It maybe seems like needless excess to “commend” a commemoration like 85 years, yet when you’re a wristwatch as old and as evergreen as the Reverso, it some way or another becomes appropriate.
In honor of the long and effective profession of the horological symbol, how about we investigate the 85 years of the Reverso somewhere in the range of 1931 and 2016.
India is the place where this generally exemplary of all games watches was brought into the world 85 years prior. The story so legendarily goes that frontier India was polo-insane, with 175 polo clubs springing up around the country before the finish of the nineteenth century.
The wristwatch – which had become extremely popular in the mid 20th century – was not something that wealthy polo players were wont to take off to play their #1 game. Such countless watches endured broken precious stones: sapphire gem was not at this point in use, so the lone other decision was mineral gem, fundamentally plain, delicate glass.
And there is no chance that mineral precious stone would confront the hardships of a polo coordinate, during which all around trained polo horses can obtain rates of as much as 60 kilometers each hour and the balls and sticks fly significantly quicker and harder.
César de Trey, a nearby partner of Jacques-David LeCoultre who had as of late become involved in distributing extravagance Swiss wristwatches, was visiting in India in 1930. In the wake of witnessing a game that inevitably finished in some crushed precious stone, the Swiss kinsman took this issue to heart.
He set engineer Alfred Chauvot to the errand of inventing a case that would be substantially more appropriate for the game of polo. What’s more, in 1931 he concocted simply such a case, filing a patent on March 4 in Paris for a casing that pivoted on its own hub to ensure the delicate crystal.
De Trey realized that there was just one assembling in Switzerland to make a particularly complicated watch case, and he went to Jaeger-LeCoultre to make the specially molded system for the craftsmanship deco-styled timepiece.
The rest, as they say, is history. It was a splendid principle involving a basic instrument of two spring-mounted prods fitting into grooves on either side of the watch’s casing. What’s more, presently 85 years after the fact this equivalent plan (with a touch of modernization, obviously) still appreciates extraordinary success.
Eighty-five years is a hell of quite a while for any watch to maintain such a level of fame. In truth, however, the Reverso – whose name is Latin and signifies “I pivot” – did have a couple high points and low points all through near a century of history.
Its early history set the tone
The most seasoned known enameled Reverso portrays a wonderful Indian lady wearing the way of the Parsi, a community found mainly in the Bombay (Mumbai) locale of India. Insights about the romantic tale behind this perfectly enameled watch continue to be a mystery, however what remains is the relationship between the Reverso’s case back and individual enameled artworks.
Indeed, the defensive case back of the Reverso has consistently been utilized for individual adornment, be it the enamel that has encountered outrageous renaissance under the cautious tutelage of the grande maison‘s own Miklos Merczel starting at 1992 or individual engravings (see Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Art Of In-House Enameling ).
The continuing history of the Reverso is likewise intertwined with the assembling’s mechanical innovativeness: probably the finest molded developments in the historical backdrop of watchmaking stem from the craving to equip the Reverso with an enormous variety of calibers.
Alone in 1933, Jaeger-LeCoultre planned three new types for it: Caliber 404 intended for the more modest women’s models, Caliber 410 with auxiliary seconds at 6 o’clock, and Caliber 411 with clear seconds.
Until the episode of World War II, Jaeger-LeCoultre had made no under eleven distinct developments for the Reverso.
During World War II, creation was definitively down, if not altogether out, as for each other watch – and remained so in post-war Europe, when all watch makers depended on solid, round watches to help sales.
In the 1970s, the Reverso got its first precious stone setting, and in the 1980s under the tutelage of amazing chief Günter Blümlein, the case was patched up, thereby increasing the individual components required for its assembling from under 30 to more than 50.
Developed, fabricated, gathered, and finished within Jaeger-LeCoultre’s own dividers in Le Sentier, Switzerland, the Reverso case remains perhaps the most complicated on the market.
The current age
For the Reverso’s 60th commemoration in 1991, the production’s engineers chose to utilize that interesting flip side for an alternate reason: complications on both the front and the back. All the while, it was given a bigger case, and the “Grande Taille” was born.
Following on, the production’s innovative watchmakers added a subsequent time region to the other side of the Reverso interestingly, which opened a totally different scope of opportunities for the renewed icon.
The Reverso Tourbillon showed up in 1993 housed in a 18-karat pink gold case – the first tourbillon in the flip case and one of the principal sequential wristwatch tourbillons by any means – in a restricted arrangement of 500 pieces. Its back was completely involved by the tourbillon and force save indication of Caliber 828.
