A new celestial body has graced the watchmaking firmament, and it’s a marvel of design and engineering from A. Lange & Söhne. Enter the Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar, the most recent addition to a line that represents the epitome of precision, craftsmanship, and originality. In a move that reiterates their mastery of horology, the manufacture has now introduced a 950-platinum model, enriching their perpetual calendar family with an exquisite new colour palette.
Introduced two years ago, the Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar centers exclusively on its defining complication. Its ingenious design features off-center displays and a peripheral month ring that serves as the framework for all indications.
The result is a watch face like no other, where the leap year and outsized date are presented clearly against a dark backdrop. All calendar indications switch instantaneously, delivering unambiguous readings. Moreover, once set, the mechanism accurately displays the turn of the month until the year 2100 without needing adjustments, highlighting its technical prowess.
The Saxon-based manufacture first ventured into designing perpetual calendars in 2001, with the Langematik Perpetual. Their ingenuity allowed them to engineer a peripheral month ring that advances instantaneously at the end of each month, a design that broke away from the traditional 48-step cam system.
The moon-phase display, another focal point of the Lange 1 Perpetual Calendar, brings in an added layer of exactitude. Built over two levels, it consists of a solid-gold celestial disc that rotates once during 24 hours. With exceptional precision, the moon performs its synodic orbit in 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes, and 3 seconds—requiring correction only after 122.6 years.
Beyond its technical brilliance, the timepiece showcases Lange’s commitment to artisanal perfection. The calibre L021.3, visible through the sapphire-crystal caseback, is a masterpiece. Hand-finished, twice assembled, it features a 21-carat gold unidirectional winding rotor with a centrifugal mass in 950 platinum. The balance beats at a frequency of 21,600 semi-oscillations per hour and offers a 50-hour power reserve.
The Lange hallmark manifests in every detail: plates and bridges made of untreated German silver decorated with Glashütte ribbing, gold chatons held by blued-steel screws, and a free-hand engraved balance cock. Each element speaks to the manufacture’s lofty ambitions in watchmaking.