It’s all the time a pleasure to current and showcase the work of younger watchmakers and rising skills. As we speak we’re looking at Théo Auffret, a part of the impartial French watchmaking “nouvelle obscure”. Theo Auffret, born in 1995, began his coaching as watch restorer in parallel together with his baccalaureate research. In contrast to the overwhelming majority of fellow graduates, after having handed the examination, as an alternative of finding out just a few years on college benches, Theo Auffret undertook the vocational pathway to grow to be a watchmaker… And the end result, named “Tourbillon in Paris”, is a powerful watch.
Théo Auffret grew to become a watch restoration apprentice with Denis Coperchot after which Jean-Baptiste Viot whereas attending programs on the Lycée Edgar Faure in Morteau, a French city subsequent to the Swiss border. Jean-Baptiste Viot allowed him to make use of the tooling and equipment for the creation of his personal watch that was patiently handcrafted for months throughout evenings, weekends and holidays…
As soon as his apprenticeship was accomplished, Théo spent a yr or so in Switzerland working at Ateliers 7h38 of Luca Soprana and Christophe Naudin. Primarily based close to Neuchâtel, this watch/motion design and growth firm works behind the scene for various manufacturers, notably Jacob & Co. The still-unfinished prototype of the watch he began in Paris, named “Tourbillon in Paris”, was awarded on the 2018 Journe Younger expertise competitors – alongside Remy Cools.
Again in Paris, Théo determined to arrange his personal workshop whereas cooperating once more with Jean-Baptiste Viot. To take action, he determined to make use of his promising and excellent creation to create a small collection of subscription watches with a manufacturing capability of three to 4 watches per yr.
A “Tourbillon in Paris” was impressed by the works and strategies used with Jean-Baptiste Viot and by the deep respect for French masters of the 19th century, specifically, Breguet and Berthoud. The watch has no dial and divulges a regulator-type show with central minutes, off-centred hours and a big one-minute tourbillon. The unique motion structure incorporates a central plate with bridges on both sides. This was impressed by 19th-century actions and is smart given the artisanal manufacturing technique.
The plate and bridges are usual out of maillechort (also called German silver), except for the 2 metal bridges discovered on the motion aspect. Théo Auffret used the escapement of a LeCoultre 409 motion, in addition to the barrel and some others elements of a Peseux 260.
The motion is beautifully adorned. The method used for the plate and bridges is “Charbonage” or coal ending – apart from the higher a part of the stepped barrel bridge and the two metal bridges. All screws are black-polished. The tourbillon cage is painstakingly adorned too, specifically with rounded arms (a method named berçage in French). The easy but elegant 38mm prototype case was handcrafted from silver, guided by video tutorials from Roger Smith. The steel-turned arms and the dial are additionally handcrafted.
Following the completion of this “Tourbillon in Paris” prototype, the subscription watches shall be produced in the identical vein, with customization prospects supplied to purchasers. The case could be ordered in a alternative of platinum, gold, silver or metal. The dial could be made in silver, gold or platinum with utilized gold markers. The motion that was initially conceived with out CAD has now been digitized into stable works. The elements coming from outdated ébauche shall be fully manufactured (for example with a Precision Engineering assortment as an alternative of the LeCoultre 904). The circumstances shall be produced by a specialised producer in Switzerland.
The Théo Auffret “Tourbillon in Paris” is worn on a custom-made leather-based strap made by David Collin, a Parisian craftsman. It’s delivered in a bespoke white ebony/pear tree wooden field made by Walter Bellini, in addition to a leather-based journey pouch. The worth for the subscription watch is about at EUR 108,000 excl. taxes – regardless of the fabric chosen, because the manufacturing technique and the small manufacturing scale have a marginal impression on value.
For extra data, please go to www.auffret-paris.com.