Jaeger-LeCoultre again shows its expertise with the Master Grande Tradition à Quantième Perpétuel 8 jours SQ.
The new model is inspired by a historical Grande Complication pocket-watch from 1928. Eighty-six years after, the skilled hands of skeletonisers and enamellers created a masterpiece of contemporary Haute Horlogerie in a limited edition of 200 timepieces.
The engraving and skeletonising artists have dedicated themselves to a new technical and artistic challenge. “It is indeed a high art to pare away as much ‘flesh’ as possible from a movement without adversely affecting its qualities”, master engraver Dominique Vuez explains.
Alongside the technical aspect, the Master Grande Tradition à Quantième Perpétuel 8 jours SQ prioritises and embodies lofty aesthetic standards because its creators were eager to pay tribute to the model from 1928 and simultaneously to prove that the non plus ultra had not yet been achieved.
Hand-wound Jaeger-LeCoultre Calibre 876 concatenates 262 components, including 37 rubies, but is a mere 6.6 mm tall. To the greatest practicable degree, this calibre is manufactured, assembled and elaborately decorated on the Manufacture’s premises. A glance at its surfaces instantly discovers côtes soleillées decorations, which are reserved for the exclusive creations from Jaeger-LeCoultre. The balance, which has no regulator, oscillates at a frequency of 28,800 semi-oscillations per hour. After the mainsprings have been fully wound, the power reserve suffices to keep the movement running for eight full days. Only afterwards must one take the watch in hand and turn its crown, thus refreshing the supply of energy stored in its two barrels.
A total of 200 Master Grande Tradition à Quantième Perpétuel 8 jours SQ wristwatches will leave the Manufacture in the Vallée de Joux, and each one of them is unique! The engravers and enamellers cannot possibly fabricate two absolutely identical models. Numerous tiny details necessarily distinguish one skeletonised movement from all others, and the grand feu enamel in one watch will never be wholly identical with its counterpart in another.