THE GAME- CHANGERS
Greubel Forsey Qp A Equation
Celebrating only its tenth birthday this April, Greubel Forsey – the combination of Robert Greubel and Stephen Forsey – has been tipped as making watches destined to become historic benchmarks in watchmaking for generations to come. It already has six inventions to its name. And the latest model is another: an interpretation of one of the oldest complications, the watch has a mechanical computer that allows the user to set a perpetual calendar using a bi-directional winding crown. That may not sound much – but watchmakers will recognise what a milestone that is.
As co-founder Stephen Forsey has it, “it’s important to recognise the complexity of that challenge – to make a perpetual calendar that’s actually easy to use. And if it was easier to use there would be more of them on the market. When I worked at Asprey people would bring in theirs for us to set up – there was a sense they were doing it almost like a test.”
But, while impressed by the front of this prototype, don’t forget (as with all Greubel Forsey watches) to look to the invariably beautiful rear. Almost thrown in for good measure on this watch’s back is an ‘equation of time’ indicator, which shows the current difference between solar and mean time – a product of the fact that the Earth’s orbit around the Sun is, in fact, elliptical and irregular. “It’s the ‘manta ray curve’ as the man who designed the graphic called it, after its shape,” says Forsey. The first time he referred to that I had no idea what he was talking about. I thought he was saying something in German.”