It can barely drink! Indeed, the yearly calendar was created just 21 decades ago from Patek Phillippe, and first produced as the benchmark 5035. The concept, which was actually one of the first “mid-tier” complications to come from a major brand, was a fantastic commercial measure for Patek, even if a little ho-hum in terms of horological innovation. Instead of a straightforward calendar where one has to manually adjust the date at the end of each month, the annual calendar compensates for those months with 30 days. That could be an unbelievable accomplishment! That’s, of course, had the calendar, that compensates for not just briefer weeks but also for all leap years, hadn’t been widely used in horology for the better part of 2 centuries.Some dismiss it as a dumbed-down endless calendar, however that’s not to say it’s not a useful and welcome complication. The 5035 allowed Patek clients to get into issues without even entering the stratosphere of both sophistication and price, of perpetual calendars, tourbillons, minute repeaters, as well as chronographs — remember, at this point, Patek failed to create an automatic chronograph, also at the time, they did not even create a straight wound chronograph then either, at house or differently. So, pickings for complicated Pateks at the time were lean.
The very complicated A. Lange & Söhne ever made, the 50mm, $2.6million Grand Complication is really a portion of their 1815 family. It is possible to see an exclusive video we made with this incredible watch here.The 1815 Collection ranges in the super-simple time-only see to the super-complicated Grand Complication. There’s a single time-only version; a single up-down (power reserve); 2 chronographs; 2 tourbillons; one rattrapante chronograph perpetual calendar, one “Tourbograph” endless calendar, and yet another grand disadvantage. Almost every complication has been addressed in this group, so the annual calendar is a welcome addition in more ways than one. As you can see, that the yearly Calendar fits in well, and closes the gap between both watches inside the collection. The 1815 Annual Calendar is the first yearly calendar wristwatch introduced from the German maker since the Saxonia Annual Calendar in 2010. As you may know, I’m a sucker for white metals and decided to go with the white gold model you see here. The case measures 40mm in diameter and 10.1mm thick. It is the only 40mm watch at the 1815 collection, with the rest ranging from 38.5mm to the time-only model, to 55mm for the Grand Complication.
The movement has 833 parts, housed in an artistically decorated rose-gold case fitted with a seven-part enamel dial.The initials “JAP,” for Jules Audemars and Edward Piguet, founders of Audemars Piguet, look on the gong block. Audemars Piguet may in fact have made not only the gongs but the whole motion: in these days, it was common for European watch companies to purchase raw motions from Swiss businesses and complete them for their own specifications.The watch almost dropped into oblivion. In 2001, a married couple brought it to Lange’s headquarters at Glashütte to find out whether it were worth fixing. A housekeeper they understood had received it as a gift over a half-century earlier. The answer was not obvious. In a book about the opinion that the company published in 2010, Lange watchmaker Jan Silva described the watch’s state: “Where there would typically be a complex, delicate mesh of springs, bridges and wheels, there was nothing to be seen however a gray-brown, amorphous mass …. Just the larger components of the movement were still recognizable.” Silva led a group of four watchmakers that revived the motion to pristine condition. It took five years; the dismantling procedure alone took three months.The watch’s case was designed by the industrial developer Carl Ludwig Theodor Graff from the Louis XV style. The front bears an engraving of this goddess Minerva; the rear is adorned with all the initials “G.S.” nobody understands whose initials they’re. Contrary to the motion, the situation and the dial were in excellent condition when the watch resurfaced in 2001. The Grande Complication is now on loan to the Mathematics and Physics Salon, a museum in Dresden dedicated to historic timepieces and scientific instruments.
Even Rolex creates an yearly calendar in its Sky-Dweller. Still, the yearly calendar watch is still not nearly as notable as its older, more complicated sibling. This is particularly true in regards to A. Lange & Söhne — besides the watch we’ve here, the Saxonia Annual Calendar is that the only other yearly in Lange’s line-up. It was released in 2010 and nothing new was released since then. This could very well be for a reason — the annual calendar is a significantly simpler complication to create than a endless and lots of purists believe it is beneath the level of refinement anticipated from the likes of Patek Philippe, Lange & Söhne, and Vacheron Constantin. An annual calendar makes sense for the Omega, a Rolex, also IWC, but not a top tier manufacturer, is exactly what they would assert. But, the wants of a purist isn’t what sells watches (at least not exclusively) and the annual calendar remains a popular commodity in both luxury and mid-tier watch brands. To understand this new annual calendar, one has to first comprehend that the 1815 family. The 1815 collection was first introduced in 1996, and is a nod to the arrival of Ferdinand A. Lange, the new first creator. It is characterized by the big, painted Arabic numerals that mimic those of early pocket watches. As you can see, the Annual Calendar fits nicely into this collection, using its well-balanced dial and conspicuous Arabic numerals.
