At SIHH 2017, A. Lange & Söhne has revealed a new addition to the emblematic Zeitwerk collection. This is not just a new execution of an existing watch however but rather a new type of complication altogether. This watch joins 3 other members in the family: the Zeitwerk, the Zetiwerk Striking Time and the Zeitwerk Minute Repeater (the latter two being chiming watches). For this new kid in the collection, A. Lange & Söhne introduces a new type of striking mechanism, the Decimal Strike, which gives echo to the unique display of this watch. Please meet the A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk Decimal Strike.
As a quick recap, the collection already comprises the Zetiwerk Striking Time – which strikes the hours and the quarters – and the Zeitwerk Minute Repeater – with a rather unique decimal minute repeater system. This latest addition, the A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk Decimal Strike, borrows ideas from both models and merges them into a single watch. From the Zeitwerk Striking Time, it takes the concept of the strike “au passage” (not on demand like in a minute repeater), while from the Zeitwerk Minute Repeater, it takes the concept of striking the tenths. So what you have with the Zeitwerk Decimal Strike is a watch that features an acoustic time indication that relies on two differently tuned gongs to indicate the full hours as well as the ten-minute intervals.
Just like in the Zeitwerk Striking Time, the chime of the full hours and of the intervals (here ten-minute intervals) are dissociated. The hammer on the left strikes the low-pitched gong once every full hour. The right-hand hammer sounds a higher-pitched tone every ten minutes, or in other words, every time a new ten-minute interval begins. Of course, this striking complication can be switched off by pressing the pusher at 4. The two hammers that are visible on the dial side are made of polished steel and, like the hammer bridge, are decorated with a tremblage engraving.
Aesthetically the Zeitwerk Decimal Strike very much follows the established design of the Zeitwerk collection, with a large gold bridge on top of the dial enclosing two windows: one for the hours, with a single jumping disc and one for the minutes, with two jumping discs, one for the tenth and one for the units (and this specific display explains why the Decimal Striking mechanism makes sense). The watch relies on the same base movement as the standard Zeitwerk and the Zeitwerk striking time, meaning a complex calibre with a patented constant-force escapement between the mainspring barrel and the balance delivers the power, which stores energy for one minute and delivers it for each jump of the discs.
The A. Lange & Söhne Zeitwerk Decimal Strike has the same 44.2mm case as the Striking Time and Lange chosen its proprietary 18k honey gold alloy – a soft and light gold tone – paired with a brown leather strap. The Zeitwerk Decimal Strike is limited to an edition of 100 watches (probably as an inaugural run, before some non-limited versions come on the market) and will be priced at 120,000 Euro. alange-soehne.com.
Here are a few live photos, before we go hands-on with this superb watch in a more detailed article.