The following year brought the Reverso Duo, fueled by Caliber 854. While the front dial showed neighborhood time, the back was committed to home time as a 24-hour indication. After three years in 1997, the more modest and embellishing Reverso Duetto equipped with Caliber 844 did likewise for women.
By 2001 the main platinum case showed up in the Reverso line within a restricted arrangement of 500 pieces called the Reverso Platinum Number One. This skeletonized magnificence was trailed by the Reverso Platinum Number Two in 2003, likewise restricted to only 500 pieces.
The Reverso Grande GMT of 2004 brought something new to the line: it was equipped with a single development powering the consecutive dials displaying two distinctive time regions. This was just conceivable gratitude to Caliber 878, a physically wound development featuring a force hold of eight days.
The mechanics of extraordinary jewels
In 2004, Jaeger-LeCoultre additionally continued its long relationship with uncommon Reverso watches for feminine wrists.
This was the year that Jaeger-LeCoultre introduced the breathtaking Grande Reverso 101, one of my unsurpassed most loved watches. At that point, it was fittingly depicted side-effect supervisor Stéphane Belmont as “the magnificence of the infinitely small.”
It remains a secret to me regarding why the innovative créateurs at Jaeger-LeCoultre hadn’t come up with this before then, as it is a watch that most productively and flawlessly combines the entirety of the assembling’s center points of feminine expertise.
The dainty mechanical wonder Caliber 101, a simple 3.4 mm in tallness, is in a real sense put in plain view in a breathtakingly hand-engraved variant behind a sapphire gem dial in a similar Grande Reverso case utilized for the chunkier men’s watches.
The inside case back – by and large improved with perlage on the normal Reverso models – has been impressively snow-set with precious stones of varying size and shape to give a glittering setting to the mechanical superstar. The development seems to drift within its sapphire gem confines, without even a come from the crown to upset its physically twisted 21,600 vibrations for each hour.
That may appear to be strange, yet the mystery is lifted once the swiveling Reverso case is turned to uncover the posterior. The crown situated on the case isn’t really useful. To wind the watch, the crown is taken out from its place of rest and inserted into the opening saved for it working on this issue back. This excellent watch cum-gem with its 1,106 precious stones (absolute carat weight: 3.93) will then remain twisted for roughly 33 hours.
Not to be outshone by the watchmakers in Le Sentier, the diamond setters at the Jaeger-LeCoultre office in the Vallée de Joux made a few more uncommon jeweled pieces in 2004, the most innovative of which is certainly the Grande Reverso Rock Setting.
Master diamond setter Alan Kirchhof invented the new stone setting strategy for Jaeger-LeCoultre. Subsequent to turning the huge loaf cut jewels and other gemstones like rubies topsy turvy, basically positioning them support up, Kirchhof got them into place by pouring liquid gold between them, in this manner creating a custom, yet invisible, setting. The cycle is extremely troublesome and tedious as even the smallest slip of the hand or a metal temperature that is off by even one degree could harm a few carats of the valuable stones. The impact can be named as a matter of fact totally breathtaking, and it’s a given that the watch shown was an extraordinary piece.
It ought to be noticed that these watches comprised the main utilization of snow setting in the watch industry.
First programmed Reversos
Featuring the lone programmed Reverso development to that point as expected, the Gran Sport Automatique of 2004 was situated as both a ladies’ and a men’s watch. With a 45-hour power save, Caliber 960R is a production development comprising 226 hand-created parts beating at 28,800 vibrations each hour. The hours, minutes, clear seconds, and date are included on a matte dark dial with charcoal dim zoning, with white luminescent Gran Sport numerals and silver-plated hour markers.
A popular component that would take on more meaning for Jaeger-LeCoultre from here was the chestnut-shaded, bothered calfskin tie with deployant catch. The ensuing quest for amazing lashes normally drove the Swiss watchmaking to Casa Fagliano in Argentina, which indeed integrated with the polo theme.
A year later, the primary programmed Reverso Grande Taille appeared at the 2005 version of the SIHH, furnished with Jaeger-LeCoultre Caliber 970 comprising 233 components and boasting 50 hours of force reserve.
