Something special from Glashütte’s first watchmaking company is the A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 Tourbillon Perpetual Calendar watch, unveiled at SIHH 2012.
Tourbillons are tricky little things. Their creation requires the skills of a Master Watchmaker. Their number of components can be counted in the hundreds. Their construction can be measured in hours spent at the bench. A tourbillon is a highly prized addition to any fine wristwatch and will animate any watch dial – normally appearing in its own aperture, many tourbillons even go for dial domination, the main feature – and one which you will be proud to show off. Not so this watch, so determined to protect the instantly recognisable Glashütte dial arrangement, A. Lange & Söhne have relegated the tourbillon of this piece to the back – in order to admire it you will need to remove it from your wrist and turn it over.
A. Lange & Söhne produce some of the best high-end handcrafted timepieces available with meticulous attention to detail and manufacture calibres housed in cases made from precious metals, these are wristwatches for connoisseurs. How very “Lange” of them to unveil a new piece with not only a tourbillon which is discreet, but also a perpetual calendar, cleverly integrated and using a rotating peripheral month ring which is so subtle it is almost imperceptible.
For this piece, the brand’s tenth Masterpiece, Lange have re-worked the indications but each retain their individual portion of the dial as before. On the right are the hours and minutes, opposite is a day of the week retrograde display, below this is a combined moonphase indicator and small seconds subdial and the outsize double date aperture, synonymous with the brand is at 10 o’clock. The rotating month ring is a world first, on its underside is an ingenious mechanism featuring recesses for each month’s variations. No adjustment will be required until March 1st 2100 which as a “quirk” of the Gregorian calendar will be a secular year. Furthermore, all the displays change instantaneously.
Displaced it may be, but the one-minute tourbillon, viewable through the sapphire caseback has not been neglected. Housed in a filigreed cage, it features a patented stop-seconds mechanism ensuring precise time re-setting to one-second accuracy. The Manufacture L082. self-winding calibre has a substantial 21 carat gold engraved rotor which makes optimum use of each wrist motion to quickly restore power reserve to the maximum 50 hours. As you would expect from an in-house Lange movement, decoration is to the highest standard.
A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1 Tourbillon Perpetual Calendar is presented in a 41.9mm “Grande” case, constructed from 18 carat pink gold, also available is a 100 piece platinum case limited edition.
A fascinating history of the brand – an amazing story
The A. Lange & Söhne Richard Lange Tourbillon “Pour le Mérite” Handwerkskunst – over-lapping subdials and a honey gold case, beautiful.
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