Nr.02 Piece Unique
Thierry Ducret SPECIALLY FOR THE EVENT
An extremely rare, unusual and spectacular time-only stainless-steel wristwatch from Thierry Ducret, a French independent watchmaker. Made in 2022–2023. Case in stainless steel, diameter 42 mm, mineral glass crystal and mineral glass caseback. Open-worked dial, with “T. Ducret” engraved on a screwed plate. Manual winding movement with central barrel, visible balance wheel and the gear, power reserve up to 45 hours. Functions – display of time in hours and minutes. Black leather strap with stainless-steel pin buckle. Unique piece.
The story of this independent watchmaker is off the beaten path. Thierry Ducret came up with the idea of starting his own business as an independent watchmaker in 2017. He's a professor of watchmaking at the prestigious Lyceé Edgar Faure in Morteau, France, where he himself had graduated. Previously, he was involved in the restoration of antique timepieces, and worked for the Pequignet and Michel Herrbelin brands from 1994 to 1996. In 2007, Thierry presented a pocket watch made by himself at the Best Craftsmen competition in France, where he was chosen as one of the winners.
The master's innovative idea to create a beautiful and rare architecture of the caliber was expressed in an unusual arrangement, with a central mainspring barrel, while the balance, escapement and gear train concentrically surround it.
A decade later, in 2017, he began working on the concept of an 'exhibition' architectural wristwatch with an openworked dial, a central barrel, a balance wheel, and a gear visible on the dial. As a basis for his project, he took the proven Eta / Unitas 6497 caliber, which was modified almost beyond recognition. In fact, only a few parts remained untouched, while in general only some of the original components of the caliber were used in a reworked state, especially the gear train, escapement and remontoir. Everything else is made by Thierry Ducret in his own workshop in Flangebouche (France). The aerodynamically shaped balance with its 12 adjusting screws is made of nickel silver, mainplate and bridges are made of brass and plated with black nickel to create a calm, technical, monochrome style. This style is further emphasized by the use of stainless steel for the case, also handmade by Thierry Ducret.
The finishing of all components shows a high proportion of manual work. This is especially true of the flat polishing of the steel parts, the shot-blasting and chamfering of the bridges in the traditional trapezoidal shape, the circular graining of the wheels decorated with gray rhodium, the esthetic ball burnishing of the pins, the tips of the wheel axles, and the meticulous concave polishing of the recesses around the jewels, pins, and screws.
The number 02 engraved on a screwed plate on the back of the movement announces that this is the second wristwatch ever made by Thierry Ducret, confirming its extreme rarity and making it a very valuable collector's item.
The Thierry Ducret No.02 'Monochrome' Piece Unique seems to be an attractive purchase for the collector and connoisseur of fine watchmaking due to its impressive 'exhibition design' and obvious craftsmanship. The master's innovative idea to create a beautiful and rare architecture of the caliber was expressed in an unusual arrangement, with a central mainspring barrel, while the balance, escapement and gear train concentrically surround it. It's definitely one of the most remarkable timepieces of modern independent watchmaking, which shows a growing interest in collector watches made with traditional technologies and a lot of handwork. The present watch has a strong and distinctive character and could well appeal to a connoisseur of the art of watchmaking as an exceptional daily wearer.
|Case||Stainless steel, brushed & polished case with a transparent caseback & signed: crown at 3 o'clock|
|Strap||Black Alligator leather strap with black stitches & a stainless steel pin buckle, signed "Jean Rousseau Paris"|
|Dial||Openworked dial with applied polished blued arrow hands, noir nickel-plated steel bridges & mainplate, signed "T Ducret"|
|Movement||Black nickel plated shot-blasted, hand-wound steel movement with rhodium-plated wheels, polished screws & a barrel, time display at the same axe complication|
|Ref.||Thierry Ducret 02|
|Movement:||Very good, all functions working properly|
|Amplitude (Dial on top/Lift angle 52):||Approx 310°|
|Accuracy (Dial on top):||Approx +3 sec/day|
Watchmaking teacher since 1996 at the renowned Morteau Highschool, where he himself graduated, Thierry Ducret has trained generations of watchmaking artists working in the most prestigious workshops in France, Switzerland, and the rest of the world.