One of the most underrated horological complications from the 19th century is the jump-hour display. The captivating display of time in little windows on closed metal fronts of watches might look deceptively simple but its execution is challenging even for the most seasoned watchmakers. The construction involves two large numeral discs, which need a lot of force to move from one level to the next. This demands a tricky control of energy as well as the right amount of friction to ensure a smooth mechanism.
Although this captivating showcase of time gained popularity at the peak of the Art Deco movement with brands like Cartier, Audemars Piguet and Patek Philippe experimenting with alternative display of hours and minutes on their watches, the concept couldn’t withstand the rise of dive watches and chronographs in the mid-20th century.
Mostly sold to sportsmen, these “no hands, no glass” watches with jump-hour displays were fitted with the best movements and were highly favoured by aviators. In the 1930s, Jaeger-LeCoultre was manufacturing digital displays for wristwatches but surprisingly it never made a jump-hour complication for a Reverso.
This year, to mark the 90th anniversary of the Reverso, which seems like the most interesting fit for a jump-hour display given its robust swivelling case, Jaeger-LeCoultre has introduced the Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Tribute Nonantième.
Crafted out of pink gold, the Nonantième takes the Reverso’s elegant profile a notch up with a stunning caseback that showcases a semi-jumping digital hour indication.
Framed in figure-eight and encircled by rectilinear gadroons also seen on the upper and lower edges of the case, while the jumping hours are displayed in a small round aperture, the minutes are shown on a bigger rotating disc that is partially concealed by a gorgeous three-quarter plate lacquered in blue.
Made at Jaeger-LeCoultre’s Atelier des Métiers Rares, this exquisite display of the night sky sprinkled with golden stars and the day/night indication brought out by the applied golden sun and moon,is a visual treat of sorts.
As compared to the striking caseback, the front of the dial is rather subdued – a silvered, sunray-brushed face with applied golden indexes and dauphine hands. It hardly reveals the big surprise on the caseback and presents a tastefully displayed moon phase at 6 o’clock. Just beneath 12 o’clock is a large date display, framed by an applied filet of pink gold that echoes the rectangular shape of the dial and case.
Keeping up with the tradition of having exclusive movements for its complicated Reverso models, Jaeger-LeCoultre has equipped the Nonantième with an entirely new manually wound movement, Calibre 826. Comprising 230 components, it offers a power reserve of 42 hours.
The Replica Jaeger-Lecoultre Reverso Tribute Nonantième is limited to 190 pieces and is available exclusively at Jaeger-LeCoultre boutiques.
March 4, 1931. René-Alfred Chauvot patents the invention of a “wristwatch which can slide on its base and flip over on itself” at the INPI (National Industrial Property Institute) in Paris. The Reverso watch was born.
One of the most iconic wristwatches of all times (to read its history, just follow the link at the end of this article), the Reverso has 90 years and Jaeger-LeCoultre keeps celebrating this special anniversary.
After the mind-blowing , La Grande Maison has just unveiled the Reverso Tribute Nonantième, a model that introduces a complication that had never been featured in a Reverso before.The 49.4 x 29.9 mm pink gold case with its signature gadroons frames a silvered, sunray-brushed dial with applied golden indexes and Dauphine hands.
Positioned at 6 o’clock the moonphase display is set within the small seconds counter. At 12 o’clock, the large date display has two apertures, framed by an applied filet of pink gold, that have the same proportions of the dial and case.
The solid pink-gold caseback is characterised by two round apertures of different sizes, arranged like a figure-eight and encircled by gadroons that echo the rectilinear gadroons on the upper and lower edges of the case. The small upper aperture displays a semi-jumping digital hour indication.
This is the first time that such complication is integrated in a Reverso but the Manufacture had already developed wristwatches with digital displays in the 1930s.
The minutes are displayed on a rotating disc that is partially concealed by a three-quarter plate lacquered in vivid blue with tiny golden stars to depict the night sky.
Within a small circle at the centre, an applied golden sun and moon, pass above a horizon, to indicate night and day. In the semi-circle below the horizon, a JL logo is set on a sunray-pattern background.
Water resistant to a pressure of 3 bar (30 metres / 100 feet), the watch has a total thickness of 11.72 mm.
For this model, Replica Jaeger-Lecoultre Reverso Tribute Nonantième developed an entirely new, manually wound movement, the Calibre 826. Comprising 230 components and showing the same time on both faces of the watch, it offers a power reserve of 42 hours.
Jaeger-LeCoultre has been busy at work this past year, busy working on the Reverso collection (unfortunately not introducing any proper sporting models like it used to make yet). This next watch introduces a complication that Jaeger-LeCoultre has never put into a Reverso watch before, which is surprising as the Reverso has held all manner of complications from chronographs and tourbillons to repeaters. The case is made of 18k pink gold and measures 49.4mm x 29.9mm, and features the classical Reverso design we all know and love. That is, straight lines down the edges of the case, beautifully rounded case sides and Art Deco lines flowing horizontally along the top and bottom of the case.
On the time dial are even more Art Deco designs, including elements such as the train track inspired minutes scale and the Art Deco hour markers. The large date is framed with pink gold, and there’s a pretty moonphase at 6 O’clock, also, dauphine hands, jus’ sayin’. This is all excellent stuff and would be special on its own. However, on the other side of the case is the new bit.
The new part is the introduction of a jumping hours display. On the caseback is a beautifully simplistic display of the information found on the dial side. An hour indicator shows the number of the hours. Below is a cleverly integrated day/night indicator with the JL logo occupying half of the display. Below that is a minutes counter disk. This may not seem particularly noteworthy, or maybe you had something else in mind, but you must remember that complications are Jaeger-LeCoultre’s department of speciality. They’ve done nearly everything. Also, observe the amount of care and attention that went into decorating this area. All of the lines and layers of engraving have been applied by hand, no machinery required. That takes time and skill and is a true demonstration of the ability of Swiss watchmakers. Inside the case is the manually-wound calibre 826. With a 42-hour power reserve, it is a classical movement through and through. Although you can’t see, you can rest assured that it’s been decorated to Jaeger-LeCoultre’s exacting standards.