In 2019, Greubel Forsey opened a new chapter in its history by presenting the particularly compact Balancier Contemporain, the first Greubel Forsey timepiece with a diameter of 39.6mm.
Embodying all the codes of the iconic Swiss watch Atelier, the Greubel Forsey Balancier Contemporain is a real tour de force. Following the initial white gold version, it is now offered in a new 5N red gold case with a rich, multi-level contrasting dial.
Composed of 255 parts, all created and hand finished in the Greubel Forsey spirit of fine craftsmanship, the Balancier Contemporain represents a true architectural accomplishment. The movement has been created especially to fit the specified dimensions, the challenge being not only to house the large balance wheel within a small space, but also more importantly to achieve a harmonious creation with optimal proportions, crafted with precise attention to detail.
The 5N red gold version of the Balancier Contemporain plays on the differences in levels, materials, volumes and finishes, while perfectly illustrating the world of Greubel Forsey.
At 6 o’clock, the large balance wheel – developed and built entirely within the Greubel Forsey Atelier – catches the eye. Its impressive 12.6mm diameter gives it optimal performance. It is reflected against the backdrop of a black-polished gold plate, reinforcing the sense of depth to the movement.
The regulating organ is equipped with a balance wheel stop function that can be activated by pulling the crown. The six gold adjustable screws have been placed inside the felloe to allow for a very precise adjustment, thereby limiting air friction and any resulting disturbance, ultimately providing improved results, better chronometric performance and easier adjustment.
With a diameter of only 39.6mm and a height of 12.21mm, the proportions of the Balancier Contemporain make it particularly unique, especially as Greubel Forsey timepieces usually have a larger diameter. The red gold case is enhanced by three-dimensional variable geometry-shaped lugs that create subtle and elegant curves. These unique proportions are accentuated by contrasting finishes: a fully polished bezel and lugs, with a satin-brushed caseband and caseback. Above the bezel, the high-domed sapphire crystal adds further depth to the movement.
The Greubel Forsey Balancier Contemporain in Red Gold boasts a black polished gold plate where the balance wheel takes pride of place at 6 o’clock. Higher up, a frosted and bevelled bridge reveals the barrel drum with Greubel Forsey engraving. At 8:30, the small seconds hand moves on a slightly higher level. Higher up still, a delicate hand-frosted bridge displays the 72-hour power reserve, which is brought to life by a slender blued steel hand.
Further east, at 2 o’clock, the contrasting colours accentuate the temporal indications, and the off-centre position of the hour/minute dial is accentuated by the anthracite finish of the minute circle. Positioned on a raised tripod bridge, the hours and minutes are displayed by two blued steel hands with a hand-polished flat surface and countersinks. The voyage ends with an opening in the dial that allows a glimpse of the large balance wheel, with its bevelled and black-polished bridge.
The caseback reveals all the mastery of traditional artisanal hand finishing of Greubel Forsey timepieces. A circular engraved red gold disc is displayed in the centre, surrounded by a white gold bridge, which features the Atelier’s key values written in engraved and black-polished letters, along with the characteristic olive-domed jewels set in gold chatons.
Model: Greubel Forsey Balancier Contemporain in 5N Red Gold
• Diameter: 32.40mm
• Thickness: 9.20mm
Number of parts
• Movement: 255 parts
Number of jewels
• Olived-domed jewels in gold chatons
Chronometric power reserve
• 72 hours
• Two series-coupled fast rotating barrels (1 turn in 3.2 hours), one of which is equipped with a slipping spring to avoid excess tension
• Barrel with relief engraving “Greubel Forsey”
• In-house variable-inertia with 6 gold mean-time screws (12.60mm diameter)
• Stop balance activated by crown
• 21’600 vibrations/hour
• Phillips terminal curve
• Geneva-style stud
• Titanium, frosted and spotted, straight-grained flanks
• Nickel silver, frosted and spotted with polished bevelling and countersinks, straight-grained flanks, nickel-palladium treatment
• Power-reserve bridge with galvanic growth
• Flat black polished steel balance wheel bridge, hand-polished bevelling and countersinks, straight-grained flanks
• Flat black polished gold plate under the balance wheel, polished bevelling and countersinks, straight-grained flanks
• Flat black polished gold plate on the movement side with relief engraved text, polished bevelling and countersinks, straight-grained flanks with apparent gold chatons
• Central gold plate, “GF” engraved with the individual number
• Involute circle profile
Hours and minutes
72-hours power reserve on a sector
In 18k 5N red gold with high domed synthetic sapphire crystal
Transparent back with high domed synthetic sapphire crystal
Three-dimensional, variable geometry-shaped lugs
Raised polished engraving “Balancier” and “Greubel Forsey” on a hand-punched background
Gold security screws
Hand-polished bezel, caseband with hand-finished straight graining
Hand-engraved individual number
Water resistance: 3atm – 30m – 100ft (standard NIHS 92-20/SN ISO 22810:2010)
In 18k 5N red gold with engraved and black lacquered GF logo
Multi-level in gold, rhodium-coloured, black minute-circle, with a visual opening for the balance wheel, polished bevel
Small seconds in gold, rhodium-coloured, polished bevel
Power-reserve in gold, engraved and black lacquered, hand matt lapped
Hours and minutes, small seconds and power-reserve in polished blued steel, hand-polished countersinks
Strap and clasp
In 18k 5N red gold pin buckle, hand-engraved with the GF logo