When it was first launched at the annual Basel watch fair in 2001, the most obvious branding on the “Freak” was the Ulysse Nardin name.
This changed somewhat when the locking device or what is termed the “lock-down plate” which secures the rotatable bezel for setting the time was added on as a security feature.
Initially, this plate had “21,600 V/h” inscribed to indicate its frequency. When the frequency was subsequently increased, the plate was updated to “28,800 V/h” to highlight the faster beat. With variations of the Freak being introduced, the lock-down plate was then used to identify them. These included the “Blue Phantom” and the “Diavolo” models which have their names inscribed on the lock-down plate.
However, the word “Freak” never had its name on the dial, let alone any part of the watch. Perhaps it was not even necessary given that the Freak is a highly identifiable watch, especially with what the brand terms the “carroussel tourbillon” being the key feature.
After more than 10 years, its “naming birthright” is finally out in the open, with the word “Freak” now clearly inscribed on the lock-down plate. It is the time to “freak out” literally.
This particular piece is the Freak THG Limited Edition. Limited to only 20 pieces, this THG Limited Edition is a new member to the Freak family made available only through the regional retail networks of Singapore-based specialist retailer, The Hour Glass.
In future, what might be interesting for collectors of such high-end timepieces, if not already done, is the customisation of the lock-down plate to indicate the owner’s name or perhaps even personal messages. This by itself is another added security feature in determining watch ownership.