Before De Bethune, there was De Bethune. And during the early days, De Bethune used third party movements before developing and releasing the DB15.
Right off the bat, the folks at De Bethune understood the philosophy of quality. What makes a timepiece desirable? Well as far as I know, they feel a timepiece has to be accurate and the finishing top notch. At first glance, one will know the work done and the class of a well finished timepiece. Such is the earlier series of DB timepieces. I was lucky to see the original DB8 mono pusher chronograph belonging to a friend and I fell in love with the earlier DB series. And it is a lot more within budget too!
The beautifully executed guilloché dials of the earlier DBs are just absolutely mesmerising. The DB8 comes with a third party movement and a closed case back. I understand the movement was from the days when Denis Flageollet was at Techniques Horlogerès Appliquées (THA).
I had asked Alessandro Zanetta (Marketing Director of DB) why the earlier pieces were closed case back and he had said that this was probably because they were third party movements and the only time De Bethune will come with a see-through case back is when they had developed their own in-house movement. Kudos to the folks at De Bethune. Slight digression… Another beautiful look at the guilloché dial of the DB8. Stunning!
As I understand it, the DB9 comes with another third party movement - the Jaquet J4000 movement with a 7 days power reserve (168 hours) and a power reserve display. De Bethune DB9 comes with a white gold polished moon on a blue disk which moves from the maximum (right side) to the minimum power reserve. I originally thought the moon was a moon phase but quickly learnt that is it De Bethune’s way of displaying the power reserve - novel!
According to their marketing materials, the modified movement is decorated with the Cotes de Geneve pattern and is hand polished. I trust they do good work there looking at their in-house pieces. They have inserted an up and down mechanism to the base calibre for the power reserve indication. The crown is octagonal in shape. Their attention to detail is the hallmark of a De Bethune timepiece.
There is something about the way the folks at DB does the blue - I simply love the blue hue they are able to develop. The DB9 is my first De Bethune but I hope it will not be my last. So the search continues for more De Bethune timepieces that are within reach.