Unveiled at Watches & Wonders 2022, the Chopard LUC Strike One chimes a solitary bell as each hour ticks by. In this case, the Geneva brand chose to eschew traditional steel gongs in favor of a patented monobloc sapphire crystal gong that first appeared on the award-winning LUC Full Strike. In addition to its melodious tone, this fine example of Haute Horlogerie has an impressive quality. Angus Davies takes readers on a fascinating voyage of discovery. Discount replica watches

I remember as a kid, summer vacations lasted an eternity. In fact, in my teens, time seemed to be wading slowly and heavily through a sea of ​​syrup. Now that I’m in my fifties, time seems to evaporate into the ether. Weeks can feel like days, and each waking hour seems to be less.

Chopard LUC Strike One is equipped with a self-sounding channel, when passing the time. This complication acts like a metronome in life, throwing away all notions of time to provide a calming soundtrack throughout the day. Suddenly, the rhythm of life seems orderly, steady and without the wrong impression.

History of chiming clocks
The chiming clock is thought to date back to the 16th century. They sometimes have no hands and can only tell the time by hearing. Since then, the sound of bells has been an accompaniment to everyday life in numerous cities, towns and villages across Europe and beyond. The main difference between a chiming clock/watch and a minute repeater is that the latter employs a complex mechanism, including a rack and snail, that “reads” the current time and strikes the hours, quarters and minutes on demand.

Striking watches and minute repeaters
Minute repeaters, and the best chiming watches, usually use steel gongs, which are formed into round shapes and then subjected to repeated cycles of heating and quenching. Thereafter, the gongs are carefully filed until they produce a clear, specific note with a pleasant tone. Typically, a minute repeater uses two hammers to strike two gongs.

Chopard fake produced chiming and minute repeater watches, the latter being more expensive due to their greater complexity. However, the Geneva brand broke with tradition by equipping its chiming and repeating watches with patented single-piece sapphire crystal gongs instead of traditional steel gongs. Originally, the unique sapphire crystal was mounted on the LUC Full Strike timepiece, the manufacturer’s first minute repeater and winner of the 2017 Geneva Prix de la Horlogerie “Golden Needle”.

For a traditional minute repeater, the gong is combined with the “plot” and fixed to the movement and case. However, the patented monobloc sapphire crystal gong is positioned above the movement, and the sound passes through the top of the watch so its quality and the power of the sound are not affected by the case material.

Chopard developed a one-piece sapphire crystal gong for its first minute repeater and now applies its patented technology to the LUC Strike One, a watch that chimes loudly and clearly every hour without harshness.

CHOPARD LUC STRIKE ONE – Timekeeping Mechanism
As mentioned, the Chopard LUC Strike One chimes every hour, but the crown is fitted with a pusher that allows the wearer to toggle the chime mode on or off as desired. An aperture at 12 o’clock on the dial reveals a dual-tone dial that indicates whether the watch is set to “Speak” or “Silent.”

While the striking mechanism is the headline news, the movement contains a host of additional attributes worth mentioning.

Caliber LUC 96.32-L is a self-winding movement with a micro-rotor. Only a few brands have the necessary expertise to manufacture movements with such small oscillating weights. One of the main challenges is to generate enough inertia through the rotation of the micro-rotor to power the mainspring (the movement has two). However, since the release of its first LUC movement, the LUC 1.96 (now known as the LUC Caliber 96.01-L), Chopard has produced several models equipped with micro-rotors. By avoiding the full-size oscillating weight and positioning the micro-rotor flush with the bridges, the resulting movement is thinner and offers excellent views of the fine decoration.

In terms of finishing, the Chopard LUC Strike One executes to a flawless standard, removing all traces of machining. Pearl patterns, chamfers, Côtes de Genève, polished stone and screw sinks, mirror finishes – the variety of finishes used is breathtaking. This watch also bears the Poinçon de Genève, a respected standard independently audited by TimeLab. The criteria required by Poinçon de Genève include the materials used, appropriate quality controls, the finishing techniques employed and the high standard of precision synonymous with “punching”.