Though the other side of this Reverso shows a surface held for embellishment, its front houses a considerable lot of the capacities that would for the most part be found on different sides: home time, second time region, huge date, auxiliary seconds, and day/night indicator for the subsequent time region. The reversible case is accessible in stainless steel and 18-karat rose gold on either a tie or a bracelet.
The 75th commemoration in 2006
The 75th commemoration of the Reverso ten years prior achieved a huge number of interesting watches housed in the swiveling case.
One of these is the Reverso à Éclipses, one of its most imaginative Reverso watches to date.
The name of the watch is misleading, however, for it has nothing to do with the cosmic marvel of the overshadowing. Rather, the incredible capacity is a shade situated on the dial that can be opened and shut freely by the wearer.
The shade can be opened, or even just part of the way opened, to uncover a show-stopper made by Merczel and his then-understudy Sophie Quenaan (presently the second most experienced enameler at Jaeger-LeCoultre). By a similar token, the shade can be completely shut, allowing the dial to remain metallic and clandestine. Generally, Jaeger-LeCoultre has put its enameled miniatures on the other side of the Reverso case, yet this time the fine art made using a brush comprising one single marten hair makes up the mysterious 18-karat gold dial under the metal shutters.
Jaeger-LeCoultre respected the watch’s Indian roots by choosing craftsmanship inspired from crafted by Renoir, Ingres, and Klimt just as the mysterious bosses of Mogul workmanship and even a scene from the Kama Sutra.
The gold plates under the enamel are first guilloché by Merczel using a pantograph, as customary guilloché made by using a rose engine would have distorted the thin plate. Then the plate is covered with a reasonable enamel, after which it is painted by the two craftsmen in particularly splendid tones and terminated at more than 800°C (making it stupendous feu). This cycle is known as champlevé and gives the finished show-stopper a profundity and intensity not otherwise possible.
Jaeger-LeCoultre picked hand-wound Caliber 849 to control this show-stopper on account of its smooth stature. Three “thousand feu” themes were made in 18-karat rose gold Grande Taille cases, each restricted to 25 pieces: eight “Suggestive” themes restricted to three pieces each in platinum; 16 “Travel and Discovery” themes each likewise restricted to three each in platinum cases; and “Chinese Zodiac” themes restricted to 28 each in red and blue in 18-karat rose gold cases.
Jaeger-LeCoultre likewise utilized the commemoration freedom to evaluate something completely new: the principal square Reverso!
Perfectly proportioned, the Reverso Squadra fit right in with the brand’s quest for the games watch segment.
Designer Janek Deleskiewicz put together his drawings with respect to a 75-year old patent that was put away at the production. Also, he discovered the perfect recipe for turning the exquisite, rectangular workmanship deco case into an energetic square, filling out the wrist in a masculine way while maintaining the definite quality of the Reverso.
It is a mostly secret certainty that both the rectangular and the square case shapes were originally made simultaneously, with the original makers choosing to push ahead with the workmanship deco-style rectangular case to fit the flavors of the period somewhat better. The square shape was believed to be excessively post-current at that point, and remained in a cabinet every one of those years.
Unfortunately, the Squadra additionally didn’t wind up meeting the overall tastes of the twenty-first century, and it has since been discontinued. I without a doubt, was a fan, though.
The Ultra-Complicated Reverso Grande Complication à Triptyque
Continuing the 75-year festivity at the 2006 SIHH, the brand introduced a Reverso combining showcases of mean, sidereal, and unending occasions in a single terrific complication in a real sense requiring the gifts of 14 unique professionals and around 700 components.
The French word triptyque deciphers as triptych in English, “an old Roman writing tablet with three waxed leaves hinged together, or an image or carving in three boards one next to the other, or something composed or introduced in three pieces of segments,” according to Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.
The Reverso Grande Complication à Triptyque uses each part of the exceptional Reverso case in request to house its eighteen complications appropriately. The front of the Reverso dial shows, nearly obviously, the hours, minutes, a day/night indication, and auxiliary seconds on a one-minute tourbillon cage.
The flip side of this dial, utilizing the similar physically twisted Caliber 175, is held for the cosmic capacities that include sidereal time, a decision of galactic outlines for the northern or southern sides of the equator, the long stretches of dawn and dusk, which should be individually set up in the processing plant according to the geological area of the proprietor, a zodiacal schedule, and the condition of time.
