Feb 9, 2016

The Restoration Of The Double-Barrel Pistol And Its Songbird By Parmigiani Fleurier

Tags: Craftsmanship, Double barrel pistol with songbird automaton, Michel Parmigiani, Parmigiani Fleurier, Restoration, Technology

Michel Parmigiani belongs to the intimate circle of watchmakers that is today able to restore super complex, vintage micro mechanical creations. Together with a few other highly skilled craftsmen, he runs the discreet but necessary restoration workshop belonging to the Parmigiani Group, where he is also in charge of maintaining the Sandoz collection. .

Just recently, Parmigiani unveiled the result of his team’s latest task: a pistol integrating an automaton singing bird that pops out of the barrel once the mechanism has been started. Michel Parmigiani and his coworkers naturally benefited from the previous experience of restoring a similar object belonging to the Patek Philippe Museum. It helped them save precious time as this singing bird pistol was in worse shape. To start, the watchmakers created a bigger reproduction of the mechanism, thereby counting on the help of the whole group in terms of research and development. This leads us to mention the fact that the Parmigiani Group is one of the most integrated today and thus able to repair delicate mechanisms of yesteryear according to the rules of the art form as well as inventing the most fascinating mechanisms bound to populate the future of watchmaking – such as the Senfine concept watch introduced at the 2016 edition of SIHH, which integrates a silicon “sauterelle” regulator that tremendously increases the power reserve.

Two other double-barrel pistols outfitted with songbirds have also been identified elsewhere in the world. And they, too, need to be restored.

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  • D&L General Services

    D&L General Services

    I felt so dumb just looking at these diminutive machinery

    Sep 10, 2018

  • Art Vandelay

    Art Vandelay

    It boggles my mind, that people with such little technological means could create something this complex. Amazing.

    Jul 21, 2018

  • Spruce Bringsteen

    Spruce Bringsteen

    Should have replaced the birds song with Tommy Wiseau's "Cheep Cheep Cheep Cheep"

    May 04, 2018

  • Lindsay Dale

    Lindsay Dale

    Imagine using those in a dual. Their would be no deaths and would make a fun time

    May 03, 2018

  • Yugan Dali

    Yugan Dali

    I'm trying to imagine the skill involved in designing that, much less making it!

    Mar 12, 2018

  • Ryan Mitchell

    Ryan Mitchell

    Knowing the absolute precision needed to reproduce those components, to the point where I'm surprised even the best modern CNC machines were able to do so, the thought that this was done by hand nearly 200 years ago will always amaze me. Such skills and craftsmanship, I wonder if anyone today has that ability, or if we're entirely dependant on the machine?

    Mar 03, 2018

  • BXOTROT ___

    BXOTROT ___

    So it’s basically the first and luxurious version, of the bang flag gun, cool

    Feb 27, 2018

  • Alejandro Sintes Ruiz de la Escalera

    Alejandro Sintes Ruiz de la Escalera

    But, it can't move up and down like the older ones can, after that a perfect recreation with no doubts.

    Feb 16, 2018

  • Leggo My Ego

    Leggo My Ego

    So much time, skill, and money wasted on something that is absolutely pointless.

    Jul 13, 2017

  • regisgoat


    What I'm curious about is the provence. Who had such an item, some foppish champion of the people who distracted aristocratic villains with it? The Scarlet Pimpernel himself?

    May 31, 2017

  • Scotty PaidTv

    Scotty PaidTv

    Michelle Martelli

    Oct 11, 2016



    This just inspires me for some reason

    Sep 13, 2016

  • drawin code

    drawin code

    What Was it used for? Just to Impress?

    Aug 19, 2016

  • V Cccc

    V Cccc

    Insane. The item itself is staggering. The fact Parmigiani could do this is mad. Crazy level of engineering and technology now, let alone 200 years ago. The finish...! 5000 hours spent fixing it, the level of detail. Must have cost near a million too. Wonder how much it's worth, it's just a crazy item.

    May 20, 2016

  • Andreas Breitenreiter

    Andreas Breitenreiter

    And that is made in the 19 th century, without machines and computers! It is a little mechanic wonder. Wow!

    Apr 18, 2016

  • Abid Hassan

    Abid Hassan

    i want one

    Feb 18, 2016

  • Girom Christian Calica

    Girom Christian Calica

    I wish they begin selling these as some sort of expensive non-electric toys in the next few decades with the advent of 3D printing. That, or just have another replica built but with Mystia Lorelei with an electric guitar in place of the bird.

    Feb 17, 2016

  • Harold Bullock

    Harold Bullock

    Good to see that someone is keeping these treasures and restoring them.

    Feb 14, 2016

  • felix crab

    felix crab

    its a shame they arnt repairing this by hand and jussst CNCing everything. thats hardly faithful restoration. imagine if it were a breguet pocketwatch or something how sad it would be to have CNC'd partss in something with such historical value

    Feb 10, 2016

  • Amintas Neto

    Amintas Neto

    Amazing work! Thanks for sharing

    Feb 10, 2016

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