You can see the movement through the rear of the case via the sapphire crystal exhibition caseback. The case is only water resistant to 30 meters, and I’d like to see that be at least 50 meters personally. With the skeletonized rotor and mostly-symmetrical bridge design, it is a very attractive movement. Note that my watch is a bit different because the central bridge has a different finish and has my initials engraved in it. What we did was have a master engraver in central Geneva take away time from doing a hand-engraved dial for one of the “top brands” and spend a few moments engraving our initials in a cursive font on the brass bridges. They were then rhodium-plated like the rest of the movement.
To be honest, it took a lot of skill to put the movement together properly. We had the best of help from Frederique Constant’s head watchmaker, Pim Koeslag, but managed to do silly things like lose tiny parts as they jettisoned away from our tweezers or got magnetized by accident. When you are mostly done it is time to regulate the movements. That means you first have to test to see how accurate they are (the rate results), and then you have to try and adjust them. In the end, my Manufacture Slimline Moonphase watch ended up being within chronometric performance–so I was rather happy.
When I produced this particular version of the Slimline Moonphase watch in 2013, it was not available in most of the world. There was a blue and steel model, and a rose gold-plated model and white dial, but none quite like this, save for a small limited edition set for Russia. As of 2014, Frederique Constant decided to produce this rose-gold plated and blue dialed version of the Manufacture Slimline Moonphase watch an exclusive, limited production piece for the Americas.This version will come on a blue alligator strap with blue instead off-white stitching, and no more than 400 pieces will be produced, only available through authorized retailers in North and South America. So this particular piece was made before that decision was made. Though knowing somewhat in advance that these would be available, I wanted to hold off on writing the review until people could get one.
Rose gold-plated not enough for you? Frederique Constant even offers a full 18k rose gold version of the Slimline Moonphase. Overall, this a modern-sized dress watch with some attractive details and desirable set of complications–especially for the money. The versatility of the design makes it suitable for a range of occasions, and it is also the type of watch that does not go out of style, but rather remains timeless when it is needed. Perhaps it isn’t something for daily wear given its more formal appearance, but it is the type of watch I am proud to have in my collection. More so, I am proud to someday pass this watch on to someone else (ideally an heir) who I can share the story of it with, given that my own hands went into its construction. Prices for the Frederique Constant Manufacture Slimline Moonphase watch start at $3,695 for the steel version and go up to $12,995 for the 18k rose gold version. This particular version in rose-gold plated steel retails for $3,995. frederique-constant.com
>Brand: Frederique Constant
>Model: Manufacture Slimline Moonphase
>Would reviewer personally wear it: Yes
>Friend we’d recommend it to first: Fine watch lover on a budget who wants a timeless Swiss dress watch with an in-house movement and not totally boring design.
>Best characteristic of watch: Great looking movement and attractive design along with modern case size.
>Worst characteristic of watch: Technically a bit thick for a “slim line” watch.