An incredibly novel thing is found in the base of this Reverso case, where one would ordinarily experience the round grained inside of the metal case back. Instead, we see the amazingly neat schedule dial fueled by a module situated within the base (case “back”). This dial shows an unending schedule including a retrograde advanced date, jump year indication, hands for the afternoon and month, and the stages and periods of the moon. The schedule module situated here is just 1.7 mm high, an accomplishment that is simply feasible because of the way that it doesn’t include a winding mechanism.
This module gets its energy from a similar two spring barrels that power the main development, however it is communicated in an interesting way. At precisely 12 PM, if the swiveling Reverso case is in a shut position, a switch plunges into a snail cam’s score, instantaneously liberating energy that has been put away in the barrel. This energy enacts an actuator in the module, which truth be told propels the retrograde date and the wide range of various pertinent schedule shows found there.
Ensuring that the case is appropriately associated at 12 PM couldn’t be less complex. All the wearer needs to do is enact a jolt system to retain the case in the right position. Otherwise, the wearer just necessities to pick the dial the person would like to take a gander at while this interaction is taking place.
The Reverso Grande Complication à Triptyque contains a tourbillon escapement, yet an extraordinary. Jaeger-LeCoultre chose to forego using the conventional Swiss bed escapement for an immediate framework, which the company has named a circle isometer escapement, inspired by customary marine chronometer escapements that send motivations just once per complete vibration as compared to the present common escapements, which do so twice per complete wavering, once after each beat (the tick and the tock, so to speak).
It ought to likewise be noticed that Jaeger-LeCoultre has additionally debuted the utilization of innovative materials in this customary kind of escapement in normal JLC style, without the show related with it right now by other companies.
Since monocrystalline silicon was the most ideally equipped material for the work of making the blocking-switch arm and the getaway wheel, Jaeger-LeCoultre felt free to utilize it, all the while guaranteeing the development various favorable circumstances like enemy of attraction, erosion obstruction, and, obviously, no requirement for escapement lubrication.
Caliber 175’s one-minute tourbillon is likewise one of ethereal delicacy as its filigreed confine is composed of Grade 5 titanium, weighing just 0.08 grams. The pen and its new escapement weigh just 0.29 grams all together.
The Reverso Grande Complication à Triptyque has procured no less than six new patents for the brand. “It’s a watch of exemplifications,” Jérôme Lambert, the company’s then-CEO, commented at that point. For which reason there were just 75 pieces in valuable platinum cases carrying a sticker price of about $400,000 each.
Reverso Gyrotourbillon 2
When Jaeger-LeCoultre introduced its Gyrotourbillon I in 2004, it was hailed as a progressive watch in high watchmaking. This status has not changed, and it is therefore nothing unexpected that the show-stopper containing a circular tourbillon would be patched up for use in one of the brand’s notable Reverso cases in 2008 (the previously was housed in a round Master case).
The distinctive case shapes were by all account not the only reasons that the assembling embraced some basic changes in the Gyrotourbillon’s circular twofold tourbillon type. Continuing escapement research in a mission for more accuracy saw the Swiss brand introduce a cylinder-molded equilibrium spring to it, the first of its kind in a wristwatch, and a spring that currently had the Gyrotourbillon beating at a quicker paced four Hertz instead of the past three, ensuring significantly more precision.
The cylindrical equilibrium spring was invented in 1782 by John Arnold. The extraordinary complexity involved in manufacturing a miniaturized adaptation ensured that it remained the select watch for his marine chronometers and maybe a couple of bigger pocket watches. Just with this watch had it been effectively made totally reasonable for a wristwatch.
Combined with the round twofold tourbillon – whose external carriage rotates at a speed of one minute and inner carriage at 18.75 seconds – exactness is genuinely the request for the day.
Manually twisted Caliber 174 additionally made it essential for the assembling’s case engineers to plan another swiveling housing for it since its circular tourbillon requested a thicker shell than was routinely accessible. Type 174 flaunts a force save of 50 hours with only one barrel fitted with a sapphire gem cover to diminish contact and comprises an aggregate of 371 components, 58 of which are jewels.
Because the mechanics of this watch are so outwardly stunning, it is not difficult to fail to remember that it really tells the time too. And the sky is the limit from there: the front shows the hours, minutes, seconds (on the tourbillon carriage), and has a 24-hour show. Being a Reverso, there is normally an interesting back to this watch too, and it is furnished with a force save indicator.
The Gyrotourbillon 2 was additionally just accessible in a restricted release of 75 pieces.