The movement is equipped with two barrels, providing 65 hours of autonomous operation. In addition to this impressive power reserve, however, the use of two barrels instead of one allows for a more consistent supply of torque to the escapement and regulator, resulting in superior chronometric performance. replica porsche design watches

Another improvement of this movement has to do with the hairspring equipped with a Philips terminal curve. This feature ensures that the hairspring breathes more intensively, thereby enhancing isochronism. The Chopard LUC Strike One is certified as a chronometer by COSC, another form of independent review that upholds the Geneva Maison’s reputation for manufacturing high-precision timepieces.

Chopard LUC STRIKE ONE – Dial
Considering the complexity of Caliber LUC 96.32-L, the dial is very simple at first glance. In some ways it’s simple, indicating hours, minutes and seconds in a user-friendly format. However, take a second look and examine each constituent element.

The gilt dauphine fused hour and minute hands, a style often favored by the Maison, seem to float above the hand-guilloché ‘central medallion’ adorned with a honeycomb motif. As mentioned earlier, the hole indicating the state of the striking mechanism (open/closed) is located at 12 o’clock and is set with a gold ring,

The beautifully polished hammer at 1 o’clock creates a pleasing animation every hour when it strikes the integrated sapphire crystal gong. Below the hammer, a string of fine lines can be seen. The hour track is snailed and decorated with gilt herringbone hour markers. On the periphery of the hour track is the traditional chemin de fer. Interestingly, this railway-like track is engraved on the innovative sapphire crystal glass. Completing the list of features is the small snailed seconds counter. The combination of texture and warm gold imbues this timepiece with a glamorous look while maintaining a high degree of legibility.

Chopard LUC STRIKE ONE – Case
Considering that the Chopard LUC Strike One contains 275 movement components, its dimensions are surprisingly modest. Measuring 40mm in diameter and 9.86mm thick, this timepiece’s unassuming indexes are a tribute to the brand’s engineering prowess. Once the watch is on, it fits comfortably on the wrist without any signs of scuffing or scuffing.

The watch is wrapped in ethically sourced 18 karat rose gold. By the way, Ethical Gold is a responsible sourcing initiative the luxury brand launched a few years ago. The case combines a polished bezel and caseback with a vertical satin-brushed case. This is yet another example of Chopard sticking to its time-tested design language. Watch lovers should note that consistency of design keeps it from becoming obsolete, and as fans of the Chopard LUC will no doubt attest, the consistency of this Maison is excellent.

A hand-stitched gray alligator strap with matching lining completes this sweet ensemble.

The Chopard LUC Strike One is a high-tech watch that tells the time as each hour ticks by. The striking of the innovative sapphire gong with a mirror-polished hammer accompanies this hour ceremony, presenting a remarkable visual spectacle.

Despite its complication, this is a timepiece that can be easily worn every day. The dial is simple and easy to understand, the movement is guaranteed to be accurate, and the case size is moderate and comfortable to wear.

In addition to the beautiful appearance, the dial, case and movement are decorated with many carefully crafted details. The hand-guilloché ‘central emblem’ of the dial is the product of the extraordinary skill of the craftsman. Likewise, one case would have a simpler finish, but Chopard has repeatedly demonstrated its virtuosity in juxtaposing two different finishes in close proximity. And, let’s not ignore exercise. Leaving aside the superb mechanical craftsmanship of the Caliber LUC 96.32-L, the finish is flawless, a basic requirement for any watch bearing the Hallmark of Geneva.

While most of my articles refer to the impressive timekeeping performance of this watch, time can also be viewed in a philosophical light. Our perception of time, or rather, the passage of time, is affected by our emotions. Traveling by car, for example, stretches out time to the point of downright tediousness. Also, as I mentioned before, our perception of time can be affected by age. However, the solo performance of the hammer hitting the sapphire gong sweeps away cognition and gives it logic. Each solitary chime of the LUC Strike One is an accurate and captivating reminder of the passage of time at a constant rate.chopard alpine eagle replica watch