Friday, June 22, 2007

The "Vintage Serie"
A. Lange & Söhne Tourbillon Pour le Mérite

Ref. 701.001. Produced in a limited edition of 150 pieces in 1996. 18K yellow gold gentleman's wristwatch with visible one-minute tourbillon regulator, 36-hour power reserve and an 18K yellow gold A. Lange & Söhne buckle. Three-body case, solid, polished and brushed, curved straight lugs, transparent case back with 6 screws to view the movement, sapphire crystals. Dial: Matte silver with painted Arabic numerals, subsidiary sunk “guilloché” silver dials for the seconds and the up-and-down indication, aperture with polished steel bridge to view the tourbillon cage. Blued steel "alpha" hands. Movement: Caliber L 902.0, Glashütte 3/4 plate, maillechort, "fausses côtes" decoration, 29 jewels including 5 in screw-mounted gold châtons, power equalization with chain and fusée maintaining power and stepped planetary gearing, tourbillon cage bearing 2 diamond end stones, lateral lever escapement with one-minute tourbillon regulator with equidistant polished steel three-arm carriage, Glucydur balance with screws adjusted to 5 positions, Nivarox balance-spring with over coil invented by Prof. Strasser, shock-absorber, self-compensating Breguet balance-spring, hand-engraved balance bridge. Diameter 38 mm. Thickness 11 mm. The Tourbillon "Pour le Mérite" was produced in limited editions of 150 pieces in 18K gold, 50 in platinum and 1 in stainless steel. Of the 50 platinum examples, 10 were produced with a link bracelet. Out of the 150 in 18K gold, 15 were produced in white gold and 15 in pink gold dial. A unique example was made in stainless steel for Pisa, Milan. This tourbillon chronometer is without exception the most prestigious of all wristwatches produced by A. Lange & Söhne. It represents the culmination of over 150 years of experience in the production of high quality precision timepieces. This is perhaps the only model produced today utilizing power equalization with chain and fusée. Only 12.3 mm. in diameter, the tourbillon itself comprises 76 components, weighing less than half a gram. The planetary transmission gear, compensating for the decreasing power of the mainspring, is built into a miniature cone, measuring only 10 mm. in diameter at its base. Yet it comprises 38 separate parts. In addition to these impressive technical features, the esthetic appeal, flawless execution and craftsmanship stand on their own.

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