The Quintessence of Precision with Christophe Claret
In 2019, Christophe Claret is celebrating a double anniversary: the 30th anniversary of his Manufacture and the 10th anniversary of his brand. The watchmaker is continuing to explore the technical territories of Fine Watchmaking and enriching his collection of traditional complication watches with a limited-edition anniversary model.
Writing a new chapter in the history of Fine Watchmaking, the Angelico model is a contemporary tribute to the quest for absolute precision embodied by the 18th century marine chronometers. For the very first time in a wristwatch, Christophe Claret has taken up the challenge of combining a tourbillon with a long detent escapement with a cable-type fusee transmission system. This mechanical feat broadening the horizons of traditional horology is complemented by an instant-jump dual-time display complete with day/night and 72-hour power-reserve indications.
Successfully equipping a wristwatch with a tourbillon featuring a traditional long detent escapement, a mechanism originally designed to operate in a perfectly stabilized position, is an authentic challenge taken on by the watchmakers of the “Soleil d’or” Manufacture. Regarded as the quintessence of chronometric precision, this type of detent escapement first appeared in the 18th century, at a time when watchmakers were competing to create a time-measuring instrument of maximum precision, serving to determine a ship’s exact geographical position at sea. Incorporated into marine chronometer mounted on gimbals, this mechanism demonstrated exemplary reliability in long-term navigation, its only weakness being extreme sensitivity to lateral impacts, which is incompatible with the all-important sturdiness required for wear on the wrist.
As a true chronometry purist, Christophe Claret has once again taken the most complex path by choosing to equip the Angelico watch with a long detent escapement. Chronometric (precision timing) performance is an endless quest, as well as an ambition and a passion. All three of these forces drive the creation of each of the watches developed, designed and assembled since 2009 within the Manufacture Claret.
From an aesthetic point of view, the Angelico watch offers a fresh immersion into the beauty of mechanics. Topped by a domed crystal, the 45.50 mm 5N red gold or titanium case makes depth of field its best asset. While technical sophistication reigns supreme, the details are once again perfectly highlighted, as evidenced in the hand-chamfered Charles X bridges, as well as the escapement’s incabloc shock-absorbers concealed beneath a natural ruby or blue sapphire, Christophe Claret’s aesthetic signatures. The show continues through the sapphire crystal caseback, providing a chance to admire the instant-jump dual-time mechanism.