And so into the carriage — the foundation that retains the flippable watch case. Usually this is a slice of machine-turned metal with all the strap attached. On the Triptyque, it’s home to a perpetual calendar. In the company of this watch’s other functions this almost seems trivial. But think about its place — how can it be powered, given that the movement is in the flippable region of the circumstance? In actuality, a set of cams and levers transmits power, just once a day, from the movement’s case to the bin and the calendar changes. When you’ve got a watch such as this and watch it working (there is one still at Bond Street — even if I sold the puppy, mortgaged the house and flogged my beloved ’66 Amazon 121 I could not raise the cost) you get the sense JLC’s watchmakers do things only for the sheer joy of being able to take action. Just because they can. But it’s not all tourbillons and complication. The Reverso crosses the chasm from the eyewatering, 75-limited-edition, platinum-cased Triptyque at around $530,700 to the Classique in stainless steel for around $5,550 new or $3,500 used. Not exactly pocket money prices, but you’re getting full-on manufacture moves, drop-dead elegance and a watch with nearly 100 years of history behind it.
Ve always thought of this Reverso as “the doctor’s watch” since, growing up, my doctor always had one on his wrist. Nothing ornate. However, I thought it was amazing, and from then on I’ve always equated the Reverso with victory and respectability. What I was not aware of is that it was, based on Jaeger-LeCoultre, a sports opinion. This was from the 1990s, shortly before the maison chose to introduce complicated Reversos — watches I am pretty certain you wouldn’t find on the wrist of the majority of doctors. This year marks the 85th anniversary of the Reverso, therefore Jaeger-LeCoultre continued to release more rectangular watches with high-end complications to observe. I knew I had to spend a week using a few of the stars of this new collection, the Reverso Tribute Calendar. Here we have a look at the growth of the Reverso, from stainless steel sports watch to supreme expression of luxury.
The differences between the 2 dials aren’t only functional, but also stylistic. This extends into the smaller details and finishes, providing the dials every their own distinctive feel. Note that the moon is hand-hammered on the other hand, but not so on the opposite (nor are the moon and stars about the day/night indicator for that matter). In the same way, the front dial is silver with a nice frosted finish, while the rear dial comes with a hobnial guilloché pattern. One nice touch tying the two together is that on either side the real indicators are finished flat, without the various surrounding finishes. It’s a subtle thing, but it reveals Jaeger-LeCoultre’s attention to detail.
Flip the situation and you have sidereal time. Meaning JLC’s watchmakers had to design a particular mechanism which converts ‘normal’ time to sidereal time — a daily variation of 3 minutes and 56-ish minutes. So that the reverse-face’s dial rotates once every 23 hours, 56 minutes and 4 seconds. Oh, and you have also got a zodiac calendar and the times for sunrise and sunset. Consider that last function to get a second. Throughout the seasons the time for sunrise and sunset changes each day with a few irregular moments. And JLC have assembled an opinion you can set to your location that will tell you just when those times will be every day of the year. And there’s a equation of time also, the type of thing that makes most watchmakers weep it’s so foully complex. On the JLC, it’s just calmly sitting in the bottom of the dial, doing everything.
The layout and self-winding system are both absent in the Reverso Tribute Calendar though. Day and month still sit next to each other at the peak of the front dial, however the date today sits with the moonphase index at six o’clock, rather than appearing on the periphery. The indicators are easy to read along with also the absence of an additional central hand definitely cleans up the look a good deal. The sub-seconds register is not missed at all, there is surely enough going on with no. The front side of this Reverso Tribute Calendar. The front side of this Reverso Tribute Calendar, using all the triple calendar and moonphase displays. The opposing side of this watch is every bit as intriguing. It displays another time zone using a stylized afternoon and night index on a deep gray anthracite dial. The reverse of this watch looks a whole lot more casual than the front, along with the gray dial offers a strong contrast to the pink gold markers and hands. However, both dials are remarkable, particularly when you consider the sheer quantity of information that they supply in a clear, organized manner. Generally, you’d get one saturated dial, but rather JLC provides two very elegant dials. Such is the magic of this Reverso. Jaeger lecoultre reverso tribute calendar back. The reverse side of the Reverso Tribute Calendar, with the next timezone and day/night index.
For many years, the Reverso sold strongly. But again in the 1960s and in the early 1970s, it nearly disappeared from JLC’s cabinets. So, softly, it just got sidelined and, after a few years, was pretty much dead and buried. JLC only realised that the Reverso can do a Lazarus if a far-sighted watch dealer bought up the remaining stock of 200 Reverso instances, had them fitted with movements and watched them fly from the shop. Maybe there was life at the old flipper yet. From 1982, the Reverso was firmly back in the JLC lineup as the imaginatively-named Reverso II, but it was only in the early 1990s that the Reverso launched to a blizzard of special editions. In fact, the Reverso has been shown to be among JLC’s most flexible models, housing everything from quartz movements to full scale, haute horlogerie micro-mechanical artwork. There were waterproof Reversos, Reversos using dials (and moves) on both sides (just think about that for a second — we’ll return to it afterwards), ” There was even the Reverso Grande Complication à Triptyque with 19 complications — 19 — that utilizes one motion to power three independent faces each with different functions. The Triptyque is a great example of JLC at its mad best. Picture; On the very first face, there is the time plus a day/night indicator. And in the bottom right is a tourbillon that runs on the ellipse isometer escapement running in 21,600bph using a single pallet controlling the balance. This, of course, has its very own patent — among six associated with just this particular watch. And there is a power reserve too.
Strictly speaking, the story of the Reverso pre-dates the narrative of Jaeger-LeCoultre, which is the reason why the title of the manufacture as we understand it now does not appear on the original 1931 model. Instead, it only reads “Reverso.” Jacques-David LeCoultre and the terrific French watchmaker Edmond Jaeger was collaborators since about 1906, but their businesses remained independent and separate (Edmond Jaeger died in 1922, and leadership of his business was taken over by Gustave Delage) until 1927, when they had been united under a single holding company. On the other hand, the merged businesses weren’t renamed “Jaeger-LeCoultre” before 1937. At 1930, César de Trey, that was extremely wealthy promoting dental products in London before turning to see marketing, presented LeCoultre with an intriguing opportunity. Mr. de Trey had just returned from a trip to India, where he had observed how fragile the dials and crystals of wristwatches were when subjected during sports such as polo, when they may be smacked by a wooden mallet or pumped using a polo ball. British officers stationed in India had broken several watches this way. Certainly the simple solution would be to leave them off the area entirely, but de Trey wondered if his buddies in Switzerland could find an elegant alternative that would allow gamers to enjoy the game with their trusty timekeepers in tow.