MAN­U­FAC­TURE ROYALE 1770

Since their in­cep­tion in 2010, the man­u­fac­ture has been mak­ing some of the most out­ra­geous, out­stand­ing time­pieces of our time. Though sim­ple in its looks, in fact the 1770 is far from it.

Esquire Malaysia Watch Guide - - Special Feature - Words by Leong Wong

THE NAME OF NEW WATCH COMPANY Man­u­fac­ture Royale, formed in 2010, was ac­tu­ally taken from a much older name that was orig­i­nally in­tro­duced in 1770 by French philoso­pher, writer, his­to­rian and en­tre­pre­neur Fran­cois-Marie Arouet—oth­er­wise fa­mously known as Voltaire. The idea was to cre­ate master­piece time­pieces, beau­ti­fully crafted by tal­ented crafts­men and master watch­mak­ers.

To­day the new founder car­ries on with the tra­di­tion of pro­duc­ing some of the most ex­cep­tion­ally aes­thet­i­cally de­signed watches with equally cut­ting edge move­ments. Over the years we have seen two su­perbly ex­e­cuted time­pieces: the Opera, which fea­tures a fold­ing and un­fold­ing case, look­ing like some­thing out of a Jules Vernes book, and An­drog­yne which has just as com­plex a case, sans the fold­able back.

2014 is clearly a year of aus­ter­ity as Man­u­fac­ture Royale has toned down its aes­thet­ics and is in­stead con­cen­trat­ing on the com­pli­ca­tions. They have re­vealed the new in-house fly­ing tour­bil­lon which sits off-cen­tre at seven o’clock and a power re­serve in­di­ca­tor just above it at nine o’clock—the po­si­tion­ing of both is rather rare. The tour­bil­lon was cre­ated from scratch by 1770’s very own en­gi­neers and watch­mak­ers, and it’s con­nected to the move­ment at one point, which is con­sid­ered re­fined and so­phis­ti­cated as it is so much more dif­fi­cult to ex­e­cute.

To add more mod­ern tech to the equa­tion, the pal­let fork and es­cape wheel are sil­i­con made, which is a ma­te­rial that does not re­act to tem­per­a­ture flux or mag­netic fields. The parts and the case are hand dec­o­rated and pol­ished to the high­est stan­dards in ei­ther rose gold or stain­less steel with opa­line sil­vered dial for the for­mer and an an­thracite dial for the lat­ter. The in­dexes are hand ap­plied, cor­re­spond­ing to the case ma­te­rial and the cor­re­spond­ing hands as well. The move­ment that pow­ers the watch is a me­chan­i­cal hand-wound cal­iber with 108 hours of power re­serve, which com­prises 208 parts in its en­tirety. They are avail­able in very limited quan­tity.

Above: Man­u­fac­ture Royale 1770 in stain­less steel with sap­phire case­back.

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