Angelus has made a unique customized version of its first model since the reboot of the once famed watchmaking brand. It is dubbed Angelus U10 Tourbillon Calavera and it is a conversation piece of large proportions that is distinguished with its gruesome calavera theme that accompanies its huge floating tourbillion. The latter feature stands separately from the rest of the superbly-finished movement and it is shown from various sides in a vitrine-like manner. It is also extremely large with the diameter that exceeds six inches. The tourbillion stands side by side with a dial with a large colorful skull motif and a dead-beat seconds hand. There is also a display for its extended power reserve. All of this is enabled with its in-house manually-wound mechanical movement with supreme decorations. The watch is presented in an oversized housing made of special steel alloy that minimizes imperfections and it features as much as seven sapphire crystals. The unique timekeeper has the price tag of $118,500.
Rich History of the Angelus Brand
Angelus is a renowned Swiss brand which was originally founded by the Stolz brothers in the late 19th century. It came to prominence for its high-end pocket watches that were characterized with the highest level of finishing and prolonged power reserves. Despite its success and fame in the past, the brand was closed in the late 1970s during the crises that disturbed the entire watchmaking industry. The brand was dormant from that point all the way until it was rebooted six years ago when it was bought by the respectable manufacturer of watch movements La Joux-Perret (which was on its own subsequently acquired by the Japanese brand Citizen). In the new era, the brand’s identity is envisioned by Frederic Wenger and Sebastian Chaumontet (the heads of La Joux-Perret), while its production is based in La Chaux-de-Fonds. The very first model in the latest chapter of the brand’s story was U10 Tourbillon which came in 2015 after four years of preparation that followed the take-over of the brand with a rich heritage. This premier model is the basis for the firm’s latest endeavor that is embodied in the one-of-the-kind novel piece we are now talking about.
Colorful Skull Theme to Praise the Dead and to Celebrate Life
There are, of course, several customizations that are visible on Angelus U10 Tourbillon Calavera, mostly regarding its special theme which is hinted in its name. To be more precise, in the “Calavera” part which refers to a peculiar Mexican tradition that takes place during Day of the Dead (Dia de los muertos). On this holiday, it is common to make colorful representations of human skulls. This is done to simultaneously praise the dead, to celebrate life and to warn about its transient nature. This colorful calavera skull motif is visible in the left part of the watch’s face. It occupies the center of a concave-shaped and gray-tinted dial made of sapphire.
On the top of the calavera background, one can notice hour and minute hands which are brushed, rhodium-treated and filled with blue lacquer. Moreover, there is also a pink central seconds hand that moves as if it was a seconds hand of a quart watch – only once per second. This is, of course, the secondes mortes complication which is just a hint about the complexity of its movement. In addition, the dead-beat seconds complication certainly fits in quite well with the overall theme of the piece.
A Showcased Floating Tourbillon
The much more obvious testimony about the intricacy of the watch’s beating heart, manufacture Calibre A-100, is visible on the front right side of the watch’s face and in a separate dial. There, one can notice a huge flying tourbillion whose cage has the diameter of 16.25 mm. It is showcased as much as it is possible. Four of the sapphire crystals that are present in the construction of the case are made specifically to show the floating tourbillion from different sides. The additional touch that allows better view on it is matte black PVD finish that was used on the inner walls that surround it. The oversized tourbillion with the diameter of 16.25 mm is polished by hand and crafted in stainless steel to reduce its weight. Contritely, the floating tourbillon’s bridge is in titanium which was selected due to its shock-absorbing properties. Another detail that captures the attention is the bridge for the tourbillion cage that is treated with magenta lacquer.
Angelus Tradition – A Supreme Finishing and an Extended Power Storage
Calibre A-100 is likewise distinguished with its extended power reserve which is the trait that reflects the ones that were present in Angelus pocket-watches of olden times. The supported power reserve lasts for around 90 hours. It is based on a pair of mainspring barrels that are placed in series for improved accuracy and sized in specially calculated ratio to secure a flatter torque curve. They are supported with a bridge that displays a criss-cross pattern with laser-engraving and satin-finishing. The two ratchets of the construction are additionally laser-engraved as well as enameled.
Extensive finishing that places the movement in the high-end niche of watchmaking is visible all over the rest of its components, naturally including its tourbillion cage.
A Huge Housing Made of Special Steel
The hand-wound movement with a one-minute flying tourbillion integrates 38 jewels in its construction and it beats at the frequency of 2.5 Hz. It is quite big with the width of 52.1 mm, the length of 30.4 mm and the thickness of 7.5 mm. The large proportions of the caliber and its special architecture are the reason for the huge size of the watch.
Angelus U10 Tourbillon Calavera has a rectangular housing which is 62.75 mm wide, 38 mm long and 15 mm thick. The housing is made of special BO-988 annealed stainless steel which is far superior than the usually used 316L steel alloy.
The material is annealed and treated with bead-blasting, as well as additional black PVD treatment on the inside. The specific built of the piece includes seven domed sapphire crystals, all treated with glare-proofed finishing. Angelus U10 Tourbillon Calavera is water resistant to 30 meters. The one-of-a-kind timekeeper is coupled with a black hand-stitched alligator leather strap that fastens with a stainless steel folding clasp. It has the serial number 0LUAS.B01A.C001F.