1 watch to rule them all…Using a watch of these features in your hands or in your wrist, even if it’s only for a couple of minutes, makes it hard to maintain your journalistic objectivity complete. Please excuse me if the next article gets lyrical and enthused… that’s the effect a watch such as the A. Lange & Söhne Triple Break may have on a watch lover. However, before that, I have to ask a simple question: Is the Triple Break useful? And the answer is: No! This view has simply no rational function. The Double Split was a demonstration of desired inutility along with the Triple Divide follows exactly the same path. Don’t get me wrong, though. I say so with all due respect and a great deal of affection. This view is in the same vein as a Lamborghini Aventador SV or even a Bugatti Chiron. Impossible to use on the street yet oh-so-essential at the exact same time. That being said, let’s take a look at this bit of pure “watch eroticism”.What is a split? What is a double split? And more importantly, what is a triple divide? Or short, why’s the ALS Triple Split THE most complex chronograph actually created?Once upon a time, watchmakers made an instrument named the chronograph — or even the stopwatch (with plenty of queries about who actually created it — Nicolas Rieussec or even Louis Moinet). They had been created in order to figure out the distance of an event, from its beginning to its end. Whether they are now utilized to measure the cooking time of your pasta or the length of a meeting, their initial goal was to period races.
This year, in the SIHH 2018, A. Lange & Söhne presented the Triple Split, the “mighter than mighty” variant of its rattrapante chronograph. One opinion to rule them all…Using a wristwatch of those features on your hands or on your wrist, even if it’s just for a few moments, makes it difficult to maintain your journalistic objectivity intact. So please excuse me if the next article becomes lyrical and enthused… That is the effect that a watch such as the A. Lange & Söhne Triple Break can have to a watch fan. But before that, I have to ask a simple question: Is your Triple Break useful? And the response is: No! This watch has just no logical purpose. The Dual Split was a demonstration of desirable inutility along with the Triple Divide follows exactly the same path. Do not get me wrong, however. I say so with all due respect and a great deal of affection. This watch is in the same vein as a Lamborghini Aventador SV or a Bugatti Chiron. Impossible to use on the street yet oh-so-essential in the exact same moment. The Lange Triple Split is a dream machine, and fantasies aren’t made to be rational. What’s a double divide? And what’s more, what is a triple divide? Or short, why’s the ALS Triple Split THE most complicated chronograph actually created?Once upon a time, watchmakers made a tool called the chronograph — or the stopwatch (with plenty of queries about who really created it — Nicolas Rieussec or Louis Moinet). They were created in order to figure out the distance of an occasion, from its beginning to its end. Whether they are now used to assess the cooking period of your own pasta or the duration of a meeting, their initial goal was to period races.
What about the Triple Break? As you have probably guessed, the new A. Lange & Söhne Triple Divide includes three rattrapante functions. In addition to having the ability to split the seconds and the minutes, it can split the hours. In his introductory article, Frank Geelen clarified: “Now you can also record events with a duration of no less than 12 hours. For instance, measuring the days of 2 F1 race cars competing, of 2 cyclists at a Tour de France leg, or two runners in a marathon.” And once again, there is a flyback function that entails all three pairs of hands. Perhaps it is not something you will use on a daily basis, but just like a Bugatti Chiron, it is a stunning case of mechanical art. Period!Leaving the technical component aside for a while, the A. Lange & Söhne Triple Split seems like a natural expansion of this Dual Split. Collectors won’t feel lost at first glance since this watch follows the identical concept as its predecessor — however, a closer look reveals a couple differences.The Triple Divide shares exactly the same 43.2mm case as the Dual Split, even if it’s a little thicker (we are speaking minimal differences with only 0.3mm added). This translates into a thick, bulky and large opinion on the wrist and also a far cry from a subtle dress watch. This perception of grandeur is reinforced by the form of the case, with its combination of a thick convex bezel and strong lugs. No bad feelings here, only a simple observation. The Double was a large watch, the Triple is the same. Yet, this has never prevented collectors out of enjoying them.When it comes to colours, A. Lange & Söhne has selected to give the Triple Split among its signature styles, a relatively unobtrusive and modern combination of a white gold case and grey dial with white sub-counters — that can also be found on the Datograph Perpetual.
