I have a confession to make to you, my fellow Vachonistas; I am a hoarder! Thankfully not the kind who lives in a house jammed to the ceiling with mouldy newspapers and stinking of cat pee; I am an information hoarder. When the The Hour Lounge, the official Vacheron Constantin discussion forum, was suddenly taken offline some four years ago I had, thanks to this small idiosyncrasy, copied many of the interesting and informative posts.
Today I am pleased to launch the first in a series of repackaged articles from those ten lost years as The Best of The Hour Lounge. I say “repackaged” because most of the official articles posted by Vacheron Constantin were preparatory to model launches or exhibitions that are no longer current. The prose, therefore, is not as relevant today and has been omitted or greatly truncated. Be assured the scholarly bits are still there; all the facts, figures and photos of interest to collectors. Where new or additional details are known, they have also been added.
From 2007 to 2017, Vacheron Constantin hosted The Hour Lounge, an online forum where a treasure trove of historic photographs and technical details were shared with participants. Although the forum is gone, some materials were saved. I have endeavoured to curate this information, updated where possible and revised where necessary, for the benefit of connoisseurs and collectors alike. Photo credit Vacheron Constantin unless otherwise noted. Tick Talk
The Best of The Hour Lounge
Vacheron & Constantin Repeater Watches Part I
Quarter repeater, 55mm red gold case, enamel dial, 22’’’ movement with 4 jewels, 8.65mm thick. Vacheron & Constantin’s first repeating watch.
Ladies quarter repeater, yellow gold case with inlaid pearls, movement 6.1mm thick.
Quarter repeater, pink gold case, movement 12.2mm thick. Also plays a musical tune on demand and on the hour.
Quarter repeater, rose gold case, movement is 11.4mm thick.
Quarter repeater travel clock, alarm, grand and petite sonnerie. Gilt metal case, dial in white enamel.
Quarter repeater, hunting case in rose gold, white enamel dial, movement 6mm thick.
Quarter repeater with jump hour and guilloche silver dial.
Alarm watch with gong striking mechanism, silver case. Back engraved with Ethel Clifford poem circa 1903;
Though we attain not, yet we shall have shared together for a space the bread and wine; have stood together on the peak of dreams and seen afar the mystic city shine.
Quarter repeater with grande and petite sonnerie.
Quarter repeater, rose gold case, guilloche silver dial, movement 4.1mm thick.
Quarter repeater pendant watch, silver dial, case with flower motif guillochage, movement 4.1mm thick.
Minute repeater, unique piece ordered with gilt brass case and repeating slide on right side of watch.
Minute repeater, day and date indicated via apertures in the enamel dial.
Minute repeater chronograph, minute counter, pulsometer, 51.5mm half-hunter case, calibre RA 18/19’’’, 31 jewels. Watch owned by Prince Louis Napoleon, last of the dynasty.
Minute repeater chronograph, perpetual calendar and moon phases, calibre RA 19’’’, 33 jewels, 59.5mm red gold case.
Five-minute repeater chronograph in hunting case, perpetual calendar, movement 11.7mm thick.
Quarter repeater with date and guilloche dial, movement is 7mm thick.
Quarter repeater in rose gold case, white enamel dial, movement is 4.52mm thick.
Minute repeater, perpetual calendar, split seconds chronograph, calibre RA 18’’’ II with 32 jewels, 50mm gold case. A similar watch was produced in 1901 with a simple chronograph.
Minute repeater with guilloche dial, movement is 5.05mm thick.
Minute repeater, hunting case, split seconds chronograph with minute counter. Movement is 9.25mm thick.
Quarter repeater chronograph, pink gold case, 9mm movement thickness.
Minute repeater chronograph with alarm, 15-minute counter, calendar with day/ date/moon phases. Calibre RA 22’’’, 32 jewels, Observatory bulletins from Geneva and Teddington. One of four pocket watches ever made by Vacheron & Constantin with alarm function, this watch belonged to Bhupindra Singh, the Maharajah of Patiala.
Quarter repeater chronograph, hunting case, perpetual calendar with moon phase. Movement is 8.36mm thick.
Minute repeater chronograph with pulsometer scale, calibre RA 19’’’ 20/12, 35 jewels, 55mm case is 5.64 mm thick.
Minute repeater chronograph with 7 1/2 minute grande and petite sonnerie, 20k chiseled gold case. Commissioned by James Ward Packard.
Minute repeater, platinum case. 4.2mm movement thickness.
Minute repeater with perpetual calendar and moonphase, movement is 7.75mm thick.
1928 The Boisrouvray
Minute repeater, carillon with 3 hammers, split seconds chronograph, perpetual calendar with day/date/month/leap year indication, moon phases and alarm.
1929 The King Fouad
Minute repeater, carillon with 3 hammers, grande and petite sonnerie, split seconds chronograph, perpetual calendar with day/date/month/leap year indication and moon phases. Calibre RA 21’’’ with 46 jewels.
In 1927 Vacheron & Constantin were working on the piece, destined to be their most complicated watch up to then, when a delegation from the Swiss colony in Egypt purchased it as a gift for King Fouad, a well-known watch collector. In 1929, the completed watch was presented to the King.
Minute repeater, split seconds chronograph, perpetual calendar and moon phases. Movement is 8.46mm thick.
1934 The King Farouk
Minute repeater, grande and petite sonnerie, split seconds chronograph, perpetual calendar with day/date/month/leap year indication, moon phases, alarm, and power reserve indication for going train and sonnerie.
Manufactured from 1930 to 1935, 80mm gold case contains 820 components and features 13 hands. Purchased as a gift to King Farouk of Egypt.
© 2017 - WatchProZine