Louis Moinet invents the chronograph – an artistic and technological masterpiece beating at a rhythm of 216,000 vibrations per hour, designed to observe the orbits of the planets in the heavens.
Louis Moinet lights up the stars by presenting Memoris, the first chronograph-watch, clothed with light. The first limited edition marks the start of a series of commemorative pieces dedicated to the bicentenary of the invention of the chronograph.
The “Memoris 200th Anniversary” uses a fixed graver engraving technique that is unprecedented in the history of watchmaking. Each star is worked on individually; never before has there been a starry sky with such a natural sparkle.
Watchmaking art that repurposes guillochage
The “Memoris 200th Anniversary” can be summed up in three points:
- A new hour dial – made in enamel for the first time in history of the piece
- A new mainplate, painted and decorated with star constellations
- A new translucent flange and counter bridge
The starry back consists of a brass plate coated in a translucent blue. The stars have been created using an entirely new fixed graver process. Devised by one of Louis Moinet’s craftsmen, this involves attaching a specially-made lathe to a traditional rose engine (also known as a guillocheuse).
The idea is to combine the power of the rose engine with the precision of a handheld graver. The result differs from that produced by milling or stamping: while it resembles the effect traditionally associated with a guillocheuse inasmuch as material is removed, here this is focused on a tiny area with varying levels of depth – two characteristics that traditional engine turning seeks to avoid at all costs.
What is more, individual stars are all fashioned to feature different angles and depths, so that each and every one captures as much light as possible. Several fixed graver sessions are required per star. The process used is unprecedented in watchmaking – and the outstanding result gives the novel impression that certain stars really are shining.