The solid silver dial isalso usual, galvanized and offers a rich metallic colour, typical of the Saxonian brand’s production. The comparison with the rhodium-plated or blued hands is very great — that is important here because there are no fewer than 10 hands on the dial of the Triple Split!As for the dial, the main difference with the Dual Split is the accession of some 12-hour countertop, while the AB/AUF power reserve indicator is currently placed at 6 o’clock — rather than at its own 12 o’clock position on the Dual Split. The main hands fit the case material and all of the rattrapante palms are all made from blued steel. The big inner flange retains its tachymeter scale. Applied facetted hour markers in rhodium-plated gold finish this dial. In general, no remarkable changes in terms of style and design.Like any red-blooded watch lover, I have an ever-growing collection of bits that I would really like to grow my collection. There are the ones that are “affordable” (in the luxury watch world feel) and more or less easily available that I think would be fantastic additions to complete my growing collection. The newest 36mm blue dial AP Royal Oak, a classic Quick and a 36mm IWC Mark XVIII (slate dial) all fall within that category for me.And then there are the ones which become objects of intense desire lust I file under “grail status” possibly because of their rarity or being at a cost point that needs some careful and disciplined saving over a period of years to obtain. Here, we are talking a Patek 5170G, Rolex 6263 Daytona non-Paul Newman black dial along with the totally magnificent rose gold A. Lange & Söhne Lange 1. If you are not terribly familiar with A. Lange & Söhne, it is because they do not market like the “big boys”, they only produce around 5,500 pieces per year, nor are they a Swiss manufacturer. So unless you’ve begun your descent into the horological bunny hole — no turning back, by the way — chances are it is a title you have not heard. If that’s true, consider this your debut.
I am always curious as to what the thought process is when admirable watch makers design watches after cars. They never seem to look too much like the cars they are modeled after. this might be a bit of an exception as at least the colors match. Do you think that cars are ever modeled after watches? Maybe. Well this is the Audemars Piguet Millenary MC12 Tourbillon Chronograph. Let me unravel that name for a moment. The “Millenary” title alludes to the stlye of the case and the “MC12” name refers to the Maserati super car that the watch is based on. The MC12 is basically a race car, not even really sure if it is street legal. The MC12 is Masterati’s version of the Ferrari Enzo. Then you have the tourbillon complication and the 30 minute chronograph. Audemars Piguet also throws in a power reserve indicator for the Calibre 2884 manually wound movement.
The open work style of the watch is a good intersection between modern and classic. Branding on the dial has Audemars Piguet and Maserati sharing the same size, which is interesting. Audemars Piguet is shorted to just “AP” and you have the Masterati Trident logo. The chronograph has a large central seconds hand with an easy to use tachymeter. The chronograph is also an monopusher chronograph meaning it is operated via a single button. Although the face of the watch is oblong, the dial itself is actually perfectly round. The Audemars Piguet Millenary MC12 Tourbillon Chronograph originally was released in about 2006 in a limited edition of just 150 pieces. The movement utilizes carbon which is part of Audemars Piguet’s talents many other watch makers can’t seem to replicate too well. I personally think that carbon is a bit gimmicky, but it is apparently very difficult to work in small sizes. The blued metal in the movement to match the blue of the car is a nice touch. The case of the Millenary is made of 950 platinum which makes it hefty and expensive. If you ever hear that a super car uses platinum, walk the other direction, it is a damn heavy material the opposite of “weight saving.” Last of all you get a crocodile leather strap. Price? About $320,000. Lower than the original retail price though.
See this Audemars Piguet Millenary MC12 Tourbillon Chronograph watch on JamesList.com here.