Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Two releases of note... Peter Speake-Marin Marin 2 and UN Freak Diavolo LE

Stylistically I wanted this watch to be very recognisably mine. It follows very closely many of the features first seen in my original Foundation pocket watch, e.g. the topping tool inspired wheel (displaying the seconds), bridges in German silver, circular graining and large sweeping curves. I am not Swiss, French, or American and my style is very representative of myself especially as I had no constraints imposed by existing movements components or constructions I was able to design this movement exactly as I wanted. This is the great advantage of starting with a blank sheet" Peter Speake-Marin.

The Marin 2 Mk1 "Thalassa" by Peter Speake-Marin. LE of 30 pieces in WG

The nautical ambience generated by the blued-steel of the outer dial, hands and seconds wheel inspired the name "Thalassa", a primordial sea goddess from Greek mythology and the personification of the Mediterranean Sea.

I prefer the look of his enamelled dialled watches with the blued hands without super luminova but will reserve my views on this till I see it in the metal. the movement though, is just wonderful.



Extract from press release: The SM2 is a totally original calibre with 100% cent of the components specifically made for this movement. It is the result of an Intransigent approach to movement architecture focusing on ease of servicing and maximum reliability and longevity, as well as beauty. The movement is hand-assembled and finished. Unless for technical reasons all surfaces, visible or not, are finely decorated with an attention to detail usually reserved for very high-end complications. Sensual, long-flowing gothic curves form the untreated German silver plates, a material that is more demanding to work than conventional plated brass, but offers increased rigidity. Furthermore it slowly oxidises over the years to a high contrast patina highlighting the large jewels and polished steel surfaces.
Like virtually every other component in the movement, the large diameter (10.9mm) chronometer balance was designed by Peter Speake-Marin as the part he wanted did not exist.
it also required the development of a new mainspring, mainspring barrel, new barrel bridge, new train bridge, new main plate and a new setting mechanism combined with the calendar mechanism.

"I believe there are very few contemporary watchmakers and brands that have created an original style and adhered to an underlying philosophy of constant improvement, longevity, beauty and quality of product that will live beyond their own time. My goal is that in years to come I will be viewed as one of them." Peter Speake-Marin

The UN Freak is probably the only watch from UN that I would buy. The Diavolo is the evolution of the Freak line and I think its a good thing overall. An LE to commemorate owner and president Rolf's 75th birthday is a bit interesting though. Its a lovely looking Freak nonetheless :)

UN Freak Diavolo Rolf 75

Ulysse Nardin, the Swiss watchmaker acclaimed for its thousands of “firsts” in watchmaking, takes the lead in ingenuity, once again with the new Freak Diavolo Rolf 75, a progression of the groundbreaking 2001 Freak.

Due to the ultramodern, minimalist and unconventional design of the Freak’s tourbillon
carrousel – one that possessed no true dial, crown or hands – and being the first timepiece to successfully present escapement wheels constructed of silicium, a revolutionary material at the time, the Freak forever changed the course of haute horology. Now, like its siblings – the Freak DIAMonSIL®, Freak Diamond Heart and Freak Blue Phantom – the Freak Diavolo Rolf 75 pays tribute to the original Freak’s pioneering spirit by expanding its use of silicium and taking its tourbillon to new heights. The Freak Diavolo reveals another development in the Freak family -- a flying tourbillon that indicates the seconds, as well as two new ball-bearing systems and a balance-wheel concept and design.

Its tourbillon carrousel (developed entirely in-house) does one complete rotation around the center in 60 minutes. The Freak Diavolo’s frequency of 4 Hz (28'800 A/h) in association with its 8 mg*cm2 inertia balance wheel make this instrument exceptional, as no other tourbillon is regulated by such a powerful oscillator and benefits from such a long power reserve (more than eight days). Its outstanding performance is the result of the perfect application of new technologies, such as photolithography, and the use of the best and latest-developed materials, like silicium and LIGA nickel, at core locations.


Ulysse Nardin’s expertise in watchmaking is further exemplified by the Freak Diavolo’s seconds indicator, which is nothing else than a flying tourbillon replacing the usual oscillator of the other members of the Freak family. Its cage is equipped with an arrow indicating the seconds on a yellow half-circle, rotating in one minute on itself, with the zero position holding steady on the axis of the minute indicator.

The two specially conceived ball bearing systems enable the “flying” function of the minute movement and of the seconds-indicator tourbillon without the need for a supporting bridge.

So simple and user-friendly, the Freak Diavolo can be wound by turning the lower bezel, and the time can be adjusted by turning the upper bezel; while the direct gear link crafted
between the three “hands” averts dephasing, or the throwing of hours, minutes and seconds out of step when adjusting or readjusting time.
Proud Parents of The Freak!

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