The winner of this year’s GPHG award in the category of calendar watches is an exquisite perpetual calendar from the Richard Lange collection. The watch has a fine-looking regulator-type of dial with calendar indications set in each of three sub-dials which are used for timekeeping. Its perpetual calendar feature which is highly complex and valued in the world of watchmaking is not the only thing that makes the A. Lange & Sohne piece special. More breathtaking traits can be seen on the rear side of the movement which features a captivating moon and realistic moon phase indication that shows the current stage of the moon in the combination with the constellation of the current positions of the Sun, the Moon and the Earth in relation to each other. Superbly finished movement also has an exceptionally long power reserve which lasts for entire two weeks. This advantageous trait brought to inclusion of another cool feature – a constant force mechanism that guarantees that the accuracy is not impaired and that the watch has the same rate regardless of the state of its power storage. The watch is available in a pink gold or a white gold case with the listed price of $229,200 and $230,400, respectively.
The perpetual calendar feature is one of the most cherished complications in the world of horology. It is quite difficult to produce it because of its extreme intricacy. As it is customary to perpetual calendars and thanks to the supported mechanism that takes months of different lengths and leap years into account, the first correction of the feature will be necessary in 2100. As it has been mentioned, the calendar indications are scattered around the regulator dial of the piece. While the largest minutes counter includes oversized date indication with two windows, the hour regulator integrates the month display and the seconds features an aperture that shows days of the week. The silver face of Terraluna piece is rounded up with an inconspicuous leap year indication at the far right section, as well as with a power reserve indication at the very bottom.
While perpetual calendar is an impressive trait on its own, it is not the only strongpoint of the watch. The feature that swayed the jury of the GPHG 2014 to give the Best Calendar Watch trophy to the piece can be seen on the rear side of the piece. Directly on the watch’s movement is a captivating orbital moon phase indication. The patent-pending trait shows the position of the Moon, the Earth and the Sun. It includes a realistic representation of our planet which completes a full revolution every 24 hours. This also makes it possible to see what time it is anywhere on the globe, just by looking at the number at the periphery that correlates to the current position. Apart from the Earth disc, the complication includes discs that are used for the night sky and for the Moon. The position of the Sun is represented with the movement’s balance which is exposed at the lower left part. This enables the wearer not only to see the stage of the moon, but also the relation of three celestial bodies, as it would be seen from the Northern Hemisphere. Finally, the complication also shows whether it is day or night. The innovative trait of Terraluna timekeeper is much more accurate than the perpetual calendar and its first adjustment will be necessary in 1058 years.
Proprietary caliber L096.1 which enables all of this has a staggering number of components – 787 in total. It features a lever escapement and it integrates as much as 80 jewels in its construction. Furthermore, the caliber is fitted with a shock-resistant screw balance and an in-house balance spring which oscillates at the frequency of 21,600 vph. It is also equipped with a system that allows precision adjustment of the movement’s rate.
Two Weeks of Power Reserve & Constant Force Mechanism
The hand-wound movement possesses a massive power reserve which lasts for 14 weeks. The twin barrels that allow such an opulent reserve are actually located underneath the moon phase indication. However, the exposed part of the movement shows another highly impressive feature. It is the supported constant force mechanism which is activated every ten seconds and which keeps the rate of the watch steady and guarantees a constant torque, regardless of the state of the power reserve. When it comes to embellishments of the movement, we should point out that the caliber is made of silver and that the recognizable swan neck regulator which the brand tends to use is embellished with hand-performed engravings.
A. Lange & Sohne Richard Lange Perpetual Calendar Terraluna is a relatively substantial piece which is caused with larger dimensions of its movement (the width of 37.3 mm and the height of 11.1 mm). Its round case has the diameter of 45.5 mm, while its thickness measures to 16.5 mm. Both front and the back side of the case are supplied with sapphire crystals. The watch with the reference number 180032 is not waterproof. As for the attachment of choice, it is a leather strap which fastens with a folding buckle. While the pink gold version is paired with a brown wristlet, the white gold one comes with a black strap.