A review on the Jaeger Lecoultre SIHH 2015. Duometre Unique Travel Time, chiseled dial.
Duometre Unique Travel Time. That name sounds familiar to you since its unveil on the 20th of November 2012, here, in your favourite JLC forum:
It has first been unveiled in white gold, a limited edition of 100 pièces for the Paris Boutique ( 2013 Collection ), then, one year after, in rose gold ( not limited ).
You will not find big changes in the characteristics of this new iteration of the UTT:
White Gold case, 42 mm big, 13, 56 mm high, water resistant to 50 meters. Cal 383, manual winding, 50 hours power reserve.
Of course, the travel time is adjustable to the minute, with a digital jumping hour. 2 power reserve indicators, one for the home time, the other for the travel time.
The big difference with the former versions is the way the dial is finished as this version receives a chiseled main dial.
This technique is somehow half way between engraving and sculpting. It consists in removing material from the dial with a special graver.
The different elements of the dial are made in brass. The main dial is chiseled, then rhodium plated, while the two sub dials are opaline rhodium plated.
One more difference, the digital jumping hour indication ( of the time zone ) is all red, while only the " 7 " and the " 9 " are red in the Paris Boutique Edition. You also have a red minute hand, for the time zone.
The hours and the minutes are treated in a different color, to make a clearer distinction between the home time and the time zone.
Same for the power reserve hands for the time zone and the home time.
The hands mare made of brass, to be complete.
For the story, the first execution of this dial was not very convincing, and Jaeger Lecoultre decided to postpone the presentation of this piece, to get a much better result. I had the opportunity to see the first prototype, and I can witness the fact that and the main dial and the sub dials were not convincing at all. Now, we have a quite subtle and more pleasant contrast between the two parts of the dial.
Another detail to be mentioned: As it is hand made, each dial is unique, and doesn't look like another one, if you have a closer look to each of them.
I would also like to add that the Manufacture shows another way to finish their dials. After the " hammered " dial of the Gyrotourbillon 3, and the grained dial of the Duometre à Chronographe or of the former UTTs, now you have the chiseled technique, which explains the " raison d'être " of this latest UTT version: A Métiers Rare Edition, capitalizing on the Manufacture savoir faire they are developing for some years, now.
As we are at it, I would have loved to see an improved finish of the movement. I mean deeper anglages, maybe. Not that the movement is not pleasant to look at, by far, but since we have a Métiers D' Art Edition, I would have also expected an improved finish on the movement, too.
This new version is a limited edition of 200 pieces. Which surprised me a bit, to say the least, since the last CEO, Mr Lambert, told me that the Paris Boutique Edition will be the only one in white metal. But the CEO changed, and obviously, they forgot that " detail ".
As for a conclusion, I would say that this latest version is very nice looking, which was not the case of the first prototype I saw in January 2015.
But I would have preferred to see this chiseled dial on the Quantième Lunaire, rather than on the UTT. Why? Because this kind of finishing " invades " your attention, more than on the complication, and, with the UTT, the complication is the Queen, the Star, while on the Quantième Lunaire, the complication is secondary. So, such a finishing would be better welcome, in my opinion, on the Quantième Lunaire, but this is just my own opinion.
Another important detail on the chiseled dial is that you will have to pay quite an important premium, compared to the Paris Boutique Edition, which remains my favorite.
Looking forward to reading your comments and thoughts.