qualities, like hardness and resistance to corrosion.
Additional praising the FFC for its qualities and ingenious realization of the thought appears pointless, as they’re anticipated from such a grasp watchmaker as François-Paul Journe and his manufacture. Splendidly, the watch seems to operate effortlessly, bearing easy mechanical options. Nonetheless, it took the Inventor over eight years to current a working prototype. In his phrases, “Crucial factor in watchmaking is what’s least seen. On this case, it was a matter of getting 5 fingers to maneuver with the least effort”. Mission completed: Invenit et Fecit.
Please consult with the half under for particular technical data and go to www.fpjourne.com to be taught extra.