From a technical point of view, skeletonizing makes no sense: watchmakers go to great length to create a stable and robust movement, only to have others saw away pieces of its components. Skeletonizing is one of those instances when form takes over from function, bringing it even closer to being art.
The balance wheel is the regulatory organ of a mechanical watch, which is expected to deliver a consistent frequency with a tolerance of as little as 0.001 percent. With so much at stake, why complicate things by altering a pure and simple geometric shape? Why reinvent the wheel? Well, here are five balances that definitely did reinvent the wheel.
If there is one complicated element that has been in a whirlwind (pun intended) of developments, it has been the tourbillon. And while tourbillons are still fairly expensive, you don’t have to spend $100,000 anymore, as many brands now have great offerings for even a third of that amount.
Tourbillons have become a hallmark of Angelus, and the U40 Racing Tourbillon Skeleton doesn’t disappoint. As far as Martin Green is concerned, this is the best Angelus yet!
The special attributes of the Angelus U30 Tourbillon Rattrapante center around the double column wheel split-seconds chronograph function, which is partially visible from the dial side. The other major feature of the movement is on the opposite side of the dial, near 10:30: the tourbillon. And all of this for a more-than-fair price that is bound to catapult this brand deep into the hearts of watch enthusiasts.
Please join our Quill & Pad round table discussion on Baselworld 2016. This time we take on some of the same topics that GaryG and his collector group use to the discuss their impressions of a watch fair: best of show, worst of show, watch you would buy with your own money, watch you would buy if money were no object, investment watch, patronage watch, fun watch, and a fantasy money no object watch.
While at first sight it appears far less “outlandish” than the U10, there is little about the Angelus U20 Ultra-Skeleton Tourbillon that is actually conventional or trendy, beside the fact that it has a round case.
Conceptually, at least, one could say that the U20 picks up right where the previous release called the U10 left off, experimenting with transparency and spotlighting skeletonization.
And what else?
When I first saw photos of the Angelus U10 Tourbillon Lumière I liked the technical aspects and thought it an audacious design likely to ignite heated debate in the passionate Angelus collectors’ community, but I wasn’t won over by the watch itself. I liked the fact that it existed, but it wasn’t really to my taste. But after I had seen and handled the U10 Tourbillon Lumière “in the metal,” I got it.
The dead beat seconds complication was developed so that the second hand on the wristwatch would move in the same way as a high-end, precious clock might. Dead beat seconds is a fairly rare addition to a watch movement in the modern age. In fact, it is almost never seen. Nevertheless, we found five watches outfitted with dead beat seconds at Baselworld 2015.
The La Joux-Perret-based team behind Arnold & Son has relaunched revered Swiss brand Angelus and presents the very contemporary U10 Tourbillon Lumière, which pays respect to Angelus’ period travel clocks in the shape of its case and to 1960s-1970s design with its funky dial.