For a top to bottom glance at this magnificence, see Beautiful Contrasts: Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Gyrotourbillon 2 .
The story of the Reverso’s introduction to the world remains the stuff of legends and this splendid principle involving a straightforward instrument comprising two spring-mounted spikes that fit into grooves on either side of the watch’s edge remains new as a daisy.
Eighty years after the fact, the Reverso case comprised an entire 55 components, reaching an exceptional complexity that barely any, other case makers can coordinate. “The Reverso is the encapsulation of capacity and style,” then-CEO Jérôme Lambert – who presently heads up Montblanc – explained as he tallied the “privileged insights” of the Reverso’s life span at the SIHH: impeccably proportioned case including a decent change between carries, tie and case and an exceptionally useful plan. “The feeling of today remains the feeling of tomorrow,” he said at the time.
On the event of this commemoration, Jaeger-LeCoultre introduced a few new models to the assortment, beginning with the Grande Reverso Ultra Thin, which is housed in the thinnest Reverso case at any point made: 7.2 mm. Accessible in red gold or stainless steel, Lambert uncovered that this super smooth size is “a recognition for the 1931 spirit.”
Even a greater amount of this soul is shown by the Grande Reverso Ultra Thin 1931, which is furthermore equipped with a duplicated vintage dial from the period: it isn’t marked “Jaeger-LeCoultre,” but instead “Reverso” as it was completely inspired by a model found in the files. “The virtue of the style was reinterpreted here,” Lambert said of the two hand-wound restricted version models.
For a full once-over of this watch from a proprietor, see Why I Bought It: Jaeger-LeCoultre Tribute To Reverso 1931 .
A new Grande Reverso Duo depended on the original Duo model that turned out in 1994; its distinguishing strength is “one development, double cross zones on two countenances,” as Lambert explained. “In those days, a watchmaker had a revelation,” he jokingly explained of the primary “reasonable” utilization of the Reverso’s flip side. Physically twisted Caliber 986 with synchronized date additionally sports another dial configuration: white on one side, dark on the other. The stainless steel or 18-karat rose gold case comes in at 48.5 x 30 x 10.2 mm.
The Grande Reverso Lady Ultra Thin was introduced by Hollywood entertainer Diane Kruger: a physically twisted delight in a proportionate stainless steel or rose gold case just 7.2 mm in height.
The haute horlogerie piece accompanying the commemoration was, obviously, a Reverso: the Reverso Répétition Minutes à Rideau.
Capturing the enthusiastic soul of the authority, the Reverso Répétition Minutes à Rideau even offers a never-been-seen component: a “pivoting curtain” that permits the wearer to indeed see different “faces” of the timepiece.
Simply using a fingertip to slide the “curtain” covering one of the sides of the case uncovers the shrouded magnificence of the development and furthermore actuates the repeating component. This model, which likewise goes through the 1,000-hours test the brand performs on its watches, is just accessible in a 75-piece restricted version in white gold. At the point when the curtain is open, a decent piece of the 340 components of physically twisted Caliber 944 are noticeable through the sapphire crystal.
And in 2016?
At SIHH 2016 Jaeger-LeCoultre disclosed another Reverso assortment to the world, which CEO Daniel Riedo portrays thusly, “To check its 85th birthday, we wished to offer another vision of the Reverso, so every individual can quickly perceive the assortment that coordinates their own character and the model destined to become theirs. It was about consciously evolving this unbelievable watch while bearing certain critical essentials in mind: preserving the idea of this outstanding watch that is a concentrated mix of the abundance of ability within our Manufacture, just as safeguarding its polish and its contemporary soul; clarifying the assortments by instating three elaborate articulations – Reverso Classic, Reverso Tribute and Reverso One – with their own distinct universes and yearnings; structuring the exemplary sizes by offering three little, medium and enormous choices; introducing a programmed development on various models in the Reverso Classic line to guarantee genuine ease of use; and, finally, inviting every one of you to imagine your own watch through the Atelier Reverso. Such was our main goal, of which we are presently pleased and glad to divulge the results.”
In other words, we saw three new assortments: Reverso Classic, Reverso Tribute, and Reverso One, each accessible in little, medium, and enormous options.
Additionally, the Atelier Reverso was introduced, which considers customization.
For more information, if it’s not too much trouble, visit www.jaeger-lecoultre.com/reverso.
* This article was first distributed on January 7, 2016 at 85 Years Of The Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso only in front of SIHH 2016.
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